Should I live at home, on campus, or off campus?

Before deciding on room and board options when attending college, it may help to itemize and project expenses. These expenses will vary depending on whether you will commute from home, stay on campus or rent an apartment off campus. Use this calculator to help determine whether living on or off campus is better and to see the costs associated with these alternatives.
Number of years until college 
Estimated annual inflation rate (%)help
Number of months expenses incurred each year 
At HomeOn CampusOff Campus
Cell phone ($)
Clothing ($)
College activity fees ($)
Computer equipment ($)
Entertainment ($)
Food (meals) ($)
Food (snacks) ($)
Furnishings (one-time) ($)
Furnishings (monthly rental) ($)
Health (insurance, copays, prescriptions) ($)
Housing (cable) ($)
Housing (renter's insurance) ($)
Housing (utilities) ($)
Housing (rent) ($)
Housing (one-time deposit) ($)
Internet access ($)
Laundry ($)
Memberships (gym, sports, etc.) ($)
Parking fees ($)
Personal (haircuts, household items, etc.) ($)
Telephone ($)
Transportation (gas) ($)
Transportation (insurance) ($)
Transportation (maintenance) ($)
Transportation (payments) ($)
Travel expenses ($)
Utilities deposit (one-time) ($)
The information provided here is to assist you in planning for your future. Any analysis is a result of the information you have provided. Material discussed is meant for general illustration and/or informational purposes only and it is not to be construed as tax, legal, or investment advice. Although the information has been gathered from sources believed to be reliable, please note that individual situations can vary therefore, the information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.

Any rate of return entered into the interactive calculator to project future values should be a reasonable average return for the period. Rates of return will vary over time, and generally the higher the rate of return the higher the degree of risk.

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