Housing options from students’ perspective


Nick Harmon, junior politics major, reviews the Student Apartments.

The good: You get a lot of space. Each Student Apartment has two bedrooms, a bathroom, a living room, a kitchen and a balcony. The living room comes with a couch, a table with four chairs, and a coffee table. The kitchen has a refrigerator/freezer, a sink and a stove/oven. It’s certainly a step-up from the dorms.

Another big step up from the dorms is that you get a whole kitchen! I was glad to have the choice of eating in the cafeteria or preparing my own food.

There are no open house hours, no dorm meetings and no RAs. There is a lot more privacy. What’s more, the Student Apartments are not a dump like “Old Mill,” and it costs less than the dorms.

The bad: You have to take care of electricity and water. That means you pay more if you use the heater or A/C more. There is no dishwasher, and the extra space means extra cleaning. Cockroaches are also a common problem in the winter for ground-level apartments. Finally, Student Apartments are incredibly overpriced compared to off-campus apartments.

The Bottom Line: The Student Apartments are the best way to go if you are not concerned about cost. They have a lot more perks than living in the dorms, and you are still two minutes away from your classes. Just bear in mind that you’ll save about $2,000 in “Old Mill,” and even more if you hunt around for apartments a few miles away.


Liz McClernon, junior theology major, reviews Tower Village.

Tower Village, or “Old Mill” as it is lovingly referred to by UD students, is one of the premier living options for upperclassmen. Long has “the Mill” been an offshoot of the Bubble, albeit perhaps less entrenched in academic rigor or focus. As such, many upperclassmen choose to continue the tradition and live “across the tracks” of Northgate. Perhaps contrary to popular opinion, however, “tradition” is not the sole driving force behind this decision. Tower Village, like any place, has both its pros and cons.

Some pros: It’s convenient, just a short seven-minute walk from the Circus to Braniff (it has been timed). It’s affordable, with a couple of apartment-mates; it is likely among the cheapest living options in the area. It is social, with so many UD students living here; the name “Tower Village” is more than appropriate. It is safe because both Irving Police and state troopers do a frequent patrol through the apartments, night and day. There is often a prompt response for all maintenance issues. There are dishwashers.

Some cons: “Old Mill” apartments are not the highest quality apartments in the Irving area. Although prompt, the need for maintenance is unfortunately frequent. Oddly, there is no overhead lighting provided. Noise can be a problem, especially on weekend nights with the active social life of residents. The visitor vehicles without a sticker are often towed when only left for a few minutes in resident parking. Internet can be spotty, regardless of provider.


Paige Hryszko, junior theology major, reivews the condos.

So, you want to live in the condos? Consider these things first:

First: you probably won’t get one. No, really. Most of the condos were claimed for 2012-2013 by the beginning of February.

Second:it’s totally hit-or-miss. All the condos are individually owned, so your experience – from how nice your condo is to how fast things get repaired – will depend on your individual landlord.

Third: isolation. The condos are a small complex. If you aren’t friends with other condo-dwellers, you are doomed to constantly making the hike or fence-climb to Old Mill to see your friends, who all seem to live next door to each other.

But seriously, there’s a reason so many people want one. Start with convenience. I can get to most places on campus twice as fast as most of my friends in the Student Apartments.

Then there are parties. We aren’t under the same restrictions as on-campus residents, most of our neighbors are students, and we are not patrolled by “Old Mill”’s mysterious security that seems to care only about the apartments that might be having a social gathering.

I can do laundry in my own apartment. If I hated everything else about the condos, I would probably stay just for this. Most importantly, it’s not “Old Mill.” I look at “Old Mill” and count my blessings, every single day.


Christine Hardey, senior english major, reviews the Colony Apartments.

The Colony Apartments, my current home, are on Coker St., off of MacArthur, just across the street from MacArthur High School and the Irving Arts Center.

The Colony is quiet, peaceful. There are swimming pools in each section of the complex, as well as different types of apartments, ranging from one bedroom to three bedrooms. We don’t have a washer/dryer hook-up, but there is a laundry room just around the corner.

The Colony knows UD students, and they like to rent to us. Student renters receive a discount.

The office is helpful, and the maintenance staff takes care of any problems with your apartment right away. Utilities are charged per square footage, rather than per usage. The buildings are almost 50 years old, so they aren’t the newest, but maintenance re-paints apartments between renters – and they even changed the carpet in our place before we moved in.

The Colony is roughly three miles away from campus, so the drive is less than 10 minutes long – unless you drive through a school zone at the wrong moment. As long as you have a car, though, I think it’s a great place to live while you’re enrolled at UD. It’s close enough to school that you can get to class easily, but far enough away so you can get some alone time – an essential during those high-stress times of senior year.


Jake Schaner, Braniff graduate student, reviews renting a house.

Living in a house several miles from campus presents a unique experience for the university student and like any housing situation (dorm or apartment) has its own pros and cons. This list is by no means exclusive nor exhaustive, but captures the “gist” of house-living.

Pros: The geographical distance from campus provides more “perspective” on the university for the student, whereby he or she may approach classes with a job-like sense of professionalism. Backyards and spacious rooming accommodations offer a more home-like and leisurely atmosphere. Overall, there is a greater level of personal freedom for the house tenant.

Cons: Living miles away from campus requires concrete transportation plans – owning a car, organizing carpools, or walking or biking to campus (at which point weather becomes an important factor).

Initially, there is the challenge of finding not only a house to rent, but also roommates who are both compatible and able to live farther from campus. Responsibility is proportional to freedom: Paying bills, addressing repairs, corresponding with the landlord, attending to general housekeeping and buying groceries are just some of the added responsibilities tethered to renting a house.

Renting a house requires a greater sense of organization, but the increased effort further prepares the individual for life beyond the university.


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