Do's And Don’ts Of Moving Into Your First Apartment

Benefits Of Serviced Apartments vs Hotel

Moving into your first apartment is both thrilling and daunting; it will provide you with the opportunity to begin a life of independence and freedom, but it will also present you with numerous problems and responsibilities.

Whether you’re renting or buying, your new place will be fully yours: you’ll be able to furnish it as you want, organize and design it anyway you want, and make it reflect your personality and style.

Finding the ideal apartment for you and planning a safe and successful move are both difficult tasks. Not to mention the fear of facing the unknown and adjusting to a new way of life.

To be successful in your grand trip, you must be aware of all potential hurdles and dangers, as well as having effective solutions to any problems that may develop. In other words, while moving into your first apartment, you need to know what to do and what not to do.

Here are some tried-and-true first apartment suggestions to help you streamline your transition and make your new place seem like home.

Things to Do When Moving into Your First Apartment

1. DO save up

You must be financially comfortable with your decision before taking such a significant change in your life. Moving costs mount up quickly, and you’ll need to be able to afford them – as well as all of your living expenses for a while after the move – without trouble to prevent financial difficulties during your move and the first few months of your new life.

You should have enough money saved up before moving into your first apartment to cover all of your moving charges, the first three months’ rent (or mortgage) and utility bills, any required security deposits, and your living expenses for a few months. You should also have some money set away for unexpected expenses.

2. DO choose the right location

Before you begin looking for a good apartment to rent or buy, you must first select where you want to reside. Consider the following:

  • Proximity to your workplace and other places you need to visit on a daily basis;
  • Transportation options – road infrastructure, traffic patterns, parking issues, availability of public transport, ;
  • Amenities – local business, grocery stores and shopping centers, bars and restaurants, entertainment and recreational options, etc.;
  • Landscape features and green areas;
  • Safety and crime rates.

3. DO inspect potential apartments

Before settling into a new apartment, it’s crucial to consider all of your alternatives and visit several places in your selected location. When looking at possible apartments, make sure to:

  • Assess the overall condition of the property – look for signs of water damage (mold patches, musty smells, crumbling paint, dark spots on ceilings and walls, etc.), poor upkeep (broken items, loose windows and doors, rusty metal pieces, leaking faucets, stains on carpeting, etc.), HVAC issues, and other potential problems;
  • Check for pest infestations;
  • Consider security issues (building security systems, fire alarms and fire escapes, possible window access for break-ins, etc.).

4. DO be careful with the lease

It’s time to sign a lease once you’ve discovered an apartment that suits your requirements and budget. Before signing the paper, make sure you have thoroughly read it and understand all of its terms and conditions.

  • Pay close attention to the policy for rent payment and late rent, pet policies, and visitor policies;
  • Ask about important issues such as availability of storage and parking space, trash pickup days, possible maintenance hours, etc.;
  • Discuss with your landlord any special conditions, clauses you fail to comprehend, and terms you are not comfortable with.

5. DO know the rules

Before moving into your new apartment, familiarize yourself with any laws and regulations in place – such as safety standards and cleaning requirements – and make sure to follow them to the letter. For example, you can be obliged to relocate within a specific time range, utilize just the freight elevator, or pay parking costs for the moving vehicle. It is crucial to understand what is expected of you and to behave accordingly.

When you’ve put your finances in order and found the right home for you, you can start the actual moving preparations. Read on to find out how to prepare for moving into your first apartment:

6. DO make a floor plan of your new place

Before you can begin arranging and packing your items for relocation, you must first determine what you can and cannot bring to your new residence – in other words, you must understand the layout of your new apartment.

So, the first step in preparing to move into your first apartment is to assess the available space and take some measurements – measure the doors and windows of your new home, as well as any areas where you intend to place furniture and other larger household items, to determine which of your belongings you will be able to bring with you, what items you will need to purchase, and where each specific piece will fit best.

A detailed floor plan will help you make informed decisions, avoid rookie moving mistakes, and create the best interior design for your new apartment.

7. DO go through your belongings and get rid of anything you don’t need.

Once you’ve determined what you’ll need in your new apartment and how much space you’ll have, it’s time to pick what to take with you – and what to do with the rest of your belongings.

Go through your belongings and discard any obsolete or outgrown stuff, duplicates, items you won’t be able to utilize in your new environment, and anything else you don’t need or like. Sell or donate those items that are still usable and recycle or discard those that are damaged or worn out.

Make a detailed inventory of the items you’re going to take to your new apartment – things that you need and things that you love – and start packing them for moving.

8. DO make reservations

Usually, it’s the small things that make the big difference, so make sure you take care of all the little details – like making the necessary reservations – when planning your first apartment move.

When moving into an apartment building, it’s essential to reserve a parking space for the moving truck and an elevator for the time when you expect your items to be delivered (if possible, reserve a freight elevator specifically designed to move heavy and bulky items up and down the floors). Such reservations will significantly speed up the unloading process and will save you plenty of time and nerves (as well as possible fines).

