Your Ultimate Guide to Bloomington Apartment HuntingJessica Frampton
Ready to get out of the dorms? I don't blame you. Having your own room and bathroom is wonderful. I've literally been to every apartment complex in Bloomington. I'm not even kidding you. So, I will share the best (and worst) ones with you. Click on the apartment names to view their websites.
Awesome, but Pricey Apartments:
- Smallwood - Parking garage. Gym memership. Washer and Dryer. Modern and trendy apartments on Walnut. However, they are by the jail. People also smoke pot here.
- Station 11 - These apartments are HUGE. I have nothing but praise for these giant apartments on College. They'd make for an awesome game of hide and seek. They have lofts, granite counter tops, a washer and dryer, etc. However, you will be paying a fortune.
- Tenth and College - I have heard nothing about these apartments, but the staff sure was nice when I called them. They are owned by Cedarview Management, so if you don't like these ones, ask them about others.
- Village at Muller Park - I think the people that work here are required to be good-looking. I'm serious. They are nice apartments with modern appliances, including a washer/dryer AND A TV. Very spacious. All utilities are paid. (Trust me, it's nice not having to mail in your check for electricity every month.) You also get a clubhouse complete with fitness room, tanning bed, and massage chairs. They have their own campus shuttle. However, you must get the furniture, and that couch is rather uncomfortable to sit on. It is also EXTREMELY far away.
- Campus Court at North Walnut: Fitness Center. Pool. Cable with HBO. I'm pretty sure the prices listed on their website are per bedroom. If not, this is the cheapest apartment in Bloomington.
- Campus Corner - Tanning. Pool. Fitness Center. Computer Lab. All utilities included. 2 or 4 bedroom apartment. .
Cheaper (but still awesome) Apartments:
- Bradford Place - Can you say HOT TUB?! They also have a resort-style pool, clubhouse, campus shuttle, computer lab, and tanning booth. This place is located just past the mall.
- The Villas (or anything owned by varsity properties besides the one listed in the next section) - Place of partying. But, not shabby apartments. I personally like their Cedar Creek property and Brownstone Terrace property. You will have to look at their website to see all of the ameneties for each place. Staff is younger people, generally friendly.
- The Crossing at Pete Ellis - (Sorry, they don't actually have their own website.) My friends love this place and it is close to the mall. Not the friendliest staff I've encoutered, but hey, you probably won't have to deal with them much. Looked nice to me when I went inside. I think this is the place that has apartments with fireplaces available.
- Hoosier Court - Mostly townhouses (so a lot of space). Washer and Dryer. Fitness Center. Clubhouse. Just a few streets past the stadium.
Cheapest (but still awesome) Apartments:
- Colonial Crest - BEST STAFF EVER. The people at this apartment complex are so friendly. They also give you free cookies 24/7! Today, a member of the staff came around and gave tenants candy with a note that said "hope you have a nice day!" They are always helpful and quick about repairs too. The apartments and townhouses are older, but you can't find a cheaper option in Bloomington (well, maybe if you lived in a trailer far away you could). The six bus has several stops throughout the complex. It also has a pool.
- Jackson Heights - Cheap apartments, and you get your own bathroom. It also has a pool and basketball court. If you don't like these, look at CFC's other properties.
- Dunhill Apartments - If you want my honest opinion, they are not worth it. BUT, you certainly would save a ton in parking since these apartments are directly across from the stadium. You get a pool. Not entirely sure about air conditioning. Regency owns other properties you should check out too.
- Campus Walk - (They also don't have a website, sorry. Check them out on Apartment Guide.) Nice apartments and extremely friendly staff. I've spent a considerable amount of time in one of their two-bedroom apartments and never had a complaint about it. I also have seen one of their one-bedrooms and it was okay too. Very cat friendly.
Apartment Complexes to Avoid:
- If the apartment you are looking at is owned by Elkins, RUN. I lived in one of their Park Ridge townhomes for a year, and it was awful. Our key would not work to the front door because they wouldn't fix or replace the lock that was broken before we got there. We had to come in through the basement door. The knobs broke off of the sinks. The staff there was rude on more than one occassion. They don't give you back your security deposit - all $2,000 of it. The reasons for not giving it back include painting and "replacing the fire extinguisher" (though we did not use it the entire year). They may be cheap, but you are paying for what you get.
- Park North - If you like crusty old hotels and cramped spaces, this is the apartment for you!!! But otherwise, don't go here. Don't even bother looking. I was with a police officer when I looked at these apartments, and even he said that he would feel unsafe living here. Look at Olympus' other properties.
- Campus Apartments - I went to look at one of these one-bedroom apartments, and the tenant said "Don't rent here. The entire place is crappy and gross and it's tiny." That should speak for itself, I suppose.
Do You Want Even More Choices and Suggestions?
- Check Apartment Guide out. Thank me later.
- Also check out the Annual IDS Housing Fair. It is WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 7th from 10am to 4pm in the IMU Frangipani Room. Some apartment complexes will even give you discounts if you go to their booth.
Other Helpful Hints
- Make an appointment to view the apartments you are interested in. Websites can sometimes be deceiving. Look before you sign.
- Make a list of questions to ask to before you go to view the apartment (Is the rent listed per bedroom or for the whole house? Can I hang pictures? What is your policy on pets? How do you determine how much of the security deposit you give back? Do you have social events? Is there an emergency maintence line? Is there a security officer here?)
- Just like dorms, you have to talk about things with your roommate before moving in. What are you going to set the thermostat at? Who is going to clean the bathrooms? Who is bringin the couch, and who is bringing the forks and spoons?
- READ THE LEASE CAREFULLY. I know, it's boring. It's a bunch of law mumbo-jumbo. If you don't want to read it, take a sample lease to Student Legal Services to review. They will tell you if it's a trap or not. Some apartment complexes that I have dealt with just want to get as much money out of you as possible. Some apartment complexes also put illegal stipulations in their lease. Some apartment complexes have rules you would never otherwise know about (Ex. You are not allowed to have candles, or if we catch you with a cat in there we will charge you $2,500). You will never know unless you read it.