When you decide to move out of your parents’ house, tons of things go through your mind, like the freedom you’ll have, the exciting night life that awaits, not having to listen to nagging and sleeping till the afternoon. Yet, there’s also a bunch of things people don’t think of till it’s too late. Here’s a quick list of things to consider when you plan your big move.
Every Quarter Counts
Your first place will probably be a studio or one-bedroom apartment that doesn’t have a washer and dryer inside the unit. After a week or two, you’ll need to lug your dirty laundry to the community laundry area or, even worse, hop in your car and drive to a nearby Laundromat.
For your trip to the Laundromat, don’t forget to pack detergent, fabric softener and a bucket load of quarters. Most places will charge around a buck or two for each load in the washer. Dryers usually charge by the minute. Sometimes you can get about eight minutes per quarter. Get yourself a good laundry basket or bag so you can get all your dirty clothes clean.
Hello in There . . .
I don’t know about you, but most people who move out of their parents’ home have been living off their parents’ cooking for years. Even if you went away to college for a while, there’s no guarantee that you actually learned to cook. So, when you move out on your own, you’ll have an entire refrigerator all to yourself. The only question is what to do with it.
Fridge and freezer combos are good for a bunch of things. A fridge is a good place to hold leftover pizza and Chinese takeout. Both are almost as good eaten cold as they are hot. It’s also a great place to stock up on your bottled water, red bull and other hydrating liquids (alcoholic or not). Freezers can pack a punch by chilling certain alcohols.
Bills, Bills, Bills
You might think living on your own comes with a lot of perks, and you just might be right. But, it also comes with a lot of bills that you might not be familiar with. Some expenditures are rent, water, electricity, heat, cable, internet, home phone and cell phone. Other costly items include food (if you cook)/fast food/frozen food; supplies for the home such as light bulbs, dish soap, hand soap, window cleaner and vacuum bags; and kitchen supplies like plastic wrap, foil, trash bags and sponges.
All of this is in addition to your normal expenses like shopping sprees with the girls, movies with the guys and all the other fun things that your newly acquired freedom will allow. Be careful because these bills can definitely creep up on you.
Wheelin’ and Dealin’
A lot of apartments don’t come with a parking stall for your car. If it does, you might have to pay an additional monthly fee to rent a space. This could end up costing a fortune!
So before you move out, check the neighborhood out and see if the location is convenient for you. Is it near grocery stores and banks? Can you walk, ride a bike or catch a bus to work? If so, you might want to think about selling your car. No car also means no monthly car payments, no insurance payments and most importantly, no need to pay for gas during this time of record high gas prices.
Once you move out of your parents’ home, you’ll probably already have a full-time job. (If you don’t, I’d strongly advise you to reconsider your decision to move out.) A full-time job is definitely necessary in order to pay all the bills. You might even need to get a part-time job to help out. Due to all the extra time you’ll be spending earning your money, you won’t have a spare minute to go out and spend the money.
Should you find some time to hang out with your friends, you’ll probably decide that staying home and snoozing the night away is a better investment of your time. Date night will be gone forever.
So before you step out and into a place of your own, consider all the pros and cons. Weigh everything out and decide whether or not it’s something you really want to do. At the end, your freedom may be worth the struggle. Or, a live-in chef and maid might be more appealing, even if you DO need to listen to some moaning and groaning every once in a while.