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Home sweet off-campus home

More than ever before in Tyler, students have many residency options when attending school. Those who are ready to leave the nest and relocate into their own place have two particularly attractive options – Staying at one of the dorms on campus, or renting an apartment. For those considering the latter, off-campus option, narrowing the range of choices may prove to be quite the task. For individuals who are still on the waiting list for on-campus living, or who are determined to start the semester in their own place, the added privacy and freedom of an apartment could well be worth the hunt for one. These are a few options in the vicinity of Tyler Junior College’s campuses.WP_20130817_15_12_23_Pro

Just far enough south of TJC to get away from the campus vibe, nestled in a grove of pines just off the road, sits River Oaks Apartments. This complex boasts a pool, a community center, and even a ‘bark park’ for man’s four-legged best friend. The rates here are comparable to, and can even be less than, a semester’s stay in Lewis Hall on campus (Roughly $566 a month per semester).  That is, provided the student finds a roommate willing to split the rent. A 950 square foot, two bedroom, two bathroom unit on the second floor runs roughly $395 per month if split 50/50 with a roommate on a six month lease, though individual services such as water, trash, sewer, and electricity aren’t included in that cost, and the expense of a daily commute or bus fare does add to the total cost of living.

A few blocks away from River Oaks, near the intersection of Troup and Shiloh, are Wood Trail apartments. While the comparable units are slightly smaller in floor space than River Oaks, they are newer and offer a few amenities that their sister properties do not. These include a washer and dryer in the monthly rent – especially handy if a student isn’t fond of trips to the laundromat. There’s a pool, community center, business center, and all the other staples of apartment living. Rent here for a standard two bedroom, two bath is slightly less expensive than River Oaks, on account of the reduced floor space. This unit can be had for about $390 per tenant if the rent is divided evenly with a reliable roommate. Upgraded apartments can be had withcovered parking and hardwood floors throughout, and the proximity to Wal-Mart makes for convenient shopping.

If high-end luxury is foremost in what the individual is hunting for, and a daily commute of fifteen minutes to main campus or so isn’t a deterrence, then The Mansions at the Cascades is a posh option. Hidden off the south-west loop of Tyler, these homes are a fair distance from the main campus, but conveniently close to TJC’s west campus. The resort feel of the surrounding Cascades neighborhood provides a daily getaway from the stresses of student life, which some future residents will find attractive. With top notch amenities and only a short walk from 18 holes of golf, a luxury spa, a private lake and miles of jogging trails.

This complex sets a high bar for living spaces in Tyler. The rent here reflects the luxury, however, and will be comparable to an on campus semester stay in the newer Ornelas Residential Hall, even with a steady roommate willing to halve the expense. (Roughly $800.00 a month per semester)

Designed with students in mind, Village at the U provides a more traditional private dorm feel. The rooms here are rented ‘by the bed’, and leases are divided among individuals instead of per-room – prices fall as the number of renters per apartment go up. This is an appealing solution for the student who likes to be completely independent of their roommate’s finances, and not worry about finding someone else to provide their share of the rent.

Outfitted with study lounges, computer labs, a community pool, volleyball court and a fitness center, The Village at the U is equipped like any other private living apartment, though geared throughout towards the coed population. Pricing here is below what it would cost for a stay in Claridge Hall, and upgraded units are ready to be rented by those who want finer trappings in their living space. A bed in a shared two bedroom, two bathroom space is priced around $545 per month. Space in a shared four bathroom, four bedroom is available for only $480 monthly.

These are just a small sampling of the nearby apartment living options – there are dozens of comfortable and affordable solutions for students of any taste, age, and means. For more information on living on campus, or to discuss housing options with a campus official, contact the housing office at 903-510-2345. (See the included info-graphic for contact information for each of the communities listed.)


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