6 Simple Student Apartment Hacks

Since your student apartment is the place you’ll be spending the most time at university, it’s important to make it somewhere you can call home. The good news is there’s no need to invest much nor risk your security deposit. These simple hacks can transform your space to make it more comfortable, convenient, and attractive.

1. Hang Shoe Organizers on Doors

Gain more storage space in places like your bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen by hanging shoe organizers on the backs of doors. You can use the organizers for much more than just shoes — they’re ideal for holding cleaning products, toiletries, snacks, and anything else that needs a home. Choose between fabric shoe organizers to keep items hidden and clear plastic ones to make finding what you’ve stored in each section easier.

2. Warm Your Space with Throw Rugs

Instantly bring warmth to your apartment by adding some throw rugs. They’re ideal for next to your bed and near the couch in the living room. Remember to add some non-slip rug pads if you’re putting the rug on top of hardwood flooring.

3. Decorate Your Walls with Decals

The walls in your apartment may not be your favourite colour — and, unfortunately, you’re not allowed to paint them. Add a fun design that shows off your personality with decals. These stick to surfaces like walls and windows without the need for adhesive. Some are even reusable, meaning you can rotate between a few different designs to suit your mood or the season.

4. Use Command Hooks and Strips

You may be prohibited from using nails and thumbtacks in your apartment, as these damage the walls. In fact, even if your lease doesn’t specify that they’re not allowed, you should avoid anything that pierces the wall to ensure you’ll keep your security deposit. However, you’ll still want to hang things like photos, posters, and fairy lights. The solution is to use Command hooks and strips. These are strong enough to hold virtually anything you could want to hang on the wall and you can remove them without damaging the paint.

5. Keep Your Drawers Neat with Silverware Organizers

It’s impossible to keep your drawers organized if you fill them with small items that become jumbled together. An easy solution is to purchase silverware organizers. These are ideal for holding stationery, spare change, keys, makeup, and more.

6. Secure Cables with Binder Clips

When your cables are not plugged into any devices, they may drop to the floor and form a tangled mess under your desk. Keep them within reach by attaching some binder clips to the side of your desk and threading the cables through. You’ll never need to search around for the type of cable you need and you’ll reduce damage to cables that mean they need replacing sooner.

Of course, it helps to live in an apartment that is already stylish and comfortable when you move in. You’ll find just such apartments at Foundry Princess. Our Queen’s University housing offers fully-furnished suites in multiple layouts. All the floor plans are spacious and attractive, with stainless steel appliances and granite countertops. Units with en suite washrooms and deep soakers are also available on request. Apply now to secure your spot while there are still spaces available.


A Guide to Finding & Applying for Scholarships

You have several ways of paying for university, including student loans and paying upfront using the money you earn from a part-time job. The best option, though, has to be using scholarships because you never need to pay back the funds nor earn the money. Scholarships are based on all sorts of criteria, including academic achievements, athletics, involvement in extracurriculars, and personal circumstances or characteristics. The huge number available means you need a strategy to find those relevant to you. After this, you’ll need to submit a compelling application to ensure you stand out from other candidates.

Here are some simple steps for finding and applying for scholarships.

1. Check What Scholarships Your University Offers

Many colleges and universities have their own scholarships. In the case of automatic entrance awards, you don’t even need to apply for the scholarship — your university will give you a discount on your tuition if your final grades are high enough. For merit-based scholarships, however, you will need to submit an application. Depending on the school, there may be scholarships for volunteer experience, athletics, or artistic achievements.

2. Talk to Your High School Counsellor

Some high schools also offer scholarships for students moving on to post-secondary education. Since not all schools widely advertise these opportunities, it’s worth asking your counselor if any exist that you’re eligible for.

3. Find Out About Community and Affiliate Scholarships

Your local district or the community organizations you belong to may have scholarships. Ask the people you know and those affiliated with clubs or volunteer organizations. You may have opportunities through your employer, if a family member is a veteran, or if you are a particular ethnicity, religion, or gender.

