Apartment vs. living at home

<p>I know that this is a topic that comes up again and again, however, I felt the need to make my own topic about it as many of the arguments I've been seeing are based on such vague arguments as "college experience" and "being connected" and not nearly as much on financial concerns or similar practical issues.</p>

<p>I live about 40 minutes from the college I plan to attend. What I would like is something closer to a cost-benefit analysis of the financial feasibility of moving away to live in a 2 bedroom apartment with 2-4 people contributing to expenses, vs. staying at home and commuting. My college (University of Kentucky) has a high number of people who don't live on campus, so it's just a matter of length of commute vs. living costs. At home, "living expenses" would run me between $75-$125 a month, being internet, phone, and car insurance. This would be a relatively stable cost with a lot of opportunity to save money for my latest-case moving date of 2012, or else an attempt next summer, in addition to the ability to update to a newer computer from my old 2005 Compaq, as I'm going into Computer Science.</p>

<p>Conversely, the situation I would be moving into at present would be one of waiting until September for my financial aid to be received by me, as an unfortunate incident with a loan that was not repaid by a family member has left me with insufficient funds to move before school starts. This precarious financial situation, coupled with my parents complete inability to aid me financially in any way has made me wary of taking such a financial risk. I'm receiving a little over $8000 for living expenses, which would likely cover my part of the expenses in an apartment with roommates, however I feel uncomfortable relying on them as in order for the one other person who is guaranteed to be paying their way would need a job in order to make up the difference between what his parents are giving him and what we could be paying each month, which he does not currently have.</p>

<p>In this case, am I being overly cautious or is it, indeed, better to commute the first year and be more financially stable for the next year, or the year after? I have been wrestling with this conundrum for quite some kind and seem to be getting mixed signals from my support system. The adults tend to say that I should stay, while my peers think that staying would be a mistake. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.</p>

<p>For me the 40 minute ride everyday would kill me. That could be because it takes me 10-15 minutes to walk to each class and then adding a 40 minute drive both ways on top of it; therefore, it's a lot of time wasted in my opinion. I also like the idea of relaxing in my room after a class before the next one starts. There's also a lot of stuff that my school or buddies plan that I'd probably miss out if I didn't live that close.</p>