9. DO coordinate deliveries

If you don’t have all you need for your first apartment and need to buy some furniture or other larger goods, schedule them to be delivered at the same time you move in. This way, you’ll be able to have everything delivered at the same time (which is very convenient as many apartment buildings have strict policies about big deliveries).

If some of your bulkier or oddly-shaped objects don’t fit in the elevator or through the doors, stairways, or hallways of your new apartment complex, you may need to hire a hoisting service to transport the bulky items into your apartment through the window. This should be discussed with your movers ahead of time so that they can factor in the additional fee for the additional service and bring the necessary equipment on move-in day.

10. DO make your new apartment feel like home

You must infuse your own spirit into your new flat in order to fully feel at ease there. So, once you’ve unpacked and arranged your belongings, don’t forget to add some finishing touches to turn your new place into your sweet home – add character to the space with colorful curtains, artistic area rugs, and cozy pillows; place plants throughout the apartment to make the atmosphere fresh, lively, and welcoming; hang your favorite pictures and photos on the walls; surround yourself with special items and beloved possessions, and so on.

What matters is that you make your new apartment comfortable and pleasant, and that it reflects your individuality, so that it becomes your safe haven and personal heaven.

11. DO get to know your new area and your new community

When moving into your first apartment, one of the most important things to remember is that the sooner you become a part of your new neighborhood, the easier it will be to adjust to your new life – and make the most of it. So don’t hide in your new apartment; there’s a whole new world out there waiting for you:

  • Explore your new surroundings and get to know your new area;
  • Meet your new neighbors and do your best to get on friendly terms with them;
  • Get involved with your new community and become a useful part of it;
  • Make new friends in your new area;
  • Enjoy your new life!

Things NOT to Do When Moving into Your First Apartment

Now that you know what to do when moving onto your first apartment, you need to know what to avoid doing as well: 

1. DON’T pick an apartment that doesn’t suit your lifestyle

You may not be able to buy your dream home in your dream location when moving into your first apartment, but you must still pick an adequate place for you.

Moving into an apartment that doesn’t meet your wants and preferences, doesn’t suit your lifestyle, does not fit within your budget, or doesn’t provide the security, comfort, and warmth you seek can be a costly mistake.

If your new apartment is in a bad neighborhood, you don’t have access to desirable amenities, your transit options are difficult, your neighbors are awful, or you don’t feel at home in your new place after a few months, you’ll probably want to move out. Moving out of a newly rented property will cost you a lot of money and nerves (because you’ll have to break the lease), and moving out of a newly purchased property will be a complete nightmare (because you’ll have to sell the apartment), not to mention how stressful, difficult, and expensive it will be to move again in such a short period of time.

2. DON’T forget the basics

When you move into your first apartment, you’ll need a lot of stuff, from everyday basics to particular favorites you can not live without. Check out a complete first apartment needs checklist to see what you already have and what you’ll need to acquire for your new place, and to ensure you don’t overlook anything.

Keep in mind that some of the items you’ll need for your first apartment are necessities that you’ll need right away (first apartment furniture, basic kitchenware, cleaning supplies, bathroom necessities, window treatments, bedding, lighting, essential electrical and electronic devices, hand tools, and so on), while others are nice-to-have but not-so-essential extras that you can save for when you have more money.

3. DON’T procrastinate

Moving takes a lot of time and work; there are so many details to consider that you may feel overwhelmed and fatigued just thinking about it. Failure to complete a critical moving task or delaying things till the last minute might result in major issues and costly mistakes. You must finish all necessary moving preparations in a timely and efficient manner to be successful in your relocation quest.

So, instead of putting off packing, dealing with the appropriate paperwork, or reserving a moving company, create a detailed first apartment moving calendar and strive to complete each relocation job within the time frame allotted. On moving day, your efforts will be rewarded.

4. DON’T be afraid to ask for help

Moving is a major undertaking, and moving out for the first time is particularly difficult. There’s no need to try to handle everything on your own; every extra piece of advice and extra pair of hands will help take some of the stress and hassle out of your relocation and keep you on track for success.

Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance; having your family and friends assist you with your relocation preparations will make things not only easier, but also more enjoyable. If you’re moving out of your parents’ house, they could be ready to help you with more than just packing and heavy lifting — they might even give you some of the stuff you’ll need for your first apartment, as well as some useful advice about living on your own.

5. DON’T splurge after the move

There will be a lot of things to buy for your first apartment in order to make it useful, comfortable, and beautiful, and convert it into your ideal home, but as much as you may want to hurry out and buy everything soon after the move, you probably won’t be able to afford it. You should evaluate your funds and demands before prioritizing your first apartment buying list and purchasing the most important goods first. To minimize financial troubles, make sure you look into your most cost-effective purchasing options, such as looking for sales and discounts, going to neighborhood garage sales, checking internet auctions, and so on.

Once you have the essentials, begin saving money with each paycheck and gradually purchase all of the additional items you want in your first apartment — your new abode will soon become a pleasant and cozy home. 

You can begin on your relocation experience without fear or worry if you have the following checklist for moving into your first apartment. Keep in mind:

# DO plan ahead, make informed decisions, and have fun!

# DON’T be afraid to make the big step or let stress overtake the excitement of moving into your first apartment!