Useless Items for a College Dorm Room

Starting a whole new life in college is challenging, especially if you plan on living in a dorm. There are many lists out there of suggested items to bring but I have found you do not need a lot to survive in a dorm room. There are many useless items for a dorm room.

Here are some items that, while they may seem useful, are not necessary. Save your cash for those dreadful textbooks that cost more than the Buckingham Palace.

College Dorm Checklists can be deceiving. You don't need everything they say you do. Here are some unnecessary things to avoid getting.

Useless Items For A Dorm Room

Brita Filters

I bought one of these but, after the first two weeks of classes, stopped using it. It was too hard (a bit overdramatic but true) to go and search for a sink to fill the Brita with water. Not to mention, my college has many water bottle filling stations in every dorm and building. The fillers are much easier to use to fill up your water bottle with drinkable water.


In my dorm room, and most of my friends’ rooms, there is not a lot of wardrobe space. Shocker. Most of the space you get is in the form of drawers. Most of my sweatshirts, sweaters and jackets are tucked away in drawers and not hung up due to the lack of space. Buying more hangers or bringing a ton of your own will result in too much clutter. There will be little space to put them.

Large Binders

Binders are not the friend of small dorm rooms or backpacks. The majority of homework done in college is completed and turned in online. For loose leaf paper and worksheets, I suggest using slim folders that can easily be tucked away on your desk in your dorm. Plus, without binders, there is more space in your room and backpack to place textbooks for classes too.

An Entire Art Supply Collection

It is very hard to unleash your inner Bob Ross in a college dorm. Bringing all your pens, markers, paints, paintbrushes, crayons, etc. will clutter your space and scare your roommates too. Coloring and drawing is very relaxing during college. My friends and I do it often. All you need is a small handful of your choice of crayons, markers or pens to have a fun time.

An Ironing Board

I have seen this on a couple lists as something college students need to bring with them. I’m not sure if these people remember how tiny college dorms are. Not to mention, many college students are too busy to worry about a wrinkle or two. Even the smallest boards are ridiculously clunky. Save the space and your sanity and don’t buy one for your dorm.

Drying Rack

Drying racks for clothes can be large, expensive and take up a lot of space. If your dorm hall has a laundry room with a dryer, skip buying the drying rack. Even if you want to hang dry some of your clothes, it is easier to drape them over the side of your bed or wardrobe. Drying racks are not meant for small dorms. Skip out on buying this one.

Steamer for Clothes

Going along with the clothes theme, steamers are really not useful in college. Most of the time you are too busy studying, eating with friends or sleeping to bother caring about a few wrinkles. Save the money and spend it on coffee instead, my friend.

Fancy Decorations – Curtains, Large Framed Pictures etc.

Fact of the matter is, most of your time won’t be spent in your dorm room. It’s not necessary to stack it to the brim with extra decorations that will just make your room more claustrophobic and tight. Keep it clean and simple.


These things are heavy and take up vital space in your one square foot of dorm space. My college has a printer located in every dorm and multiple in the library. Just use those and save yourself time, money and the energy carrying it to your dorm.

Bed Risers

Many dorm rooms come with beds raised high enough to easily fit a dresser or fridge under. Bed risers won’t make that much of a difference and are too expensive.

It doesn’t take a lot to live in a dorm. Hopefully, you have some better insight into what not to bring to college.

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