Family, Self

5 Important Facts I Wish I Knew Before Moving Out The First Time

Photo: Alexandra Kirr on Unsplash
things to know before moving out of your parents house for the first time for college

Moving out is intimidating. You’re leaving the comfort of your room behind for the great unknown of the vast, unforgiving world of adulthood.

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You have to make new friends, find your new normal and now learn your way around an entirely new city, state or country. There are a lot of things I wish I'd known about myself and life in general that I didn't prior to moving the first time. To save you some trouble, I've compiled this list of 5 things I wish I knew before moving to help you avoid some of the moving stresses I faced.

1. You don’t have to know everything.

No one really knows what they’re doing, and, if they claim to, they’re lying. The real world that we’ve been dreading since we were kids is all a sham, which makes it significantly less scary than we think it is. Like, it’s OK to have questions. Moving out doesn’t mean you automatically know everything there is to know about paying rent, utilities, etc. There’s going to a lot you don’t know, but that’s normal. In fact, most other adults just laugh it off and will tell you to calm down. Odds are, what you’re worrying about isn’t that serious.

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2. You have to start saving early.

While the real world might not be as scary as we once thought, it’s way more expensive than we could’ve ever imagined. I wish someone would’ve grabbed me by the shoulders, shook me and told me start saving when I was 12 years old. But that’s not realistic. It’s definitely doable, but just know that you probably will face some financial troubles as you’re getting the hang of things. Prioritize your savings when you can, and avoid frivolous spending.

3. Pets are great. Get one, especially if you’re living alone.

Get a pet. Just do it. I have a dog, and she’s been a lifesaver. Even if you’re moving out with roommates, which I strongly recommend, you should invest in a pet if you have the time and money to support one. They will love you forever, and you will love them forever. Nothing can compare to that, unless you’re just not a pet person. Pets can make the transition from your parent’s place to your own place more manageable. Trust me.

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4. Decorating is fun, even if you’re not into decorating.

I’m so not a decorator. I’m not even a shopper, but I got interested in home décor stuff and HGTV when I started actively searching for an apartment. It might just be a me thing, but I doubt it since I know the same thing has happened to my friends who are also not shoppers. Embrace the weird feeling of wanting to buy pictures, shelves and plates, and enjoy the process of decorating. It’s an added bonus of moving out.

5. Skype dates are a necessity. Set them up beforehand.

Keep in contact with your friends and family. Moving out, away from close relatives and peers is a huge change in your life, but social media allows you to stay in contact with one another pretty regularly. Scheduling your weekly, biweekly or monthly chats will make the transition away from your friends and family more manageable.

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Meaghan Summers is a writer who covers astrology, pop culture and relationship topics.