In light of the pandemic, it was probably not the end of your college career that you envisioned, but even so, you’ve accomplished so much! You’re still graduating and ready to start your life as an “adult.” Congratulations!
This can be a scary time for recent college grads but it can also be one of the most liberating times of your life. Figuring out your next step, whether it be a new job, a new town or a new apartment is as nerve-wracking as it is exciting. For those of you who are starting your apartment hunting journey, figuring out all of the odds and ends related to moving into a new place can get stressful, from deciding what type of apartment you want to how you’re going to afford it all. Since most college graduates will be working on a tight budget, here are some tips to help you furnish your new home or apartment without going into debt.
Track Your Purchases
Keeping a list of everything that you want to buy or have already bought will help prevent overspending and save yourself money. It can be really easy to overspend if you don’t keep track of how much you’ve spent and what you’ve spent it on. So, try keeping the receipt from each store you shop at to keep track. By doing this you’ll be able to easily stay on top of the amount of money you’re spending and where you can potentially cut back. You’re less likely to go over budget if you can see that you’ve already spent a good amount of money but still need a lot more items.
Shopping online is a great way to save yourself some money when looking for furniture, especially with the current social distancing in place. Shopping online allows you to easily compare prices while shopping from the comfort of your own home. So why deal with the hassle of driving from store to store to compare prices?
Another pro of shopping online are discounts. Sales online tend to differ from the ones available in-store, so make sure you keep a lookout for those discounts as well.
Enable Price Alerts
Sometimes even if you’re online shopping you don’t want to completely commit to buying an item. Maybe the price is just a little too high, or you don’t need the item right now. Whatever the reason for something sitting in your cart for a few days is, you want to get the best price when you do decide to hit buy. To guarantee this, set up price alerts. Price alerts will help you monitor any item and give you an idea of when the best time to purchase it will be. There are a lot of different sites that offer price alerts. A popular price tracking website that shows you relevant discounts and monitors the cost of items is Slickdeals. Just type in a store or item you like and it will pull up relevant discounts and promotions.
Decorate in Stages
Remember, you don’t have to have your entire apartment furnished by the time you move in. Sometimes, depending on your financial situation, it can take months to get everything you want for your apartment, and that’s okay. To help stay within budget, focus on furnishing rooms that are essential to living comfortably. Two rooms that you should focus on are your living room and bedroom. In your bedroom, it’s important to have a quality mattress to sleep on with some comfortable sheets. In your living room, you want to prioritize seating. Make sure to get yourself a nice cushioned couch so you have a comfortable place to sit and relax.
Throw a Housewarming
If this is your first place or even your second, your family and friends are probably more than happy to throw you a housewarming party. Yes, housewarmings are about celebrating and enjoying your new home, but it’s also a great way to get some additional household items that you don’t have to pay for. Since most people traditionally bring gifts to the party, you should put together a list beforehand. Your list can have anything you want on it. Most people tend to put things on the list that are useful, but not necessarily crucial to buy themselves. A few popular housewarming gifts include candles, artwork, and kitchen and bath accessories. Even if you don’t have an actual party your loved ones probably won’t mind getting you a few things for your place.
This should be one of the most exciting experiences of your life, so don’t let a limited budget hold you back. There are plenty of ways to decorate your apartment nicely without having to break the bank.