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October 2, 2019

Well, I should have said “…to buy for HIS dorm’ because if you have a daughter you are going to be buying five hundred things for her first dorm room whether she needs any of them or not—or more! This is one area that boys come in handy and save you some money. So, we are able to keep it to ten things in this 10 ‘Must Have’ Items to Buy Your College Kid For Their Dorm.

My boys wanted to take as few things to college as possible. I wasn’t allowed to make their rooms look “matchy-matchy”—no coordinating anything! They are dudes, after all…Geez. It had to look effortless and like no planning had been put into it. Again—they are dudes, after all.

There are ten must haves that the boys were super grateful to have and that made a difference in their living space. I have listed them below in no special order other than how I was able to get this aging mind of mine to remember them.

The Top 10

  1. A small upright vacuum cleaner—like super small one. Think Dustbuster on a stick.
  2. Flip-flops. Unless your kid wants to get Athletes Foot, you will want them to have some shower shoes.
  3. A robe. Anymore, dorm floors can be co-ed. And, the kids have to walk from their rooms, down the hall, to the shower room. The guys will, oftentimes, just run around in a towel, but a robe is better.
  4. A toiletry caddy. This is for the same reason as the robe. The kids have to make trips back and forth to the bathroom. They will need a waterproof caddy that they can take inside of the shower with them.
  5. A small refrigerator. This is completely necessary. Buy one that offers the most cubic space while fitting any school requirements, if there are any. If you can get a good sized one with a separate freezer area, get that. Your child can put ice cream in it, or make ice, or store a frozen pizza.
  6. Plastic storage. I bought my kids several of the ones with three wide drawers. They are light enough that they could go up above their school issued dresser or armoire. I bought my boys two each and they could have used another, I think. The drawers are not super sturdy. So we put the light items in them, such as, socks, paper plates and bowls, bread and bagels, towels and washcloths, gym shorts…things like that. Also, the under-the-bed ones work great for extra shoes or extra bedding, as well. Everything having a home and place to be put away will help maximize what is a very tight space.
  7. A microwave. A must, for all obvious reasons.
  8. A television. Your child will have down time when they just want to chill in their bed and watch TV just like the rest of us.
  9. A whiteboard with colored markers. It is amazing how much they use these. My kids always had notes on theirs that was between them and their roommate; one telling the other of their plans or apologizing for the mess that they left, or whatever. My point: it will get used.
  10. I would say, a coffeemaker, but my kids don’t drink coffee. So, I will have to end with: a fold-away chair or large bean bag chair. Clearly, a fold-away chair is the most space efficient choice. The most important thing is that your child has a second option for seating—and comfortable seating. They will get their bed and a chair that goes to their desk—that’s it. So, another more comfortable and reclined option is always nice.

A Bonus Item For Mom

**And, then…here is a little bonus for you: bring a box of tissues for yourself because the day that you drop your kiddo off will not be an easy day. Good luck! I am rooting you on from over here…you can do it!!!

Image of 10 'Must Have' Items to Buy Your College Kid For Their Dorm | J.B. TOLS
Image of 10 'Must Have' Items to Buy Your College Kid For Their Dorm | J.B. TOLS
Image of 10 'Must Have' Items to Buy Your College Kid For Their Dorm | J.B. TOLS
Image of my sons dorm with our top 10 Items | J.B. TOLS

If you have a list of 10 ‘Must Have’ Items to Buy Your College Kid For Their Dorm, could you share them below in the comment section?

And, follow me on Instagram or Facebook while you are here!

For more ideas, here are a few blogs to check out:

The New York Times on The Best College Dorm Essentials

Cosmopolitan on 35 College Dorm Essentials

Scary Mommy has some nice tips to consider in their piece, Off To College: Your Complete Guide to Shopping For A Dorm Room



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