The stress, the anxiety, and the nerves—are you ready for the dorm daze? That’s right parents! Schools almost back in session and while kindergarten parents are wiping tears as they drop their little ones off on the playground for the first day of school, you’re about to embark on an even bigger adventure!
If you have a recent grad who is about to start their freshman year of college, you’re probably experiencing all the feels! You’re excited about their new chapter, yet sad they’ll be leaving the nest...after all, no matter where they go, they’ll always be your baby!
I can’t help with the flood of tears that might ensue after you see the university in your rearview mirror, but I sure can give you tips to ensure your freshman is stocked, ready, and organized for their most successful year yet!
Let’s start with the packing process!
Dorm rooms fill up quickly, and if your college student has a roommate, you have to be even more mindful of the space! Instead of packing up everything but the kitchen sink, this is the perfect opportunity to go through their belongings with a fine-tooth comb. After all, whatever they don’t bring will be left at your home!
Apart from clothes, cleaning, and bathroom essentials, here’s a simple list that will help with the necessities:
Organizing the Dorm
You probably noticed one recurring trend above—storage bins! You will have to make the most of every square inch of your kid’s dorm, especially considering how quickly they will accumulate more stuff.
Use vertical space!
When you’re limited on space, the best place to go is up! By taking advantage of hanging storage caddies and shoe organizers, you can make the most of doors and wall space. Oh, and just because an organizer is labeled for “shoes” or the “bathroom” does not mean you can’t repurpose it to fit your freshman’s needs!
For example, hanging shoe organizers are great for holding knick-knacks, accessories, bathroom essentials, or cleaning supplies.
Most dorm rooms are equipped with platform beds, perfect for hiding away bins, bins, and more bins of storage! Whether your kid needs a space to store their overflow of hoodies, workout gear, or shoes, tucking them underneath the beds keeps things organized & neat.
If the dorm bed has the ability to be raised high enough, you can even install an entire plastic bin storage system underneath!
Command hooks are oh-so-cheap, plus, they allow you to turn a boring wall into a make-shift coat rack, necklace organizer, or towel rack. Since most schools forbid nailing anything to the dorm walls, this easy hack makes using up more wall space a breeze.
Help them stay prepared!
College campuses are well-equipped with all the tools necessary in case of an emergency, but I love the idea of a back-up...just in case! Keep an “In-Case of Emergency” box loaded up in your student’s dorm. Pack it with Tylenol, Midol, batteries, a flashlight, scissors, a First-Aid Kit, and a list of all campus emergency numbers.
Mini-fridge, maximum storage!
Most dorms are equipped with an adorable little kitchenette! Make the most of this space by using adjustable, super sturdy metal storage racks that fit snugly right above a mini-fridge. This makes it easy to store snacks and kitchen essentials in a neat, clean place. You’ll want to keep food as high above the ground as possible, so the dorm doesn’t attract ants.
It’s time to get creative!
Now that you have the room outlined with all the organization essentials, have fun and play around until the room feels like the right fit. Oh, and don’t forget all the sentimental goodies your freshman will want to have closeby to remember home. With a framed picture or a quilt made of their high school sports’ team’s t-shirts, they’ll never feel too far away!
Moving your college student into the dorms can be an emotional and stressful experience, but it doesn’t have to be. Click here for instant access to my College Dorm Checklist, and rest easy knowing that your scholar is equipped for success—a comfy room to come back to each night helps, too!
You have one less kid in the house, could you use a little sprucing up in the spaces they left behind? I’d love to help! Click here to schedule your FREE discovery call, so we can work together to bring back order to the nooks and crannies you already love.
Annie Kilbride is the CEO of Life Simplified, LLC a professional organizing business. Visit www.lifesimplifiedpo.com for more information.