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How to Move out for the First Time

Updated February 21, 2017

So, you're ready to move out. You've had it with your parents' rules. You can't stand having to be in by midnight every evening and keep your music down. You want some freedom, the kind that comes with having your own place. However, you aren't really sure what is involved in moving out.

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  1. Save money. You don't want to move out until you have saved enough money to live for a few months if you would lose your job. You also want money available for emergencies and unforeseen costs. Most rental companies require at least one month's rent in advance as a security deposit.

  2. Get some advice from your parents or someone who has lived on their own about costs and budgeting. You need to know what kind of costs you'll have, such as rent, transportation, electric and lights, cable and phone bills. You also need to learn how to make a budget and stick to it, so you have the money available to pay your bills each month.

  3. Find a good location. It might seem unimportant that your apartment is nowhere near a train station or convenience store. However, the first day you are pressed for time or need something fast, you'll realise that location is everything. If you have children, you'll want to be near a school or school bus stop, as well as close to doctors and locations of extra-curricular activities.

  4. Have a solid job lined up to pay your bills. If you have no idea where you will work once you move out, you're not ready. You can only live off of your savings for so long and jobs can be hard to find. You can't expect that you will be able to miraculously find a job that pays well in a short period, especially when the economy is suffering.

  5. Look the lease over carefully before you sign it. If you are going to rent a place, have an attorney or someone familiar with lease terms look at the lease. If you don't have an attorney or expert, at least let your parents look over the lease terms. Otherwise, you could end up signing something with terms you didn't realise.

  6. Have a backup plan for what you will do if you can't make it on your own. Work out with your parents that you can move back in if things don't go well. You don't want to upset your parents or be on bad terms with them right before you leave. Try to make it a friendly separation.

  7. Take only what you need. You may have had a cluttered room at your parent's home, full of things you never used. There is no need to repeat this pattern in your own place. Take the essentials and keep the rest with your parents, or consider storage space. This might be an excellent time to have that huge yard sale you've been planning.

  8. Tip

    It can be helpful to make a budget of your costs and make sure your income will cover everything before you move out. When you are preparing to move out, make sure your credit is in check. If you have any credit issues, such as an unpaid bill from two years ago, pay the bill and take care of the issues.


    Don't live beyond your means. Don't rent an apartment that is more than 30 per cent of your income, or you could find yourself in a situation where you can't afford your bills each month. Don't rely on credit cards to pay your bills. Once you get into this cycle of debt, it can be hard to escape.

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