Moving Out Tips, Life Hacks, and Apartment Checklist of Essentials

First Apartment Checklist & Essentials

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You’re moving out for the first time?!?! How EXCITING!

Whether you’re moving away for college, work, travel, or any number of reasons, this is a huge next step in your life. When I moved out of my parent’s house and into my first apartment, I felt confident and excited. I soon realized that there was a lot of things I was completely clueless about and A LOT of things I needed to go out and buy because I completely spaced that I needed it. *Face Palm* This led to the creation of my ‘first apartment checklist’ so you can all learn from my mistakes. (I’m sure you’ll have plenty other mistakes to make on your own)

I’ve broken down the first apartment checklist into 6 categories of essentials. Having been moved out for 3 years now, I have learned that these are the things I absolutely need to have.  You may need to add more things and even take a few things off of the list. Either way I hope this first apartment checklist is beneficial to you and helps you stress a little less about moving!

I’d love to hear what your apartment essentials are!

Also you might notice throughout the list that I linked some items to my favorites. I absolutely LOVE Ikea for things like this, but this post is not sponsored in any way.

First Apartment Checklist

Moving out tips and first apartment checklist of essentials


The kitchen is where you need the most things, especially if you plan on eating more than mac and cheese, pizzas, and ramen. Trust me, it gets old FAST. Depending on what you cook will determine your kitchen essentials. Over the past three years of living on my own, I have found that these are the things that I need in my kitchen!

  • Silverware
  • Dishes
  • Pots/Pans
  • Cooking Utensils (spatula, soup ladle, wooden spoon, tongs, noodle spoon, pizza cutter, can opener)
  • Cutting Board
  • Measuring Cups
  • Strainer
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Parchment Paper
  • Saran Wrap
  • Blender
  • Coffee Maker
  • Toaster
  • Microwave
  • Dish Soap
  • Drying Rack
  • Table and Chairs
  • Tupperware
  • Ice Trays
  • Oven Mitt
  • Paper Towels/Napkins
  • Ziploc Bags

Moving out tips and first apartment checklist and essentials


Many bathroom essentials are common sense, but it can be easy to forget some things too. For example, you don’t want to wait to buy a plunger until you need one, at that point you will need it NOW. These things are absolutely essential to any bathroom. However, ask your landlord if you will need to bring your own shower curtain and rings or if there will already be one there.

  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels
  • Bath Mat
  • Shower Curtain and Rings
  • Toilet Brush
  • Plunger
  • First Aid Kit
  • Band-aids
  • Triple Antibiotic
  • Tylenol/Advil
  • Cough Medicine
  • Hand Soap

Moving out tips and first apartment checklist and essentials. Free printables


The bedroom essentials are the most straight forward. If you are trying to get the bare minimum then technically you just need a mattress, pillows, and bedding. However, I find that the rest of the items on the list are used on a daily basis.

moving out tips and first apartment essentials and checklist

Living Room

The living room can be broken down into 3 essential categories: Seating, Entertainment, and Lighting. Obviously seating can be a couch and/or chair. Entertainment involves a tv and possible game consoles. Last but certainly not least is lighting. This may not seem important but the last apartment I lived in and the current house I live in do not have any lights in the living room. Bring at least one lamp either way, just to be safe.

moving out tips and first apartment checklist of essentials. Cleaning products you need


Two of these items may be questionable “essentials” but I will tell you why you need them.

First item is rubber gloves. I used to clean without them, but they are the BEST dollar (yes just one dollar) I’ve EVER spent. I don’t have to worry at all about getting gross stuff on my hands.

Next is the magic erasers. I just recently used a magic eraser for the first time (my friend dyed her hair blue and rinsed it out in my tub causing my tub to be stained blue) after my mom recommended it to me. OMG! Where have these been my whole life?!?! If you have any kind of stains or small areas (in between tiles, stove/oven, literally everywhere) then you need to get yourself some magic erasers. You can thank me later.

  • Trash Bags
  • Trash Cans
  • Broom and Dustpan
  • Mop and Bucket
  • Vacuum
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Sponges
  • Cleaning Products (multi surface, windex, toilet cleaner, laundry detergent)
  • Magic Erasers
  • Rags

moving out tips and first apartment checklist and essentials. Plus free printable for moving out


Some random things that I have found myself needing often. Good things to keep in your house at all times.

  • Batteries (AA + AAA)
  • Flashlight
  • Screw Driver
  • Hammer
  • Light Bulbs
  • Extension Cord/Surge Protector


Moving can be stressful and it can be so easy to forget things. Especially if this is the first time you are moving out on your own. Good luck to you!

I’d love to hear what some of your apartment essentials are and why!!

<3 Manda Mae 


First Apartment Checklist and Tips
First Apartment Checklist and Tips
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