The new LDS mission age affects Utah Valley housing

Reading Time: 2 minutes With so many female students preparing for LDS missions, it’s no wonder the housing situation has been greatly affected.

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Students looking to buy housing contracts for this semester are in luck. KSL and Craigslist are full of apartment ads, and many of these contracts are being sold by students preparing for LDS missions.

In the past, females had to be at least 21-years-old to serve a mission, but the age has recently changed to 19. With the age change has come an influx in female missionaries, which has also caused issues for the student housing situation in Utah Valley.

Renee Gavaldon was waiting until she turned 21 to serve a mission, but when the age was changed to 19, she no longer had to wait. She turned 20 one month ago and leaves for her mission on March 13. According to Gavaldon, the only trouble she has had with preparing to leave has been selling her housing contract.

“I had no idea it would be so hard to sell my contract,” Gavaldon said. “It makes sense though, with all these girls leaving.”

Screen Shot 2013-01-27 at 1.08.13 PMGavaldon received her mission assignment in late November and said she has been trying to sell her year-long contract ever since. She has an ad on both KSL and Craigslist and has posted an announcement on her church’s bulletin board, but ahe has yet to find a buyer.

“When I go on KSL to update my ad, I see so many other housing ads. It’s so discouraging because I feel like no one will want to look at my ad when there are so many others to look at,” Gavaldon said.

On the other end of the spectrum, student Amy Charles considers herself lucky that she was able to buy a housing contract so fast.

When Charles made a last minute decision to move from Rexburg, ID to Provo she was worried she wouldn’t be able to find a housing contract available in an apartment complex she would enjoy.

“I was nervous I would be stuck with buying a contract for a ghetto complex because I moved here after the semester already started,” Charles said.

But to Charles’ pleasant surprise, KSL was “full of available contracts for really nice apartments.”

Charles agrees with Gavaldon that the reason why so many contracts are for sale is because of the increase of female missionaries.

Melissa Lindsey is a senior at Utah Valley University studying communication with an emphasis in journalism. Contact her at [email protected]