7 Important Things You Need When Moving Into Your First Apartment

Moving into your first apartment is an exciting time. You’re going to get to pick things out and choose how to decorate your very own place for the first time. There are a lot of choices to make and it’s a lot of fun to imagine what you want for your own space.

There are some things you’ll need to remember to have when you move into your first apartment, however. Sometimes in the excitement of picking out the fun stuff, you might forget some of the basics you’re used to having because you’ve been living at home or with someone else.

You’ve already spent a lot of time and effort into locating an apartment you love so it’s important to put some thought into what you’ll need when you move. Don’t let the excitement result in you being caught off guard the first night you’re in your new place. If you’re not sure what you’ll need, keep reading. Here are seven important things you need when moving into your first apartment.

1. A Mattress (And Bedding)

If you’re moving into your first place there’s a good chance you don’t have your own bed yet. This is something you’ll want to get as soon as possible. Maybe even right after you sign your lease. Having a bed you can sleep in is really important to make your first apartment as comfortable and enjoyable as possible.

You won’t want to wait until you move in to realize you don’t have somewhere to sleep. Sleeping on the floor is never a good way to realize that you don’t have a bed after you move. Do yourself a favor and invest in a bed and bedding before you move into your new place. It’s something you’re going to need and use every night.

2. Kitchen Essentials

You’re going to need all the kitchen essentials you’re used to having if you live with other people right now. Pots, pans, spatulas and everything in between. You’ll want to make sure you aren’t missing these things before you get settled instead of after you start cooking something and realize you don’t have an item you really need to finish your dinner.

Remember to get things like potholders and a pizza cutter too. These small things are often forgotten about until you really need them. You can find “kitchen in a box” type options in stores that include a lot of the smaller items you may forget (like a can opener) so if you aren’t sure what you’ll need buying a box like that is a good idea.

3. Cleaning Supplies

Moving is dirty work so you’ll want to have cleaning supplies on hand right away. You may want to clean some surfaces yourself instead of trusting they were cleaned before you moved in, for instance. You’ll also have to deal with the mess of boxes and packing supplies left behind from unpacking.

Make sure you’re ready to handle cleaning things up right away by getting some supplies together before you move. You don’t have to have a ton of cleaning supplies but dish soap, an all-purpose cleaner, paper towels, and garbage bags are a good place to start. Just make sure you’ll be prepared for spills and general cleaning and you should be fine.

4. A Shower Curtain

Moving into your first apartment means you may not be expecting that you won’t have basic things like a shower curtain. This is something you might not even notice you don’t have until you go to take a shower after moving in. This one is pretty important to be ready for before you need it.
a curtain rod in bathroom

You can find shower curtains at the dollar store if you’re on an especially tight budget right after your move, but remember to get the hooks too. You’ll be glad you were prepared for this need when you don’t have to figure out how you’re going to shower after you move because you forgot a curtain.

5. Lamps

A lot of apartments don’t have much overhead lighting so you’ll need to be ready for that. If you noticed while you were checking the place out that there wasn’t a lot of light in the apartment that’s a clue that the previous renters took most of their lamps with them. You’ll need to plan for that as you’re getting ready to move.

Floor lamps and table lamps are both pretty affordable at mass retailers so you shouldn’t have to worry about it too much. If you want something more durable than you might find on a store shelf you can check out thrift stores or furniture shops to see what they have on hand. Just make sure you won’t be left in the dark your first night and bring a few lamps with you when you move.

6. Toiletries

Some other things you might be prone to forgetting would be toiletries like toothpaste and shampoo. Make sure you’re set up to live your daily life when you move by being prepared for these things in advance. Make a list of what you use every day to get ready and ensure you’ll have all of those things at your new place.

Don’t forget that you’ll need things like towels and toilet paper too. You might be used to those things being around if you’re living at home or with roommates right now so it’s good to plan in advance. The worst time to find out you don’t have toilet paper is when you already absolutely need it. Just another situation where planning in advance is extremely helpful.

7. Furniture

This is one of the more fun ones. Picking out furniture for your new apartment is something you should enjoy. You can find a couch you love and some tables that look great with it. Again if you need to save some money you can check out thrift stores or local Facebook groups to see what’s for sale there.

Make sure you have some basics. A couch, a coffee table, and some side tables are usually pretty important. You also may want to get a dining room set of some sort and storage for your clothing like dressers or a wardrobe.


When you’re moving into your first apartment there are a lot of things to remember. Keep a list of what you’re going to need and on that list remember the things you’ve read here. If there’s something you use all the time that wasn’t mentioned, make sure to put that on your list too.
Move. Cardboard boxes in empty new apartment
Moving is always going to be a little stressful but if you’re prepared it doesn’t have to be too overwhelming. Once it’s over you’ll be glad you stayed organized and remembered the small things as you’re enjoying your first night in your new place.

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