Parents, Don't Let Your Kids Wind Up In One Of The Most Expensive Dorms

The California Golden Bears can no longer crack the national rankings in football, but its dorms are definite contenders for the BCS national title game for most expensive near-campus lodging.

Campus Grotto lists UC Berkeley’s average annual dorm rent of $15,307 as the second-highest in the country, trailing only the $17,110 rent at Eugene Lang College. The story says the average room and board cost at colleges across the country is $8,535.

Here are the top 10 most expensive dorms:

1. Eugene Lang College $17,110

2. University of California – Berkeley $15,308

3. Suffolk University $14,624

4. Fordham University – Lincoln Center $14,614

5. Fordham University – Rose Hill $14,491

6. University of California – Santa Cruz $14,172

7. St. John’s University (Queens) $14,000

8. Manhattanville College $13,920

9. Sarah Lawrence College $13,820

10. Pace University $13,800

If you lived in a dorm, what did you get out of the experience — other than athlete’s foot from the community showers?

Most Expensive Dorms 2010-2011 [Campus Grotto]


Edit Your Comment

  1. TuxthePenguin says:

    Did they think of indexing this to the Cost of Living in the area?

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      That would have given context, and we can’t have that!

    • mythago says:

      Why? The article wasn’t “The Most Overpriced Dorm Rooms”, it was the most EXPENSIVE dorm rooms.

      • TuxthePenguin says:

        “Expensive” is a relative term. If you’re used to pay $1 for a bottle of water, seeing one sold for $2 is expensive. But if you’re used to pay $2.5 for that same bottle…

        What they should have said is “Costliest” if they wanted to show the most costly dorms – ie, what costs the most.

        • craptastico says:

          expensive means having a high expense, it’s a pretty objective term. most expensive means highest dollar price. it has nothing to do with affordability or cost of living

        • mythago says:

          No, a $2 bottle of water is still expensive, it’s just slightly less overprice than the $2.50 you were paying for.

    • Mom says:

      Wondering that myself. Berkeley is in one of the most expensive places in the US. Finding acceptable off campus housing is going to be expensive. Eugene Lang college is in Manhattan. Suffolk University is in Boston.

      I think I’m seeing a pattern here…

      • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

        Actually, Berkeley’s an interesting case because you can find plenty of cheap places to live if you’re willing to live in squalor.

      • Pax says:

        Suffolk is in boston, sure. So are at least half a dozen other schools. Off the top of my head, BC, BU, Northeastern, Harvard, and MIT.

        Both of the last two in that quick list are easily head and shoulders above Suffolk in terms of education/degree value. Yet, neither of them are even on the list. So, no, it’s not solely due to cost-of-living.

        • Gulliver says:

          But Harvard also has the tuition and money from donors that help subsidize these things

        • DorsalRootGanglion says:

          Suffolk, unlike Harvard, MIT, BU, etc., has its main campus in downtown Boston, walking distance from the financial district and government center. The dorms will factor in that they’re built on some incredibly pricey real-estate.

    • jessjj347 says:

      No, but the thing I don’t like about this list is that the cost they site is for one person. The cost of the dorm room is at least twice that much, since roommates cannot split “rent”. That’s why it’s such a rip off! Off campus housing anywhere is still cheaper simply because rent is split amongst flatmates.

      My dorm room cost about $11,000 x 4 people = $44,000 per year (although it was a suite with/small kitchen and living room)!!!

  2. UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

    I gained two of my closest friends, including the best man at my wedding.

    I also gained the opportunity to spend a lot more time on campus, developing contacts that are still useful to me today. Living on campus was one of the best decisions I made in college, and I encourage any college student to do it.

    Especially if you can do it at a great school like Berkeley that has so much going on every day on campus.

    • startertan says:

      Living on campus versus living at home or off campus completely changes your college experience. I agree with UCLAri, at the very least live there for your first 2 years then get a place off campus, you meet so many more people and have so many more great (and horrific) experiences but all make great stories!

