Your college student has almost made it through that tricky first year of college! Congratulations to her and to you! She’s anxious for summer break and you are looking forward to having her home.
But wait, you have a flash of memory of moving her to college last September! You remember the bulging car, maybe with cartop carrier or trailer attached, and you remember all of the things she’s taken back to school or bought since then. The thought of doing this whole thing in reverse is causing a small panic attack.
The first thing to consider is whether or not your student needs to bring everything home again for the summer. If she is returning in the fall, are there some things that could remain at school and be ready for her when she gets back? Probably. But you’re not sure how to go about storing things.
What is college policy about storage?
The first thing to do is to have your student check about college storage policy. Some colleges allow students to store things for the summer. Often this storage area is in the basement of a residence hall. There may be a limit on the amount that can be stored. If the college does allow students to store belongings, your student should ask some further questions. How much can be stored? How secure is storage? How must things be “packaged”? How should they be labeled? When will they be available to be picked up in the fall?
Are there other options?
If the college allows storage, and you’re satisfied with the answers to the above questions, then congratulations, you’re all set.
But what if there is no on-campus storage? The first thing that your student should do is begin asking upper classmen what they do. They’ve been here before and they probably have suggestions. There may be several options.
Off campus storage units – There may be a private storage company that has a facility close to campus. If so, they may offer monthly or even college student rates for the summer.
Joining with other students – If your student decides to store her possessions off campus, she may be able to join with several other students to rent a unit and reduce the cost.
Storage services – There are services available that will deliver boxes to your student’s room, pick up the packed boxes at the end of finals, store them for the summer, and deliver them to the new room in the fall. This option can be pricy (it can range anywhere from $70 – $120 plus the cost of packing supplies), but is certainly convenient.
The end of the semester is a stressful time, so making plans early is important. Your student wants to focus on final exams at the end of the semester, not be worrying about summer storage. Storage units or space may also be at a premium, so planning ahead helps.
What to store.
Your student should think carefully about what to store. She can leave anything that she will not need over the summer. This often includes desk and study items, bedding and linens, some winter clothing, books. Remind her to clean clothes and linens before storing. It is important to check to see when she will have access in the fall. If she can’t retrieve her things for a few days, she may want to be sure she keeps a set of bedding and towels for those first few days.
So, hopefully, both you and your college student can relax, store a few items, pack up the car, and head to the beach! Have a restful summer.