First Apartment Essentials – What You Really Need

Getting your own place for the first time is fantastic. However, you never want to forget these must-haves that not only make the place homey, but are also functional.

I moved out of my parent’s house at a fairly young age. It was okay though because I always could afford it, and it was my time to leave the nest. The only bad thing was that I always had roommates.

This made it affordable, but it also never prepared me for living alone. When you have roommates, you rely on them to pull their weight and supply your home with essentials that you didn’t bring yourself. This always meant that I had everything I needed—until I moved into my first apartment, that is.

Shortly after getting my own place, I realized that it was missing some really, really important things that had previously been supplied by my roommates. It made moving in difficult, unpacking difficult and even living there inconvenient for a while.

Don’t make the same mistakes I made. Make sure you have all of these essentials items in your first apartment to ensure that everything functions smoothly.

1. Toolbox

Wooden toolbox on the table

I think most people, especially women (not to be sexist in any way), forget the importance of keeping a toolbox on hand in their homes. There are so many different instances where a toolbox would come in handy.

For example, if you want to hang up any artwork around your new place, you’ll need a hammer and possibly a screwdriver. So many people go weeks without hanging anything up because they simply don’t have the tools to do so. Make sure you have a multi-tool toolbox on hand in when you first move in.

2. Screws/Anchors/Nails

Speaking of hanging up art work and anything else that you may need screws and nails for, make sure you get some! Aside from needing to anchor and screw in your bigger artwork on the walls, you may also need these to put together furniture or repair the furniture you already have.

You can never go wrong keeping some nails and screws in your new place.

3. Lamps

Lighting options in apartments aren’t always the best. There’s usually only one light per room or area, and they’re usually not the best quality.

Keeping plenty of lamps in the place allows you to have the room as bright as you want it, and they offer that extra touch of hominess that is usually missing in your first apartment—not to mention that if you get some really cool ones, they can double as decorations.

4. Trash can

This seems like a silly thing to put on this list, but you’d be surprised how many people forget to buy a garbage can for their new place. It’s just one of those things that slips your mind until it’s too late and you have a pile of trash that just accumulates until the place starts to smell bad.

5. Dish drying rack (If there’s no dishwasher)

bowls and plates glasses on a dish rack

Older apartments rarely come with a dishwasher. Although they’re convenient, many buildings don’t put them in 1-bedroomed apartments because, really, how many dishes can one person use in a day and not have time to wash themselves?

For this reason, you’ll need a dish drying rack. It’s just another thing that often slips people’s minds since it seems unimportant, but have you ever started washing dishes and realized you have nowhere to dry them? Yeah, it’s not fun.

6. Bottle opener/corkscrew

Ah, yes. You’ve just finished unpacking your entire kitchen and living room belongings, and now you just want to kick back and enjoy a nice, cold beer or glass of wine. But wait! You don’t have anything to open it with!

I’ll be the first to admit that I rarely keep a bottle opener on hand, and I really should. I don’t drink beer much, but my guests sure do, and when there’s not bottle opener, people tend to use the edge of your counter as one and it ends up denting the thing. No good.

7. Can opener

How on earth can you eat all your canned food if you don’t have a can opener? Using a knife is both terrible for your knives and just downright dangerous! Make sure you pack one of these. You’ll thank me later.

8. Bath mats

This was a big one for me. It’s really not comfortable to step out of your shower onto cold tiles because you forgot your roommate was the one who brought the bath mats in your old place. It’s not necessarily all that important, but it is something that makes post showers comfortable.

9. Hangers

Beautiful young woman near rack with hangers

You can never have too many hangers. NEVER. And don’t let anyone ever tell you differently because they’re wrong. If you pack all your clothes and forget the hangers for your new walk-in closet, you’ll be living with wrinkled clothes for a while.

10. Curtains/blinds

Another thing that is usually furnished by roommates or your landlord, and another thing that people forget when their new place doesn’t have them. Blinds are often supplied by landlords, but if you don’t want lousy ones that leak light like no other, get your own.

11. Vacuum

Oh boy. The vacuum. This is the first thing you’ll want to bring into your new place! Without a vacuum, you will be unpacking into an already dirty apartment, making it that much harder to clean up once you’re all settled.

12. Flashlights

What if the power goes out on your first night? What if you blow a fuse? Flashlights are extremely beneficial and everyone needs to have a few stashed throughout the house—preferably somewhere you can find in the dark.

13. First aid equipment

I think this one is self-explanatory. First aid kits are essential in the home just in case you slice your hand open cutting a tomato with your new set of cutting knives—not that I know from experience or anything.

14. Light bulbs

Beautiful retro luxury light lamp decor glowing

The lightbulbs provided by your landlord are lousy and suck up more energy, leading to a much larger bill than if you pay a little extra and get yourself some good ones. You’ll thank me for this—a lot.

15. Carbon monoxide alarm

Most apartments come with these nowadays, but if not, definitely buy yourself a reliable one. Carbon monoxide poisoning is life threatening and you won’t be able to tell it’s in the air without this handy little device. If your new place comes with one, have it checked to make sure it’s functional.

All of these are vital items for making your apartment safe, helping you to repair things when necessary and making for a more functional home altogether. Is there anything else you found you needed in your first apartment?

About the author

Bella Pope

Just a small town gal fighting my way through this seemingly endless war called life. Writer. Reader. Guitar Player. Craft Enthusiast. Workout Junky. Wannabe Chef. My passion for helping others through words transcends any other aspect in my life.

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