Roommate Etiquette 101

Roommates

Whether it’s a friend or a stranger having a roommate can be an amazing shared experience… but not one that comes without a little work. By simply taking a few steps you can ensure you and your roommate will always remain simpatico and get the most out of your living arrangement.

Step #1 Establish Guidelines From The Start

Avoid unnecessary arguments by establishing clear guidelines early on. Agreeing on schedules and day-to-day rules helps avoid misunderstandings and annoyed housemates.

Some suggested topics to cover include:

  • Bill paying procedures
  • Cleaning Schedule
  • Dirty dishes policy
  • Significant others coming over
  • Sleeping habits
  • Noise levels
  • Drinking habits
  • Pet policy
  • Allergies and general health requirements

Step #2 Respect Each Other’s Personal Space

It’s always a good idea to not enter your roommate’s space without their permission. Think about it, would you want someone entering your room when you’re not there?

Step #3 Respect Each Other’s Belongings

Unless you have an agreed upon rule for sharing food try to be mindful of your roommate’s food. There’s nothing worse than coming home after a long day dreaming of your left-over pizza only to find it eaten by someone else.

This rule also extends to personal belongings. Nothing stirs up bad feelings quite like the notion of someone rifling through your private stuff.

See this? Don't do this.

Step #4 Clean Up After Yourself

Even if a cleaning schedule is agreed on you should always be mindful to pick up after yourself. Certainly don’t leave trash or opened food lying around or an angry roommate will be the least of your troubles.

Step #5 Address Concerns

Bottling up feelings of annoyance will lead to an eventual explosive argument. Speak your mind as problems emerge and work together to find solutions. Whether the problems are big or small you will always be better of for addressing them openly.

Step #6 Don’t Expect To Be Best Friends

Though it’s certainly possible you may end up being best friends with your roommate, the expectation it will happen can often create an uncomfortable dynamic for a roommate. Be friendly but also be aware that their interests, schedules, and friends may not align with yours.

Step #7 Be Open To Change

Living with a stranger (or even a friend) will inevitably bring about new experiences and customs. You should always try to keep an open mind to these differences and change and go with the flow.

Step #8 Remember It’s A Shared Space

What’s most important to remember is that the home you occupy is a shared one. If you’re bringing people over, give your roommate some warning. Before blasting your rock music at 3AM, remember your roommate is one wall over and probably asleep. If you are leaving trash out, don’t forget someone else could be coming home to it.

If you stick to these rules you should be well on your way to having a comfortable shared space. Best of luck!

Handy Info For New Von Klein Property Management Tenants!

Larry & Carmon von Klein
Larry & Carmon von Klein have owned and operated Von Klein Property Management for 25+ years!

It’s the beginning of a new school year and September is going to a very busy month for the Von Klein staff- “Move In Days” are finally here!  We are here to help all of our residents have a smooth move in process so read through these tips and bookmark this post, you never know when this info will come in handy:

  • If your move in date and lease signing date are the same, your security deposit is due with your first month’s rent. Please note that you will not receive keys until you have a zero balance.
  • If you are moving in this month, your security deposit was due on August 1st. This policy is in place because it ensures that you have a zero balance on your account and causes less confusion at move in time.
  • To get a parking space you must come to our office (or see your onsite manager, if applicable) for a parking permit when we post a notice on your door for your complex that they are ready. Please bring your driver’s license and registration- and not your insurance. The car must be registered under your name or under your parents name. Each unit comes with ONE parking spot at no extra cost to you. If you lose or misplace your first parking permit, you may purchase a second parking permit for $5.00.
  • Plug the following numbers into your phone (if applicable)
    von Klein office – 541-485-7776
    von Klein Emergency – 541- 686-0743
    EWEB Electric Company – 541-484-6016
    Northwest Natural Gas – 541-351-3661
    Century Link Phone Company – 1-800-244-1111
    Comcast Cable Company – 541-484-3000
    University Police Station – 541-682-8350
    Diamond Parking – 541-343-3733
    UO Conflict Resolution Services: 541-346-0617
    Community Mediation Services 541-344-5366
    ASUO Legal Services 541-346-4273

Bookmark these University of Oregon Resources (in case you ever need them)

City of Eugene

  • City of Eugene
    Information about the City of Eugene including services and city events.
  • Eugene Police Department
    Safety and police enforcement information for students and community members.