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        And you also get to appreciate living in small spaces, and making do with the space you have. My apartment is a palace compared to my dorm room, but I learned to maximize my space from living in a dorm room, where every single inch of space mattered.

        • Cat_In_A_Hat says:

          I agree with you on this one. Living dorm style made living in a smaller house/apartment post college more manageable. I’m from San Francisco and went to Berkeley for my undergrad education. I lived on campus for 2 years in one of the most expensive housing complexes on campus in a triple room which went for a little over 10k per semester. I commuted and lived off campus my last two years and thankfully because I had an on campus job I was able to stay connected with my peers and have met some of my best friends to date that I still stay in touch with regularly. My sister on the other hand also went to Cal, and commuted all 4 years and only met a few college friends. There is a huge difference in the experience you get and what you learn from living on your own (even if not that far from home). All incoming students should at least consider living in the dorms their first years if the cost is manageable for you/your family. Just living on my own for that short period of time makes it’s so much easier to transition into adulthood and become less dependent on mommy and daddy.

      • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

        The people I know who lived off-campus generally had inferior experiences, and were less connected to their peers. Even living in an apartment within walking distance of campus makes a huge difference, in my opinion.

        Plus, learning to deal with a roommate in undergrad taught me how to live more harmoniously with someone else later in life. That’s a skill that’s worth a few extra grand every year!

  3. clarkins says:

    I had less in student loans than the cost for one year room and board at any of these places. :)

    I agree with the above posters who mention that the cost of living in the area is a contributing factor. Aren’t most of those in California and NY? Certainly a higher cost of living than in OK where I went to college.

    I also met my best friend, who I still stay in touch with in the dorms at college. Because of meeting his friends, I met my wife.

    • Pax says:

      Then again, Massachusetts – and especially Boston – are no cheap-to-live-here places, either.

      So where’s Harvard? MIT? Why aren’t any of them on that list?

      Or, how about Yale, in Connecticut?

      Three of the top schools in the country, all in urban areas, all in densely-populated regions, two in a state I know to be high-cost-of-living in general (Massachusetts) … why isn’t even ONE of them on that list, hmm?

      Maybe it’s because most of those dorms are grossly overpriced?

      Nah. Couldn’t be. For-profit schools would never gouge their students for every last penny they could get a hold of … would they? [/sarcasm]

      • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

        If you can get into one of those schools, odds are that you can afford the housing. Or at least you can get the financial aid necessary to afford it.

      • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

        Also, just because a school is private doesn’t mean it’s for-profit.

        Harvard is a not-for-profit private university. ITT Tech is a for-profit private university. Big difference.

      • AnthonyC says:

        Suffolk is in Boston, and closer to the center of the city than Harvard or MIT.

        NYC is more expensive than Boston, as are several cities in CA, so those schools top the list over ones in Boston.

        Also, schools with large endowments (like Harvard and Yale) get some of their operating budgets from those endowments; only 2/3 of what Harvard spends on its students comes from tuition payments.

        I will say that dorms (and meal plans) in general are overpriced. My meal plan was unlimited (I had no option on that); the average student ate 14 meals a week. That means over the academic year I paid over $10/meal. For that much I could have eaten every meal at a restaurant and gotten much better food for less money. I also paid $1000/month for a 75 square foot bedroom (as a senior) on the 5th floor, walk-up. Oh, and in a dorm you’re not allowed to have air conditioning, any means to cook food, or candles. In practice no one pays much attention to the rules on the things you can’t have as long as administrators don’t see it, but it’s still a ridiculous system to impose on anyone who is legally an adult.

  4. ZimZombie says:

    I lost 10 pounds in the dorm due to terrible cafeteria food and a 6-story stair climb to my room!

    Though I do agree with other commenters, a year of dorm life is a must for kids in meeting new people and getting out of one’s comfort zone.

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      I gained 15 thanks to UCLA’s generally palatable dorm food.

      Damn you Puzzles and your chili cheese fries with curly fries on the side!

