The cost of renting and buying your first place is consistently increasing – so for recent college graduates and people in their twenties, leaving the family home is becoming more and more difficult.
If we’re all being honest, sometimes we look at our finances, our jobs and our prospects and we think that moving out will almost never happen for us.
So, what can we do to change this? We’ve compiled a list of things you can do to help you try and move out of your bedroom a little sooner!
Step One: Create A Realistic Life Timeline
Have you ever heard people say to you “what’s your five year plan?” or when you’re in a job interview, the boss might say “where do you see yourself in five years?”. Many of us will struggle to answer that and think, man – I don’t know where I’m going to be in five minutes, let alone five years!
The thing is, setting a life timeline is important for big life events. We’re not saying you definitely need to do things like marry at 25 or anything, but when it comes to trying to move out of the family home, setting a realistic timeline for leaving is important.
Consider this, you’re straight out of college. You’re overcome with debt and you don’t have a well-paying job yet. You might have dreamed of owning or doing a few things while you were in college.
While you’re still under the protection of your family home, you should take full financial advantage of it. You have the time now to do whatever it is you wanted to do, without the worry of the financial implications, such as dependents or rent/mortgage payments.
It’s worth trying to save some money and get rid of pesky debts before you leave your home, because having financial worries when you start your journey into adulthood is simply not ideal.
If you’re really keen to move out, set yourself a 12 month timeframe if you’re planning to rent, or 24 months if you want to give yourself the best possible start at a great time. If you’re hoping to buy a place, you may need to wait longer and save up some more cash.
This is where the realistic element comes into play. How much will you need? Do you have a job? You’ll need to solve these problems first!
Step Two: Budgeting. Learn It. Do it.
We discussed the financial security that you have in your family home and why you should take full advantage. Building up a good savings pot and clearing your debts are incredibly important when you’re plunging into the world of the adult.
It’s also great practice for the future, because those with a sound financial mind will never have to worry about where the next meal is coming from or where they’re going to live.
Now, we get it – you’re still young and you want to go out with your pals and act like you’re still in college, hitting parties and bars and generally having the time of your life. People wrongly think that you have to give this up in order to save up enough money to move out, but the truth is – you can do it all!
This is why budgeting is so important. Let’s say you have a job that pays you around $1500 a month and your family home is charging you $25 a month to stay at home.
You’ve got bills of around $75 a month and you’re clearing debts of $100 per month. Here, you’d need to only pay out a mandatory $200, leaving you with $1300 for the month.
Consider trying to only use half of this for things that you want. Meaning you can put $650 into a savings account, and if you do that with a handy timeline of 12 months – you’d have $7,800 ready to move out. Not too shabby right?
If you’re not that interested in partying or anything but you’re partial to clothes and luxuries, consider if you really need them and could you wait until your birthday or christmas? Try putting that money into your savings account too – you could move out even faster that way!
While we’re on the subject, get yourself a piggy bank. Anytime you find some spare change in your pockets, around the house or outdoors – put them in the piggy bank, and when it gets full – take it to your bank to put it in your savings account.
If you’re looking to really maximize your saving power – use round-up apps on your smartphone (or do it yourself) where if you buy something for, for example $8.95 – put $1.05 into your piggy bank or savings account. You won’t notice that extra buck in your account, but over time in a savings account, you will!
Step Three: Maximize Your Income
If you’ve left college, you might have got yourself a graduate job, and that’s fantastic. That’s the whole point of college after all, right?
If this is the case, you’ll want to ensure that the pay is good and that you’re following our savings tips above. Depending on what job you’ve managed to find yourself in, there may be the option for more hours, overtime or ad-hoc work that will get you some more money.
Although it might be hard work, it’s certainly worth it. Always remember and think to yourself: “this won’t be forever”.
On the subject of other work, if you’re bored on the weekends and you’re not much of a partier, consider getting yourself a casual job at a bar or delivering pizza. Something that isn’t too physically demanding and has only a few hours worth of work. Extra income is always good!
If you don’t have a job, you’ll probably want to start finding one! You may have to start out with some menial labor tasks, but remember that money is money. Keep working and putting those dollars away. The more hours you work, the more money you make – so always take advantage of work offers.
While you’re working, you can find yourself a job with a higher salary and one day, you’ll get lucky. But remember, don’t leave on bad terms with your employers. You can one day wind up there again, and good contacts and connections are always good to have.
Step Four: Plan Your Moves On Moving
Now, obviously the key part about moving out is… moving out. So, where are you going to go? Take the time to check websites, newspapers and local agency stores to see where you could live and how much they’re charging.
Remember, it’s all well and good setting a budget right now, but if your rent is going to be much higher than you can afford to save – chances are, you won’t be able to afford it. On top of rent/mortgage, remember you’ll need to budget for food, transport and utilities too.
Regardless if you are going to rent or buy a place, you’ll need to consider location. Let’s say you’ve got a great paying graduate job but it’s a little far away from the family home right now and you’re spending a lot of time commuting there or spending a lot of your precious dollars on gas. You’ll want to move closer to your place of work.
It’s all about being realistic though. Do your research on the property prices around the area and see if you will be able to afford it. If you can’t afford to move into the city for example, you might need to move to the outskirts and spend a little more each week on transportation.
The other thing you have to consider with moving out is that, if you really can’t afford to move out on your own or buy your own place – you might need to start thinking about a roommate.
Don’t get us wrong, we totally understand that it isn’t ideal to have to live with someone all the time. It lacks the privacy element and they can often get on your nerves a lot – but think about these two things.
- 1 – Is it better than living with your parents?
- 2 – Is it much cheaper?
We bet you’ll find the answer to those two questions as yes, almost every time.
Speaking of living with someone else, if you’re in a relationship with the love of your life, you might both want to start considering moving out together. If you’re serious about each other and believe in your relationship, it’s a step that you’ll be taking at some point in your relationship – what are you waiting for? If you’re both ready – go for it!
Step Five: Don’t Think About It, Just Do It!
The one part of human nature is that we’re great at talking about things. A load of things sound like they’re great ideas, but we never do anything about them. It’s almost like we’re a collective group of dreamers.
The thing is, people who simply think or dream, never actually do. If you’re serious about moving out, you’ll refuse to give yourself more excuses and you’ll work as hard as you possibly can to sort your life out!
Think about it like this. If you want to lose weight, you force yourself to remain disciplined and you stick to a diet and go to the gym. The same applies here: if you want to move out, you will force yourself to remain disciplined and stick to a budget and go to work!
We understand that leaving home and moving onto your first steps in the adult world can be extremely daunting, but you’ll need to leave your comfort zone and finally take that plunge.
If you’re really struggling for work and to make ends meet, and you 100% need to move out – you could consider joining one of the armed forces. You’ll be able to move out, make money and have a great career with lots of prospects, whilst also serving your country – what more can you ask for?
The armed forces are great for saving too, as you shouldn’t need to spend as much money when you’re serving, and that extra few bucks could go straight into your savings account, ready for when you finish and come home.
What To Remember
You’ll need to be able to do the following things in order to move out:
- Get a job
- Create a regular savings pot
- Do your research on housing
- Consider the costs of living (utilities, food, transportation)
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