City of Eugene Parking

Download these Off-Campus Resources

If you need any assistance, we are here to help!  Please contact our office during business hours at (541) 485-7776. Our office is located at 1301 Ferry St., Eugene, OR 97401. We are here to help you! Happy move in!

Apartment Safety 101: 10 Tips to Keep Your Apartment Safe and Secure

Apartment SafetyAt Von Klein Property Management, we do everything that we can do ensure the safety and wellbeing of our tenants and their homes. We carefully screen our applicants to ensure that those with criminal records or drug convictions do not obtain a lease with us.

Unfortunately home invasions and burglary traditionally reach their peak during the holidays so we encourage you to be vigilant and follow these tips to deter criminals:

1. Never hesitate to report any suspicious activity you may see in and around our properties (or on campus).  Program these numbers into your phone and keep them somewhere visible so you can quickly call for help if needed (you can also call 911).
University Police Station – 541-682-8350

After you report any suspicious activity to the police, report it to us by calling the von Klein Emergency # – 541-686-0743

2. This may seem obvious, but it remains an important tip: NEVER leave your apartment door unlocked, even if you are leaving for a few moments to obtain something from you car, get the mail or take out the trash. Someone lurking nearby could gain access quickly.

3. Never open your door to a stranger. Require all utility/repair men to provide identification before opening the door. If there is no peephole, have the repairman slip the ID under the door so you can check it out. If still uncertain, look up the telephone number, (do not accept one they give you) and call to verify the information.

4. Use a timer (an inexpensive purchase from a hardware store) for radios, televisions and lights so that the home looks occupied. If you will be away for a while, notify a trusted neighbor to keep an eye on your home.

5. A well-lit area is one way to deter crime so keep a light on at night if possible. If you notice that a light is out on our property or parking lots, please notify our office.

6. Do not leave valuable items visible in your home or car.  Close your blinds at night and keep your car doors locked and park in well lighted areas if possible.

7. Get to know your neighbors. Introduce yourself to them, get to know who they are and try look out for each other. If your neighbors know who you are, they are more likely to report possible criminal activity and get some help.

8. Test and examine each latch, lock, window and door. Look to see if there are solid core doors, peep holes on entry doors, and securely fastened window locks.

9. If there are sliding glass doors, invest in a secondary locking device– it can be as simple as a broom stick that prevents the door from opening or as complex as “Charley Bars” pin-locking mechanisms or anti-lift measures to prevent the door from being lifted from the tracks.

10. Try to use common area facilities during high-traffic hours. Do not feel compelled to change laundry if your common sense tells you to stay away from an empty laundry room.

Sources:
10 Tips for Safe and Secure Apartment Living 
5 Apartment Safety Tips to Help You Sleep Easy 
Apartment Safety and Security 

How to Find the Right Roommate for You

Happy Roomates

Now that we are renting properties for the 2015-2016 school year, it’s time to find your roommate if you have not already done so. While this process can be fun and exciting, it’s important to do your homework and find the right person. Trust us, you don’t want to be stuck in a lease with someone who you have nothing in common with.

Whether you plan to live with a friend or a friend of a friend or a stranger- you must find out important details about their personality, habits and lifestyle preferences before making a decision.

Tip #1-Set up an interview.

Even if you are moving in with someone you know, set aside time to have an honest discussion to find out of this is a good fit. Be honest about your expectations and make sure they match those of your potential roommate. Don’t tiptoe around the subject in order to seem polite, be upfront.

Tip #2- Ask questions before signing the lease.

Talk about your likes/dislikes, cleaning habits, friends, significant others, sleeping habits, etc. Establishing an open line of communication from the beginning will save you from potential misery down the line. Here are some basic ones you’ll want to cover-

1. Are they an early riser or a night owl? Light sleeper or good sleeper?

2. What is their typical work or school schedule? Will it conflict with yours?

3. What do they need to feel safe and secure (locking windows, etc)?

4. Are they neat or “relaxed?? Get clarification as this means different things to different people (and no one admits to being a slob).

