Career & Living, Life

How To Afford Moving Out Of Home

As much fun as it is to have Mum doing your washing, cooking your meals and cleaning up after your filth, we all want independence. Maybe it’s that niggling board fee, or your awful siblings, even just desperately wanting to have your own space. With growing up comes a desire to forge your own way and moving out offers that forgery in spades. Here’s just how to finance moving out, as soon as the next pay check comes.

Bills, budgets and bargains will start to fill your everyday. But if the cost of housing (hello Sydney) or pure comfortable affordability of staying with your parents has you stagnant, you can do it. You may not be experiencing penthouse living straight out the gates but getting in on the ground floor will have you ready to take on the world. One dish at a time that is.

Evaluate Your Finances

Before you start cruising Gumtree make sure your money situation is in check. Do you have any savings? Great. If you don’t it’s likely back to square one. You’re going to need at least a little cash for your bond, so make that your first priority.  Moving out of your parents house doesn’t mean you can rely on them for rent. Don’t you want to be independent? Good, then check that bank balance ASAP.

Look For Extra Cash Flow

There’s no doubt living out of home is expensive, so a little extra cash coming in definitely can’t hurt. It can make the difference between the big bedroom with a window and the shitty bedroom next to the toilet. No questions on value there. If your work is flexible why not pickup a weekend gig or evening job.

Stretched too far already? Why not downsize your possessions. Not only will you save on moving fees you’ll be able to afford a nicer house warming dinner. A little eBay cleanse or Gumtree purge never hurt anyone. For ladies that’s a closet cleanout and for gents perhaps a game trade or two.

Budget, Budget, Budget

Once you know exactly how much will be coming in and out each month, sit down and work out what you can afford. Ideally 30% of your wage should go to housing, for a $50,000 salary that’s $238 a week. This is a benchmark to make sure you can live comfortably and weather any unforeseen events, car breakdowns etc. When you start to push this mark, that’s when things get tricky and you start having to exist on mee goreng and tuna.

Be realistic, even if you’re dying to live inner city with harbour views, maybe that’s not achievable right now. And is it really worth it if you can’t afford to leave the house anyway? Likely not. You’re not locked into this share house forever, and if you’re respectful then you have a windfall of bond money to spur you onto the next place with gusto.

Lock down how much you’re going to spend eating out and be ruthless. You don’t need to eat out every lunch or even any lunch, with a little prep and planning you’ll appreciate that pub lunch every Sunday even more. Do you need two coffees everyday? Cutting back on your caffeine will have your finances in check in no time.

Oh, And Bills

Oh yeah bills. Moving out will be an eye opening experience, you’ll start to pay for everything you use excluding air. Gas, electricity, water, internet and that’s just while you’re at home. If you’re moving to the city than expect to pay a fee for on-street parking on occasion. Parental support may extend to your phone bill for now, but moving out can often signal the cutting of those ties too.

Be prepared of just how much you’re spending. You’re going to be alarmed but it’s much better to be aware so you can account for these costs. Don’t worry you don’t have to live in the dark, it’s just about being prepared for the cost.

Look For Locales Near The Hotspots

You probably can’t afford that triple 000 postcode, 2000, 3000, wherever – the inner city will have you over budget in an instant. Instead look just beyond those hot spots, there you’ll find the well connected neighbours of pricy suburbs. Winner winner chicken dinner indeed. We covered the cheapest suburbs to rent earlier, let this guide you to finding a locale worth setting up camp in. Both for affordability and liveability.

A great market for up and coming spots is coffee shops, jump onto Beanhunter and see where the trendy baristas are cashing in. There’s obviously a market for good coffee there which likely means people traffic and general happenings. You could be there newest regular.

Don’t Forget Transport

Unless you plan on burning through dollars on petrol each week, moving out will mean no more of Dad filling up the tank politely. None of it. Instead look for suburbs where the transport is well connected and you’ll be saving money. If your place is 30+ minutes to the nearest stop, then you’ll be blowing too much cash on ubers in no time. It may be a little more costly each week but think of the savings down the track. It’s an investment worth making.

Pick Reliable Housemates

Ah the age old debate, living in a house full of mates like Friends does not make for idyllic sitcom living. Instead it likely means a messy breakup if things turn sour. What if your Joey looses his job? Are you the Chandler who’s going to have to foot the bill. You better hope not.

Instead look for people you get along with but aren’t nesscarily lifelong friends with are ideal. Or take the opportunity to meet new people and make new friends, there is no surer way to see if two people are compatible than living together. As sure people are going to evaluate you by your employment status, and likability make sure to vett them too. You don’t want to be attached on a lease to a bunch of people who will dart of at any moment leaving you with a massive financial burden.

Housemates can be absolute horrors. That’s just a reality you’re going to have to accept. Be smart and ask the right questions, especially before you hand over a wad of cash.

Enjoy The Freedom

There is no surer way to hate moving out than if you’ve overstretched the mark. With a little prep you’ll be soaking up alone time without your parents nagging quick smart. Enjoy the freedom, the independence and embrace the new found stress. Stress is guaranteed, sorry. But it means you’re growing up, making something of your own and that’s invigorating more than anything. So go on get hustling. And invite us to the housewarming drinks too, many thanks.

Image Sources: Bloomberg, Real Estate.com.au, Huffington Post, She Know

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Alex is a 20-something beer drinker and sporting fanatic (mainly because he posses no actual physical skill.) Football (not "soccer") is life, does not mind a bowtie.

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