      • Platypi {Redacted} says:

        For some, it was 40 lbs (I stuck to about 5, luckily). U of Oregon generally had some good food items, but you tend to overeat since you can only get to the cafeteria 3 times a day, so you wanted to get your “money’s worth”.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      I lost 10 pounds because I picked the farthest dorm on campus and dear god that was a long walk.

  5. Mecharine says:

    I went to SUNY Stony Brook and the room/board fees were pretty low, especially if you got one of the kitchen floors. People on those floors get access to pay as you go meal plan instead of the lump-sum prepaid one.

    As for what I got out of it, really awesome LAN parties.

    • kalaratri says:

      Back when my dad went, you could pay room and board on one summer’s work. Of course, NY was still giving out Honors Scholarships for acing your Regents.

  6. Arcaeris says:

    I got plantar warts from the community showers.

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      If it makes you feel any better, I got plantar warts long before college and haven’t been able to eradicate them completely since.

      Duct tape therapy has worked pretty well for me, even if it is just a placebo.

      • Julia789 says:

        Try the freezing kits now available over the counter, in the foot care section of the pharmacy where the insoles and foot powder are. They’re like $10 or $15 or so.

        They are neat, they sizzle the warts off with cold. My kid at the plantar warts at summer camp in the locker rooms, one wart was HUGE bigger than pencil eraser, came right off with the freezing kit.

        Much cheaper than $45 co-pay at the dermatoligst to freeze them there. Of course for people with stubborn or very deep warts, the freezing stuff the dermatologist uses is much colder and works a little stronger, so some people might need that. But for most cases that freeze-away pharmancy brand works great.

  7. Scuba Steve says:

    Ah Dorms.. Let me count the ways I loathe you:
    1. Community showers. Filled with the remnants of freshmen who couldn’t make it to the bathrooms after Rushing that night.

    2. Community music. Not completely unexpected, but completely unwelcome at 4 in the morning. Usually the loudest, deepest rap, from the whitest kid on the floor

    3. Someone would pull the fire alarm each month. Funny the first time at 2 AM, not so much in December with a foot of snow and you in your .. underwear.

    4. Community sharing. My best and favorite memory: My roommate was a complete asshole who would steal my Books, my software, my food, and hide my crap in different places.

    5. Community entertainment. Whether its the girlfriends of the douche who starts screaming at 10 in the morning, or some other room fighting over someone stealing something, the drama was pretty much constant.

    If you can get off campus housing, find an excuse, and take it. You’ll be glad you did.

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      Where did you go to undergrad, because most of my floor mates were quiet, respectful, and pretty easy to get along with.

      • Scuba Steve says:

        I went to a big, downtown college. Georgia Tech. Class Sizes sucked, Teachers were good. Homework was tough, Tests were brutal.

        If I didn’t love what I did so much (Comp Sci) I would have left after my first year.

        • The Queen of Everything says:

          Agnes Scott ladies didn’t really have these problems, so at least you’re not generalizing this to the entire Atlanta metro ;)

          Though for whatever reason, we also had people who would take a crap in the shower. Like…why? Never got it.

        • UncleAl says:

          To each his own, I guess — I spent four years in the same suite at Georgia Tech (Woodruff North in the years shortly after it opened in the 1980’s) with no regrets — always had good roommates and hallmates. OTOH, I do remember the constant fire alarms… but no snow in the South!

    • jasw says:

      Pretty much sums up my dorm experience. Eventually the fire alarm pranks got so bad (we’re talking 4am at least once every week or so in during an Ohio winter) that my roomie and I took to hiding in our closets while the RAs and fire department “checked and cleared” each individual room. Got out of there as soon as my freshman year was up.

    • AstroPig7 says:

      My freshman year was spent in a college that forced freshman and sophomores to live in the dorms. This would have been fine had everyone been an upstanding model of civility. The experience was only slightly better than living in an apartment complex above and below douche bags who lived as if they were on an isolated country estate.

    • TheGreySpectre says:

      My freshman experience was like that but I had a single for sophomore year in a building entirely full of singles. That building was usually pretty quiet and clean and being on campus was nice although the food still stunk. Junior and senior year I had an on campus apartment with 2 good friends and it was fantastic, rent was comparable and the being on campus was awesome. Also the rooms were remarkably well sound insulated.