5. What are their favorite/least favorite chores? How to do they like to divide up household work (chore list, just do it when they feel like it, etc.).

6. Are they extra-sensitive to fragrances and/or odors? This may affect what you choose as cleaning products and you may have to hide your running shoes after going to the gym.

7. Are they allergic to anything? (Examples: peanuts, perfume, milk, flowers, mold, smoke).

8. Do they smoke, drink, or do any other kinds of recreational drugs?

9. Do they enjoy talking or do they prefer to be quiet all the time? Do they talk about feelings or keep to themselves?

10. Do they enjoy decorating, or do they not care about decorating? What decorating style do they have?

11. What kind of music do they listen to and, more importantly, do they particularly enjoy listening to it when it’s loud?

12. How much TV do they watch? What do they watch? Are they fans of a sport team that you do not support or a sport you do not like

13. Do they like to share some items like pots and dishes or do they prefer to have separate everything?

14. How often do they invite friends and romantic interests over? Are you comfortable with the crowd they hang out with?

Source How to Find a Good Roommate on WikiHow

Tip #3-Listen to your gut instinct.

Your instincts are usually right on. If you get a weird feeling about a potential roommate, tell them politely that you don’t think it would be a good match and move on.

The University of Oregon Office of Dean of Students has additional resources for Off Campus living in addition to a list of places to search or advertise to find a new roomate. You can always contact our office at (541) 485-7776 for more questions, we are always willing to help in any way we can.

photo credit: Fun Ladies via photopin (license)

Five Tips to Get Through Finals Week

medium_7658261288

It’s hard to believe, but finals week is here! Final exams can be a stressful time for students, especially if you are juggling a job, an apartment and multiple activities. We wish all of our tenants good luck on finals or any exam you may be taking right now. Here are some tips to help you do your best!

medium_5146762770

1) Optimize and organize your study space

A well organized study room is very essential during this time. Make sure that you have enough space to organize your textbooks & notes, your chair & study table are comfortable and that the lighting in the room is good. be sure to remove any potential distractions like your phone, tablets (unless it’s needed to study), game systems, TV and anything else that would cause you to lose focus. If music is a distraction, replace it with white noise to minimize interruptions to your study time.

2) Eat right and exercise

It is CRITICAL to take care of your body during exam time, yet so many students neglect their health during this time. Stick to the basics: a balanced diet that includes vegetables & fruits, avoid sugar and go for healthy snacks (e.g. yoghurt, almonds, fruits) to keep your blood sugar stable. If you are going to study for a long time, eat some protein. On the day of the exams, do not forget to eat breakfast! Research has shown that high-carb, high-fiber, slow-digesting foods such as oatmeal are the best for exam day. Also, remember to drink plenty of water (at least 8 glasses a day) to keep your body hydrated. Exercise is also essential during this time as it helps you refresh your mind.

3) Manage your time wisely

It’s very common for students to wait until the last minute to “cram”, but according to experts, this is not advisable. Write down a list all the exams that you are preparing for, and then set a study timetable. Note that, there are some subjects that may require more study time than others however, you should never neglect any of them. Smart time management will also help you avoid cramming which lowers your ability to retain information.

4) Take regular breaks

Research shown that regular breaks are very essential for long term retention of knowledge. Not all the people are the same and therefore make sure that you develop a study routine that works for you. When you feel tired, take a short break to stretch and at least have your mind rest for a while before resuming your studies.

5) Look at the past exams

If possible, reviewing old exams will help you understand the format of the questions and train your brain to perform better on exam day. You can also time yourself to ensure that you spend the right amount of time on each section.

We hope these tips help you get through finals week successfully! On the day of the exam, make sure that you have everything that you will need ready (e.g. writing materials etc). Also get the directions of the room/place where the exam is going to take place and do not forget to look at the rules and regulations. Good luck!

photo credit: CollegeDegrees360 via photopin cc

photo credit: JuditK via photopin cc

Off Campus Living Tips- Know Your Neighborhood!

Eugene is full of great neighborhoods U of O students call home.
Eugene is full of great neighborhoods U of O students call home.

