Before going off to college, I did lots of research before buying stuff for my dorm room. I simply did not have the money to deck out my whole room and I didn’t want to take up too much space. So, this list gives you an idea of what items are super intriguing but completely unnecessary.
Most colleges provide a microwave and a mini-fridge, so you don’t have to bring anything else. What’s more, other appliances are typically prohibited so you might get in trouble if you have them. For instance, during my freshman year, the people who lived under me brought a 3-in-1 Deluxe Breakfast Station, which was a coffee pot, grill, and toaster oven combo. Sounds great, right? The breakfast station ended up killing the power in their dorm, and they had to have maintenance come and fix it in the middle of the night. Luckily for them, they didn’t get in trouble. In short, there is no reason to bring any other appliances than what is provided — it will be more than enough.
2. Ironing board
This is the most obvious item you will regret buying for so many reasons. The first reason is that you will have no space for it. Usually, dorms are rather small so you should make the most of it and only include essentials.
Also, when are you going to iron your clothes? Between classes and extracurriculars, you are not going to have time for it. I keep emphasizing the size of dorm rooms because it plays a big role in what items you buy. Overall, there are easier and smaller options you could use instead of an ironing board.
Personally, I brought this pad that allows me to iron clothes on any surface. There are many smaller alternatives that you can look into to save space and time. So definitely do your research.
I am so glad I decided to steer clear from buying a printer. I thought I needed one because then I wouldn’t have to walk to the library or the closest computer lab. However, I was told countless times that having a printer in my dorm would be a waste and boy, were those people right. For instance, a girl who lived next to me brought a printer and ended up never using it because she ran out of paper, and it was nearly impossible to connect to the school’s internet. My college gives me printer money every month, so I don’t need one in my dorm. Not to mention how much space printers take up and how much money they cost.
Even if your school does not give you a printing allowance or offer free printing, I don’t recommend buying a printer for your dorm — there are many cheaper ways to go about it.
4. Bed risers
I remember seeing bed risers all over the internet and thinking how cool they were. I mean, they raise your bed, and they have outlets?! Sadly, they aren’t necessary for the dorm beds and are a waste of money. At most colleges, you can raise and lower the bed because they all have that function now. If you are not sure if the beds at your college do that, still hold off on buying bed risers until you move in.
5. Pots and pans
I promise you will not be cooking anything at your dorm building for multiple reasons. Due to the lack of time and other appliances, you really won’t be cooking much. My dorm building only provided a fridge in their common area. So, while you may have the ingredients, you won’t be able to properly cook them all.
The only thing I ended up buying was an extremely cheap baking pan so my roommate and I could bake cookies. So, if you do end up needing pots and pans, wait to buy or bring them later on.
Make a brand-new or the latest computer the sixth item you don’t need to buy for college. You can get a college laptop that is functional and reasonably priced online. With hundreds or thousands of options for a reliable laptop or desktop, if portability is not a concern, you make a small investment toward something useful for a long time.
My wild amount of research may have been unnecessary, but I avoided items that either cost too much or take up too much space. I was able to avoid bringing in items such as a printer or pots and pans. I was also able to avoid buying expensive decorations like ottomans or even a futon. Overall, my research and budget lead me in the correct direction, and I hope it can help you too.