Everyone knows that the go-to way to find a new place to live, or a person to live with, is Craigslist. Craigslist is a website dedicated to providing local classifieds and forums for jobs, housing, for sale, personals, services, local community, and events. Since the search can be done locally, Craigslist is a really useful tool for finding a living accommodations in your area.
I have had first hand experience with using Craigslist and would consider it a success story. My sophomore year at Cal Poly I was all set with four roommates and a lease signed to live in Carhill Apartments on Foothill Boulevard. It was about to be a dream year; four best friends and our own place to live. Life couldn’t get any better. Until September 1st, FOUR days before we were set to move into the new place. One of my four roommates decided she wasn’t going to come back to Cal Poly, so that left three of us with a four-person house; and not to mention a four-person rent that was about to be split three ways. Since the price of the rent went from affordable to nothing but, we decided to look on Craigslist for a roommate to fill the void. Before doing any searching, we sat down as roommates to write out some agreeable ground rules for our search. it went a little something like this:
1. Had to be a female; there were already three of us and we were sharing bathrooms
2. Had to be a student; we wanted to make sure that she was our age and would respect our studying
3. We preferred a Cal Poly student so we would be on the same schedule for finals, etc. – but we weren’t took picky about that
4. Before we signed or agreed on anything, we HAD to meet them in person, and we had to be together.
5. It had to be a unanimous agreement.
That was pretty much all we had decided upon when starting our initial search; and we figured that anything else could be felt out when we met in person. So we set out; and we got lucky.
We met our roommate through Craigslist; she was our year, a Cal Poly student, and had also had her presumed roommate decide not to come back to Cal Poly. Things worked out perfectly and she fit right in.
Now that we know the selling points for writing a successful post, or reading one, I’ve decided to help you navigate through the actual website.
Here’s how it goes.
1. Go to http://www.craigslist.org
2. Select your State and City
3. Choose from the many different options for housing (see below)
4. Start looking!
Step 1: go to http://www.craigslist.org
Step 2: sign up for an account, and follow the steps (e-mail verification and accepting terms and conditions)
Step 3: click on “my account”
Step 4: click on “new post”
Step 5: type away and let the search begin!
Brenna Collins, junior Journalism major used Craigslist to find a roommate when she and her friends had to sublease when another roommate went abroad. “It’s actually a really easy website to use, and I was surprised how fast we were really able to find someone to live with. She was super cool and easy to live with. I was also surprised and how many “normal” people were on the website… if that doesn’t sound weird.”
Tam Lee, Junior transfer student, who attended SBCC but now attends Cal Poly, used Craigslist to find a house to live in when she moved into the area. “My parents wouldn’t let me live in a house by myself, and I didn’t really know a lot of people who went to Cal Poly, so I decided to go on Craigslist. It took me a little longer than I thought because I wanted to make sure that I saw every house that I was interested in. It made the process longer but at least I knew where I was going. Overall it worked really well, though.”
Rick Hill, owner and landlord of the Carhill Apartments, also had good things to say about Craigslist. “I always put my apartment rentals on Craigslist. I mean, thats how I found you girls. I’ll always be picky with tenants, but its definitely the easiest way to get information out there – and it’s kept me in business for 15 years!”
My last tip of Craisglist: don’t be afraid to let your personality fly – here’s a housing listing that was SO funny, even the Huffington Post picked it up.
Craigslist is used A LOT in college towns, since there are always roommates coming leaving, students going abroad, students transferring in, and more. Some of the most popular places to live in SLO are also on Craigslist – so be sure to use the website as a tool for finding an apartment as well, not just a roommate.