Living in off campus neighborhoods can be an enriching experience for college students by giving you an opportunity to interact with a more diverse group of neighbors. In other words, not all of your neighbors will be college students. Some are retired professionals while others are families with small children.

Eugene is filled with vibrant neighborhoods that are accessible to students, and we can help you find a great place to rent in many of these areas. Click here to see a list of properties available now, or call our office at (541) 485-7776 and we’ll be happy to help.

Here’s some info about 2 popular neighborhoods close to the U of O campus where permanent residents and renters co-exist:

The West University Neighborhood (WUN)

Approximately 75% of West University’s residents are U of O students. This charming community has lots of new construction and complexes that are coming up. Some of the popular spots that you will enjoy in the neighborhood include the Glenwood restaurant, The Duck Store, Yogurt Extreme and Starbucks. The neighborhood encompasses the area west from Kincaid Street to Willamette Street, and north from East 19th Avenue to Franklin Boulevard.

The South University Neighborhood

The South University Neighborhood consists of 60% students while the other 40% are members of the university faculty, retired folks, university staff and families with small children. Students who live in this area have a much different experience here than in other traditional off campus neighborhoods and are expected to keep quieter and follow a more traditional schedule (no late night parties, etc). Some of the popular spots include Toms Market, Safeway, Eugene City bakery and Prince Puckers Ice Cream.

Don’t forget these quick tips to help you be a better neighbor:

1. Make sure you introduce yourself to the homeowners in the area. It’s simple, but you’d be surprised how often this step is neglected! Let your new neighbors know that you care about the neighborhood and you will plan to show them the respect they deserve. You can also exchange contacts and learn about them a bit.

2. Communicate. Ask for assistance when you need it and discuss your concerns with neighbors before they escalate.

3. Keep the noise down. You should try and keep your conversation or music that you are listening to low in your room. The neighbors have the right to call the police in case you are too noisy, you should respect them and their rights.

4. Park your cars in appropriate places. There are drive ways and parking places provided in the neighborhoods. In order to ensure you do not obstruct others, you should park your cars in those places.

5. In case of conflict you should seek help. You can contact UO conflict resolution centre at uodos.uoregon.edu or 541-346-3216 and crs.uoregon.edu, 541-346-0617.

photo credit: Don Hankins via photopin cc

Seven Reasons to Be a Volunteer

Volunteering Oregon
The experience you will have helping others is like none other.

For many college students, juggling busy class schedules, jobs, exams and social activities make it challenging to find time for yourself, let alone for helping others. But if you’re able to fit the time in, even if it’s alongside a part-time, paying campus job, it could be worth your while to pursue a volunteer position.  The experiences you will have are priceless.

Other than the fact that it’s simply a good thing to do, here are seven reasons for you to consider becoming a volunteer.

1. Volunteering Can Be Good for Your Health

Studies have indicated that college students who spend time giving back to others experience lower levels of stress & depression. Volunteering offers a sense of purpose, fulfillment and satisfaction that are vital to surviving the stressful college years. It’s also a great way to get out and be physically active, which we all know is good for you!

2. Could Result in Landing That Big Job

There are no guarantees in the workplace, but having volunteer experience on your post-graduation resume could make you more appealing to potential employers. When employers see that you have volunteered your time, it sends a positive message that you are able to manage your time and that you’re a team player.

3. Teaches Life Skills Beyond the Classroom

Volunteer work gives you an opportunity to develop valuable skills such as public speaking, decision making, writing, communication, personal leadership, etc that you may not have been able to do otherwise. Equally valuable, it allows students to gain a greater understanding of their interests and how to pursue career goals and dreams.

4. Helps You to Build Your Professional Network

Volunteer positions are a great way to meet people, especially if you land a volunteer position in your desired field, whether it’s medical, education, business, etc. The contacts you build through volunteering are very valuable and a great way to build your professional network.

5. Can Lead to Potential Scholarship and Financial Aid Opportunities

There are a great deal of scholarships and grants out there that list community service as a prerequisite, so if you dedicate some time each week to volunteer work, you could be giving your financial aid profile a boost as well.