4. Use Scholarship Databases

Look more broadly for scholarships using a national database. The difficulty with this strategy is that you’ll find thousands of options, many of which have high competition. However, it can be useful if the above tactics yielded few options or if you simply want to maximize your chances.

5. Confirm the Eligibility Requirements

Before starting the application process, always double-check the eligibility requirements. If you’re using a database and have found many scholarships you could apply for, use eligibility requirements to create a shortlist of scholarships that have the lowest competition.

6. Apply Early

Never leave applying for a scholarship until close to the deadline. You may need to provide documentation to support your application that could take a while to acquire. In addition, you’ll need to spend time crafting a unique letter of intent for each scholarship. Giving yourself enough time will strengthen your application and improve your chances.

In addition to gaining more funds to pay for your education, you can make university more affordable by cutting your expenses. One way to do this is to search for an inexpensive room for rent. Kingston students can find affordable accommodation that still provides them with an incredible experience at Foundry Princess. We have two- to five-bedroom apartments, all fully furnished and equipped with modern conveniences. You’ll also have access to an endless list of amenities to make your time at university extra special, including a 24-hour market, rooftop patio, and outdoor swimming pool. Apply now — there are only limited spaces remaining.


How to Make a Long-Distance Relationship Work While Away at School

Many students start university already in a committed relationship. It can be tough to make the relationship work if you’re attending schools far away from each other — but it’s certainly not impossible. With the right strategy, you can make a long-distance relationship work and succeed at university. Here are a few tips to consider.

1. Put Your Education First

Although you may want to do everything possible to ensure your relationship works out, it’s important to remember that your priority is your education. Your classes, homework, and labs always need to come first if you’re going to graduate on time and with a good GPA. By prioritizing your studies from the start, you’ll be able to keep your goals in mind through any ups and downs.

2. Set Ground Rules

Before you head off to university, discuss what you can expect from your relationship and your partner. This will help you confirm you’re both on the same page and will give you the chance to work out any details while you still have the chance to talk in person.

3. Communicate How You’re Feeling

Situations may occur that you hadn’t considered when you were setting ground rules. If you’re ever feeling upset or unhappy about something, make sure you communicate this. Never expect your partner to know how you’re feeling — this is extra important when you’re far away from each other, as it’s more difficult to read someone’s emotions when you’re not talking in person. By communicating, you’ll be able to overcome issues and prevent them from becoming major problems.

4. Be Honest

Although there’s no need to tell your partner about every detail of your life, it is important not to hide anything. Lies even about small things can erode the trust between you.

5. Live the Full University Experience

Make sure you complete university with no regrets. It’s important to live your own life by making friends and finding activities you enjoy. Not only is it definitely possible to do this while maintaining a long-distance relationship, it’s crucial for feeling happy at university. You’re more likely than your peers to feel lonely — but having plenty of friends and making good use of your time will help keep negative emotions in check. You should encourage your partner to do the same.

6. Schedule Time to Chat

In addition to sending each other messages throughout the day — such as to share pictures and brief greetings — schedule regular times to chat. This will ensure there’s always a time when both of you will be available, meaning you won’t need to turn down a chance to talk because you have a class, an extracurricular, or something planned with friends.

7. Arrange to See Each Other

Depending on how far away you are from each other, you may be able to meet up frequently at the weekends, occasionally during the semester, or only during your breaks. Whatever the case, it’s worth always having something on your calendar to look forward to.

It will be easier to arrange visits from your partner if you’re living off campus. You can find Queen’s University student housing at Foundry Princess. When your partner comes to visit, you’ll be able to hang out in places like the rooftop patio, outdoor swimming pool, and clubhouse as well as your spacious apartment. Book a tour to see where you could be living.


3 Factors to Think About When Planning Your Career

Before you start university, there are two big questions to answer: which school do you want to attend, and what do you want to major in? As you near your graduation date, another big question arises: what career do you want to pursue? Whereas you can always change your mind later, it’s helpful to go down the right path from the start, as you’ll start gaining experience that will influence your odds of landing other jobs in the future. To plan your career, here are three crucial factors to consider.

