50 Things You Might Not Have Remembered for Your Dorm Room

We are going to assume you are set with things like sheets, towels, a laptop, and hangers but here are a few others you might want to consider. The caveat: most items can be delivered with free two-day shipping. 

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  1. Unbreakable cups, bowls, and plates for take-out or snacks
  1. Snacks
  1. A college-oriented planner for learning time management 
  1. An electric tea kettle, if it is allowed, think hot chocolate, soup, and tea. 
  1. Diffuser or wallflower, no one needs to smell a dorm room
  1. A stocked medicine box
  1. Brita water pitcher
  2. A series of legal documents you should have in place after your student turns 18 
  1. A strong fan, unless they have A/C
  1. A zip-up mattress pad or protector, yep those mattresses are not nice 
  1. A long charging cord, the outlets can be anywhere 
  1. A door stop, open doors help make new friends 
  1. A lap desk if your teen likes to work sitting on their bed
  1. A big backrest pillow, see above
  1. Flip flops, showers can be even worse than the mattresses 
  1. Desk lamp, if it isn’t provided 
  1. A letter from you to leave at drop off
  1. Laundry basket or bag that travels well to the machines  
  1. Blackout curtains if your teen struggles to sleep with sunlight 
  1. External battery for phones
  1. Dorm bed shelf 
  1. Mattress topper, our teens told us this was the best thing we bought them for college after their laptop
  1. Bathmat
  1. Rug if the climate is cold
  1. Air fryer, if allowed 
  1. Over door organizer hooks for hanging wet towels
  1. Move-In Bags
  1. Clothes steamer
  1. Command strips or hooks for hanging
  2. Water bottle
  1. Coffee maker, Keurig makes a tiny one
  1. Laundry pods
  1. Extra toiletries
  1. Backpack
  1. Microwave
  1. Headboard 
  1. Safe, if your child uses medications
  1. Extra phone charger 
  1. T-shirt quilt, lots of teens like these
  1. Posters or wall hangings
  1. Surge protector
  1. Raincoat or umbrella
  1. Lint roller 
  1. Elevated cart to lift a refrigerator off the filthy floor and provide storage
  1. Underbed storage
  1. A wipe-erase board
  1. Weighted blanket, if your teen prefers one
  1. Ottoman for storage, friends to sit on, and a step stool onto a lofted bed
  1. Small flashlight, if there is a power outage you don’t want them using their phone
  1. Ear plugs, white noise, something to make sleeping easier

More Great Reading:

50 Things to Do Before You Send Your Teen to College

About Lisa Endlich Heffernan

Lisa (Endlich) Heffernan is the co-founder of Grown and Flown, the #1 site for parents of teens, college students and young adults, reaching millions of parents every month. Lisa is a New York Times bestselling author.
She started the Grown and Flown Parents Facebook Group and is co-author of Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults (Flatiron Books) now in paperback.

Read more posts by Lisa

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