Settling In: A Guide for Living on Your Own for the 1st Time

April 10, 2024

Settling In: A Guide for Living on Your Own for the First Time

Living on your own for the first time is both an exciting and scary venture at the same time. Although you are ready to spread your wings and fly, there are some things you may still be apprehensive about. It can be quite the adjustment to living on your own for the first time, but with a little guidance and a lot of preparation, you can be sure that your first foray into the world will be a successful one. Even with the changes and challenges that life can bring, rest easy knowing that you have got this and that with a little planning, things will go a lot smoother. Here is your guide for living in your very first apartment for the first time.

The Essentials

The first thing to tackle is the basics and the essential rental information that you should know when renting your first apartment or house. Know the terms of your rental agreement: how much rent is and when it is due, services included, and cost considerations for your month-to-month expenses. Know who your landlord is or what property management system they run the business through and keep a name, address, phone number, email, and website address handy in case you need to contact them on short notice. Find the contact for any maintenance and repairs needed.

Consolidate information such as who to contact for emergencies, what the hours of operations are, and what sort of penalties are required for breaking the lease. If there is a roommate situation, learn the lease implications and understand each of your roles of responsibilities.

Take care of utility setup and changes. This includes transferring or signing up for various utilities such as water, sewer, trash, recycling, electricity, gas, internet, and landline phones. Update your address for mail forwarding through USPS to ensure that you receive all of your important mail at your new address. Purchase renter’s insurance, taking into account the upsides and downsides to living there, and add on any necessary policies for fire, flood, or earthquakes.

Emergency Information

Though we all know the number for dire emergencies, it will benefit you to find and record non-emergency services, such as your local non-emergency police number. Locate your local urgent care clinic and make sure your health insurance is in network with the clinic. If you have pets, locate your local veterinarian clinic and services, updating vaccinations according to local ordinances.

Local Authorities and Services

Along with finding out the location and non-emergency contact for police services in your town, you will need to find the same information for your local fire department. Know where your post office is relative to your new home and update your new home address online or in person. Find your DMV and update changes to your driver’s license or ID and make sure your voter registration is up-to-date.

The Community

Start branching out and getting involved in the community at large. Along with emergency services, visit your city’s website and sign up for alerts for news, outages, emergencies, and more. Join social media platforms for members of your town, including local buy/sell/trade groups to stock up on home essentials. Explore resell and consignment shops for big-ticket items, like furniture. Visit your local library and sign up for a library card. Utilize online community library apps for even more resources and entertainment.


While you are busy setting in your new place and familiarizing yourself with the area, there is one thing you can rely on without delay and that is self-storage. For holding onto belongings in case the apartment isn’t quite ready or for the storage of items that won’t quite fit, a storage unit from Mini U Storage is perfect for you. With so many locations across the country, you are sure to find the storage space you need at a moment’s notice. Settle in with the breathing room you need and begin storing your belongings with us today.