1. Your Purpose and Identity

Studying at university will likely have revealed your passions and may have led you to a more clearly-defined purpose. If you’re unsure what your purpose is, consider your deepest values. You may find it helps to draft a personal mission statement that aligns with your identity, summarizes your goals, and takes your skills into account. You can then use this to think about what kind of work will lead you to where you want to be.

2. Who You Want to Spend Your Time With

When you were choosing between universities, there’s a good chance you considered what the other students were like at each school. This is equally important when choosing a workplace. Although every business has its own culture, certain types of company culture are particularly prevalent in certain industries. Spend time learning more about the kinds of people who are attracted to different careers to find out who you’ll be spending your days with. This is important because it will influence who your friends and mentors are and even how your own identity develops.

3. How Much Flexibility You Want

Some jobs have rigid schedules and require you to be onsite throughout the workday. However, the world of work is becoming increasingly flexible — in some fields much more than others.

Flexibility means different things to different people. You may want to work from home every day to eliminate the need for a commute. Alternatively, you may be happy to go into the office once or twice a week to see your coworkers in person but still have the freedom to fit your job around other commitments. You may even prefer to work part time to earn a salary while you work on building your own business or explore other options through a side hustle.

You’ll need to consider how important flexibility is for you, especially in regard to other factors. For instance, you may decide it’s worth sacrificing some flexibility to fulfill what you feel is your purpose.

An important decision to make now is where you want to live while you finish your studies. If you’re tired of living on campus, you may be looking for a room for rent. Kingston students can find a new home at Foundry Princess. We’ll make your remaining time at university extra special by providing you with incredible amenities, including an outdoor swimming pool, fitness center, onsite market, and much more. Apply now while there are still limited spaces available.


6 Ways to Keep Your Student Apartment Organized Next Semester

It’s common to think of the new semester as a time to set academic goals, but it’s also a great opportunity to commit to improving other aspects of your life. There are various low-cost methods you can use, all of which are suitable even when you have limited space. Here are a few tips to try.

1. Use Shoe Organizers for More Than Just Shoes

Shoe organizers are a great way to store a variety of items. They are particularly useful for cleaning supplies, especially when you need plenty of space to store the items you buy in bulk to save money. Top places to hang organizers include in your closet and on the back of doors.

2. Divide Your Refrigerator with Storage Containers

If you live with several roommates, your refrigerator may be cluttered and you may forget which food item belongs to whom. Adding storage containers will allow you to keep items separate to avoid any mixups and enable you to quickly access your food without needing to remove anything.

3. Store Small Items in Mason Jars

Small items are particularly prone to creating clutter and are easy to misplace. Mason jars are an inexpensive and fashionable way to store things, especially if you decorate the jars by painting them, adding stickers, or drawing doodles in permanent marker. Use them to store stationery, kitchen utensils, and all the things currently strewn across your bathroom counter.

4. Organize Your Desk and Drawers with Silverware Containers

Another option to store small items is to use silverware organizers. These are perfect for things you want to keep within reach on your desk as well as for objects you’d like to tuck away in a drawer.

5. Add Containers Under the Sink

Most kitchens have a decent amount of storage under the sink, but the lack of shelves means it’s difficult to utilize this space. You can overcome this problem by storing items in stackable containers.

6. Hang Baskets on the Wall

An attractive way to take advantage of wall space is to use hanging baskets. You should find it easy to find baskets in different styles at the dollar store — you can pick some to match the decor of the room.

There are multiple ways you can use baskets. For instance, you could install a couple in the bathroom for spare towels — this is extra useful if you share a bathroom with a roommate and want to avoid realizing you’ve forgotten a towel when you finish showering. In the bedroom, you can use baskets for anything from accessories like scarves and hats to books. You could even have a different basket for each of your classes.

If you follow these tips but are still struggling to keep your home organized, the solution may be to upgrade to a better apartment. You can find premier Queen’s University student housing at Foundry Princess. Our three- to five-bedroom apartments are all spacious and fully-furnished and some even have en suite bathrooms. Plus, we offer a monthly in-suite cleaning service to keep your space organized. Apply now while there are still units available.


