Why I chose to stay at home for uni (& all the worries that go with it)

staying at home for uni

It’s funny, really, how people seem so shocked to hear that you decided to stay at home while attending university, rather than moving out to the accommodation.

You’d think it wouldn’t be a big deal, but when people constantly hit you with “WHY?!” in that really demanding, disparaging tone of voice,  it can raise hackles after a while.

There’s absolutely no problem in asking – it’s an interesting conversation. I myself love hearing why people chose to move out or stay at home. But there’s a difference. Asking out of interest is fine. Basically demanding why as if that person made an idiotic decision? Well, that’s another matter. Especially when it’s constantly followed with “but you’ll not get the full uni experience!”

This is how it goes here in England, at least. Or maybe it’s even just the small part I live in. But either way, my brain has gone back and forth over this topic for months…and so I’m going to babble about it.

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Why I chose to stay at home

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So to put it in simple terms, my decision comes down to this: the university I’ll be studying at is in the same city I live in.

It really is that simple for me.

Of course, a lot of people move out for uni because they have to – it’s a lot of time, money and effort to commute when your university is in another city, after all.

But my university would be considered a stone’s throw away. I could walk it there (and will do the majority of the time, because gotta save that money). So I honestly don’t see the logic in me moving out. Why would I spend thousands of pounds per year, just to live probably half an hour away from where I already live, in a smaller room? Why would I go through the hassle of choosing which books to take with me, buying new things I’ll need for the accommodation, deciding what to leave behind, and then transporting it to…a flat down the road?

To me, there is literally no logic in that.

“But you won’t get the full uni experience!”

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Won’t I?

You see, I’m not someone who likes to go out at night, to clubs drinking and whatnot. In fact, it sounds like a nightmare to me. I might try it at some point, just for the sake of saying I tried it, but most of the time I can guarantee I will choose to stay at home, studying or reading or something. And when people talk about the “uni experience” in that way, more often than not they do mean the whole stereotypical “student” side of it – the chaos of freshers week as everyone gets drunk and party with new people every night. *shudders* Quite frankly, I won’t feel like I’m missing anything.

The actual everyday living side of it…I don’t know. I have actually experienced what it would be like to live in accommodation, sharing the place with a bunch of other people. And maybe I will miss out in that aspect. Who knows.

But I’ve also heard from numerous people that it doesn’t actually matter. People who live at home still make friends and go out at night if they want to. There’s a lot of stories from people who go out and just stay in their friend’s accommodation for a night or two. It’s hardly a stern barrier between those who moved out and those who didn’t, a barrier where the two types of people don’t interact.

That reminded me of Donald Trump, halp.

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Worrying as ever

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I worry. As always.

I went through a period of time when I seriously considered if I’d made the wrong decision. Maybe I should have chose a different university, and gone through the whole experience of moving out? In my longing to travel more, maybe it would have been perfect for me to go and live in another city?

And then I realised I could, if I really wanted to. I still had my second option, a university in another city. I could very easily choose to go there instead and do it all. And when that option became possible, I suddenly realised…no. That wouldn’t make sense.

This worry of mine originally came from my longing to travel. And yet if I moved away, the majority of my loan would be spent on the accommodation, so I’d only actually travel to that place and back home again for holidays. If I stay at home however, I’ll have a bit of leeway with money, meaning I’ll be able to travel much more whenever I can. And that thought gives me so much comfort because finally, at long last, I will actually be able to do it.

Still, it sucks to see everyone preparing for uni so much earlier than me. I actually hate having all this free time they dub “summer”, because the endless hours to fill overwhelms me. I need to have some sort of structure to my day again, something productive to do. So I’m just forever waiting for uni to start. And for most people, September is the month it all kicks off. A week or two in, everyone starts moving to their new homes, get to grips with the city, find out what’s happening and meet new people. And I absolutely adore hearing about it all. Meanwhile my course doesn’t start until the very end of September, so it’s still a good month away until I do anything really.  So I half long for that bustle of moving out.

I’ll just live vicariously through everyone else’s stories.

And of course, I worry that I won’t make friends. I won’t be thrown into the situation of living with another group of people, and having to at least maintain a comfortable scene with them. I won’t be able to relate to most of the people in my class in the sense that “this is a new city!” or “omg is your accommodation like this?” And especially since I don’t like going out at night…well, I can’t see the socialising part going too well, honestly. But granted, I would have worried about that whether I was moving out or not. So there’s really no difference there.