    • AnthonyC says:

      YMMV. This will depend greatly on where you go to school and what dorm you live in.

  8. SecretShopper: pours out a lil' liquor for the homies Wasp & Otter says:

    living on campus my freshman and sophomore years @ St. Joes gave me access to coed housing for the first time, def worth the 20k or so combined cost

  9. kalaratri says:

    I got my maid of honor, my husband, and two very good friends.

    Being on campus meant it was only a 30 minute walk to the far reaches of the campus instead of being a bus ride AND a walk. I was also able to take better advantage of our computer facilities, the awesome library (10 minute walk, yay!), multiple clubs and interest groups, and the student center. But it was really expensive.

    When I moved off campus because of bureaucratic nonsense, it was a 45 minute bus commute to campus assuming there was room on the bus. Otherwise it could take an hour or more. Obviously, the buses weren’t free, either. Going home was a disaster and if you didn’t haul ass to the north end of campus immediately you’d probably need to wait at least half an hour before the next bus came because there was no room by the time the buses looped to the south side. I had to quit most of my clubs because I didn’t want to walk home or wait for the bus at 9pm. On the other hand, it was about $8,000 less a year to rent.

    • UofIgirl2000 says:

      I got my husband and a pair of bridesmaids too!

      Also, the priceless lessons that cannot be learned in classes:
      How do deal with alcohol poisoning… how to tune out the neighbor’s incessant playing of “No Scrubs”… how to report your roommate’s plotting a felony to the appropriate authorities… how to bake cookies in a toaster oven… how to effectively advertise swing dance parties using chalk and available sidewalk space… how to steal seafood from the cafeteria and stage a visually appealing seascape in the communal toilet…

      In my opinion, the less posh your dorm, the better!

      • kalaratri says:

        For me it was ignoring non-stop John Mayer and reporting the drug dealer that was allowed to camp on our floor.

  10. beoba says:

    Suffolk university is in downtown boston, a few of their dorms are literally across the common (bos’s equivalent to central park).

    • Pax says:

      Except the Common is far older (and is only a tiny, tiny remnant of what it once was: a common grazing area for citizen’s goats, cows, and horses. No, I’m not kidding. :) ).

      Also, the Common is just a big, empty space of grass. The Public Gardens might be closer to a lot of Central Park in terms of feel/aesthetics/etc. :)

  11. Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

    My mortgage is less than their dorm rooms, Wha?

    I got a lot of sweet young coeds in my dorm.. and crabs.

    The crabs weren’t from the coeds, though: my roomate brought them back as a “souvenir” from a Grateful Dead Show.

  12. Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

    1. Eugene Lang College $17,110

    How in the world can an 18 – 22 year old possibly afford this much for housing? Assuming it covers 9 months of rent, that’s ~ $1,900/month for housing. When I lived in DC, I lived in a brownstone in Capitol Hill for $2,000 a month, and then an even bigger house for $2,500 where I sublet the basement out. It was a hardship when our household income was well over 6 figures.

    When I got out of the Army, I went to college and got an apartment with 3 other guys. I think I paid roughly $150 – $200/month. I did the same thing for grad school. I can’t even contemplate spending anywhere near $1,000+ a month for basic room and board, let alone paying that much to live in conditions that are roughly equivalent to modern military barracks.

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      If you go to a decent school, they often help with cost of living through grants or other financial aid. My living costs were covered by UCLA for two years via a sweetheart scholarship I got.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      I didn’t see any clarification on this, but most colleges include meals with the room and board costs. For example, the Eugene Lang housing includes meals and the dorms have full kitchens so you can cook. There are lounges, practice rooms for music students, reading rooms and libraries, exercise rooms, and studios.

      For $1,900 a month you can get those things with an off-campus apartment, but good luck having a place to practice your cello without getting complaints.

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        I guess I’m just not used to seeing such high numbers. When I got my first job out of college (a low level bio tech taking water samples), I got paid about $22,000/year.