6 Tips for Writing Better Papers

Understanding the material from your classes is not enough — you also need to be able to demonstrate this knowledge, which often means writing a paper. This requires you to come up with creative ideas about what to include, perform research to gain the citations you’ll need, and write everything into a coherent argument. Although this task can be time consuming and stressful, there are ways you can make it easier and start creating papers that lead to better grades.

1. Know What You Need to Cover

The only way you’ll write a great paper is if you answer the question. Even a well-crafted paper will receive a low grade if it doesn’t address all the necessary points.

Spend time reading the assignment to make sure you know how to tackle the question. If you have any doubts, reach out to your professor.

2. Start with Some Preliminary Research

Set a time limit of how long you’ll dedicate to initial research. Remember, there’s no need to read the material in depth when you’re researching — just skim-read to pick out the information you need for your paper. Plus, you just need to make sure you have sources to cover all the main points. You can do more research to fill in any gaps once you start writing.

3. Create an Outline

Use the question you need to answer and the information you were able to find from your research to determine what to include in the paper. Put this into an outline to guide your writing. When you have an outline, approaching the paper is much less intimidating than trying to write with a blank page. Plus, it ensures you don’t forget to write about anything important.

4. Draft, Then Edit

It will take far longer to finish your paper if you try to perfect your sentences as you go along. Unless it’s immediately obvious that there’s a better way to write something, don’t worry too much about your wording as you draft your paper. Once you’ve finished, read through the entire paper (perhaps twice, if it’s especially important) to see where you could make improvements. You’ll likely find it’s much better than it seemed when you were drafting it!

5. Don’t Add Fluff

It can be tempting to add superfluous information to bring your paper closer to the word or page limit. However, it’s always better to be concise. If you’ve already covered everything, there’s no need to search for places to add more words just to make your paper longer — you’ll only end up diluting your argument and reducing the quality of your paper.

6. Use a Reference Manager

Keep track of all your sources by storing them in a reference manager. The software can also create citations for you in the right style — although you should still check the citations because tools can occasionally make mistakes.

Even if you put all the above tips into practice, you’ll struggle to write great papers if you lack somewhere to work on your assignments in peace. If you live on campus, you may need to rely on your campus library — but this can be inconvenient. A better option to study without distractions is to have your own bedroom in a room for rent. Kingston students can upgrade their housing by moving into Foundry Princess. Not only will you have a desk in a fully-furnished suite, you can use our multiple onsite study areas, all of which have lightning-fast internet. Book a tour to check out all the amenities and modern conveniences we have to offer.


Should You Move Off Campus Next Semester?

Living on campus can have a negative effect on your student experience. It’s stressful to lack privacy, need to share a bathroom with many people, and be stuck with a meal plan. You may be wondering if living off campus would be any better. Whereas this will depend on what housing you choose, you’ll typically be much more comfortable.

Here are some of the most noteworthy perks to consider.

1. Stay in Your Apartment Over the Summer

If you want to stay in your university town over the summer, moving off campus is a necessity. Universities tend to close their dorms for the summer and students need to remove all their stuff — including if they’re returning in the fall. In fact, not needing to move in and out of your housing each year could be reason enough to search for off-campus housing, even if you do want to go home for the summer.

2. Study Without Distractions

Your academic performance could be suffering due to the distractions you face by living in residence. With an off-campus apartment, you’ll have a private space where you can focus in peace. If necessary, you can even agree with your roommates to have quiet times when you all want to study. Living in student housing is even better, as there will likely be study rooms on site.

3. Build a Rental History

It’s easier to find housing after you graduate if you’ve rented in the past. Living in a student residence doesn’t count, whereas any kind of apartment — including one in a student community — will come up in a background check. You’ll be able to show prospective landlords that you have a history of paying your rent on time and that you left the apartment in good condition when you moved out.

4. Have a Car

You may have wanted to bring a car to university but found it wasn’t an option because you’d have nowhere to park it on campus — or at least not for an affordable price. If you find an apartment where parking is available, it will be much easier to have a car to commute to your part-time job, for weekend trips, and to reach other places farther away than campus.

