The ins and outs of moving out on your own

Nathaniel Christopher The Mind's Eye [Nanaimo, B.C.] Volume Issue 15

On April 1st I moved out on my own. I have learned quite a bit about budgeting, organization and being a responsible, mature individual.

In some ways, roommates are a good idea. If you have a roommate you can split the rent and bills. You could live in a nice apartment for cheap. Another advantage of living with a roommate is that sometimes they have things you might not otherwise have, like cable, a computer, or a VCR they will let you use. Roommates are not always a good idea, however.

If you are under nineteen and you want to get a phone, you will have to get one in someone else’s name who is over nineteen (your parents are your best bet). Since the phone line will be theirs in name, the bills will go to them and you will have to pay them. If your place does not include hydro, and you have to pay it separate from your rent you will have to get a parent to sign for that as well.

Be very careful with whom you choose to live. You may find you and your best friend are incompatible. Sometimes a roommate can be a control freak and try to control your life. A family member of mine had a roommate who used to erase all of her messages on the answering machine causing her to miss out on several job opportunities. If you get a roommate who is older than you, they could turn into your parent.

If you move in with someone, make sure you have an agreement about everything like the rent, bills, and responsibilities, in writing! Make sure you are given your key as soon as you move in it is not fun being locked outside till three in the morning while your roommate is out partying!

My advice is to live on your own.

There is nothing like having your own space where nobody can bother you. It might cost a little bit more, but I found it to be worthwhile.

Once you have found your new place, you will probably want to furnish it. If you are a ward of the Ministry of Children and Families, you are entitled to an allowance to furnish your place.

Before you go spend all of your money, ask your family members if they have any furniture they want to get rid of. My place is almost entirely furnished by stuff given to me by family members.

The ideal places to buy things for setting up a house are the many garage sales around town, but if you are not into getting up before nine on a Saturday, there are great stores in Nanaimo.

For furniture , appliances, and household junk I strongly recommend the Salvation Army store on Albert Street.
You can get quality products for good prices, and the longer the product is the re.the cheaper it is. At the Salvation Army
they reduce the price 20% every week.

Good Neighbors’ prices are good. Value Village is okay, but you can get anything there at the Sally Ann or Good Neighbors for half the price.

Now there is the matter of food. Shop around – look at all the sale sheets and try to find the thing s on your list for as cheap as you can. When buying junk food and stuff I suggest shopping at Field’s. You can get a big thing of cookies for $2.00. They also have chips and stuff. Another great place to go is the Bargain Shop. They have great prices for things like toilet paper and soap.

Finally, there is the matter of stuff that you want , but you really don’t need to survive . Spoil yourself once in a while, but don’t burn a hole in your pocket. If you are afraid you will blow all of your money on crap, buy gift certificates to your favorite grocery store so that when you run out of money you can still use your gift certificates. If there is a particular restaurant you like going to you can do the same.

Above all, be happy about where you live and treat yourself well.

I am a resident of Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada, who has been blogging here for nearly 25 years. I enjoy sharing my thoughts and feelings on my own online platform. From 1998 until 2017, I worked as a journalist, and I have posted most of my articles in the 'News' section of this website.