Eight Steps to Moving Out of Your Parents’ House

Jon Fesmire |

We all move out of our parents’ homes at different times. Some move off to college and never move back in. Others stay through their twenties or even later. At some point, nearly everyone wants to have their own place and is ready to get some independence from mom and dad.

All moves are challenging, but leaving your parents’ house and getting your own place may be one of the toughest you’ll face. Follow these eight steps and it will be easier:

Be Financially Prepared

Once you decide you’re ready to move out, it can take months to make it a reality.

You’ll need a job and money in savings. Ideally, you’ll want about three months’ worth of wages in the bank. When you apply to rent a place, you’ll have to show that you’re gainfully employed and that you can afford the rent.

You may have to pay a processing fee for each application, and if your rental application is accepted, you should expect to pay your first month’s rent and the deposit. Your deposit can may vary depending on your credit from about half the amount of a month’s rent to a full month’s rent. So, if you find an apartment that rents for $800 per month, you’ll need $400 to $800 extra for the deposit.

Establish Good Credit

It’s important to use credit cards wisely. Don’t make big purchases that will take you forever to pay off. Do pay your bill on time, and pay your card off as soon as possible. This will help establish you as someone worthy of credit, and will increase your credit score, which helps in finding a rental.

There’s more to your credit score, however, than just your credit cards. Pay all your bills on time, and don’t sign up for a service you can’t afford.

Work With Your Parents

Your moving plans are a big deal for your parents, too. They’re used to having you around and will miss you. Talk to them. Keep them in the loop on your plans. Remember that they once moved away from their parents, too, so listen to their advice, and if they want to help, let them.

Make a Budget, Part One

There are various costs associated with moving, so make a budget. Here are some of the things you’ll need to include:

  1. Application fees

  2. First month’s rent

  3. Deposit

  4. Storage unit rent

  5. Truck rental

  6. Boxes

We mention self storage because it can make moving easier, in part by allowing you to stretch it out over the course of a few months. The cost per month will depend on the unit size and where you rent.

Make a Budget, Part Two

It’s important to keep track of your finances after you’ve moved in as well, and it’s good to have some idea of what they will be. Do a budget of your monthly expected expenses. These will include, but may not be limited to, the following:

  1. Rent

  2. Renter’s insurance

  3. Food

  4. Clothes

  5. Car payment

  6. Car insurance

  7. Gas

  8. Electricity

  9. Utilities

  10. Entertainment

Sell, Recycle, and Donate

As you pack your belongings, there’s a good chance you’ll find things that you no longer need. Here’s an opportunity to declutter and possibly make a little extra money. Decide, first, what you can sell, then use Craigslist, Ebay, or OfferUp to make those deals. Next, figure out what you can recycle or donate. Old, low quality clothes and out-of-date electronics can be recycled, and gently used clothes, toys, and so on can be donated to local thrift stores. Get receipts for your donations, as you can list them as line item deductions on your taxes.

Get Help

Moving on one’s own would be a lot easier if not for the heavy, bulky items like mattresses, bookcases, dressers, and so on. Yes, you may be able to handle all the boxes on your own, especially if you use self storage, but you’ll need other people to help move the big stuff. Ask your parents, friends, and relatives, and get three to five people who can help you haul your things into your new place.

Shortly Before You Move

Once you’ve got a new place secured, there are a few important steps to help establish yourself there. Set up the utilities and electricity in your name. Set up cable and internet. Change your address and register to vote in the new location if you’re moving out of state. Contact companies, like those handling your student loans, credit card companies, your bank, and so on, and change your address with them.

Finally, if you plan to move somewhere with a friend or partner, work with them. This can make moving much more affordable. All these tips will help whether you’re moving with someone, or alone. Best of luck!