Essential Checklist for Your First Apartment

You’ve just finished signing the check for your first apartment and college is around the corner. The next steps in this exciting process should be preparing for your big move. Whether it’s months away or you only have a few days, you’re going to need an essentials checklist. It may not seem too important, but trust us, thousands of college students have run into the problem of needing something they didn’t get before moving in. That’s why we at The Monroe decided to put together this checklist for you. It’s basically a list of essential items and tips that are useful for staying organized, clean, and creating a comfy atmosphere in your new place. Although you may not need everything on this list, it should at least help you get a head start into the next chapter of your life.

Before Moving Into Your New Apartment

Once you’ve finished signing off on your new apartment, you’ll want to make sure you go over a few things. It’s always a good idea to ensure everything is ready to go right at the start to make your move a little easier and to start off with your best foot forward. You’ll want your new living space to be as clean as it can be and for it to have all the utilities up and running in time.

  • Check and replace any broken locks
  • Clean and disinfect refrigerator, sinks, and restrooms
  • Go over any apartment restrictions and policies (Pets, Smoking, Drinking, Visitors, Etc.)
  • Organize moving boxes by room to save time
  • Plan out how you’ll be moving and setting up your belongings
  • Turn on utilities in advance (some apartment complexes handle this for you)
  • Update your address at USPS

Essential Checklist for Apartment Furniture and Supplies

You don’t have to buy the newest furniture and supplies before moving into your new apartment. It’s alright to use hand-me-downs, buy used stuff, or get your furniture from discount stores. The important thing is that you’re ready by move-in day for your new apartment.

Furniture Checklist

Let’s start off by checking off some of the most basic home furniture you’ll need for your first apartment. Try getting a head start on gathering the large items since they do cost a bit more.

  • Bed
  • Bookshelves
  • Drawers
  • Chairs
  • Coffee Table/Stand
  • Couch
  • Mattress
  • Night Stand
  • Table
  • Television
  • Television Stand

Kitchen Checklist

Next up on our essential checklist for your first apartment are the items every kitchen needs. You don’t want to finish unpacking and realize you don’t have something to snack on! You’re also going to need some kitchen utensils to prepare your meals. We’ll make it easy for you and divide the list into cleaning/storage supplies and necessary foods and condiments.

Cleaning, Cooking, and Storage for Your Kitchen

Here are some essential kitchen items you might want to have before moving in:

  • Aluminum Foil
  • Blender
  • Bottle Opener
  • Can Opener
  • Dish Soap
  • Dishwashing Gloves
  • Dish Cloths
  • Utensils
  • Ice Trays (if you don’t have an ice maker in your fridge)
  • Set of Knives
  • Microwave
  • Paper Towels
  • Saran Wrap
  • Plates, Bowls and Glasses
  • Pots and Pans
  • Sponges
  • Storage Containers
  • Trashcan
  • Garbage Bags
  • Toaster or Convection Oven
  • Coffee Maker
  • Coffee Cups
  • Ziploc Bags

Food and Condiments for Your First Kitchen

Here are some essential foods and condiments you’ll want to get right before moving in:

  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Baking Soda
  • Bread
  • Canned Foods
  • Cooking Oils (Olive, Vegetable, etc.)
  • Frozen Foods
  • Hot Sauce
  • Ketchup
  • Mayonnaise
  • Meats
  • Milk
  • Mustard
  • Pepper
  • Salt
  • Soy Sauce
  • Vegetables
  • Vinegar
  • Water Bottles

Bedroom Checklist

The bedroom should probably be your top priority. This is where you’ll be sleeping and waking up for the next few years, so make it as comfortable as you can. Here are some bedroom essential you’ll need before moving into your first apartment:

  • Bed Sheets
  • Blankets
  • Curtains
  • Hamper
  • Mattress
  • Mirrors
  • Night Lamp
  • Personal Items
  • Pillows
  • Pillow Cases
  • Storage Containers

Bathroom Checklist

You may have not noticed it while you were living with your parents, but bathrooms have plenty of items that can easily be overlooked. Here’s a list of all things you might need for your bathroom before moving in:

  • Air Freshener
  • Baby Wipes
  • Bath Mats
  • Conditioner
  • Cotton Swabs
  • Dental Floss
  • Lotion
  • Mouth Wash
  • Razors
  • Shampoo
  • Shower Curtain
  • Shower Mat
  • Small Trash Can
  • Soap
  • Toilet Paper
  • Plunger
  • Toilet Scrubber
  • Toothbrush
  • Towels
  • Toothbrush holder
  • Washcloths

Cleaning Supplies Checklist

You don’t need to buy everything you see at the cleaning supplies aisle, but you do need the essentials:

  • Baking Soda
  • Bleach
  • Broom
  • Cloths
  • Disinfectants
  • Dustpan
  • Duster
  • Fabric Softener
  • Laundry Basket
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Mop
  • Stain Removers
  • Vacuum Cleaner
  • Vinegar

Miscellaneous Items Checklist

These are some small but useful items remaining that can help save any day:

  • Bandaids
  • Batteries
  • Coat Hangers
  • Duct Tape
  • First Aid Kit
  • Flashlight
  • Hammer
  • Key Holder
  • Light Bulbs
  • Lighter
  • Matches
  • Organizers
  • Power Cords
  • Scotch Tape
  • Screwdriver Set
  • Thumb Tacks
  • Wrenches

Moving Into Your New Apartment

Moving day is usually one of the most exhausting of your college adventure. From moving boxes around to setting up your bed, there are plenty of important things for you to do. Don’t worry, once everything’s unpacked, you’ll be ready to start your new journey. Here are some tips to tackle moving into your first apartment:

  • Document and take pictures of the property before setting anything up, in particular of any damage that you notice. This way, you won’t be charged unexpectedly for any pre-existing damage.
  • Move in all the heavy stuff first (bed, desk, drawers, etc.) and leave the smaller stuff for later
  • Refrigerate any foods that can spoil in a few hours
  • Take a dolly and an extra hand in case you run into trouble moving
  • Take a pair of heavy-duty gloves in case you need to lift something

Once you’re done moving in, make sure to take a well-deserved break and adventure around the area. It’s a great way to meet other college students living in the same neighborhood. Venturing around will also help you learn where most important landmarks are and how to make your way through the town.

After the transition, make sure to enjoy your college years and create some great new memories. Don’t worry if you feel a bit sad at first, it’s only natural for you to miss being at home. College is a great time to make new friends and learn how to live on your own. Think of it as a learning experience before making your transition into the professional world. Transitions aren’t always easy, but they are changes well worth making.

That’s all folks! Hopefully, this list helps you be better prepared for your move, and be sure to share this essential checklist for your first apartment with others you know who are about to make the big jump!

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