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Moving Into Your First Home On A Budget

First added 18th May 2021

By Jonathan Taylor

7 min read

First-time buyers, moving out for the first time, may not completely understand the true cost of buying, moving into, and furnishing a home. To help, we have created this article to help first-time buyers think of all the things to do when moving into a new house on a budget. Read on as we explore everything from moving house checklists to cost breakdowns, as well as unexpected items you'll need to budget for.

Moving House Checklist

Whether you’re looking to buy a house, moving out of your parent’s home, or making the transition from student accommodation to a brand-new house, you don’t need to panic! But it is important to plan ahead. Planning will help you realise the cost of moving before the big day so that you have plenty of time to save money. This will ensure you don’t get any costly surprises that distract you from the excitement of buying your first home. And for those moving away from parents for the first time, it also helps you find the cheapest way to live on your own. A moving house checklist is therefore key to a less stressful move day as well as your first few months after moving in. Here, we'll explore all the key things to consider and look out for.

Before You Buy A House, Budget Your Money

Before you buy a house, you must plan and budget your money. Your budget must take into consideration everything you spend money on. Yes, that even means your Saturday night takeaway treat, parking tickets, and Netflix subscription. They may seem unimportant as they don’t break the bank, but they do all add up.

So, when looking to move, be sure to spend some time calculating your expected monthly outgoings. This should include how much you can afford to spend on your mortgage, council tax, water, gas, electricity, and more.

These should all be included on your moving house checklist as you will need to set them all up when you buy a house. Setting up gas and electricity for the first time may seem daunting but there is plenty of help and information online to get you started. If you are on a tight budget, make sure you compare the market.

How to Budget Your Money Buying A House

When you buy a house, there will be money coming out of your bank account left-right, and center. As a first-time buyer, it's often wise to use the simple 50/20/30 rule of budgeting. This rule will help you keep on track of your monthly incomings and outgoings.

The 50/20/30 rule may not be the cheapest way to live, and you may find more ways of saving money. However, it does allow you to live comfortably and not have to restrict yourself from life’s pleasures. The rule splits your monthly expenses into:

  • Essentials: 50% of your income
  • Wants: 30% of your income
  • Savings: 20% of your income

The 50/20/30 rule may not be the cheapest way to live, and you may find more ways of saving money. However, it does allow you to live comfortably and not have to restrict yourself from life’s pleasures. The rule splits your monthly expenses into:

  • Essentials: 50% of your income
  • Wants: 30% of your income
  • Savings: 20% of your income

Essentials will include your mortgage and bills. Wants, on the other hand, are those things you can live without such as going out for cocktails with your friends at the weekend and other leisurely activities. You may argue that cocktails are essential to your happiness but at the of the day, it’s not going to be the end of the world if you don’t have a Piña Colada on a Saturday night.

Things to Include in Your First Budget

There are many things you need to consider when moving house for the first time. This includes everything from essential white goods and bedroom furniture to more decorative purchases like house plants and wall art.

Clearly, this all costs money. So, it's important to make sure they are included in your monthly budget. Here, we'll talk through key costs you'll need to consider when creating your first house budget:

Mortgage payments

A rather obvious one but your mortgage payments are likely to make up the biggest part of your monthly expenses. Be sure to include these in your monthly budget. We'll talk a little more about this later but a good rule of thumb is to ensure these costs don't go above 50% of your monthly income.

Utility bills

One of the cheapest ways to live on your own is being cautious of your utility bills. Each month you will have to pay a bill for electricity, gas, water, council tax, TV license, and internet. Make sure you shop around different providers to find the best value for money.

Food costs

When budgeting for your new home, make sure you take into account the amount of money you spend on food each month. This includes the food you buy from supermarkets, takeaways, and restaurants.

Transport

Your mode or modes of transport can make a massive dent in your monthly budget. Whether that's monthly payments on a car, a monthly train pass or a hybrid of the two. Depending on your choice of transport you will need to consider, car insurance, road tax, fuel, parking tickets, breakdown cover, off-peak vs peak train tickets, bus tickets and seasonal passes.

Debt

Most of us at some point in our life will have debt and money troubles. If you have been to university, you will have a student loan to repay. Don’t worry first-time buyers, you can still buy a house. Make sure you budget any debt and loan repayments into your monthly housing budget.

