Today, my little sister Kenzie has suggested/requested that I blog about…
Unexpected Apartment Expenses
…so I’m going to.
I think this topic suggestion/request is prompted by two things. First, I am moving at the end of May. Second, she is also moving this summer.
I can’t really say any of my expenses are unexpected, but sometimes they’re a little… annoying/frustrating/bizarre/high.
I moving for a myriad of reasons, but the biggest reason is just MONEY. When I moved to the town I live in, I was a little overly optimistic about how much money I’d be making once I settled into a job and/or once I began grad school. I was fresh out of college and the mental math on “I lived with a roommate in apartments” to “I’ll be living by myself” didn’t calculate. Living by myself is infinitely more expensive, but also, I’d never live with a roommate again.
So I’ve lived in my apartment for two years, and finally I decided it was time to move. Part of me stayed beyond the first year because I hate moving & I wanted to feel settled for once. In six years, I’ve moved seven times.
So in this whole moving situation, this is what I’ve learned and why I’ve made the decisions I have about apartment-living. (Note: any money talk in this post is related only to what I pay for as it directly relates to my living in an apartment; obviously I pay for other things like food and gas and clothes and school, etc. etc. etc.)
1. My apartment, while lovely, is incredibly over-priced.
I’m of course not going to tell you the amount I pay for anything, but this is what I pay for every month: rent, pet rent, washer/dryer rental, cable/internet, and electricity.
When I move, my apartment-related expenses will be: rent and electricity.
2. My electricity bill was approximately equal to that of a rather large house.
I live in Texas, so yeah, it’s expected that the utility bill in the summer is a little higher than probably any person wants to pay. But when it became obvious I was paying slightly less than people I know who live in houses, I knew that my utility bill was going to become a major issue.
3. I am sick of pet rent.
Sure, I have to pay an insanely high pet deposit at this new place, but I did the mental math (and then double checked with a calculator), and in the long run, I save money by paying a large pet deposit up front over paying little bits of pet rent each month. Plus: I can get the deposit back as long as the cat doesn’t destroy the carpet.
But inevitably with moving comes the discovery of all the things you have to finally admit you need. For me, I haven’t gotten new anything for my apartment since I first moved into one four years ago.
1. New furniture.
With the exception of my bed, all my furniture is second hand. While my coffee table and kitchen table will remain, I desperately need a new couch, a new living room chair, and new dining chairs. (Also, the cat tore all of these to shreds when she was a kitten, and I’m at a point where having tattered furniture is just embarrassing.)
But I’m sad because I absolutely love my couch.
2. New pots & pans.
I own two sets of pots & pans. The first set I bought at Wal*Mart, and they most definitely were not meant to last four years. The second set belonged to Boyfriend’s cousin before she was married… and then to Boyfriend before he got fancy cookware… and now to me. Needless to say, my kitchen is a sad place to cook. The cookware alone might make you think the food tastes bad.
3. Just a whole new decorating style.
I love how I’ve lived and decorated for the past four years, but something about this move seems like permission to update my living situation. Everything I own, I got when I was 20 and still in college and just having a lot of fun with life.
Which is not to say I’m not having fun with life now–life is a blast!–but I do a lot of work from home, and Boyfriend & I like to host dinner parties for friends, and I like to have classy girls’ nights with A. I’ve just reached a new stage of aging up, and I’m pretty stoked to do that.