Beyond Bama Bound: Navigating the Journey to Off-Campus Housing with ApartmentsForLegends

Posted By: Olivia Blitchington Inspiration, Local Solutions, Student Housing,

The Spring of 2023 marked the launch of ApartmentsForLegends, coinciding with the excitement of Bama Bound orientation — an event that held special significance for me as my youngest cousin Lauren, accompanied by my Aunt Connie and Uncle John, were in town for the freshman orientation.

Over dinner, I savored Lauren's enthusiasm as she shared details about her upcoming classes, roommate assignments, and the myriad of opportunities on campus. Following Day 1 of Freshman Bama Bound, Uncle John emphasized the importance of ApartmentsForLegends, stating, "They might not be kicking them out of the dorms, but they should start looking for off-campus housing early in their school journey!" Chuckling, I responded, "They're not kicking them out, but it does seem encouraged to begin the off-campus housing search sooner rather than later; this market leases quickly!"

Tabling at Bama Bound

The ApartmentsForLegends team set up in Moody Hall, engaging with parents during the morning session. As parents enjoyed fresh pastries and hot coffee courtesy of the Bama Bound team, they explored hall tables seeking information on community resources for their students. Our team fielded numerous questions, covering topics such as individual leases, roommate matching, the timing of the apartment search, distinctions between student and non-student housing, and even inquiries about bathrooms in off-campus apartments.

To ease tensions and settle nervous stomachs from the influx of information, our team distributed boxes of TicTacs with the message "Take a mint; off-campus housing doesn't have to be hard."

A Touching Interaction with a Bama Dad

Amid these interactions, a dad donning a Bama Dad shirt passed by our table, creating a buffer zone with his outstretched arm, and declared, "I CAN'T EVEN THINK ABOUT OFF-CAMPUS HOUSING RIGHT NOW… THIS IS TOO MUCH!" He sought refuge in the refreshment room for a much-needed coffee. Smiling at my team, I reflected on my own college drop-off experience, recalling the day my dad, who had never shed a tear in my presence before, dropped me off for college in the south. He hugged me goodbye and left my apartment  misty-eyed in his camouflage Crocs.

Approximately 10 minutes later, Bama Dad returned to our table, expressing readiness to tackle the conversation about "What comes after the dorms?" He asked, "So, this website... what is it?" I explained, "It's Tuscaloosa's local apartment guide, built by a team of UA students. Who better to help students find apartments in T-Town than Bama students themselves?" He responded, "So, I can go back home, sit down, and look at all the options here in Tuscaloosa in one search?" "Certainly! I'd recommend coming back for parents' weekend and scheduling a few tours while you're in town," I advised. Grateful for the guidance, he exclaimed, "Wow, that's super helpful. Thank you so much. Can I have one more box of TicTacs?"

Bama Bound Reminded our team of our "Why" at ApartmentsForLegends

College orientation is the next significant step after the acceptance letter. Emotions run high as families prepare for their students to leave the nest, living on their own for the first time — often hundreds of miles away from home. There's a myriad of tasks — from decorating dorm rooms and purchasing wardrobes to fulfilling Greek Life Rush obligations, paying tuition, catching flights, and facing a long drive home back to work the next week. Younger siblings start back to school without their elder siblings at home to help, and even pets wait by the door for a few weeks, eagerly anticipating the return of their beloved college students who don’t show back up until the holidays.

At ApartmentsFor, that's our "Why." We believe local insight inspires confident housing decisions. ApartmentsForLegends offers parents and students the ability to start the off-campus housing process at their own pace, wherever they are! Whether you’re searching in your dorm room, scrolling apartments on the Crimson Ride to class, at the dining room table with mom back home, or in another country heading to T-Town for college, you can learn about Tuscaloosa apartments from anywhere and have confidence in the place you call home.