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UCLA Off-Campus Housing: Why You Should Live In West Los Angeles

UCLA Off-Campus Housing: Why You Should Live In West Los Angeles

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While UCLA housing comes with its advantages, many UCLA students opt to live off-campus. For these students, the reasons for living off-campus are obvious. However, for other students, it can be an agonizing decision. After all, living on campus means closer access to classes and school friends. 

While this decision is highly personal, there’s also a logical element involved here. If you’re looking for an apartment off-campus, here are some of the most common reasons that the staff here at the NMS Cara have heard in favor of off-campus housing. 

Dorm Food and Hours: There Is More Freedom Off-Campus 

If you’ve ever lived in a dorm that wasn’t an apartment-style dorm, then you know about meal plans. Most new dorm students sign up for plans that include between 14 and 19 meals a week. 

These work out great if your classes gel with the mealtimes in the cafeteria, but often, they don’t. If you have a particularly heavy schedule that doesn’t leave any significant amount of time open between your classes, getting meals during the day is often challenging. 

That’s why some students prefer to live off-campus. They don’t worry about making it to the cafeterias before they close. These students can make meals when they need them. This gives them more flexibility in their schedules and less stress as a result. 

Get Real-World, Practical Living Experience 

This point relates to the one above but speaks to more than just navigating the meal plan. For many students, being away at college gives them their first taste of adult life. While living on-campus can provide a good transition into independent living, especially during freshman and sophomore years, many students feel that the only way to get any practical, real-life skills is to live off-campus. 

Apartments vary in West LA, from fully furnished apartments to completely bare, empty apartments. Each type of apartment offers students a different look at what life in post-campus housing would look like. Many times, off-campus housing also costs less than living on-campus, which is also a draw. 

Many upperclassmen opt for this type of living arrangement because they want to learn to navigate the vagaries of life, from learning to pay bills on time to finding out what it means to get involved in their community. Sometimes, the only way to truly understand what independent, post-college life means is to start getting a taste of it. 

Japantown and Other Cultural Draws 

Certainly, Japantown, formerly Little Osaka, counts as one of the most important draws among those who choose to forego UCLA housing for more independent living. Japantown was established by Japanese Americans who were once displaced by the internment camps of WWII. For them, the area of Japantown offered them a way to integrate back into American culture. 

Today, it’s a place of amazing eateries, boutiques, and more. For lovers of history and culture, there are few places like it. Students who live off-campus often spend a great deal of time in Japantown and Sawtelle. 

But Japantown isn’t the only cultural draw in West LA. Numerous museums and cultural institutions also entice students away from campus housing. The Museum of Jurassic Technology, the Wende, and the La Brea Tar Pits are among the museums and cultural attractions here. And naturally, one of the industries that LA is most known for – the movie industry – is also very prominent here. Those who have their sights on a movie career live off-campus to be closer to career opportunities. 

Final Thoughts on Living Off-Campus While Attending UCLA 

Attending UCLA is a dream come true for many students. Some students relish the idea of living on-campus in the thick of campus life. Others choose to live off-campus because that works better for their lives overall. 

For them, off-campus living offers a gateway into the culture of West LA and an intro into post-college life, including career opportunities. 

If you’re interested in living off-campus, consider looking at the NMS Cara. We have furnished apartments that make living off-campus a breeze.

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