So at the suggestion of Therapist4Chge, I decided to create a new thread for this where current students can post advice for the non school-related survival skills you may need as a grad student. These can include things like: Inexpensive recipes/diet plans so we don't end up on McDiets until we have to biggie-size our doorways. Advice for finding roommates/housing. What to look for in an apartment, what to be careful of, etc. Those of you who did buy housing, how did you go about it, what kind of moeny did you have to lay down up front, etc. Do you think it was worth the hassle in general Advice on necessities that people may not think of (for example, laptops, SPSS licenses for home computers, etc.) Workout plans for those of us so inclined(i.e. how often/when during the day, do you work out at home or go to the gym, etc.) And pretty much anything else you can think of regarding living a reasonable life off a grad-student budget. I'm sure those of us who will be attending next year would appreciate any suggestions/advice from others who went through the experience of having their salary cut by 1/2 (or 1/4 or 1/8, etc.) and having to adjust.