There is a lot of excitement that comes with moving to your first house. You get a sense of freedom from starting life on your own and not having someone to answer to. This freedom gets short-lived if you don’t plan well and keep your finances in check. When you are renting for the first time, you need to come up with a budgeting plan on how you will pay for essentials including rent. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation whereby you have to move back to your parent’s house because you can’t afford to pay rent.
If you are feeling confused and don’t know what to budget for, we will break down some of the important aspects you should consider. These tips will make your life easier and less stressful when it is your first time living alone.
Don’t Buy Everything at Once
Most people want things to be perfect by the time they move to their new house by buying everything at once. But in reality, this never happens. Unless you have a lot of money to do it. You should only buy the important items to start with then the rest will follow once your finances allow you to. When you buy things in bulk, you end up buying things you don’t need and waste money. You will also add clutter to your house and make it look congested.
Stick to Your Budget
When paying rent, the general rule is: spend 30% of your gross income on rent. Don’t stretch yourself to a point where you are struggling to make ends meet just because you want to live in a beautiful house you can’t afford. Determine how much you can spend on rent then look for houses within that range. Living within your means will help you stay out of debt.
Cook Your Meals at Home
Food is one of the major things that can really drain your pocket. Most people don’t have time to cook when they get home because they are tired from the day’s events. But that shouldn’t be an excuse to eat out every day. Sustaining this habit will leave you broke. If you want to save money, eat at home and carry packed lunch. The best way to make sure you don’t run out of food is to cook in bulk on a Sunday. Invite some friends over to help you do it.
Budget for Recurring Expenses
Some apartments include utilities in the rent while in others it is usually a separate bill. Find out from the landlord/caretaker in advance about this to help you plan. Staying on top of monthly expenses such as electricity, water, garbage collection, internet, and cable TV will help you avoid making last-minute payments or getting cut off.
Find a Roommate
Living with a roommate could ease the hustle of paying rent. It could either work out or cause a strain in your friendship. That’s why you need to remember that spending time with a friend and actually living with them are two separate things. Before you decide to move in with any of your friends, you need to know how they handle their finances. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where you have to pitch in to sort the monthly rent when you hadn’t planned it.
Finding your own place is great and exciting. It comes with independence and freedom. But it also has its own challenges. If you don’t plan accordingly, you could end up going back to your parent’s house.