      • jessjj347 says:

        Most schools I know do NOT include meal plans with housing costs.

    • outlulz says:

      I live on campus at UCSD and my rent is about $1200 a month, which also includes food. My grant money pays for it.

      • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

        Go Tritons!

        I lived off-campus in graduate apartments, but for the price on-campus housing at UCSD is a pretty damn good deal. Especially given the availability and pricing of apartments in La Jolla…

    • theduckay says:

      I’d venture to say that most parents pay for their boarding (and most likely their tuition). My college wasn’t very expensive, but I don’t know anyone that actually paid for their own room and board, and if they did it was more towards their senior year, not as a freshman.

  13. sponica says:

    I lived in the dorms that made number 5!

    And while some people did live off campus, I loved those dorms! They were like palaces! Well the freshmen dorms had community bathrooms, but most of the upper classmen dorms had private bathrooms. The new dorms (built after I left) have apartments but you don’t have to share a bedroom!

    Plus, it’s the Bronx…very few out of state parents are willing to let their kids live in the Bronx unless it’s in the private gated community.

    The Lincoln Center campus while expensive is probably cheaper than rent in the area…

    What I got out of living in the dorms…some of the best friends I have ever made.

  14. DogiiKurugaa says:

    I gained a new appreciation for cleaning supplies. I was in a dorm with an entire floor for international students and shared a suite with two guys from Turkey. Those guys were sick bastards. I repeatedly had to clean the bathroom of ground in shit. And yes, I did complain to the RA and to others. I also tried to transfer, but there were no rooms open in my dorm and it was way too much work to move to the next closest dorm about half a mile away. They did nothing except setup a cleaning schedule that I still had to end up cleaning because they didn’t actually clean.

  15. Michaela says:

    I live in a dorm.
    I actually have the best dorm option on campus. I live in a private suite with a living room, bedroom, kitchenette, and private bath. It is on the top floor of a two year old building too (so no ancient, broken furniture).
    As for price, I don’t worry about it and just let my scholarship pay for it.

  16. jasw says:

    Alcohol poisoning.

  17. BigDave says:

    Go Bears! You need moar shout-outs to Cal!

    But seriously, Berkeley has recently put up many more dorm buildings – many of them are quite plush. The surrounding area has rent control [or it did in my days 15 -18 yrs ago]. There are other options which are cheaper – frats & sororities, co-ops. I only lived in the dorms [Unit 3] for one year – still have good friends made from living there almost 20 yrs later. Plus the dorms are very close to campus.

    • Cat_In_A_Hat says:

      Go Bears Big Dave! I lived in Clark Kerr for 2 years and man was it expensive, but who can beat the memories from living in the dorms versus living in an apartment. Dorms are also very convenient and not having to worry about purchasing food and cooking or finding a laundromat, having housing services staff, an awesome RA to go to for advice, computer lab, common social area and gym within walking distance from my building justified the price paid per semester. I wouldn’t give back my days in the dorms for anything (even after having on really annoying roommate).

      • BigDave says:

        Clark Kerr – nice. My wife lived in Foothill when she was a freshman.
        Back in my day, if you rented an apartment near Campus [southside] you could average $400/ bedroom. I think my dorm fees for Unit 3 [which was newly renovated at the time] averaged $1000/mo with a 14 meal/wk plan. Not too bad in the early 90s.

    • Coelacanth says:

      Maybe I just had a different experience, but I cannot help but imagine what ridiculous sums of money Cal must make off its dorm accomodations. I shared a room with two roommates, paying the equivalent of a modest Manhattan apartment in a desirable neighbourhood.

      Cal, if my calculations are about right easily makes three to four times per square foot in rent, and I usually had hundreds of points left over on the meal plan every semestre.

      Yes, I made had a few good experiences, but I don’t think I could honestly justify the expense – intangibles included – if faced with a similar situation in the future.

      Maybe some of us should go into the business of building school dorms. At least it could provide some honest competition =/.

  18. magadorspartacus says:

    I gained a career path. This is my 20th year of working in residence life.

  19. phonic says:

    Let’s see, my roommate was a total loaner who never left the room and their life was on AIM. She gave new meaning to naive and I swear didn’t even know what the “birds and the bees” were yet. She actually like the cafeteria food that everyone said there were laxatives in. Glad I moved out after 1 semester and managed to scam her out of $40.

    • AlxFherMana says:

      So you moved out because you had an introverted, naive, non-sexual roommate who didn’t mind the food that everyone else hated? And you took advantage of her naiveté? …Wow.

      And here I thought people moved out because of oversharing roommates, community bathrooms and overall lack of consideration. Hm.

    • Michaela says:

      Um…honestly, it sounds like you were the bad roomie.

  20. Pax says:

    Funny how Harvard, Yale, MIT, and other schools in their league, aren’t in this top 10 list … isn’t it?

    • Not Given says:

      It’s been a really long time since my son started at MIT so I can’t remember the exact numbers. I do remember tuition, dorm, food, insurance, etc for the entire year totaled more than my husband was making in a year.
      Son got scholarships, grants and loans. He also spent less on other expenses than the materials from the school suggested he would need. I saw his dorm room and suite. It was a third floor walk up in the oldest building on campus, one living room, one bathroom, 3 bedrooms, 2 smaller one person rooms and one larger 2 person room. His roommate’s side of the room was a chest high, teetering pile and one time he came in early in the morning after spending the entire night in the computer lab and saw 4 feet sticking out of the covers of the top bunk.

  21. thekevinmonster says:

    I did not gain that much weight living in the dorms, because I found out that if I overeat dorm food, I just develop IBS. (Someone will probably tell me that I’m misusing IBS but my bowels were very irritable so hush.)

    I had a single room, which was very expensive, but it prevented me from having massive dramafests. That was nice. There were other benefits to being nerdily, painfully alone, too.

    The food was better than you would really think. They actually tried to make decent food most of the time. Certainly better quality than Old Country Buffet. Not sure about better than Golden Corral..

    I discovered that I can easily sleep even when someone next door is listening to psychotic extreme black metal at 3AM.

    My first year in the single dorm, our RA was super mega awesome turbo cool. My second year, he was a cliquey engineering student who sent us vitriolic threatening emails when people would poop in the bathroom sinks and only ever hung out with people who were also in his classes.

  22. gman863 says:

    Looking at an individual college’s total cost of living in a dorm versus off-campus housing is no different than any other major purchase: It pays to shop and compare.

    The dorms at Ball U (Ball State University) were rather Spartan in the 1980’s: A room slightly larger than a prison cell for two – no private dorm rooms available, a shared bathroom on each floor and parking (depending on which dorm) was up to a mile away. I think this is where the term “buzzkill” originated.

    If you didn’t wait until the last minute and avoided the few slumlords, you could get a nice place where each roommate would have a private bedroom plus a decent size shared area for about the same cost. True, food wasn’t included; however most of my dorm dweller friends’ gag reflexes required buying off-campus meals on a regular basis.

    Living off campus doesn’t make you a hermit; it gives experience in budgeting and living on your own. If you can’t stand noise or constant interruptions while studying it can be a major plus.

  23. masterage says:

    The dorms I live in are somewhere high on that list, but that’s partially because they are full-blown apartments.

    Granted, apartments with 1 or 3 other people in them, but you get a private room with a lock, and no community showers or anything. It’s… nice.

    full kitchens, too. No way in hell would I be able to go to the ‘regular’ dorms after this, and apparently the ones here are nicer than what I’m seeing in the comments.

  24. f5alcon says:

    i went to pace, the dorms were also studios with 1-3 other people so total cost for a 4 person room was roughly $30,000 per 9 months

  25. erratapage says:

    I think it partially depends on if it’s a commuter college or residential college. I found that living on campus wasn’t much of a benefit where I went, because so few people lived in the dorms. The food was fine, but I developed some very interesting habits. I think I skipped almost every meal after my first semester. And I really didn’t like the cramped quarters. Oh, and at home (back in the mid-eighties), I could write my papers on a computer, instead of typing them.

    Eventually, I developed friendships that were off-campus and decided to commute. I’m sure I would have made a different decision if my friends had lived on campus, but I needed a car to see my friends, and contract parking was too expensive.

  26. wackydan says:

    The higher ed industrial complex… just keeps milking us dry. Soon it will be so expensive to get a degree, that it will be more affordable just not to get one to begin with.

  27. kimmie says:

    Interestingly, the college i went to in PA *required* you to live in the dorms all 4 years, and to have a meal plan. (Even if it made you physically ill because you have major food allergies, as someone I know did) Unless you lived with your parents. If they found out you were living off campus, they would bill you for the entire cost of room and board for the year. The total cost of a year at my college was about $23k in 2000.

    Incidentally, seniors got to take place in a drawing where a lucky few were allowed to live off campus. All anyone in a fraternity could live in the frat houses. But since it was 7 females to every 1 male, they cared less about the income from men.

  28. moyawyvern says:

    The dorm at the first school I went to was great. I was in a newer building, with cluster-style rooms. There was 5 rooms to a bathroom, unless you were on the first floor (where I was) and there was 4. I was right across the hall from the main kitchen and tv lounge. The laundry was on the same floor, close enough that I could check the dryer during commercials but far enough away that it didn’t small like Tide all day long. It was co-ed, but single sex floors. The rooms were big and airy and the ceiling were so high that I could kneel on the top bunk and still not hit my head on the ceiling. There were traditional dorms on campus, as well, if that was what floated your boat, and apartment-style for upper classmen. And to top it all off, the food was GREAT. Perdue chicken was in town, so the chicken was really good. They had made-to-order omelets and Belgian waffles on weekends. I had my first bananas foster and cherries jubilee there. And I still dream about the doughnuts.

    Then I switched schools. My “double” was a tiny cinder block that couldn’t be called a single anywhere else. The singles were glorified walk-in closets. I had horrible roommates, who burned incense and pretty much refused to speak to me, until they transfered and I got an unintentional single. I wasn’t thrilled with the fire at 4am in December in MA that left us standing in the cold. Plus, the food was pretty sucky. I think I lived off Hot Pockets from Stop and Shop most of the time I was there.

  29. bluline says:

    I lived in dorms for two years in college. My freshman roommate was gay. Didn’t bother me, but it spooked a lot of the other guys on the floor (large Southern state university in the mid-70s). He was actually gone many weekends, which was good for me and my social life. My sophomore roommate was a recent born-again Christian who spent most of his time trying to convince me to be like him or I was going to go to hell. I preferred the gay roommate.

  30. H3ion says:

    University of Wisconsin – Madison has some privately owned dorms that are pretty nice, at least compared to the school’s dorms, and the prices are comparable.

  31. H3ion says:

    Hey Phil. Are these numbers room only or room and board? You could get a decent place in Manhattan for what some of these schools are charging.

  32. Economists Do It With Models says:

    I used to live next door to one of the Suffolk University dorms, and I know what I was paying for a studio apartment, so this doesn’t surprise me at all. On the up side, the Suffolk kiddies have nice views of Boston Common…

  33. AnthonyC says:

    Oh boy, dorms in the hearts of major cities cost more. Who would’ve thought?

  34. Amnesiac85 says:

    I’ll be honest, I had a great time in the dorms. It’s been seven years since I lived in dorms, and I’m still close with my roommates from freshman and sophomore year. Yes, it was crazy, and some stuff was annoying, but I guess the experience differs for everyone. Personally, it was just fun.

  35. Cantras says:

    I lived in a dorm that was what i would call standard — a double room, closets. Bathrooms were down the hall- 3 toilets, 4 showers, and like 10 sinks for maybe 30 girls. No kitchenette, but there was a microwave in the den if you didn’t have your own.
    Across the road from us was “suites” — double room, closets… and two of those rooms were attached to a room about the same size as a room again, and off that room was a private bathroom. small kitchen to every 30 people.

