The consensus is that campus life is a benefit to your social life freshman year, but after that, it is time to move out. If freedom is an issue, and you intend to have off-campus visitors for overnight stays, then the visitor policies on campus can be really stifling. Also, partying is notoriously difficult in on-campus living, so if you are looking for privacy, off-campus housing is the only way to go. The discipline for “improper behavior” in on-campus housing, such as neglecting to set up a visitor request three days in advance, typically depends on the RAs, and brownstones are significantly less strictly upheld than the larger dorms. Specialty housing also includes its own specific restrictions concerning residents and guests.
Moving off campus is a completely different lifestyle (read: freedom). But if money is tight or you are supporting yourself, off-campus living is extremely expensive. Rent runs around $700 per month for a room. If you have the means, however, it is well worth it and really easy to find. There tends to be a moving explosion all over Boston on August 31st and September 1st, since that is when all of the leases turn over. If it is at all possible, try to move your stuff the day before the chaos begins.