Don’t Break the Bank When You Move

So it’s time for you to leave the comforts of home, spread your wings and fly or you’re just moving into a new home or apartment. Whatever the case may be, you’re moving on up to the east side to a deluxe apartment in the sky… (If you don’t know this theme song, then you’re too young to be moving out on your own anyway).  Moving out for the first time or the tenth time can be an exciting, yet terrifying process; it is also a very expensive process.

As a woman that loves interior design and creating spaces, every time Alex and I have moved from one place to the next, I get overly excited to begin decorating. I take trips to HomeGoods (don’t go to HomeGoods) and begin imagine the look and feel of our new home. Then Alex in his infinite wisdom brings me back down to reality and bursts my creative bubble.

Just the process of getting a new place is expensive. If you are renting you have to provide a security deposit, first and last months rent, and if you have a pet don’t forget a pet deposit. If you’re purchasing a home the appraisal, closing cost, down payment, etc. adds up. You get the picture, it’s a lot of money going out the window in a matter of hours. On top of all this, you want to buy new furniture, buy every knick-knack at HomeGoods (stay away from the HomeGoods, you’ll thank me later), make upgrades, and paint the walls all in the first 2 days after you’ve signed the paperwork.

Oh if only life was this easy and cheap, but unfortunately for all of us it’s not. So, as someone that has moved 2 times in the last 2 ½ years here are some of my tips on moving, decorating, and upgrading without breaking the bank.

Understand how much you are going to have to dish out.

Whether you are renting or purchasing, the moment you sign the contract there is a significant amount of money that you need to provide upfront. Know what this number is ahead of time; make sure you have enough to cover the costs of closing on the new place and enough in your bank account to continue your standard of living. Challenge yourself by not tapping in to your emergency fund!

OfferUp and LetGo

These are great resources for lightly used items that you can get on the cheap. For example I got an awesome Z Gallery bar cart that retails at $250 for 50 bucks! You’ll find everything on these sites from Restoration Hardware pieces at 75% off to vintage sideboards and wardrobes.

Hold off on renovation projects.

Unless you are building your home from the ground up or renting a completely renovated apartment, there are some minor or major upgrades you’re going to want to do. My advice, hold off on these projects for at least 3 months. Holding off gives you plenty of time to get a good grasp of your new expenses and also lets you save a bit for those renovation projects. From a financial planning perspective, make sure to adjust your budget after the big move and set new short term and long term savings goals for your home projects.

Pick 1 or 2 major furniture pieces that you’re okay with splurging on.

Holy cow, furniture is expensive! That is why I suggest picking a few pieces that you are okay with splurging on like you sofa or master bedroom set. As for the rest of the pieces try to find them at a bargain. For us, we splurged on our mattress, sofa and master bedroom set. This tip helps you save on the overall cost of furniture while still getting some awesome staple pieces.

Rome wasn’t built in a day and your home won’t be either.

It takes time to transform a house into a home, so be patient. You don’t have to purchase everything all at once, and you shouldn’t feel pressured to make your home look like a Pinterest home. Decorating and making it your own is half the fun of having your own space. Take your time and enjoy it!

Bottom line is that purchasing or renting a new home is such an exciting and wonderful experience but also a little overwhelming. Enjoy the process and don’t get into debt with furniture, renovation or decor purchases. Take your time and understand your budget…Heck I still have an upside down HomeDepot moving box as a nightstand until I find the right piece!

Suggested articles to read: home ownership and savings!

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