Can I Even Find Housing?

One hectic spring semester later and a month before finals, I decided that I would be taking summer classes at Berkeley from mid-June to August, and working a job and internship or two. After finding housing with a nice girl who was subletting for the summer, I safely assumed everything was settled and that I was ready to take on the next three months! But then as with so many things in college, those summer housing plans fell through at the worst time: right in the middle of finals week.

So here I was in yet another college crisis with the following problems:

1. No Time: I needed to move out and store my belongings somewhere before 5/13, the day of my flight back to LA and also my dorm’s move-out day (!!!)
2. No Housing: Where was I going to stay for 2 months when I came back in June for classes and work? 🏡
3. No Time to Find Housing: How in the world am I supposed to find a summer sublet within 24 hours while still studying for finals (???)

IMG_3066
Room 312 looking sad – good luck to the person who gets my bed and desk next! (I’ve kept it super clean for you)

So I took to Facebook, where I proceeded to join and post in the largest housing groups I could find: UC Berkeley Off-Campus HousingHousing, and Berkeley and Bay Area – Off-Campus Housing…etc etc. (For your convenience I’ve linked them all – you may or may not be able to access them depending on whether your Facebook account is connected with your Berkeley email!)

Two hours in, I was bombarded with 15+ message requests, comments, and chats about housing – making me realize the sheer amount of people trying to find tenants for the summer! Of course, I had a budget and I had made a mental list of some requirements I knew I needed to have, so it easily ruled out some people. If any person was unwilling or disorganized/messy about giving me this information, I’d put the person to the side and look elsewhere:

  1. May I see pictures?
  2. What is the exact address?
  3. Would it be possible for me to get the keys to the apartment before I leave Berkeley on Saturday?
  4. Can I move in my stuff to the place today / tomorrow to store until I come back?
  5. Which floor is the apartment on?
  6. Is there parking?
  7. What utilities are included (laundry, electricity, internet, kitchen, bed, desk, closet)?
  8. Will we be signing a sublease and can you give me keys at the time of signing?

My friends and family were also SO nice in helping me out during the housing search, and thank you all so much for that – you have no idea how grateful I am for all the support! Through the 24 hours of stress and no sleep, I was finally able to find a nice apartment near where I worked and where my classes were in about a day; I even got the keys, signed the sublease, and moved in all my things by Friday night (although I’ve actually re-hurt my knee from the ordeal 🤕)!

But with that my finals were finally finished, and my dorm room was looking sullen and empty. I spent the next Saturday morning preparing to leave, saying my goodbyes, and getting brunch with some friends. It’s really unbelievable that I’m not a college freshman anymore, but it was a hectic and amazing first year that I’ve had at Berkeley! I hope that this next school year will be even better, and that I’ll have more time to find housing/summer housing later on LOL.

– Melanie

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