5. Great Amenities

Off-campus apartments often feature great amenities to attract students. Even the most basic apartment is likely to have fast WiFi, a kitchen with full-size appliances, and enough bathrooms to mean you only need to share with a maximum of two other people. The best student communities have additional perks like fitness centers, BBQ areas, and lounges.

6. Save Money

Even though living on campus provides you with a shared room and few amenities, it tends to be more expensive than living in an apartment. You should be able to find an apartment that fits your budget, such as by having more roommates if you need to save money.

The choice to move off campus is easy when you find a great apartment. An example is the Queens University student housing at Foundry Princess. In addition to finally having your own room, you’ll gain access to some fantastic amenities, including in-suite laundry facilities, a monthly cleaning service, a rooftop patio lounge, multiple study areas, and an outdoor swimming pool. You can even choose a unit with an en suite bathroom. Apply now while there are still limited spaces available.


3 Savvy Money Management Tips for Students

Many of the things you learn at university have nothing to do with your classes. In particular, you’ll learn to be independent, which includes managing money. There are two ways to acquire these skills: the hard way by making mistakes and the easy way by using savvy money management strategies from the start. Here are some money-saving tips to guide you.

1. Create a Budget

It’s crucial to make a budget for all your expenses. This will ensure you never overspend and it will show you where your money is going.

To create a budget, you first need to know how much you have available to spend each month. Add together all your sources of income, such as from your part-time job and financial aid. Next, calculate fixed expenses like rent, subscriptions, and car payments. The amount that remains is for your variable expenses, which likely includes food, textbooks and other school supplies, personal care items, and entertainment. Decide how you’ll divide your money between these activities — always give yourself more than you think you’ll need for essentials.

To stick to your budget, it’s important to track expenditures. You can use a budgeting app or just a spreadsheet. This is especially useful when you start out budgeting because it allows you to adapt the amounts you assign to each category.

2. Be Smart with Credit Cards

Having a credit card can be a great way to build credit for after you graduate — but only if you use the card appropriately. Using a credit card to buy things you want now but can’t afford will hurt your credit score and potentially put you into debt. The best way to use credit cards is to only purchase what you could pay for in cash. Then, you’ll be able to pay your bill in full every month and avoid interest. It’s also a good idea to set a reminder to pay your bill to avoid late fees.

The last thing to bear in mind is you should use no more than about 30% of your credit. This may feel restrictive, but it will have a big impact on your credit score. By continuing to use your card appropriately, you’ll soon be able to apply for one with a bigger credit limit.

3. Keep Applying for Scholarships

Many students are under the impression they can only apply for scholarships right before they start university. In fact, many scholarships are available at any time. You can search for them yourself in databases or ask your financial aid office for suggestions. It’s worth keeping some free time in your schedule to apply for scholarships because some applications can be time consuming — particularly if you need to make a video or ask other people for letters of recommendation.

One last tip is to stop wasting money on expensive housing. Living on campus is particularly expensive, especially when you consider that all you’re receiving is a cramped room you need to share with another student. You can find Queens University off-campus housing at Foundry Princess. For an affordable price, you’ll receive everything you need and more: a spacious suite with a full kitchen and laundry facilities, underground parking, an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness center, and places where you can study alone or in a group. Our floor plans range from two to five bedrooms and some rooms have en suite bathrooms. Apply now for the unit you want.


What to Think About Before Taking a Semester Off

Taking a semester off can be appealing if you need a break for health reasons, you have another opportunity to pursue, or you’re unsure that you’re on the right path and need to clear your mind. Whereas time off can be a great decision for some students, it is a big decision — and not one you should take lightly. Here are several things you should consider before deciding if it’s the right move for you.

1. What Your Academic Advisor Says

The academic advisors at your school will have helped many students navigate taking a semester off. They can explain the process and its implications. In addition, they may be able to offer you other options that you hadn’t considered.

You may also like to seek advice from other school officials — especially people who already know you. Consider what these people tell you when coming to a decision.

