The months of October and November are often frantic for University students as they scramble to sign housing leases before their options run out.
Those who haven”t yet settled on a living situation for next year made their way to the University”s Housing Fair yesterday, hoping to find a place to call home.
More than 40 housing-related organizations were represented at yesterday”s second annual fair, giving attendees an opportunity to see the wide range of options available both on and off campus and officially kicking off the hunt for fall 2002 housing.
The University asked landlords to not advertise for 2002 housing until today, after the annual housing fair, to prevent early lease signing.
“It was really helpful,” said LSA freshman Jason Roberts. “I”ve been looking around for next year and this is the best place to go for a comparison.”
The diverse choices represented at the fair included residence halls, co-ops, family housing, and privately owned off-campus homes and apartments.
The table for Homeshare advertised a more unconventional choice sharing a house with a senior citizen.
“It”s an intergenerational experience,” said Jan Arps, the representative from Homeshare.
“It”s also very affordable. The rents are anywhere from $250 to $350.”
Promoters for Family Housing and for co-ops both said a feeling of community is their best feature.
LSA junior Chris Foye, a cooperative housing representative, said his experience with co-ops was a great way to meet people.
“I moved into the house last year not knowing anyone and came out with 30 best friends,” Foye said.
“You own part of the organization so you have a say in one of the largest nonprofit groups in Washtenaw County,” he added.
In a co-op, students own the house and work about four hours a week, often cooking meals and cleaning rooms or serving on house councils. There are 600 members in 19 co-ops on Central and North campuses registered with the Inter-Cooperative Council.
Family Housing is open to students with children, spouses and same-sex partners, as well as to single graduate students. Located on North Campus, it is organized by University Housing, which sponsored yesterday”s fair.
The fair”s attendance was not limited to University of Michigan students.
Kelly Toole, a junior at Eastern Michigan University, was there to learn more about Ann Arbor co-ops and apartments.
“I want to live downtown, and this is awesome. It gives you a good overview of options,” Toole said.
However, LSA sophomore Erik Freimuth was disappointed that the fair offered no housing in the area where he wanted to move.
“I”m looking for apartments in-between Central and North Campus. There”s not much at all. It”s all south of campus,” Freimuth said.
LSA sophomore Ben Carlton said he found what he was looking for at the fair.
“I liked Willow Tree Apartments because I”m planning on being up in North Campus a lot next year. The layouts are pretty nice and the rent is reasonable, unlike a lot of the stuff on Central Campus,” he said.