Getting ready to move out of the family home? It’s a big step to take for a young adult, especially if you’re moving out to an apartment on your own. Whether you’re still in school or already working a full-time job, there are a few things you’ll want to learn about:
Creating a Budget
Before you move out, learn how to create a budget. Make a list of all your income streams – whether that be from your savings, from a part-time or full-time job, from a student loan, etc. Once you know how much money you’ll have coming in every month, you want to take a look at your expenses. How much money will you be spending on your phone bill, groceries, student loan repayments, rent, gas, etc? You can even put all this data into a spreadsheet to keep track of all your monthly bills. Always make sure you have more money coming in than going out each month. If not, you’ll have to reevaluate some of your spending choices.
Looking for Accommodations
If you’re lucky and already know someone looking to rent an apartment, or know someone who is looking for a roommate, then finding a place to live when you move out will be easy. If not, you’ll have to do it the old fashioned way – looking through classifieds. No, we don’t just mean the newspaper classifieds. There are dozens of websites out there to help you find a place to rent. When you see something within your price range, make sure to go and have a look at it in person with someone you trust. Inspect the apartment for water damage, cold drafts and other problems. Also make sure to go on the Bed Bug Registry and check to see if your apartment building has had any nasty infestations in the last few years.
Make sure you learn about your rights as a renter. For example, did you know your landlord needs to give you 24 hours notice before they can enter your apartment, unless it’s an emergency? Of course, they can ask you for permission to enter sooner, but you are under no obligation to allow them access. That gives you a couple extra hours to clean up any messes you’ve left lying around!
Renter’s insurance doesn’t only insure your belongings in case of an accident like flood or fire – it also protects you from liability if your apartment causes damage to others. For example, if you don’t have renter’s insurance and your bathroom floods and leaks down into the apartment below you, you are now responsible not only for your own apartment but for the apartment of your downstairs neighbour! That sort of damage can really add up. Make sure to look into getting good renter’s insurance – you never know what could happen, and it’s better to be safe than sorry!
This is the kind of information you’ve never really had to think about while living under someone else’s roof, right? There’s a whole new world of information you’ll need to take in, now that you’re going to be out on your own. It’s an exciting and scary time, but with a little bit of research, you’ll be ready to take on the world!