Due to the high amount of student-living communities in Gainesville, you will find that many come with furniture included. This makes it easier for students to be mobile and quick when moving from home for the first time. This also helps save money and is a very big factor for many students when choosing their first (or second or third) apartment.
The difference between finding a unit with and without may mean hundreds of dollars in price difference right away. It also means you have these items to own in case you wanted to move back into a student-run complex with furniture included.
The trade off of spending money on your own furniture and lugging it is that you have the ability to choose furniture based on your taste. Maybe you want to invest in furniture now or you have grandma's armoire that you think would look great in your bedroom. Think carefully about what set-up you and your roommates want.
Looking for an apartment complex that offers furniture is easy with SwampRental's Gainesville Apartments Guide. Simply click here to go the guide and click the left tab that says "Apartment Furnishing". This is where you can select what features you want including "Furnished Common Area" and "Furnished Bedroom" or "No Furnished".
It took myself four years of Gainesville apartment living to finally move into a place without furniture included. Sure, I had more of a choice about what furniture went into my place but I was also still a college student. That means I made Ikea and Craigslist my best friends for that summer before move-in. The cost was that I had large furniture to move around and the benefit was my place was a little more… Me.
Furnished apartments are great starter units but finding a place without furniture may be in your best interests as you look towards moving into your third or fourth year of school. Here are some tips for finding affordable furniture in your first apartment that you have to furnish yourself!
IKEA – Google "places for cheap furniture" and the first thing that comes up is your nearest IKEA. IKEA is the popular Dutch furniture maker that tailor make their furniture to be apartment starter-sets. The pieces here are stylish, modern and affordable.
Target – In case you don't have an entire day to spend, Target is a great option for more practical furniture shopping for a slightly higher price. They have some great choices, especially in the department of end tables and decorations.
Craigslist Furniture – Only on Craigslist can you choose between dinged up end tables going for next to nothing and very high end furniture for affordable prices.
Craigslist Free – If paying for furniture isn't your thing, scout out cool stuff on Craigslist's Free Section. Just be prepared to meet and haggle with the owners in some random part of town (be careful!). Also have a vehicle ready to pick up large, completed items as they usually are giving them away because they can't move with them. I found an amazing IKEA bed/desk set on Craigslist's Free section!
Grandma- If all else fails, go to grandma. Large, heavy and likely made of finely crafted old wood - This is the way to go up your apartment to "classy". Just find a strong friend and a truck that are ready to haul this furniture that seemingly always weigh a ton.