A guide to moving out and moving into your first home

Plan, save, and prepare for the worst. These are the things you should know before moving out.

Are you planning on renting or buying your first home? Here’s how you can save for it.

Living with your parents has many benefits, the most important being not paying rent. While you may contribute your share for utilities, groceries, and other bills, being rent-free is reason enough to stay in the family nest. However, there’s a lot to be said about living on your own in your first home.

Being away from the security of your primary support system gives you freedom and teaches you to be responsible. Whether you’re planning to rent a place or buy your first home, moving out is the first order of the day. Here are some things you should know before packing those boxes.

first home

Before moving in, make a list of essential furniture and furnishings you’ll need to ensure your new home is comfortable

Your reasons for wanting to move out should be logical, practical, and well-thought out. 

Follow the rules your parents set if you live under their roof. Contribute to expenses, do your share around the house, and be respectful. Being a responsible member of your household prepares you for living on your own.

Start planning when you feel you’re ready.

Financial readiness is a good indicator if you’re ready to live by yourself. Stay home if you still ask your parents for an allowance, or help in paying your bills.

Do your homework.

Before moving out, decide on a location, weight the pros and cons, and begin saving. Aside from the having the place you want, proximity to transport hubs, commercial establishments, safety, and security are things you should keep in mind. One of the most practical reasons for moving out is to live closer to your place of work. Whatever you save on transport costs though, will go towards paying your rent or mortgage, utilities, and other expenses.

Always ask for contracts, and consult with a lawyer if you have any concerns. Two months security deposit and two months advanced rent is standard if you’re leasing. All these should be settled a at least a month before you plan on moving in.

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Neutrals are a good choice for your space as you can easily change the look of your home by simply replacing a few choice accessories

Have a goal and set a deadline. 

When are you planning on moving out? Have you decided whether to rent or buy? Do you have enough saved to move out of the family home? You can make informed decisions if you know the difference between what you want, what you need, and what you can actually afford.

Create a budget and stick to it.

It’s not enough that you know how much you make each month. You should also be aware of how much you spend. Packing lunch and bringing your own coffee may save you a few bucks, but the reality is that you need to save more.  If you plan on renting a studio for P15,000-18,000/month, a P30,000 salary might be cutting it close.

To give you an idea of what need to have on hand monthly, think about how much you’re left with after you pay rent. Will you have enough left for food? Can you afford gas or cab money? What about your phone bill, laundry, and utilities? If you can pay all those and still set aside money for your savings and other emergencies, then you’re good to go. Be prepared to spend, too, on unexpected costs such as repairs, medical bills, and the like. Prioritize necessities before everything else, and always be ready for hidden expenses. Never rent beyond your means and always go by what you have in the bank.

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You can always add things later on so keep things simple and fuss-free. This will prevent clutter in your first home

Shop for loans. 

If you’re planning on buying your first home, do the math before putting your name on anything. A big chunk of salaries and savings go to home ownership. Unless you can make an outright cash payment, you will probably get your home through bank financing. Compare bank rates and don’t be afraid to ask for a better deal. You will be paying for your home for at least a couple of years. Make sure you’re ready for that kind of responsibility.

Be prepared.

Check moving services to transport any items you plan on bringing from home before moving in. Professional movers may cost more, but you’re paying to be stress-free. If you plan on buying new appliances or furniture, be sure to coordinate with the store and your landlord or building manager so someone can receive deliveries in your absence. A few weeks before moving in, make sure your utilities are in place. These include power, water, phone, cable, Internet, and the like.

If you have everything you need or can afford to buy what you want in one go, then by all means do so. For furniture, the bare necessities are your bed, a table, and chair. A refrigerator, stove and microwave, and fan or aircon are the appliances you should have. Everything else aside from these can follow once you’ve settled in. If you’re having your place designed, coordinate with your contractor and suppliers so they can finish work before you move in. Be aware of any permits they might need and coordinate these well ahead of time.

Once you’ve established the necessities, you can add a personal touch to your interiors with your favorite accents and accessories

While you may rough it for the first couple of weeks, remember that living alone gives you the freedom to live the life you want. Being responsible for yourself means you need to make better decisions, too. So always be prepared, never forget to set aside enough for your savings, and don’t forget to call your parents.