Subscriptions and Memberships

Subscriptions and Memberships are not essential. But if you do enjoy watching your favourite television programs in the evening, make sure you can afford to do so before you sign up for anything in your new home.

Clothing and Toiletries

Moving out of your parent’s home for the first time means you will have to start buying your own toothpaste, toilet roll, house cleaning products, and shampoo.

Socialising and Gifts

When the weekend comes around every week you will most likely want to go out and enjoy yourself! Budget for any nights out and special occasions, such as a friend’s birthday. You will not only need money for going out but also gifts for your loved one's special days.

Medical Costs

Make some room in your budget for any medical costs such as monthly prescriptions or private health care (if you have any).

Home Insurance

When buying a house, you will need home insurance. There are a lot of different options to choose from. Some insurance will cover the loss of or damage to the contents of your house. Make sure you compare the market to find the best option for you.

Things to Include in Your Moving House Checklist

First-time buyers, always remember, planning is the key to make buying your first home as easy and as stress-free as possible. Our helpful moving house checklist will make sure you don’t forget the essential things to do when moving into your new house.

Confirm Your Moving Date

Once you have confirmed a moving-out date, it should be easier to plan the rest of the move. If you are living in student accommodation you will need to advise your landlord. If you’re moving out of your parent’s home, make sure you let them know the date too. They will be able to keep the date free and help you move into your new house.

Removal Costs

Depending on your belongings and pieces of furniture you own, you may need to organise a removal service to transport your things to your new house. As a first-time buyer, you may not have accumulated masses of large furniture yet, so you may be able to save money and transport your stuff in a car.

Mail Redirection Costs

To continue to receive post when you move home, you can use Royal Mail's Redirection Service. This can be expensive though so be sure to change your address with relevant companies as soon as possible.

Sort Out Your New Bills

On your moving house checklist, make sure you include setting up all your utility bills. Setting up gas and electricity for the first time can be difficult if you have never done it before. Speak to friends, family, and other homeowners to help you along the way.

Organise Insurance

If you do need to use a removal service to move large items such as a bed frame or sofa, make sure they are insured. You will also need to set up your home insurance policy which may insure your move. Always check the company policy and documents.

Contact the Relevant Parties

Moving out for the first time as a first-time buyer means you will be responsible for contacting parties who sends you correspondence. The main parties who will need to know your new home address are:

  • The Council
  • Your employer
  • Your bank
  • Doctor, dentist and optician
  • TV licensing
  • DVLA
  • HMRC/DSS offices

Pack up Your Belongings Ready to Move into Your New House

Not many people enjoy doing it, but you will need to pack up all your belongings into boxes ready for the moving out day. Make sure any fragile items are packed safely.

Shop for A New Bed and Mattress

When buying a house for the first time, you will probably want to buy a new bed and mattress. If you’re a first-time buyer, make sure you include new home furniture in your monthly budget when moving out. At Sleep and Snooze, we have a wide range of great value for money beds and mattresses that will not break the bank. Shop our Rest for Less mattress collection here.

Money-Saving Tips for Moving Out for The First Time

As we have already established, for first-time buyers moving to a new home is extremely expensive. This means first-time buyers are going to want to save as much money as possible in their monthly budget moving forward. Here are a few money-saving tips to help you.

  • Budget your money every month so you know what you have left to spend after bills.
  • Cook your own meals and keep eating out to a minimum.
  • Always make sure lights are switched off when you don’t need them on.
  • Always make sure electricals are unplugged when you are not using them.
  • Invest in a dressing gown and try not to switch up the heating.
  • Don’t spend a fortune on home and bedroom furniture, you can find the same quality for less.
  • Use public transport and ditch your car.

Even if you are yet to buy a house, you can still start implementing money-saving ideas into your life. If you’re looking to become a first-time buyer, you are going to need to save for a deposit on your new home so it's best to start now. Small changes can make a big difference.

Creating a moving house checklist and budget is by far one of the least exciting elements to buying a house and moving out for the first time. However, it is essential and will help you adjust to living on your own. And if you are on a tight budget, it may even teach you the cheapest way to live on your own.

If you’re a first-time buyer and would like more information and advice on finding a new mattress and bed for your first home, please contact our friendly customer service team. We are always happy to help.