How to Live on Your Own – A Guide for Successful Independence

Posted How-to / December 7, 2021
Kate Holland

A true grunge and rock music fan born in Seattle, Kate has moved across the country and started writing about her experience.

As challenging as it is, being independent has many perks. But anyone who hasn’t experienced it yet may feel scared and insecure before leaving their parents’ nest. You aren’t born with the knowledge about how to live on your own, but with some guidance, you can have an easy transition.

The times are a-changin, and it’s affecting the way we function in today’s world. In the fifties, around 4% of Americans lived on their own, and now approximately 36 million adults lead an independent life (it’s a record high of 28%). With so many US citizens dwelling alone, there’s a handful of advice on how to leap forward and start your own story. So, before contacting cross-country movers and investing in long-distance moving services, ensure you’re armed with the best relocation tips about how to make this leap of faith toward the best possible outcome.

Can I Survive Living on My Own? Prepare Your Budget to Create a Sense of Stability

Now, the burning question for anyone planning to dwell on their own for the first time is – How much money do I need to live on my own? Although no one likes to talk very much about the financial part of our lives, this step is a must. It’s especially true when you haven’t lived alone before, and you haven’t got a clue how much you actually require during one month. That’s why you should have two budgets – a moving budget and one that will get you going for the first few months.

Understanding living on your own expenses is crucial for true independence. There are several major financial obligations that await you when you move to another state alone. So besides writing a moving expenses checklist, you should make a list of costs that you will pay for each month. This includes a certain amount of money required for rent, utilities, and other services, as well as groceries. On top of it, you are required to leave a deposit when you rent an apartment, and it’s usually two months’ worth of rent. However, if you manage to get a job in another state before moving there, you can call a long-distance moving company, with certainty waiting up ahead.


Start Saving While Living With Your Parents and Before You Leave Your Old Home

While finding the cheapest way to move out of state will help you cut down on relocation costs, there are many ways that you can practice saving up money before you leave. While you are still sharing a roof with your parents, you can cut down on eating out. Dining at restaurants is something we can survive without, and that means you’ll have to manage without your favorite falafel for a while. You should also get used to using public transportation instead of driving or using taxis and Uber. That doesn’t mean you should give up transporting your car through the auto shipping service, although if you’re relocating to one of the cities with the best public transportation, you’ll drive less. It’s simply a wise way to save up on gas. Cancel all your subscriptions and additional classes, but don’t worry; you can resume them later after you move.

Ensure You Pay the Bills on Schedule to Achieve Financial Stability and Keep Your Credit Score in Check

This is something you probably won’t be able to practice before you move out for the first time, but as soon as you start dwelling on your own, ensure you pay every bill and take care of it on schedule. Building a healthy credit score is important for later stages in your life when you start considering getting a loan, and you want more favorable terms. There will come a point when you wish to buy a new vehicle or move to one of the best cities for young professionals so you can start your own business. That’s when building a great credit score will be essential.

What Is the Cheapest Way to Live By Yourself?

Life on your own can be most challenging, especially when you have no previous experience with it. It’s hard to be the sole person responsible for doing all the chores for the first time ever, but also the only one contributing to the household income. So the most important tips for moving out of state for you would be the following:

  • Learn to plan your grocery list in advance. Also, buy everything at discounts and use coupons to save up some more. The best way to figure out how much does it cost to live on your own and how much groceries you actually require is to start cooking while you’re still under one roof with your parents.
  • Although you can get an idea of how much you’ll require for monthly utilities from your future landlord, calculate the additional services, too. Ask the property manager if some of the utilities are included in the rent.
  • Instead of renting a one-bedroom apartment, which can be out of your reach, you can use the space in a studio properly by implementing small apartment ideas.
  • Before you go over the top with the list of things you need for your first apartment and start a shopping spree, consider buying second-hand furniture and clothing. You can also repurpose old furniture that you initially thought you should get rid of.
  • If you want to keep track of just how you’re spending money and to help yourself create a custom budget, you can try using an app for managing money, like Intuit Mint.

Everyone loves and enjoys a bit of mindless spending here and there. But all those who are planning to venture into independence should restrain themselves if they don’t want to end up broke, without any money whatsoever, and back on their mom’s and dad’s doorstep.

Learn How to Live on Your Own and Make the Best Out of It

As the big day approaches and you’re focusing on your moving to-do list, you’re probably starting to feel worried and anxious. After all, leaving the safety of your nest isn’t easy; however, often, you’ve fantasized about it. But being alone doesn’t mean lonely, and you can take this time you’ll have for yourself to do all those things you wished you could before. Netflix and chill until you have no more popcorn, play online games, or simply read and contemplate on the new Starbucks flavors.

Becoming Self-Reliant Is a Priority

Being on your own can hit you hard. Sometimes you’ll wish your family was right there to listen to you talk about your day or simply give you a reassuring embrace. Also, no one is there to remind you about the most commonly forgotten things to pack when you start getting ready to travel or to wash the dishes. But being by yourself in these situations is an excellent learning point. Though you could buy a dishwasher and also call your loved ones when you feel like talking, working through any kind of obstacle by yourself is gratifying and beneficial. It’s an opportunity to grow stronger and to grow as a person, but also to get to know yourself better.

Don’t Bring Yourself Down When Something Isn’t Working the Way You Want

There will be times when being alone can batter you, and you’ll be wondering, “should I move back home?” Being self-reliant is an incredible feat to have, but it’s also a struggle. It’s an entirely normal process to feel like you’re not being able to achieve everything you have planned. But when situations like that occur, you should avoid beating yourself up about it. It’s simple – be a good friend to yourself, be tolerant and kind and accept that making mistakes is a normal part of life. Especially if you are on your own.

Don’t Become Isolated, But Know How to Reach Out to Others

We admit that dwelling alone after cross country moving may hit you the hardest because you’ve moved away from friends. And some of us may choose the isolation that our abode offers us. But making friends in a new city isn’t hard, and all you have to do is reach out. You can make a habit of socializing on a weekly basis through courses, clubs, and other activities. Or you can simply start making your social circle by meeting your neighbors.

Choose Your Future Residence Carefully

One of the important moving hacks that you’ll need is to organize important documents at home before you can rent an abode. You will be required to show pay stubs or bank statements to prove your ability to pay rent regularly. You should also provide the landlord with the social security number so they can run a credit check. If you have never loaned before, your score might be low, so you should talk to your parents or any other family member to be your co-signer. But above all, carefully choose a residence to your liking. Mind the amenities close by, the size of the abode so you can afford the rent, as well as the commute time to your place of employment.

Decorate the Abode to Give It a Personal Touch

Before you call the long-distance movers and invest in a packing service, decide what you’ll bring with you. Keep in mind that smaller residences don’t have too much available space, so leave some of your bulkier stuff in the storage units. But once you’ve moved in and settled, it’s the right moment to make the residence as cozy as possible. Since you’ll be dwelling in a rental, there’s only so much you can do. But even when you can’t use paint to brighten up the walls, you can use some great yet affordable hacks to achieve a homey and chic look.

Create a new apartment checklist and add some stylish stick and peel wallpaper to it. You can also do wonders to the abode with new bright-colored curtains. Artwork, pillows, carpets, lamps, blankets, and other details won’t empty out your wallet but will bring a unique touch to your abode. The following video shows you several of these tricks that will help you achieve an expensive look for your home.

YouTube video

The Final Take Is to Appreciate Every Perk of Living on Your Own

You are probably only left wondering – Is it cheaper to live by yourself? It all depends on how well you organize your life after moving to a new state. There will be ups and downs, but nonetheless, you should enjoy every single day of independent living. Use your time in the best possible way – learn, explore, socialize, but above all, have fun. It’s as the novelist Richard Yates said in the “Revolutionary Road” – “If you wanted to do something absolutely honest, something true, it always turned out to be a thing that had to be done alone.”

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