Your Survival Guide to Living on Your Own for the First Time


The percentage of adults who live alone has nearly doubled in the last 50 years. In 2019, almost 15 percent of adults lived on their own.

If you’re planning to join their ranks, these tips for living on your own for the first time will help you make the most of it.

Make a Budget and Stick to It

Even if you’re good at handling your finances, expenses can add up quickly when you’re living on your own. You’ll likely need to buy furniture and other things to get yourself set up and any unexpected expenses that pop up are completely your responsibility.

Remember, you won’t have roommates or family to share those costs.

Make sure you budget for saving some money every month as well. This helps build an emergency fund in case you have an unexpected repair bill.

Get to Know Your Neighbors

You don’t have to become close friends with your neighbors but it pays to get to know them at least a bit. Learn their names and be friendly with them.

You could end up becoming good friends but even if you only remain acquaintances, you can help each other with things like picking up packages or watering plants when the other one is away. It could also be a good idea to exchange keys in case either of you ever locks yourselves out.

Buy Things That Make You Happy

When you live on your own, you don’t have to convince anyone else when choosing furniture, art, and other decor items. Buy things that you enjoy and will make you happy every time you use them.

Don’t worry about trying to make your home look like some kind of perfect setup you might see on Instagram. Unless that’s what makes you happy, of course.

Keep Things Neat and Tidy

When you live on your own, there’s nobody around to pester you to clean up. It’s easy to let things pile up.

Spend a few minutes every day tidying and schedule time every week for more time-consuming jobs like vacuuming or scrubbing down the bathroom. It’s a lot easier to spend smaller amounts of time every day or week than having to spend an entire day or two cleanings after letting things get out of control.

Learn How to Cook for One

Cooking for yourself can be challenging. It’s tempting to grab take-out or make some kind of pre-packaged meal to save time but don’t fall into that trap.

Take advantage of your freezer and store leftovers for later. This way, you can still make larger meals but pull something out of the freezer on a day you don’t have a lot of time for cooking.

And make sure you outfit your kitchen with useful appliances. Tools like the Zojirushi NP HCC10XH rice cooker are perfect for making meals for one.

Living On Your Own for the First Time Is Exciting

If you’re living on your own for the first time, it’s easy to procrastinate on things that a roommate or family member might hold you accountable for. If you take action on the tips in this article, you’ll start out on the right foot.

Check out the Tips section of our site for more helpful articles like this one.


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