Chances are, you either haven’t put any thought into what to buy for your dorm room, or your parents plan to get you everything you can imagine at Bed, Bath & Beyond. Either way, you will have some things collecting dust on your shelf, and some things you’ve never used before will become your best friends. Here are 10 things you will definitely want to have in your dorm:
Whether you want to save cold drinks for a hot day or to keep leftovers from a dinner in town and heat it up the next morning, your microwave+refrigerator combo will meet all of your snacking needs. Also, it’s nice to have things other than boxes of Cheez-its and Pop Tarts to eat in your room.
2) Dryer Balls
Washing machines at college aren’t great. Neither are the dryers. Chances are your clothes will stay a bit damp after a dryer cycle, and paying extra for a second cycle it probably not worth it. If you toss a few dryer balls in with your clothes, it’s pretty much guaranteed they will come out dry. This doesn’t sound like a big deal, but if you have wet clothes hanging in your room, you’re not going to want to spend the afternoon there.
This one’s pretty self-explanatory. Find a cheap printer in a store near campus and stock up on ink. When you forget to print your essay or lab-report until the morning it’s due, you’ll be grateful you don’t have to run across campus to a library before class.
If anyone ever brings food into your floor lounge, or you want to cook a meal with your friends for a special occasion instead of going to a dining hall (which will happen more than you expect), you will want some plates, forks, and knives. Also, if you ever decide to make instant-ramen or have some cereal for breakfast, spoons and bowls are a necessity. Have at least one of everything.
5) Lap Desk
Working on your bed or on a couch in the lounge, sometimes it can be annoying to keep your computer on your lap for a long time. Lap desks let you work anywhere you go, and with the amount of work you’ll have to do during the week, you don’t want to waste a minute.
6) Comfy Chair
The wooden desks and chairs in your room are nice, but not particularly comfortable. If you ever want to invite friends to your room, you don’t want them to have to sit on the floor or all crowd onto a bed. A bean bag chair or a net chair is great, and if you can fold it up and store it in a small space when you aren’t using it that’s even better.
7) Floor Lamp
A lot of dorms don’t have overhead lighting, and desk lamps don’t provide a lot of light. A floor lamp will make it a lot easier to do work in your room, to invite people over, and to walk around late at night if you need to find something.
8) Sports Equipment
While the weather is nice out, a lot of people will get out to play basketball, soccer, etc. If you want the ability to get people together, make sure to keep a football, frisbee, or baseball glove in your room, and it’ll help make some friends during the first few weeks.
Things break all the time, but at college, you can’t always find someone to fix it for you. During my first week of school, my roommate and I had to fix our own fan, I fixed the fans of two other people in my dorm and the bed frame of someone down the hall. Having a hammer, screwdriver, and wrench to take care of these issues will make sure you never find yourself helpless, and might gain you some respect from your floormates who weren’t prepared.
10) Shoe Rack
You will probably need a few different pairs of shoes for school. Sneakers, boots, sandals for warm days, shower-flops, dressy shoes, etc. There isn’t a lot of floor space in a college room, and you can only fit so much in a closet or under your bed. A shoe rack will save you a lot of clutter and make it easier to find the pair of shoes you need in the morning rather than digging through all of your clothes and bags to find them.