Blog December 6, 2021

How to Live on Your Own – All You Need to Know

Posted in How-to
Hannah Michaelson

Hannah is a freelance relocation writer from NYC that has become an expert on packing and unpacking.

Leaving your parents’ house, and renting a first apartment can make you both excited and stressed out. The question that bothers all those who prepare for this event is how to live on your own? Once you understand there won’t be anyone to make dinner and shop for groceries, you might find yourself totally confused about what to do next. Here is how to prepare yourself properly for the upcoming changes, and be completely self-reliant.

The first thing to know is that financial independence is fundamental to embark on this journey. If you feel anxiety about moving out – take a breath. There is no reason to feel that way because everything is a matter of adjustment. Here are all the details to cover before moving to a big city, that will help you prepare properly for stressless interstate moving.

How to Live on Your Own? Learn How to Manage Your Finances

Relocating after college, and finding an apartment will face you with many challenges of moving out for the first time. The tiring questions like can I survive living on my own or is it cheaper to live by yourself will inevitably start to rise. And all of them are expected when you’re about to move to a new state.

Living solo implies a lot of responsibility, especially when it comes to finances. Since there won’t be anyone else to take care of the bills, and other costs and your monthly budget will be limited, the best solution is to learn how to spend the money at your disposal. Here are some useful tips that will help you manage finances successfully without getting in trouble.

Learn What Expenses to Expect Prior to Moving Interstate

A considerable part of your budget will be focused on preparatory steps which will provide your desired relocation to become true. Don’t forget that you’ll need enough money to cover the moving state to state process which includes:

  • Hiring state to state movers and choosing all moving services,
  • In case you plan to ship the four-wheeler ensure to have cash ready to cover auto-transport services,
  • Acquiring packing materials necessary for boxing up your belongings,
  • Travel costs such as flight tickets, hotel, AirBnb or gasoline, tolls, and similar if you decide to drive to your next residential address,
  • The deposit which implies paying at least two monthly rents in advance (or more if the landlord requests),
  • Any cost related to improving your future house.
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How Much Money Do I Need to Live on My Own? Calculate Your Monthly Incomes and Mandatory Expenses

The greatest concern of all those who are about to move to a new city alone is how they’ll keep up with all the costs. That’s why creating a financial plan and listing all costs and monthly incomes will be the best way to determine how much money is at your disposal. As well as how much money do you need to live on your own.

Good to know: To cover all the costs including rent, a single person needs (on average) around $2,800.

Optimize Your Expenses by Calculating them On Yearly Basis

One of the first things to do when moving to a new state is to optimize your expenses in terms of cutting all services or subscriptions you actually find useless. Remember to go through all these providers and decide what you’ll continue to use and what to cut. This could be a pretty tricky moment since many of those services are paid through standing order which is a very convenient solution but is also the best way to forget what you are paying.

This especially applies to transferring utilities so you’ll be able to avoid paying double bills for services you don’t use, like internet or TV subscriptions. Also, don’t forget to check all other things that are automatically paid for each month, like a gym membership. Keep in mind that the majority of people fail to do this since all those costs might look insignificant when calculating on a monthly basis.

Follow the Old Good Tip: Don’t Fall for Consumption Traps and Learn How to Differ Needs from Wants

There’s no need to buy everything that is at a discount. Understanding the difference between your true needs vs. wants is the first lesson for all fresh grads who start their solo life. Let’s see how it works in practice.

You want that latest smartphone with a mind-blowing camera, but are you sure you really need it? If your existing device is already providing quality photos and videos, and you’re not a professional photographer or influencer, think twice before taking out the credit card. The same rule applies to any other piece you find potentially worth spending your money on. No matter if it is a dress, course, or house item, always put the necessity first rather than sheer want.

Set Your Financial Goals and You Won’t Have Any Problems To Save Up

Another great way to prevent yourself from unnecessary shopping is to predetermine your top priorities when it comes to investing the money. For example, let’s say your long-term goal is to buy a flat.

