4 ways to cut college housing costs

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Not all dorms are made equal, explains Doug Hallenbeck, executive director of housing for Clemson University in Clemson, S.C.

"If you're trying to save money, then the best way to go is with the cheapest housing option," he says. "A private room with a private bathroom is going to be much more expensive than a shared room with a community bathroom."

At Clemson, there's a $3,000-per-year discrepancy between the cheapest and most expensive dorm. Students willing to share their room, live in older buildings and walk farther to their classes for the year will leave campus with a fuller bank account.

Meal plans are another place where students can cut back, says Hallenbeck. Because meal plans range from $815 to $1,563 per semester at Clemson, students who plan their meals wisely will be rewarded with enough to cover books for the following semester.




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