2. How It Will Affect Your Financial Aid

It’s crucial to know how taking a semester off would impact any loans, scholarships, or grants you have. For instance, there may be requirements that you take a certain number of credits each semester or graduate by a particular date. If you’re unsure, talk to someone in the financial aid office on campus.

3. What You’ll Do in the Meantime

Using your semester off as a chance to earn money could solve any problems with financial aid. Plus, it may give you the experience you need to boost your resume after you graduate or allow you to explore a field you’d like to work in. If you feel you need time to rest, you can always search for part-time, rather than full-time, work.

Of course, a job is far from your only option — it may even be the opposite of what you need. Other options for a semester off include studying abroad, an internship, volunteer work, or developing other skills.

4. Whether You’d Prefer to Transfer

An alternative to returning to your current school after returning from a semester off could be to transfer to another university. You could do this immediately or after a break. This may be the right solution for you if you’ve never felt completely comfortable at university or you’ve decided to pursue a different career to what you originally intended.

5. How You’ll Return

The biggest risk to taking a semester off is losing momentum — but you can avoid this by preparing for your return. This will involve things like deciding where you’ll live, picking your classes, and choosing which extracurriculars you’ll take.

Whatever you ultimately decide to do, it’s important to make changes to prevent burnout and stay motivated until graduation. Key to this is searching for a better apartment. You can find Queens University student housing at Foundry Princess. We offer everything you need to help you study, socialize, and relax, including study areas, an outdoor BBQ area, a 24-hour convenience market, and the option for a deep soaker tub in your apartment. Apply for a lease in time for your return to university.


10 Habits to Be a More Successful Student

What success means at university may be different for everyone. However, most people will agree it means gaining good grades, graduating on time, and enjoying the experience. You can be a successful student by developing the following key habits.

1. Set Goals

To stay motivated, it’s important to have several short- and long-term goals. These will give you a reason to keep studying, even when times are tough. Short-term goals can be things like studying every day for a week for a test or receiving a good grade on a paper, whereas a long-term goal could be to pass a challenging class or land a great internship.

2. Take Full Advantage of Your Professors

Your professors can help you succeed — you just need to ask for help. Reach out whenever you have doubts, either via email or by dropping in during office hours. This will help you produce better papers and achieve higher scores on tests. Plus, you’ll strengthen relationships with professors, which may be useful after you graduate.

3. Become Involved on Campus

You’ll feel a greater connection to your school if you belong to some clubs or intramural sports teams. This will also enrich your time at university.

4. Create a Schedule

The best way to make sure you stay on track is to create a study schedule. To do this, put all your commitments into a calendar and block out the time that remains for studying for your classes. Bear in mind that some of your classes may require more hours than others, depending on their difficulty and the amount of homework you receive.

5. Use a Variety of Study Techniques

Try different study techniques and use a variety of tools until you’ve figured out what works for you. Most importantly, strive to improve your note-taking skills to capture all the critical information while still being concise.

6. Choose a Balance of Classes

Think carefully before you choose your classes at the start of each semester. Learn from experience how many you can handle and avoid too having many challenging classes at the same time.

7. Join a Study Group

Study groups are your chance to consolidate what you’ve learned in class, discuss aspects you’re finding difficult, and explain concepts to others — this is one of the best ways to ensure you’ve understood something. It’s worth joining study groups for all your most important classes.

8. Go to Class

It’s impossible to be successful with your academics if you skip class. You’ll learn much more by hearing the material first hand and taking your own notes. Plus, you’ll have the chance to ask questions and participate.

9. Sleep Enough

It’s impossible to live up to your full potential unless you sleep enough each night. Stick to a consistent bedtime whenever possible.

10. Utilize Campus Resources

Your school has many resources available to help you succeed with your academics and in other areas of your life. Visit the library, writing center, academic advisors, and financial aid office whenever you need support.

Where you live can also make a big difference to your success during university. This means finding the right room for rent. Kingston students can find the ultimate housing at Foundry Princess. We offer spacious floor plans with in-suite laundry, lightning-fast fiber internet, multiple study areas, a rooftop patio, a community clubhouse, and much more. Book a tour to check out your new space before you sign a lease.