6. You Will Grow as a Person

In additional to resume and professional network building, volunteerism can do wonders for your social life and help you grow as a person. Finding causes that matter to you is a sure fire way to surround yourself with like-minded people who share your interests. You will also have the added benefit of encountering people from different walks of life as well. Even if you do something completely different with your life, you’ll now be able to boast experience in a variety of different fields. You’ll be surprised how much you will mature and grow as a person once you see that an organization is relying on you.

7. It’s fun

Trust us! Volunteers get all kinds of fun perks, access to cool events, meet interesting people and do things they would not otherwise do!

What more can we say? Volunteering can help you meet new people, find new experiences, get healthy and have fun! Ready to get started?

Duck Corps hosts a variety of volunteer opportunities to make it as easy as possible to find ways to serve in the community! Register now to become part of the growing Duck Corps community. Click here to see their local Volunteer Opportunities Database.

Content Sources:
Benefits of Volunteerism in College


The Health Benefits of Volunteering – Corporation for National and Community Service

photo credit: Kels Photo Images via photopin cc

Duck Spotlight: CommUniversity Assistant Program

The CommUniversity Assistant Program (CAP).
Photo Source: The CommUniversity Assistant Program (CAP) on Facebook.

Living off campus can be an exciting and rewarding time for students where they can experience independence and personal freedom.

But for some students, that increased freedom can come at a cost. It’s confusing and stressful for inexperienced first time renters to learn the ropes, navigate their way through issues with other roommates, neighbors and addressing safety concerns. It’s often hard to know who students can turn to, which is one of the primary reasons why the University of Oregon Office of the Dean of Students launched The CommUniversity Assistant Program (CAP).

CommUniversity Assistants are student leaders (CAPs) hired by the University to live in student-populated neighborhoods and serve as liaisons between students and the greater community. These students know first hand the issues students face and work to create positive off-campus student living where students can study, have fun and thrive.

The organization works to educate students on their rights and responsibilities and the impact of student behavior on residents, business owners, and property owners. They also provide resources to students with scheduled programs throughout the year like the Off-Campus Housing Fair, Move-Out Event, Taking it to the Streets, and Winter Family Weekend. Think of them as the “What To Do and Where To Go” People.

The Goals of CAPs are to:
• To foster positive relationships between edge neighborhoods (residents, business owners, and property owners) and the University (students and employees). Provide value to the University and the community in this relationship.

• To improve quality of life for students who reside off-campus, to advance student learning.

• To increase access to campus and community resources for students who reside off-campus.

To learn more about this program and how it can benefit you, contact the CommUniversity Assistant Program through one of the following channels:

Telephone: 541-346-3216
E-mail: communiversity@uoregon.edu
Facebook: www.facebook.com/UOCommUniversity
Twitter: www.twitter.com/comm_university
Office of the Dean of Students
164 Oregon Hall

Links and Additional Resources:
dailyemerald.com
www.facebook.com/UOCommUniversity

City of Eugene and UO leaders to go door to door in campus neighborhoods

Photo Source: "Around the O" University of Oregon
Photo Source: “Around the O” University of Oregon

Leaders will welcome students, share information on unruly gathering ordinance

To celebrate the start of the academic year and to welcome back University of Oregon students to Eugene, university and City officials will visit residents door to door from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Started in 2009, the Community Welcome event is an opportunity to create neighborhood relationships and to provide information about respectful and safe off-campus living experiences.

City of Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy and others will walk door to door to greet off campus students on Tuesday September 30th
City of Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy will join Interim President Scott Coltrane and other campus and city leaders to walk door to door to greet off campus students on Tuesday September 30th
Scott Coltrane Interim President
Scott Coltrane Interim President

“The Community Welcome is a great way for us to connect with our students and campus neighbors,” said interim President Scott Coltrane. “We are a community that benefits from each other and looks out for one another. We want our students who live off-campus to know how to stay safe, be respected and respectful, and be to good neighbors. This face to face interaction really helps us build these relationships.”