    I told my brother, “Do not date anyone — male or female– who lives in suites. They got Daddy or Mumsy to pay $1500 extra per semester so they wouldn’t have to share the toilet.”

    That said I do recommend dorms. And I recommend co-ed dorms– not for reasons of more/less hanky-panky (about even as far as I noticed), but because the girls in the all-girls dorm were catty and insane.

    • gman863 says:

      I told my brother, “Do not date anyone — male or female– who lives in suites. They got Daddy or Mumsy to pay $1500 extra per semester so they wouldn’t have to share the toilet.”


      How exactly does living in a dorm with a private bathroom make a person unfit to date?

      If someone who lived in the suites had turned the tables by saying “Don’t date anyone who lives in the commoner’s dorm. Their parents are too poor to afford a private bathroom.”, what would your reaction be?

      Someone low enough to be seeking a love connection based on family fortunes would cruise for a date in more expensive housing. The rest of us judge the individual; not where they live.

  36. Gaianna says:

    That is my photo this is so cool

    On a side note my Dorm, which is where that picture was taken was about 6.5-7K a semester.

    For a 10 by 12 room shared with another person, which doesn’t sound horror-able until you have to fit all the mandatory dorm furniture. Which I was happy to have after my first year there with the old furniture from the early 80’s.

    The meal plan was not worth the cost and one of the main reasons I moved.

  37. chocolate1234 says:

    I gained my husband, and many of my best friends. I loved, loved, loved living in the dorms. I loved the activity, and the loudness didn’t bother me one bit.

  38. SoTEX says:

    the years i lived the dorm life shaped me to my core. those years were spent in tents in places like turkey, bahrain, saudi arabia, kuwait and iraq. of course, the dorm life included a shitter a couple hundred yards down the row of tents through kung-fu like sand and dinner was served in a dark brown, then tan (with a chemical heater), bag. and i guarantee that my dorm expenses exceeded, by at least a factor of ten, the expenses outlined in this article. [US out of afghanistan today.]

  39. DeathByCuriosity says:

    Two horrible roommates and a hatred of dorm life in general.

    Roomie #1 sprayed her bedsheets with perfume every night and was a social butterfly (I’m a non-perfumey bookworm loner). She was gone most of the time during the week so I had the room to myself, and I went back home every weekend for laundry and free food, so she’d have the room to herself from Friday night through Monday morning. Things went very smoothly until two weeks into the semester when she had an out-of-the-blue screaming sobbing fit and told me that she couldn’t stand living with me because I stayed in the room studying a lot and she couldn’t have friends over EVER (remember what I said about being gone every weekend? yeah). She immediately moved out and I had the room to myself for the entire year.

    I had my own room the next year as well because my assigned roommate never showed up, but the following year, the university threw another roommate in. Roomie #2 totally surpassed #1. She was a white girl who talked like a black girl, only more exaggerated and stereotypical. She sucked her thumb (yes, sucked her thumb just like small children do) and she was a complete slob. After a week and a half, you couldn’t see the carpet on her side of the room due to it being covered with dirty clothes (including panties with visible crusty residue) and take-out containers with half-eaten food. She moved out after a couple of weeks and I had the room to myself again.

    In addition to that, I hated dealing with the showers, the clogged toilets, and other residents randomly screaming in the hallway in the middle of the night.

  40. veg-o-matic says:

    And the Suffolk kids who choose not to live on campus just move into nearby apartments and drive up the cost of rent for the rest of us.

    Not to mention being generally poor neighbors.

  41. Zernhelt says:

    I’m disappointed George Washington University isn’t on the list. I was always proud when we ranked high on the most expensive universities list.

  42. selkie says:

    Not surprising to see a bunch of UCs on the list. The system is in extreme money crunch, and also under extreme pressure to keep increases in tuition proper to low levels, so they tend to rely heavily on revenue from non-tuition sourses like the dorms to keep the budgets balanced.

  43. Miraluka says:

    Cooper Union. $13,700. But they only have housing for freshmen & RA’s. And students don’t pay tuition.