Moving out for the first time can be exciting. Sure, you probably lived away from home for college, but moving into your first adult apartment is an entirely different proposition. To ensure you are ready to handle all that comes with your first adult home, continue reading. Below you will find just a few tips and tricks that will make your moving experience stress-free.
Figure Out What You Can Afford
Before you jump ahead and sign the lease for an apartment, you’ll want to sit down and really work out what you can afford in terms of rent and other regular expenses. Experts suggest spending about 1/3 of your take home pay on rent. That means, if you make $3,000 a month, you should be spending about $1,000 per month on rent. In high cost of living locations, you may need to take on a roommate to spend just 1/3 of your income on rent.
You may also want to create a budget and figure out all the other bills you currently have outstanding. This, too, can affect how much you can realistically spend on monthly rent. For example, if you are still paying off student loans, currently own a car you will want to work out a budget that includes those regular payments, as they traditionally remain the same over the course of several years.
Factor in the Moving Costs
Moving costs can quickly add up, so before you move you will want to prepare yourself for the potential costs. In most living situations, you’ll need to provide a deposit on the apartment or home you’ll be moving into. In most states, a security deposit is equal to one month’s rent. In some areas you may need to provide a security deposit, plus the first and last month’s rent when you sign your lease. If you are working with a real estate agent to find your home, you’ll likely have to provide a finder’s fee, as well. Finder’s fees, traditionally are equal to one month of rent. Application fees and the cost of a credit check may be required, as well.
Once you sign your lease, you’ll need to get your furniture and goods from your old residence to your new one. While many people choose to move themselves by renting a moving van and doing the heavy lifting, it is safer and easier to hire a professional moving company. Professional movers will move all of your furniture and boxes out of your old home and into your new one for one fee. It is best to call a few different companies in your area for price quotes.
Open Utility Accounts
About a week before you move into your new home, you’ll want to get utility accounts set up. Many apartments will require you to pay your own electricity. You will need to call the utility company and open a new account. If your credit is less than desirable, you may need to submit a deposit before the electricity in your new home is turned on. If you are expected to pay for heat and hot water, you’ll need to establish that account as well. Finally, you’ll want to turn on phone, internet and television services. Call around to find a provider that provides the best package.
Moving out of your parent’s home, into your first real apartment is exciting, but it can also be complicated. To keep things as simple as possible, just follow these simple tips, and you’ll be enjoying your new found freedom in no time at all.