My fiancee and I would like to move in together, but the actual date of the move in has been pushed back. A lot. Both of us currently live with our ‘rents and have never lived outside the ‘rents home before, so we don’t have any apartment stuff. I was thinking of purchasing some things for the apartment and keeping them stored in my current abode.
My mother’s advice was this: don’t buy too much stuff, because it might not fit in to your apartment – aesthetic-wise or space-wise. So my question to Homies is this: what do you wish you had as soon as you moved in, and what could you have done without or what would you liked to have purchased AFTER you moved? – Aurora
Here are some answers from our awesome readers:
Wait on bathroom items (shower caddy, storage solutions etc.) We got a new shower caddy and a shaving mirror that use suction cups, well, our new tub/shower, have textured walls, so our caddy/mirror had to be returned.
I’d also wait on a lot of decorative things too. The real estate listing had some of the window measurements. So I went ahead and got curtains, pre move. I didn’t notice/pay attention to how our windows open, so I had to rethink the curtains completely. Big headache.
We knew we would have a yard to deal with, so we ordered a lawn mower and organized the shipping so it would arrive on the first day we would officially be moving in. I did this with a lot of stuff we’d need, like some furniture and dishes. Some of the stuff I even had shipped a few days before the move in date so they would be done and out of the way before everyone came schlepping in with boxes. – Tiffany
I’d go with practical stuff.
Toilet paper! My experience is there’s no toilet paper left so you want that.
Basic cleaning supplies – all purpose cleaner, Magic Eraser, dish soap
If you don’t already have towels and wash cloths you are taking then take those. Also cheap shower curtain rings and a shower curtain liner. I’ve also moved into a place that had those when I looked at it empty but not when I moved in. Which meant a run to the store after a day of moving.
If you don’t have kitchen stuff – then you may want to get some basics.
Toolkit. Even living in an apartment you’ll want screwdrivers, hammer, pliers, measuring tape, a small level.
Foldable stepladder – so if you have to hang something high or change a light bulb you’re set
If you have dishes and wrap them in newspaper you’ll want to wash them so dishwashing liquid or dishwasher detergent (if you have a dishwasher).
Is coffee a must have? Do you have a coffee maker? If you don’t I’d get a coffee maker and some coffee. Again so you don’t have to run out the first day to get your fix.
Vacuum cleaner. Dirt Devil makes a compact apartment sized one. Again, this is something I didn’t think of until I needed to vacuum something up.
The little carpet protectors to put under your furniture, if you have rugs I’d do it as soon as you move in. One it makes them easier to move, but it also reduces the risk of holes in the carpet. – Ali
My now husband and I bought random small things we knew we’d need when they were on sale in the year prior to us moving in together (measuring cups, spatulas, glasses, dishes, pots and pans, whisks, can opener) when they were in the clearance sections at Target.
For the big stuff – I had most of it from living on my own, but we did buy a new couch and if you know any sort of rough estimated date most big box furniture stores will work with you on holding the product until you’re ready. (we bought the couch in August, when it was on a killer sale and didn’t have it delivered until Nov.)
Basically, while you’re living with your ‘rents take note of all the things you use daily (towels, dishes, silverware, etc) and see if it’s something that is dependent on your house, if it isn’t try & buy it while it’s on sale now so you aren’t shelling out as much later. Also, if you can start going through your closets and stored items now so you don’t have as much to go through when you do get ready for the big move.
Also, make sure you both agree on chores/rules before moving in together. Talk, talk, talk! My husband doesn’t pick up his socks, I knew this before living with him, so we establish he has to either put his socks in the baskets or they don’t get washed. I’m allergic to grass, so in the summers when there’s yard work – he does that and I do the big inside stuff (clean ceiling fans, scrub the tub, baseboards, etc) and we both split the every day stuff – either one of us washes the dishes and the other one cooks. If he puts the laundry into wash, I move it to the dryer, or put the clothes away when done.
And if you plan on saving money by not eating out a lot and using meal planning, look into a meal planning service (I use emeals & save all their menus in a binder) and start researching some recipes and using your parents kitchens as test kitchens, since they’ll most likely have the supplies you already need. My husband and I thought we knew how to cook a lot of foods, but we were sorely wrong! So at least hit a local bookstore or Pinterest and start putting together a recipe book. – Storm
Everyone else has the furniture and such covered, so I thought of food first. If it’s a completely empty bare-bones apartment, some of the food items for cooking would need to be bought, like salt, pepper, olive oil, etc. The super basics. Often in the haze of moving and getting stuff to and from it’s time for dinner and you’re like “oops.” and then it’s takeout for like 4 weeks. – Melissa
A coffee table! We lived without furniture for 2 weeks while waiting for movers to get our stuff out of storage and move it across the country, and man was I thankful my mom made me stuff a coffee table in my trunk. We camped out on the floor, but having something to eat on was invaluable.
Next most important – a lamp! Any kind will do, but many apartments I have lived in either have no light fixtures at all beyond the kitchen/bathroom or very limited overhead lighting (none in the living room, etc). Our last apartment we had to go out and buy a lamp the first night because otherwise we would have been in complete darkness.
Make sure to have a set of necessary kitchen supplies – pots, pans, strainer, vegtable peeler, knives, utensils, plates, kitchen towels, oven mitt, basic spices
Also pretty basic and some of the first things I always end up buying are trash cans, trash bags, laundry degergent, saran wrap, tinfoil, dish soap, sponges
Wait to buy anything decorative or that isn’t absolutely necessary or something you want. I KNEW I was going to need bookshelves because I have a ton of books, but I waited until we lived here a few weeks to be sure how we were going to arrange furniture first. – Oread