Ready for this big transition?
Whether you're a first time mover or moving your kids out, this is a big change!
First, Pick a Place
Congrats on an apartment! Did you parents force you out, ready to move on, or are you the parent that’s ready to have the house to yourself again? Celebrations all around! We want to make sure you’re all prepared for this new adventure.
First things first, where are you going to live? Make sure you shop around, compare prices, read reviews (with a grain of salt), and ask lots of questions. What’s the area like? Are there schools nearby? Drive your commute at commute time from your potential new home to see what the traffic is like. Look at the exact apartment that you would be living in (I’ve made this mistake and ended up in an apartment that looked nothing like what I signed up for). Is the landlord compatible? How many times has management switched over the years? What utilities are included? Determine what your make-or-break is, i.e. dishwasher, washer/dryer, complex amenities, etc. and go from there.
So, you’ve officially decided on an apartment, woohoo! First, start packing. Typically, people start packing way later than they should. Get a head start so when move-in day creeps up, you’ll be stress-free and ready to go. Also, start purchasing the little things; a new toothbrush, kitchen utensils, non perishable food items, soap, and cleaning supplies. We want to make this as peaceful as possible, and those little things can really get under your skin after hours of heavy lifting on move-in day.
Time to get serious: We're Movin' In!
Guys and girls, actually read your lease!!! Many times people sign this 15-page contract without reading the fine print. You’re paying lots of money and living there for approximately 1+ years, so make sure you know what you’re getting into. Before you move anything into your apartment, check for what the landlords will inspect when your lease is up. You’re looking for cracks, lightbulbs, water damage, uneven floors, marks on the walls or floors, door locks, and outlets. If there are these things already noticeable in your apartment, take a photo with a time/date stamp so you have evidence when it’s time to go.
When shopping around for furniture, make sure you know what will and what won’t fit in your new home. Decided on a 600 sq ft apartment but want a king bed? I hate to break it to you, but maybe that will work later in your life. You may not have the best-of-the-best furniture to start, but it’s a start! The fun thing about living on your own is you can make it your own. If you place your sofa by the window, three months from then you could move it to the other side of the room; play with it!
Getting furniture overtime can help you save money. It gives you more time to visualize what you really want, save up, and shop around. I know you really want a bar cart now, but in a month you may see that you just don’t need it. An apartment can help you see your long-term goals, too. If you want to save up for a house or get a new car, maybe put that extra $100 in your savings as opposed to getting that china cabinet.
Throughout the moving process, your child knows you want to help, however sometimes it can come off the wrong way. Give them space, let them figure it out. Plan out finances with them, communicate, and show excitement - not worry. If any time is a good time to let go of the reigns, it’s now.
Parents; I know it can be hard. Your baby is officially moving out and on with their lives. How do you cope? Give yourself time to digest. For 19+ years, you’ve had a child in your home- taking care of them, feeding, cleaning, all of it. It’s going to be a big change now that they’re gone. If you’re really feeling down and like something just isn’t right, talk to someone. Look into empty nest syndrome symptoms and take action to get over this new hurdle.