A penny saved is a penny earned.

~Benjamin Franklin

Why It's Important to Spend Time Organizing Your Dorm Room or Apartment

On average, around 40% of college students live on campus. However, there are many schools where close to 90% of students live in university housing. If you are going to stay in a dorm for the next four years, it is important to spend some time making your room feel like home. It will help you to reach your academic goals and unwind after a long day at school.

Keep Your Budget In Mind

While you are at it, keep your budget in mind. The costs of outfitting your new home tend to accumulate fast. Students expenses include much more than just tuition and fees. According to the College Board Trends in College Pricing 2016 report, public two-year college students spend on room and board $8060 per year, students at public four-year institutions spend $10440, and students at private four-year institutions spend $11890.

Undergraduate Student Budget

Room and Board Costs Vary by Type of Student, Region, and Type of Institution

Of course, these are average costs and they will vary for undergraduate, master’s and graduate students. As shown in the Table below, room and board expenses of undergrads and master’s students are comparable, while graduate students spend the most.

Tuition and Room and Board Expenses

Room and board expenses also depend on the location of your school. Here is a breakdown of tuition and room and board expenses by region of the country and by institution type.

Student Expenses by Region

Here are five tips to save money on bedding, kitchen utensils, storage containers, and other essential home goods. Use these tips to organize your new home on a budget. You might be also interested in reading this blog post:

How to Set Up a Home Gym on a Budget

5 Tips to Save Money on Organizing Your Dorm Room or Apartment

1. Save Money with Deals of the Day on Groupon

Not many people know that Groupon is a great way to save money not only on local events, activities, travel, and eating out, but also on many other goods. Check out their Deals of the Day and Trending Deals sections! By the way, they have a Super Sized Sale going on today and tomorrow.

8/14-8/15 Super Sized Sale

Here are my favorite Groupon Deals of the Day. They won’t last very long, so get them while they are still available.

  1. 14-Piece Glasslock Storage Containers. These containers are very convenient to store food leftovers. They are very durable and made of recyclable materials. You can also use them to pack a one-serving lunch.
  2. Guy Fieri Ceramic Nonstick Cookware Set (21-Piece). This is a great deal on high-quality cookware like that. Ceramic finish makes it easy to clean. It would also make a great Christmas gift. The same set costs $90.02 on Amazon right now.
  3. Makeup Storage Organizer. I don’t own this one, but I’m seriously considering buying it to store my makeup. I’ve been enjoying my Ipsy Glam Bag subscription for a few months now. Now that I’m fully stocked with makeup for just $9.99 a month, I need a better storage solution. Every month I get a customized surprise bag full of goodies. Who doesn’t like surprises? I haven’t had a month yet when I didn’t like what was in the glam bag. If you want to sign up for Ipsy, use my referral code.

2. Save Money on Bedding and Kitchenware at TJMaxx and Marshalls

I must admit I love TJMaxx and Marshalls! You can save a significant amount of money on bedding, kitchen utensils, glassware, and silverware there. Here is a bonus tip for smart shopping at discount stores. To compare prices for your finds, use PriceGrabber or just search for a similar product on Amazon. No need to overpay, if you find it cheaper somewhere else.

3. Save Money on Home Goods at Aldi

You can significantly reduce your grocery spending by shopping there. Aldi offers high-quality produce and other groceries for less. In fact, their motto is, “Great quality shouldn’t come at a high price; rather, great quality should come with everyday low prices.” This is how it should be!

Aldi is my favorite find of the summer. I live in Boone, North Carolina. The closest Aldi store to us is within a 30-minute drive, in Lenoir.

Even though it’s quite a drive by Boone standards, it’s totally worth it in terms of weekly savings. I also like that Aldi carries many organic and gluten-free products and cares about the quality of their goods.

This week, I spotted several very affordable bathroom stands and storage organizers there. There was also a larger 4-tier bathroom stand for $29.99. Check their weekly ads for more information.Bath stand and storage organizer

Aldi is able to offer low prices for several reasons – higher efficiency, fewer employees, volume purchases, and exclusive brand products. In this article, Lauren Greutman discusses the reasons why Aldi is so cheap without sacrificing the quality.

4. Save on Shipping When You Sign Up for Amazon Prime Student

Did you know that students could save on Amazon Prime membership? I shop at Amazon all the time. I live in a small college town, and Amazon Prime makes it easy for me to get what I want fast and easy. With Amazon Prime Student, you will get a 6-month free trial of Amazon Prime. After the 6-month trial period, you will get Amazon Prime at 50 % off. Amazon Prime is a great service that offers free 2-day shipping on many items, Prime video, Prime reading, and more.

I’m always looking for the best deals on Amazon. Here are a few great deals to organize your dorm room:

1. Lochas Soft Indoor Area Modern Rugs – 4 x 5.3ft – $26.99

2. Globe String Light – 13 ft – $11.99

3. Fancii 10-Pocket Bedside Caddy – $13.99

4. Sorbus Set of 4 Foldable Drawer Dividers – $10.99

5. Receive Cash Back With a Free Account at Ebates

Last but not least, you can receive cash back when you shop online at Amazon, Groupon, and many other stores. You don’t need to do anything to earn cash back. Just sign up for a free account at Ebates, and click on Amazon or any other site from their site. Cash back offers vary from store to store. Once you click through to your online store of choice and make a purchase, the cash back will show up on your Ebates account within 7 days. Ebates will send you a check in the mail every quarter. I have been happily using Ebates for a few years. It doesn’t cost me anything to have an account. It’s always nice to receive a check from them in the mail.

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