Approximately 100 people in small groups will distribute approximately 2,000 “Your Neighbors and U” brochures during the evening event that will cover more than 70 city blocks. In addition, neighbors and rental property managers have already started distributing the information to tenants. The booklet contains information that encourages students to meet their neighbors, keep themselves and their belongings safe, know local laws, use sustainable transportation options, and party responsibly. The publication includes information on municipal ordinance on unruly gatherings that holds hosts criminally responsible for unruly gatherings where alcohol is present and at least two illegal activities are taking place.

“The University of Oregon and its programs, faculty, staff and students make considerable contributions to our community in so many ways,” said Mayor Kitty Piercy. “I enjoy this collaborative effort to welcome the students each year and let them know how much we value them. It’s also important to help them understand the importance of getting to know their neighbors and being responsible members of the community.”

Mayor Piercy and Interim President Coltrane will be joined by Associated Student of the University of Oregon (ASUO) President Beatriz Gutierrez; City Manager Jon Ruiz; Eugene Police Department Chief Pete Kerns; UO Police Department Chief Carolyn McDermed; UO Dean of Students Paul Shang; and neighborhood association leaders.

 

 

Twelve Things to Do for Free (or really Cheap) in Eugene, Oregon

Photo Source: Eugene Saturday Market via Facebook
Photo Source: Eugene Saturday Market via Facebook

One of the biggest challenges of college life is managing your finances. Between college tuition and living expenses, most of you are probably on a tight budget.

Fortunately, you don’t need a lot of money to take advantage of all that Eugene Oregon has to offer; it’s is a vibrant, friendly, community oriented city full of cheap and free things to do!

Though there are probably too many to list, here are twelve recommendations to get your started. With your student ID, many of these activities are either free or discounted.

1. Check out a Zepplin, Beatles, U2, or Pink Floyd Laser show at the Science Factory Children’s Museum & Planetarium (November-December). Click here for info.

2. Find unique treasures at local Saturday morning garage sales (various locations around town) and Eugene Saturday Market: Oak Street and East 8th through mid-November. Saturday Market features hundreds of local crafts artisans, great food, live music, and a fabulous Farmers Market!

3. Take a hike up Spencer Butte.

4. Take in 15,000 years of human history and 200 million years of geology at The U of O Museum of Natural History, the largest natural history museum between Seattle and San Francisco and a center for archaeological and paleontological research in the Pacific Northwest and the wider world.

5. Take a visit to Pre’s Rock, the site where Olympian Steve Prefontaine died at 24 when his convertible crashed into the ledge. Pre’s Rock is now a shrine memorializing the legendary distance runner. Click here for directions and info.

6. Catch a movie at the Bijou Art Cinemas (next to our office) which has provided the finest Foreign, Indie and Classic Films to Eugene for over 30 yrs. David Minor Theater, Eugene’s first & best downtown movie theater/pub, is also a fun place to catch a flick. For super cheap movie tickets, check out Discount Day on Wednesdays at Cinemark Movies 12 in Springfield.

7. Unwind at Alton Baker Park. Run, bike, walk, or roller blade along the riverfront bike path and pedestrian bridge, bring a picnic and your favorite book, and enjoy the relaxing views of the river and ducks.

8. Spend an afternoon at The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art (JSMA), a premier Pacific Northwest visual arts center for exhibitions and collections of historic and contemporary art. Check out their vast collection of Asian artifacts & Pacific Northwest Art.

9. Go Ice Skating at The Rink Exchange $5 admission with student ID. Located on the Lane County Fairgrounds, be sure to check their calendar or call in advance for Public Skating times.

10. Take in the many free art exhibits available at The Maude Kerns Art Center. Lane Arts Council’s First Friday ArtWalk is also a great way to explore local artists and galleries for FREE (always the first Friday of the month from 5:30-8pm ). Click here for details on the next

11. Pack a picnic lunch and spend a sunny afternoon strolling through the lush forest and world-renowned 12 acre rhododendron garden at Hendrick’s Park on Summit and Skyline Drive.

12. Visit Mount Pisgah Arboretum, featuring a 209 acre living tree museum, riverside trails, open wildflower meadows, fun educational events and more.

For More ideas, visit For more ideas, visit
www.uodos.uoregon.edu
Free and Cheap Things To Do in Eugene Oregon