On Your Own: Acquiring The Essentials

Moving would be amazing if everything you needed was already in your new place. In real life, it doesn't usually happen like that (unless you get a fully furnished place). Moving means lots of...moving (again, unless you get a place that is fully furnished). 

With moving, it's good to have an idea about what you will need. I've come up with some essentials, and how you can save yourself some money! 

Here are 5 essential things you will need when you move (and 5 ways to get them cheaper) 

Furniture (couch, chairs, dining table, bed, mattress, shelves)

You can either (1) overspend on your furniture or, (2) get furniture for a deal. I like to go with option 2, so here's where you can look if you want to get your furniture for less. 

  1. Yard sales or Moving Sales - When people want to get rid of stuff, that usually is good news for someone looking to acquire stuff! I once found a whole couch set for only $50 at a moving sale!! (The couch was in brand-new condition, by the way). 
  2. Discount or Bargain Stores - i.e. Marden's is a good place to start. They have TONS of nice furniture for less money than at a regular furniture store. 
  3. Family members that have old furniture they no longer use. You can usually get away with lots of great furniture by asking your family if they have anything they'd like to get rid of! 

Okay, so if none of these options appeal to you, and you decide to look for furniture elsewhere, that is totally fine and totally up to you! There are probably lots of great stores, with great furniture where you can get a good deal. The only thing I would suggest NOT to do is Rent-To-Own. Buying new is better than renting. Renting becomes costly because of the interest you pay over time.

Kitchen Stuff (dishes, pots, pans, spatulas, utensils, etc.)

If you eat out every night, you might argue that you do not need to buy all of these costly kitchen items. However, think about the long run...what's really going to cost you more, eating out every night, or making the one-time purchase, so that you can cook your own meals?

Cooking at home usually saves people money (of course, depending on what groceries you choose to buy). So the investment in your cooking supplies is (usually) well worth it. You don't need to get more than the essentials. A few plates, cups, utensils, a couple of different pots and pans (pizza pan and frying pan) and some cooking utensils should do it. 

Again, yard sales or moving sales, family members, and discount stores are great places to look! 


Towels will come in handy for several reasons. Number 1:  Bathing. But also, cleaning around the house, doing the dishes, drying the dishes, and other random things. It's good to have a good collection of towels on hand. 

Getting second-hand towels is iffy. I would suggest starting at a discount or bargain store, like Marden's, where there is usually a good selection of towels at a cheap price. 

Random Household Stuff

Feel free to stock up on the following:  toilet paper, paper towel, dish soap, laundry detergent, shampoo, soap, conditioner, trash bags, toothpaste, toothbrushes, dental floss, deodorant, cleaning supplies, light bulbs, and air fresheners. A lot of times, you can get these things in bulk (at Sam's Club or Walmart) for cheap, and it will save you from having to run to the store when you run out of TP! 

Shoe/Coat Racks

If you own more than one pair of shoes, or more than one coat, you may want to invest in either a shoe and/or coat rack. Having a shoe rack for your heaping pile of shoes will greatly decrease your level of stress (trust me, there is nothing worse than losing one shoe in your sea of disorganized shoes). Having a coat rack may alleviate the urge to use other household items as coat racks, like the backs of chairs, the couch, the bed...you get the idea. 

Places like Ocean State Job Lot, or Big Lots, or Walmart have lots of cheap options!