Adulting is hard: finding the perfect place for your budget

Think of this as a housing quiz to your heart. Find the description that sounds the most like you and discover your “perfect match.”

Budget $300-400 a month

You’re a Freshman ballin’ on a budget or someone who enjoys the convenience of on-campus living. You probably won’t be staying in Bloomington for the summer so a 10 month lease is appealing to you. Cooking isn’t your thing and you’ve developed a relationship with the RPS workers at your favorite dining hall. You don’t mind working hard to save a buck or two if it’ll mean less student loans in the long run.

Perfect match: Co-op dorm
Co-op dorms are floors in dorms Wright, McNutt, Forest and Ashton where residents receive 40% off of the price of housing in exchange for doing janitorial work on the floor an hour a week (or less). You and your floormates are responsible for taking out trash, cleaning the kitchen, cleaning bathrooms et. I know one of the RA’s for this floor and she said these activities allow residents to become closer and bond while saving money.

You want to save some money, but on-campus living is just not an option. Freedom, including your own room, would be nice. You don’t mind having to take a bus to campus if it’ll mean you have more space. One, two or three roommates? No problem. You’re pretty social and living by the stadium sounds like a dream come true. Tailgates here we come!

Perfect match: Stadium crossing
Stadium Crossing / Varsity Court (aka the Villas) are apartment and home locations near the Stadium. These apartments are very fairly priced and you can get a pretty decent sized room and probably your own bathroom too for around $400 a month with utilities. Good location if you’re into partying on weekends or attending athletic events. Look into the A bus route if you want to live here. Want a little closer location? Check out Terra Trace.

Live by the IU athletic action
Live by the IU athletic action

Budget: $500-600 a month

You’re someone who likes everything taken care of all at once. You want your rent to include utilities, a place to workout, and maybe even all of your furniture ready to go. Safety is important and you sleep soundly knowing that security is just downstairs. You live for the weekends – the bars are within walking distance and you apartment building is known for having its own social life. But when Monday rears its ugly head, you can easily catch one of the two buses to campus.

Perfect match: Smallwood
Smallwood is located on College Ave and is a popular location for students who are looking to live in the downtown area with the option for furnished apartments. Easy access to campus through the 6 and 6L bus.

Smallwood apartments
Smallwood apartments

You’re a pro at navigating the net, and you think you can find the perfect place online without going through a complex. You dream of the quirky college house with a huge porch. Or maybe you would just rather deal with a landlord than a real estate company.

Perfect match: Independent apartments/houses
Where you’re going to live is a big decision. Take some time and research to find a place in your budget and ideal location. There are many search engines to find housing. Some popular ones are IU real estate,, Zillow, Rentcollegepads, and Cribspot.

Budget $600+ a month

You like the finer things in life. Granite countertops and stainless steel appliances sound like your HGTV fantasy. Amenities are important to you. You envision living somewhere with a clubhouse, workout center, pool, and shuttle bus to campus.

Perfect match: The Dillon
This is a newer apartment complex that was built in 2014. They offer a lot of amenities and plenty of space in their large, 3 story townhomes. Also see similar places like the Village, Bloom apartments, or Park on Morton. If you want something like this but with a slightly lower price tag, check out Reserve on Third.

The Dillon clubhouse and pool
The Dillon clubhouse and pool

You like living on campus, but it’s time for some privacy! You want your own space but don’t mind still using a keycard to enter your building and access to the dining halls are nice but not always necessary with your full kitchen. Furnished apartments make move in easy and 10 month leases are available.

Perfect match: Union Street apartments
Union Street is has the convenience of on-campus living but the feeling of adulthood. The apartments can be pricey, but they appeal to out-of-state students especially because they’re furnished and you’re still able to use meal points. The apartments house four students usually with two sharing a bathroom. Also check out Wilkie, Ashton, or Spruce.

Deciding on housing can be stressful, hopefully this guide makes it a little easier to find what’s right for you. Happy hunting!

Megan Tackett

Class of 2017, Public Relations Major.

Hi I'm Megan! I'm a junior studying Journalism with a focus on Public Relations. I am also a student in the Liberal Arts and Management Program. I love being a blogger for because visiting this site was really influential in my decision to come here. IU has so many opportunities for students to get involved on campus. I'm currently completing two media-related internships at Author Solutions and the Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship in Biotechnology. I'm also a Hudson and Holland Scholar as well as a Cox Legacy scholar. My hobbies include frequenting Kirkwood eateries, travelling, and blogging.