Is your living situation changing? Getting an apartment is an exciting step, but it can come with the uncertainty of living alone.
No matter if you’re moving out of your parent’s house or have always lived with roommates, living on your own is a big adjustment.
One of the biggest benefits of living alone is that you are in control of your space. You don’t have to deal with sharing space with roommates, battling over the thermostat, or having their things all over the apartment.
You are free to use the space how you want, decorate to match your style, and have privacy and personal space. It is often easier to work from home without having to deal with roommates, and you can potentially keep your living costs down because you are in control.
Living alone also comes with its negatives. Financially, you are in charge of the entire cost of living, including rent, utilities, groceries, and household items. One of the cons of living alone is that you also don’t have the safety and social network of roommates.
Some people find it lonely to live on their own because they don’t have the built-in social interactions that come from living with other people. You are in charge of everything around the rental property, which can feel like a large responsibility.
Even with the pros and cons of living alone, it can be an exciting adjustment to a new living situation. Here are seven tips for living alone for the first time.
Without roommates, your neighbors become incredibly important. They are your connection to the community and can become great friends and resources. Chat with neighbors as you walk around the complex, check the mail, or use the fitness center.
They may have advice about the area and living in a new space. Knowing your neighbors is also important for safety. If you’ll be coming home late or going out of town, you can talk to your neighbors to keep an eye on your apartment.
Living alone can get lonely, so be sure to prioritize your relationships. Stay in touch with family and friends, call or text with people throughout the day, and build a network of people you can talk to. You can expand your social circle by getting involved in your complex or neighborhood, joining a group or recreational sports team, or going out and meeting people in your area.
Without roommates to rely on, you are in charge of your social circle. Don’t just sit at home when you are feeling lonely. It takes effort to maintain relationships, but it can greatly impact your mood and happiness.
When you live alone, it’s on you to pay rent. One of the biggest adjustments can be financial as you are responsible for all the costs of living and for furnishing and decorating your own space.
Set a budget and consider your monthly income and expenses, including rent and utilities. A budget can help you keep track of your finances and set savings goals so you don’t get overwhelmed by the cost of living solo.
You don’t have to be scared to live alone, but not having anyone else in the space with you does increase your safety risks. Look for apartments with safety features like deadbolts, door chains, and interior security doors.
When you move into a new space, talk to your landlord about changing the locks. Pay attention to your surroundings so you know what to do in case of an emergency. You can also talk to your property manager about adding a temporary alarm system that can move with you to your next home or apartment.
The beauty of living on your own is that you can do whatever you want with your items. But without other people in your apartment to check in on you or structure your day, you may find that time slips by and seems wasted. Create structure in your day by waking up and going to bed at the same time and following good routines.
Set aside time for exercise, grocery shopping, and cleaning, as well as time for relaxation and hobbies. Set goals for how you want to spend your time and stick with them, even if there’s no one to check on you. People who have structure tend to be happier and less stressed, no matter their living situation.
Living on your own means you get to decorate the apartment however you want. You are in control to create a welcoming environment where you want to live and spend time. Decorate according to your tastes to build a living space that reflects your style—no matter if it’s boho, modern, or rustic.
You may feel disconnected from your new space, so decorate it in whatever way makes you happy. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a welcoming space—secondhand furniture and small improvements can make a big difference in building a home that reflects who you are.
Without roommates, there’s no one to ask to kill a spider or unclog the sink. You can call your landlord or maintenance person for big issues, but smaller repairs and tasks likely fall on you.
Work to develop the skills you often ask others to help with, including cooking for one, cleaning, and keeping the apartment clean. You can learn how to do almost anything from YouTube tutorials, blog posts, or podcasts. Becoming self-reliant is empowering and puts you in control over your life and living situation.
Living on your own for the first time brings lots of opportunities. These seven tips for living alone can help ease your adjustment and help you jump into a new living situation.