Establishing a fund exclusively dedicated to this particular goal will keep your money in a safe place, and will limit your spending in an effective way. You can establish this fund by opening a savings account, or a regular bank account and setting an automatic money transfer after you receive the salary. Once you withdraw the specific sum from the main account and save it from yourself, reaching the goal won’t be that far after all.

Consider If There Is Any Chance to Make A Passive Income

A regular job could be pretty exhausting, meaning you don’t have many chances to work extra hours. However, there are many other ways to boost your income, and savings! Building an online business based on digital products like e-books, guides, or even courses is simply blooming.

If you have any special skill or knowledge you can share with others, don’t hesitate to take this advantage. After all, once you move to a new home and start your independent life, you’ll have enough space to dedicate to this project that could be quite lucrative.

Plan your finances when moving state to state
Plan your costs and incomes in time, and ensure to have some savings aside that will support you in fulfilling your long-term goals

Find a Place You Can Afford, and Create Alluring Space Out of It

How much does it cost to live on your own? Rent could be quite a burden to your budget. According to the latest data, the average one-bedroom apartment rent in the US ranges from $1,000 to $1,400 depending on the location. Of course, those numbers can be even lower (or higher), everything depends on the state, city, and neighborhood you choose to relocate to.

Check Your Credit Score, and Prepare the Report for Landlord

There is no doubt landlords will ask for your credit score report, and check your paying history, since they want to be convinced you’ll be paying the rent and bills in time. So before submitting the rental application, ensure to have your credit score report prepared! The best way to check your credit score is using the website AnnualCreditReport.com where you can get a free weekly report.

What Is the Cheapest Way to Live by Yourself?

In case you want to keep the living costs lower, another option to consider is finding a co-living space. This solution provides enough privacy and companionship as well. For all those who feel very hard to separate from their family, and know they could feel depressed after moving, co-living space presents a perfect balance between all needs and wants. The best thing of all is living on your own expenses will be considerably lower, so remember to take into consideration this solution too.

Don’t Forget the Fun Part, and Arrange Your Flat According Your Style

Moving from house to apartment will face you with a different lifestyle, and less space. However, there are many solutions to help you use the space at its maximum, and adjust it according to your style in an affordable way.

Painting the walls in your favorite color, incorporating some creative storage ideas, making wall galleries, and placing plants are great, fun, and cost-effective ways to improve your future home. The best thing of all is that all those things can be done on your own. Although outlays are crucial when it comes to living solo, still don’t forget to make this experience as pleasant as possible, and enjoy all the benefits of moving.

A girl is painting her apartment, and prepares to live there after moving interstate
Covering all outlays is the top priority when it comes to solo life. But don't forget to make some fun out of the whole experience

It’s Time for Final Preparations – Remember to Learn How to Do Home Chores

Independency implies doing all home chores which is the least fun part of the whole process, but that’s what adults do. Regardless of reasons to move, once you leave your parents’ house and relocate to another state you’ll be forced to do it all by yourself. Many young people are really annoyed with these tasks, pointing out that those prevent them from socializing and making friends in a new city. However, unless you pay for professional cleaning services, it won’t be done by magic.

Learn How to Keep Your House Neat Before Leaving Parents House

Vacuuming, cleaning the bathroom, dusting, washing the windows, keeping your space neat, and preparing your meals will become a part of your weekly routine. Meaning, it would be better to learn how to properly do it. For all those who need “cleaning training” here is a video that will explain how to get your space neat, efficiently, and quickly in only half an hour, so don’t miss to take a look at it!

Follow Our Tips And Living Solo Will Be a Great Adventure!

For many fresh grads becoming independent represents a pretty stressful event, which is absolutely understandable. Leaving your parents’ house, and starting to be responsible for finances is a huge milestone.

Some typical mistakes are usually related to spending more than projected, choosing an expensive apartment to rent, or not taking care of a place and coming into a conflict with the landlord. But now you know all the potential obstacles, and mistakes to learn from, the question should I move back home will never come across your mind! Just follow our tips, think ahead, and enjoy new life chapters and all the good things that will bring!

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