Congrat's for being accepted to Ferris State University in Big Rapids, MI. One of your many new challenges is to find a place to call home while attending school. There are always the dorms, and for some , that is the only option available. Ferris has restrictions on who can live off campus and while the price of the dorms seems pricey it is your only choice. For others the lure of buying a home, renting a few rooms to buddies while going to school and then selling for a huge profit is too much to resist. Like any journey, the first step is deciding on whether to go it alone or use a guide (in this case a Realtor®). There are so many things to keep an eye on in Big Rapids, it would be insane to not at least talk to a local agent. Many people think they can just find a home zoned correctly and buy it. Not so. Even if the zoning is correct for renting to students, the home may not be. Unless it has been used as a rental before it has to go through a "Change of Use" process which involves several inspections by City and County agencies to make sure the home is safe to rent. Parking is another thing to consider. Big Rapids has a parking rule that says you must have 1 parking space for each bedroom plus one for a guest. These spaces have to be on the side or rear of the home and must be at least 180 sq. ft. per spot. So a 4 bedroom house must have 5 parking spots to be able to rent rooms out. I hear agents tell clients to just go outside the City limits to avoid the zoning hassle but Big Rapids Township is also zoned, so that is not always a good option. Best bet is to find an experienced Realtor® that is familiar with the City of Big Rapids zoning laws and let them guide you. Most will answer questions for those who still want to do it alone. Best of luck and I am here if you need me.