Moving out of home is a big step. While it may not be something on your radar given the current lockdown, there are some important considerations when it’s time to take the plunge. Even without considering COVID-19, moving out of home can be a daunting exercise. How will you know if it’s the right time to leave? What kinds of costs can you expect? And should you move in with friends or chance it with a stranger?
There’s a lot to consider – but don’t worry, we’ve got your back! We’ll help you figure out:
When it comes to moving out, the ‘right’ time will be different for everyone. Some people start looking to leave before they get their first pay check, while others are happy to wait it out if it means they can save for a deposit on their own place. I knew it was the right time for me because I was tired of spending hours commuting to and from uni – and after a few years of this, even my dad had conceded (no small victory!).
If you’re considering leaving the nest, make sure you ask yourself:
Living out of home comes with all sorts of ongoing expenses like rent, bills and utilities. You’ll also need to have enough money for a bond (usually 4 weeks’ rent) and at least 2 weeks’ rent (to be paid in advance). And that’s just to secure a place! Don’t forget the costs of hiring a moving truck, getting the internet connected and buying any furniture you may need.
Pro tip: Creating a realistic budget will help you work out what your expenses are and how much you can afford to spend. If your current income doesn’t cover your expenses (without you having to sacrifice your social life), you might want to wait until you’ve got more cash coming in.
Sure, you promised your best mate that you would move out together one day. But would they really make a good housemate? Asking a slacker mate to pitch in with the cleaning every night may put some strain on the friendship – and not asking can make for an unpleasant living situation. Trust me!
Pro tip: When considering moving out with a friend, try travelling with them first. If you can’t survive a few weeks away together, it may be better to save the friendship and look at other housemate options like Flatmate Finders (we’ll get to this).
Living with friends:
Tips for leaving the nest and flying high
Once you’ve decided to make the move, the next step is finding your dream house (and housemates). We’ve rounded up some useful services to make things easier for you.
Pro tip: There are plenty of Facebook groups that advertise share houses, and these can work for a lot of people. However, we recommend Flatmate Finders because it allows you to filter out incompatible housemates who don’t match your preferences. This means you won’t have to wait until you move in to find out that your new housemate is a smoker with a cat (dealbreakers that they didn’t mention in their Facebook post).
Pro tip: You’ll need to upload all of your supporting documents with an online rental application, so make sure you have these saved before you go to an inspection. This includes scanned copies of your licence, bank statements, payslips and rental references. Having your application ready to go straight after the inspection will put you ahead of the rest.
Once you’re in your new place, you may notice that the fridge is getting empty, the cupboard isn’t re-stocking itself and the bathroom is starting to look a little worse for wear. Here are a few services that can make living out of home a little easier (without asking your parents for help):
Do your shopping from the couch and avoid having to drag bags of groceries home on the bus. You can choose the delivery time and have the household groceries delivered to the bench top faster than you can say 'thanks Mum!'
If you’re looking for an easy and more ethical option than the big supermarkets, OOBY delivers mixed boxes of organic fruit and vegetables straight to your door with no delivery charge – and with the knowledge that you’re supporting local producers.
If you don’t want to spend your weekends scrubbing the toilet and mopping the floors, hiring a professional cleaner may be the solution. Helpling lets you choose a trusted professional cleaner in your area who can come in and get the job done from $35 an hour - and remember, they’re cleaning a lot more in that hour than you would be!
You’ve found the perfect place, you’ve moved everything in and you like your new housemates. How can you keep things running smoothly and avoid a dramatic Big Brother-style eviction?
Pro tip: If the preference is for everybody to cook their own meals, cook in bigger batches (think curries, soups and pastas) and learn to love your leftovers. You’ll save a heap - and with food already in the fridge, you’ll avoid the temptation to order from UberEats.
Like we said, there’s a lot to consider when leaving the nest - but take our advice and you should be flying high (without any major housemate crashes).
Stay tuned for upcoming topics or check out or other useful articles here. We’ve got plenty more gold to help you make the leap from top student to top professional!
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Disclaimer: The information provided in this topic is general in nature only and does not constitute personal advice. The information has been prepared without taking into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs.