Missouri State University

Useful Tips For Living Off Campus

Students walking to class

The following tips and suggestions may enhance your living experience in Springfield.

Stay involved!

  • The more involved you are, the more you'll love college! Missouri State offers so many organizations, groups, and activities, you're bound to find something you enjoy. Discover more about getting involved by visiting the Office of Student Engagement website.
  • Stay involved by taking advantage of our convenient dining halls with an off-campus meal plan.
  • Attend the many Division 1 sports offered at Missouri State and support your Bears!

Budget finances

  • Know your monthly income.
  • Browse differently priced apartments. Are amenities like a pool or fitness center worth the extra money? 
  • Check average utility costs for your new apartment.
  • Know what's included in your rent.
  • Estimate your monthly grocery bill: $150-200.
  • Estimate your gas expenses.
  • Estimate other monthly expenses like cable, Internet, and electricity.
  • Remember some things, like groceries or eating out, may be more expensive from your home town.
  • Use this budget calculator.

Budget your time

  • Lump your classes together so you just drive to campus once a day.
  • Leave yourself time to eat lunch sometime during your day between work and classes.
  • Use a calendar and plan ahead.
  • Share household chores (dishes, cleaning, etc) with your roommates.
  • Study on-campus or at coffee shops for less distractions from TV and Facebook.
  • Block out various study times during the week. Consider joining a study group.

Money saving websites

Daily commute

If you don't live next to campus, consider these helpful resources:

Be a good neighbor

Nothing can ruin the off-campus living experience like butting heads with a neighbor. Keep these guidelines in mind when you move in:

  • Keep the noise level down, especially late at night.
  • Get to know your neighbors.
  • Invite your neighbors over for social gatherings.
  • Maintain your yard.
  • Don't let trash pile up.


Being "green" will not only save the environment, but it'll also save you money!