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What to do With the Extra Room When Jr Goes to College

Hurray, you made it!  And congratulations.  The high school years are behind you and your college bound student.  There’s a new diploma on your Crown PointHobart, or St. John mantel and anticipation toward the future in your hearts.  Pressure from a younger sibling to move into big brother’s or sister’s room at the end of the summer when it comes time to move your college freshman into the dorm seems to have been mounting for years.  Maybe you’ve even been bitten by the bug to turn Junior’s room into that sewing room, craft room, home gym, (fill in the blank with your own renovation/remodel/repurpose room dream).  Here are a couple nuggets to keep in mind before taking action on your impulses.

  1. Feelings.  What does your new graduate think about losing his room to his little brother or the brand new treadmill?  Teenagers like to think they have it all together, that they’re now ready to take on the world, and that little things like their bedroom don’t matter anymore, but remember, “There’s no place like home.”  If they lose the one corner of the world that’s been their very own since they were a kid it might have an adverse effect.  Talk to them.  Make sure they’re okay with the change.  Listen to what they have to say about the situation.  If it truly is time for a younger sibling to get the larger room, have Junior participate in the passing of the torch.  Rather than taking the room from him, give Junior the opportunity to give the room to his sibling, as if it were a gift being handed down from big brother.
  2. School’s out.  What happens when Junior comes home for Thanksgiving, Christmas break, Spring break, and summer vacation?  It’s not like they’re moving out for good.  They’re just heading off to school, and will still need a place to rest, recuperate, and re-energize when school’s not in session.  If you must take over the space because the new furniture is already on order be sure you have a couch or futon that can be easily converted into sleeping space if the need arises.

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