College apartments should have a distinctive sensibility that makes the apartment a home-away-from-home for the busy and active college student. When deciding what must-have gadgets to bring into your apartment, you should consider both what will make your life easier and what will make your life more fun.
1. A Space-Saving Computer
No matter your major, you’ll be using a computer for essays, research, drawing and/or design constantly throughout the year. The computer will also be one of your gateways to your friends and family back home and across the country, as well as a major source of entertainment when you’ve got time to kill, as you browse the Internet, play DVDs, listen to music, watch videos and shows streamed online and keep up with social media.
The best college computers are sleek so that you can fit them on small desks, easily carry them around the apartment or put them on lapdesks when you need to find the space. Better yet, college computers are mobile, so you can take them around campus as well. Think laptops, netbooks and iPads; just don’t forget that the smaller you go, the more difficult it can be to compose essays or spend long periods online.
2. A Mobile Device Charger
You’d be hard-pressed to find a college student who doesn’t love mobile devices, like a cell phone, an iPhone, an iPad, a portable game player, an MP3 player or a book reader. That’s why one staple of well-equipped college apartments is the mobile device charger. The latest models take the form of a sleek “powerstick” on which you can literally just drop your devices and they’ll start charging. Having one easy place to charge all of your mobile devices makes the most of small spaces and eliminates the need for multiple power cards to keep track of.
3. An Electronic Book Reader
An easy way to cut down on massive bi-annual or quarterly bookstore costs and to clean up the clutter in college apartments made from having a stack of books for each class is to invest in an electronic book reader. While not all text books are available on the devices, many of the novels you may be asked to read are available for a cheaper price on your device—or are possibly free, if they’re part of the public domain.
4. Kitchen Gadgets: Toaster Oven and a Crock Pot
If the college apartments you’re looking at don’t include a full kitchenette—or even if they do—you’re sure to appreciate a toaster oven and a crock pot more than you’d think. It’s all too easy to eat or microwave food while in college, but having a toaster oven will allow you to make fresh meals that need to be baked in the oven, but in a size that’s right just for one serving. Crock pots allow for simple cooking—just toss in the ingredients and allow to simmer for hours.
Including these must-have gadgets in college apartments should be a priority for all college students moving into their first apartments. If you have roommates, you may be in luck, as you can decide to share responsibility for bringing at least some of these gadgets into the apartment. If you’re living alone, look for good deals online, at thrift stores and during back-to-school sales.