You’re about to make the biggest move of your young life. After living with your parents all your life, you’re ready to get an apartment, a place to call your own. Getting an apartment is one thing, but moving to one is something entirely different, what could prove a challenge if you’re not prepared to make the move.

1. Plan what you will bring with you. Moving from your parent’s home to your own apartment means that you may take everything in your bedroom or perhaps some items and assemble other furniture as you go. Make a list of what you will bring with you, where it will go in your apartment and what you will need to order later, such as new furniture.

2. Move it yourself or hire help. Likely, you won’t have a lot of stuff to move. However, if you have a bedroom full of furniture and your parents are donating living room furniture, then you’ll need a small army of helpers to assist you. If some of the pieces are particularly heavy, then consider area moving companies for that work. Otherwise, contact your local truck rental companies to see if a UHaul or a Ryder truck is available on the day that you’ll be moving. Enlist the help of some friends to help load and unload the truck.

3. Pay it forward. You may find that some of your possessions won’t be going with you. Specifically, you may have a piece of furniture, some clothing and sporting equipment you no longer need. Further, your parents may not relish having these items left behind. This is a good time for you to call a local charity such as the Salvation Army or Goodwill to gauge their interest in accepting your goods. Find out what hours are available to drop off what you have or if you have a lot of stuff, including heavy items, you may be able to arrange for a pickup.

4. Notify everyone of your move. With a moving date set, send out notices to everyone you know that you’ll will be at your new address on such and such a date. Likely, you won’t need to tell the post office as mail that comes to your home will be with your parents. However, you will have to notify your insurance company, creditors, bank and other businesses you work with that you have moved. You should also contact the utility companies in advance to ensure that lights, heating and cooling, and water are working when you move in. Shop for a communications provider to supply you with your television signal, Internet connection and phone service as needed. Send emails to your friends, but be discrete on social media about your move.

5. Shop for apartment insurance. Your landlord may provide heating, water, sewer and trash removal with your apartment, but you won’t be covered for insurance. That means if your apartment is fire, smoke or water damaged, your possessions will not be covered. Speak to your current insurer about your rental insurance options. You need to be covered from damage and loss, including theft. Choose a policy that provides you with everything that you need.

6. Save your money. Expect that you will go through a lot of cash with your first apartment. You will pay your first and last month’s rent, and a security deposit. The utility companies may demand a deposit too. The first month of living in an apartment can seem like you’re paying out more money than you ever have and it is. Therefore, conserve your money and avoid spending more than what you can afford. It may take a few months to get used to being a tenant.

Apartment Living

Living in an apartment is far different from anything you’ve done thus far. Dorm living isn’t the same as the financial burden is on the back of your parents. As a tenant, you’re responsible for nearly everything, therefore make certain that you have the resources to pay for your expenses.