While not every homeschooler heads off to college, or stays in a dorm room if they do attend college, I thought I would direct this post to those that ARE going to college and ARE staying in a dorm room. Along with that, this could totally be helpful for those who are moving into their first apartment!
This year with getting married, my husband and I moved into our first apartment together! There are a LOT of things that can slip your mind when you are about to move into your own place. This is why moving out on your own can be so expensive, regardless of (though in addition to) holding deposits, first and last month’s rent, security deposits, renter’s insurance, internet, etc.
–Laundry basket. There are ways around using a basket for laundry (for instance: new trash bags), but baskets aren’t expensive and they honestly makes it much easier to carry laundry.
–Hangers. You’ll need somewhere to put your clothes, and some materials wrinkle quite easily when you fold them and put them in a dresser drawer!
–Laundry detergent (likewise, bleach and dryer sheets). You’ll need to do laundry at some point, and you don’t want to be left without any clean clothes and not have any detergent. Do yourself a favor and purchase a bottle to begin with so you have it when you need it.
–Kitchen mat. We didn’t have a kitchen mat for a month or two, and let me tell you, it made such a difference when we finally got one! It absorbs any water spills from the sink and gives a little extra cushion when you’re standing there washing the dishes!
–Door mat. Again, it’s not something you really think of, but it is quite helpful. I love having something to wipe my shoes off on before stepping into my house and it keeps the entrance cleaner!
–Bathroom mat. Stepping out of the shower isn’t exactly the best when you don’t have anything to catch the dripping water–even if you have dried off in the shower. A bathroom mat saves so much effort and the risk of slipping.
(Not our image. Source.)
–Shower/tub mat. Not everyone has mats inside their shower for stability and traction, but if you are used to one, go ahead and add it to your list! (Not our image–source.)
–Shower curtain. Say you are the first of your roommates to move into this apartment and you don’t have one of those nice showers that doesn’t require a curtain. You’ll want to get a curtain before taking that first shower or there will be lots of water to sop up! Also, don’t forget curtain hooks. (Not our image–source.)
–Towels. Dish towels, hand towels, bath towels, washcloths… Whichever towel you can think of, it would come in pretty handy. I mean, you *could* replace hand towels with paper towels, but think of how much money you’d end up spending. And drying off from the shower with paper towels doesn’t quite sound like fun. Towels are certainly an essential!
–Paper towels. Though paper towels shouldn’t replace bath towels, hand towels, or dish towels, they are still one of the most handy products in the house! Anything that you’d rather not dirty a nice towel for, is a great job for a paper towel–and believe me, there are many of those situations!
–Microwave. Unless you happen to be against microwaves, these are such a lifesaver! If you’ve lived with a microwave until now, you’d be surprised at how much you rely on one when you don’t have one available. Oftentimes you can get a compact microwave for fairly inexpensive at Walmart, or search around Craigslist, Buy & Barter Facebook groups, or friends and family.
–Sponges/dishcloths. You’ll have to wash dishes at some point, so you’ll need a sponge or dishcloth with which to wash them! Both work fine, it’s just a personal preference.
–Dish soap. I suppose if you are using all paper plates, bowls, and plastic flatware, then this one is not an essential. However, if you have any non-disposable dishes, dish soap will come in handy, and hopefully before the sink is overflowing with dirty dishes. 😉
–Hand soap (or at least hand sanitizer). This one is rather self-explanatory as well, unless you are a die hard hand sanitizer fan. The bottom line is: hand soap cleans better and is healthier for your skin and frankly, not expensive.
–Basic all-purpose cleaner. There will be a mess at some point, and it’ll probably be sticky or might become sticky. You’ll want to clean it up before it attracts dirt and bugs and just gross-ness overall. You can get an all-purpose cleaner from the dollar store and it works wonderfully!
–Kitchen trash can. Not having a trash can in the kitchen is an inconvenience, not to mention probably disastrous. I’ll wager that most of the trash in the house comes from the kitchen, so you’ll need a trash can there, for convenience at least.
–Bathroom trash can. Again, there’s only so many containers you can use to store trash and you’ll soon find yourself annoyed at the inconvenience of walking to another room to dispose of trash. It’s quite essential to have a trash can in the bathroom. You can even purchase one at the dollar store! Just pop a grocery bag in the can for a quick trash bag and you’re all set!
–Trash bags. Without kitchen trash bags, you’ll be making more trips to the dumpster than you’d like and there’s only so many containers in which you can store your trash. Save yourself the trouble and get a box of trash bags.
–Toilet paper. This is as self-explanatory as it gets. Unless your roommate has already stocked the bathroom with toilet paper, you’ll be needing to purchase some…ASAP.
–Fire extinguisher. Most apartments and dorm rooms are required to already have a working fire extinguisher in each unit. However, some do not, and you’ll want to make sure of this. If yours doesn’t, be sure to get one as soon as possible. You don’t want to risk not having one in case of an emergency.
–Fireproof/waterproof safe. As a college student, you might think that you don’t have anything important requiring a safe. However, things like your birth certificate, your social security card, your passport, your car title, etc, should all be protected in case of a break-in, fire, or flood. If these things get destroyed, you’ll be wishing you spent $40 on a safe.