Students sign leases for next school year

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EAST LANSING, Mich.- It’s only six weeks into the fall semester at Michigan State University, but students are already looking into housing options for next year.

Freshmen who just arrived on campus have settled into things and are making new friends. However, they now have to decide where they want to live for next year, who they want to live with and it has to be done fast. If not, all the houses and apartments will be leased.

“It is a little bit of pressure to have to choose so early in the year when you don’t know what you’re going to take next year and who your friends are going to be,” MSU freshman Sarah Presley said. 

Presley wants to live with someone who doesn’t attend MSU, her friend goes to community college back home but will transfer next year.

Since her friend isn’t at MSU, it’s tough to look at houses and apartments together and difficult to pick a location. 

“She was freaking out because the deadline was so soon and I think that is what did it for her too because she wasn’t ready to commit to something like that and pay the down payment for the whole thing so early in the year,” Presley said. 

Next year Presley and her friend will live in the dorms.

Housing companies typically lease their properties before apartments even open their application process.

I found one management company in East Lansing that sounded reputable based on what people told me and it was very sketchy,” MSU freshman Kyra Alpiner said.

Alpiner ended up signing a lease for a house with friends who asked her to live with them. She thought this was much easier than trying to navigate websites and find housing options on her own.

Housing companies didn’t always open lease signing this early in the year. In fact, 20 years ago, DTN opened their application process in February. 

“As demand increased other competitors started pushing back further and further and further and dorms also start reaching out for renewal in October,” Emilie Wohlscheid, an area director at DTN, said. 

DTN usually allows students to sign leases a week after the MSU housing fair in mid-October. However, other companies are already fully leased by the time DTN opens.