The thought of moving out on your own can create a mixture of emotions – equal measure of excitement, nervousness, empowerment, amongst others. There is no set time in one’s life when the decision to move out occurs and it may happen for many different reasons. Whether the decision is yours alone or a necessity it is important to review all options available with a level mindset. You don’t want to make an impulsive decision based on how you’re feeling or the situation as this can sometimes be a recipe for disaster.
We’ve supplied you with some important tips below to ensure the process is a smooth and enjoyable one first time round.
This is the time where you realise how quickly money disappears! The first step in this process is to set up a monthly expenses budget to get a concept of what the outlays are. It would be a good idea to go through these expenses with a parent, relative or someone you know living on their own to ensure all areas are covered. Moving out of home is expensive and if you are not aware or prepared for the costs involved then you may fall into financial hardship.
A simple budget involves starting with your income followed by deducting any bills, rent/mortgage, loans, groceries, transport, social, etc. expenses for the month. This will provide you with an idea of what you can afford based on your income and if there are any areas that you may be over spending i.e. entertainment or eating out. You will also need to account for any initial set up fees for the first month such as rental bond (normally one calendar month’s rent), phone, internet, TV, gas, and electricity as well as the costs involved in furnishing your property from furniture to linen to cutlery, etc.
Loans, rent and bills are high priorities and should always be paid on time to avoid a bad credit rating. It may not be a concern for you initially but could possibly affect you in the future when applying for any loans. Real Estate Agencies will commonly perform rental checks on clients applying for properties for rent and part of that process is reviewing your financial capability and history.
It may be tedious at the start but having a good financial concept of the expenses will be beneficial and less of a shock when the time comes.
Moving out on your own is a big commitment. If there’s an option available for you, a trial run would be ideal – perhaps moving in temporarily with your partner or a friend. During the practice period you will be able to get a feel for budgeting and all costs involved as well as being hands on with housework and maintaining the property. You will experience independence and freedom and at the same understand the responsibilities required before making your big move.
If moving out for a trial period is not an option, then ask your parent’s to let you be involved or observe the running of the household and help out with chores such as cooking, cleaning, laundry and garden maintenance. Not only will this help equip you with the required skills but it will also earn you brownie points with your parent’s!
Searching For The Right Property
It’s question time!
In order to finding the right home you will need to ask yourself a series of questions to help narrow your search. What property would best suit you and your lifestyle? Are you buying, renting alone or sharing? What style of home are you looking for? Modern and close to CBD or are you wanting to be away from the hustle and bustle out of town? How much can you afford? Is the location right for you – commuting to and from work or university?
Once you have answered your questions you should have a good foundation of what you are looking for, can afford and location. Begin searching online for properties, sign up for alerts so that you are notified as soon as a new listing matching your criteria appears on the website – be the first to know.
Speak to a professional. Real Estate agents are there to help with your search and provide advice. Be sure to attend open days or arrange private inspections for a variety of properties to understand what you will be getting for your set budget. Don’t rely solely on internet photos, you need to view and inspect the property to ensure it’s secure with no major defects. Also, drive around the area in the morning, during the day and at night to get a feel for the location – Is it noisy? Too much traffic? What are the neighbours like?
If you are looking for someone to move in with you make sure you do your research!
Communication is the essence. Finding someone compatible is extremely important as it will help open the lines of communication. So be sure to look for a connection – can you tolerate the person, do you feel comfortable around them, can you engage in conversation quite easily and naturally together?
Find out a little more about them by asking a series of questions i.e. Do you smoke? Have you any pets? What can you contribute to the household? Have you shared/rented before? What are your work hours? Social lifestyle and hobbies?
If they have share rented before it won’t hurt to get references off previous flatmates – it could be sweet and rosey or you could save yourself a lot trouble down the track.
You’re not searching for a new best friend but ensuring you have someone who is well-matched for you.
You will also need to discuss finances early on even if you feel uncomfortable in doing so. Approach items such as bill sharing, groceries, rent, etc. and how you would like it split/managed. Money is a big issue and can cause many problems if you are not clear and concise about your expectations and agreement. Putting your arrangement on paper and having all parties sign is also another way to ensure everyone is on the same page (this includes setting the ground rules).
Good luck on your new venture and don’t forget to pop by and visit your parent’s from time to time… this is a big adjustment for them too.