We’ll see how it goes

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And so, this is where I’m at. One huge mess of babbling thoughts, honestly. But for now, that’s enough babble for one post. But I’m sure I’ll keep you all updated, as things go on.



Are you moving out for uni? Or staying at home?

I’d love to hear about your uni experiences!

Until next time…

Ashleigh

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46 thoughts on “Why I chose to stay at home for uni (& all the worries that go with it)

  1. I can totally relate to you, with tackling away the stereotype of ‘getting the full uni experience’. And I’m not even in uni yet lol. But your exact thoughts would probably apply to me if I were in that situation :p
    Good luck and happy studying though, I hope uni goes well 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I stayed at home when I went to school to. It didn’t make sense to me to spend all that money to move to a smaller uncomfortable place with a roommate (heck no) just for the “experience”. Yes I stayed at home but I saved a ton of money and feel like I still got the whole experience. Don’t listen to those people!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m so jealous! I live at home for uni as well…but it’s a 90minute public transport travel just to get to uni…
    It’s so interesting seeing your perspective – especially since I’ve always wanted to move out for uni! But in Australia, I think the culture might be a bit different? Most of us still stay at home (or that’s the case with most of my friends anyway!), unless we’re moving interstate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, there’s a huge difference between different countries and their attitude towards moving out for uni! 90 minutes is a huge commute though – I applaud you for managing it all the time!

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  4. I stayed at home during uni for pretty much the same reasons — money and proximity (though walking was never an option for me) — and I, too, was told so often I didn’t get the full uni experience. In some ways, living so far from campus did, I think, impede my social life, but, looking back on it, I don’t feel like I missed out. I feel like I made a smart decision and I got from uni what I needed.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I completely understand your motivation behind staying at home! I start uni next month and I am beyond nervous about sharing with other people, but the uni I want to go to is too far away to commute everyday. I’m not a massive party animal so I am nervous I won’t fit in. Great post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure you’ll fit in just fine! A lot of people aren’t wild party animals ahaha – and especially after the first few weeks of being there, everyone will settle down anyway! Good luck with uni (I’m nervous too, but we’ll manage!)

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I stayed at home for uni too, much for the same reasons of going to a university in the city I live in and for money reasons too.

    I have friends who I refer to as my “local friends”. They didn’t go uni, but they went to college or into work in the city I still lived, so I was able to socialise with them still. When freshers week came round I would go out with them and then mingle with other students and I made some friends that way. But the friends that have lasted the longest were the ones that were on my course, as well as others I met at uni events or by chance in the library.

    You’ll do brilliantly at uni Ashleigh! 🙂 When you meet students that are new to Sheffield, you’ll be able to recommend places to go/eat/etc, you could offer a tour/or they might ask- you never know what might happen.

    Be sure to check out the societies page too- they are a great way to meet new people, plus it looks good on your CV! There are some you might like, like- English, Creative Writing, Photography- as well as others like Disney and Quidditch!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahhh it’s sounds like you had a fab time, I’m so glad!!
      I can’t say I’d be too helpful giving tours to new students ahaha – though I live here, I barely know of good places myself. I’ll probably end up doing more exploring by hearing of places the new students have found ahahaha 😆

      Liked by 1 person

  7. That seems like a good decision! I’m staying home as well, because I can take the subway and 25 minutes after, I’m at Uni. I thought about going to another city too, but then I changed my mind about what I wanted to study, and they don’t offer that course over there (I’m glad for that, honestly), I have to wait until September 11th to see if I got in in my first option of course. I hope I do, I don’t think I could wait until the end of the month to try again. Just like you, I need something to do. And everyone keeps saying you’ll make friends easily at Uni, so I’m trying to believe that. I hope everything works out for you! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I live at home for university, but that’s because I’m less than a ten minute drive away from my campus. I worried about missing out on the full experience of halls etc but I’m in my third year already and have definitely had the same experiences as everyone else, just without all the roommate frustrations. I like that I have tons of space at home and parents that still cook for me if I’m too busy to do it myself during exams etc. I still go out regularly and joined a bunch of clubs so I’ve met tons of people despite not living near any of them. Whether you live on campus or not really isn’t a big deal, even though it will feel like it at times. And you can always go stay with a friend in halls some nights. I did that a lot my first term and got to know my friends’ roommates and all that fun stuff. I hope you have a great first term at university! It’s nowhere near as daunting as it seems! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I remember all throughout high school, I had teachers telling all of their students (myself included, obviously) that you just HAD to move out and live at school in order to get the full college experience. And I totally caved to that and did it when, honestly, it would’ve made a lot of sense for me to at least consider going to school closer to home. I mean, I think I ended up making the right decision for me, but I definitely felt pressured to go and live somewhere else. There are pros and cons to both decisions and I think it’s ridiculous how people try to push everyone to go live at school without considering that it may just not be the best option for them.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s so odd that people are so pushy about it! Like you said, both options have their pros and cons – it should all be laid out in front of students so they can make the decision themselves!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I was confused at first… I thought you meant doing university online? Then I finally caught on at the end. I don’t get why people would make such a big deal out of it. Staying at home is way more economical! And it makes more sense when you live near your uni!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I understand perfectly. I left home for my bachelor’s degree and it was fine. I’m not a party spirit either, so it didn’t matter much when it came to night events. I only got out when I wanted to. However, now that I know myself better, I made the decision to stay at home for my master degree. There’s a university 35 minutes away from where I live and it’s cheaper to stay at home. This way, I still have my stuff, my bedroom and despite the tuition, I know that I can save money for other things (like books or traveling adventures). I can organize myself in a different way. I’m not going to lie, I’m worried about making friends. (Who isn’t?) I’ll be a fish out of water and I’m not the best at starting conversations with random people. Hopefully, everything will be alright. My classes won’t begin until the middle of the month (maybe on the 18th?) so I have more than enough time to think about it. Good luck to both of us, Ashleigh! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh it definitely makes sense with a masters degree, there’s much less funding readily available to help with tuition fees etc, you need to save money where you can because they’re hardly cheap!
      My classes don’t start until late either (the 25th I’m pretty sure). Good luck to you too! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I don’t understand anyone who wouldn’t be ok with this decision. My university was also in the same city I lived in (and still do). I commuted to school every day. And my school actually had a reputation for being a commuters school so it was VERY common to know other students who also drove from home. Plus, I couldn’t afford university – I took out loans. So obviously I couldn’t afford to go to a school away from home and then pay for a dorm or apartment. That wouldn’t make any financial sense for me. You do you girlfriend! Haters gonna hate!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I think you just need to do what’s right for you and try not to worry about anyone else.

    I moved to a university 600 miles away from home and loved every minute of it. My brother went to university a 30 minute train journey away and he loved it too, he has considerably less debt that I do!

    Short story, while I wouldn’t change what I did I can definitely see the benefits of staying at home if there’s a local university that does the course you want to study.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m currently going into my second year of university and I chose to stay home for my first year and this one coming up. But I actually decided to go study abroad for my third year (in England, I’m Canadian) where I will be living in residence. I live only about a half an hour away from my school right now so I didn’t see a point in moving into accommodation either but I also thought it might be a cool adventure to go study abroad for a year. But I totally get everything people say! There’s so many different ways to experience university that I think it’s silly people only think that living in accommodation is the only way.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Loved reading this – I went to University in Newcastle so moved away, but I really enjoyed reading your reasons why you’re going to stay at home. I was friends with a few people who lived at home and they didn’t miss out on anything we did, so try not to worry and good luck! Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Ohhhh my goodness I’m in the exact same boat woah someone can relate xx the thing is though I’m afraid I won’t be able to connect with others as strongly as everyone else might buy sharing those special moments together *sigh* I guess it’ll just have to happen in seminars x

    Liked by 1 person

  17. When I went to college, I did the whole “college experience” where you move into the dorms and all that goes with that. The college I attended was only 15 minutes away from my parents house. If I could go back and do it all over, I would have stayed home my first year or two and just saved the money. Like you said, just because you live at home doesn’t mean you can’t still have a wonderful experience. I think you have made a very practical decision.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. I’d say just write however feels most natural to you! A lot of people think they ought to make it really colloquial or story-like, but people are more likely to read if they can tell it’s coming from you and not forced I think 🙂

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  18. As with Geraldine with AUS, the culture in my country, Ecuador is different about university XD. Here few universities have dorms for students. Only two or three I think. I live in one of the main cities, so a lot of people come from others to study, but they either a) move in with family or b) rent an appartment. But in general, living in dorms and sororities and all that stuff, for us just exist in movies XD

    So I stay at home! Wake up super early for classes at 7am and then go to internship, and then back home (yay!) and then go out again for night classes. We still have parties, and everything! Which I always decline to go in favor of staying at home and stuffing my face with popcorn and a good book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s so interesting! I love seeing the differences in cultures, it’s fascinating how simply being in a different place can make so much difference ahaha 😀
      Staying at home with a book and popcorn sounds much better in my opinion 😆

      Like

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