How To Save Money and Move Out of your Parents’ Place
More and more people are living at home with their parents for far longer than previous generations. It can be difficult to imagine how it could be possible to move out and gain more independence. Here are some tips to help you save money and make the move out of the family home and into a life of your own:
Keep a Spending Diary & Make a Budget
If you do not already do so, it can help to get a handle on your finances if you make a spending diary detailing everything that you spend. Before you think about how you might be able to improve your financial situation, you obviously need to know exactly how much money you have and where exactly it is going. Make a list of all your necessary expenditure, and think about where your money goes each month – where it has to go, and where you choose to spend it.
Once you have a good idea of exactly where your money goes, you will be better placed to make a budget and figure out ways in which you can save.
Identify Overspend & Cut Your Outgoings
The key to cutting your spending is to identify which expenses are absolutely necessary and cannot be cut, and where you might be able to make some savings. Your outgoings might include:
Rent (to your parents) (Perhaps also a contribution for utilities)
This will usually remain the same, though talking to your parents about your desire to save up and move out, and a discussion of reducing rent to allow this to happen, could be possible in certain situations. Whatever you decide, make sure you keep the lines of communication open.
If you drive to work, you will have costs relating to your vehicle. These may include:
- payments on car finance
- car insurance
- costs of maintenance, servicing and/or repair
You may take public transport, in which case the cost of getting to work will be a necessary expense.
You may be able to cut travel costs by walking or cycling to work, by joining a car share scheme, or by taking public transport rather than driving.
You will likely have expenses for your mobile phone contract or pay-as-you-go service. You could consider switching provider to get a better deal, opting for a SIM only deal, and, if you are on a contract, haggling with the provider to get a better price.
You may buy your own food, or your parents may feed you when you are at home. Either way, you may have to buy your own food when out and about – lunches for when you are at work, for example. You may be able to save on your sustenance by buying in bulk, making your own meals from scratch, taking packed lunches with you rather than eating out, and even by creating a container garden and growing some of your own food. You may even be able to create a fully fledged edible garden in your parents’ garden – perhaps trading your time and effort for the space, and giving your family a share of the produce you grow. (If you have no growing space at your parents’ place, you may be able to get an allotment, or get involved in (or even create) a community garden.)
While some clothing will obviously be a necessary expense, think carefully before you buy any new clothes or accessories. Create a capsule wardrobe of versatile items that you can wear over and over again, and don’t be lured in by cheap, disposable fast fashion. Before deciding to buy new clothes, consider how you might be able to repurpose/ refashion/ mend your old ones. Think about creating a chic, vintage look with second hand items. You could even consider making some of your own clothes – learning new skills at the same time. Thinking carefully about how, when and where you spend on clothes can help you save money.
Beauty Products and Personal Care/ Cleaning Items
To save money on your daily care and beauty regime, think carefully before purchasing products. Monthly costs can be cut significantly if you reduce the number of products that you buy. Rather than spending on costly shampoos, soaps, lotions and make-up you could consider making the switch to a more natural, sustainable regime. You can make a whole range of cleaning and beauty products using natural materials at home, and save your money for just a few special items, or your favourite products.
For your personal mental health and well-being, some spending on entertainment is obviously essential. Experiences and socialising are important. But there are ways to cut the cost of the entertainment you enjoy the the things you like to do. For example:
- Ditch the gym membership and consider exercising in the real world instead. Hike, bike, jog, enjoy outdoors adventures and use everyday household items for a work out session.
- Save on cinema. If you love going out to the cinema, consider saving with an Odeon or Cineworld cinema membership. Consider taking advantage of discounted screenings on certain days or at certain times.
- Save on live events. Check out cheap ticket comparison sites online to get tickets at a cut price. Check at the box office – you can often save by booking direct rather than through a third party. Look out for second hand tickets for sold out events from reputable sellers.
- Save on meals out. Take advantage of coupon sites, meal-deals and special promotions for restaurants. Check out tablepouncer.com, where you can book last-minute tables in selected locations across the UK for a discounted price. Eating earlier and/or on quieter days can also be cheaper.
- Save on drinks out. Set yourself a budget for an evening to make sure you don’t overindulge and overspend. Consider taking cash and spending only what you have on you, as this can help limit your spend. Look out for happy hour deals and promotions to take advantage of when planning tie out with friends. Some clubs are also cheaper if you book in advance.
In addition to saving on these sometimes costly entertainment options, you could also consider cutting down on these expenses all together and enjoying free or cheaper options for your entertainment instead. You could:
- Stay in and watch films or TV (A Netflix of Amazon Prime subscription is cheaper than the cinema, though you could also consider simply sticking to the free TV and film output on freeview.)
- Consider cheap gaming options, online, or with a cheap console.
- Take up a new hobby – painting, furniture restoration, gardening, crafting… whatever takes your fancy. There are plenty of fun ways to spend leisure time without spending much money.
- Head out to enjoy nature for free. Walking or hiking can take you to some truly stunning spots and get you out from under your parents feet. Spend time enjoying nature close to home, or take a cheap camping trip for an affordable holiday, alone, with a partner or with friends.
- Visit free attractions. Plenty of historic sights and fascinating museums are completely free. Consider choosing a visit to one of these places rather than spending on other entertainment options on your weekend.
- When out and about, take your own water bottle and snacks or lunch with you, to save on food and drink costs on days out.
Explore Ways to Increase Your Income
As well as thinking about ways that you can save on your outgoings, it can also be useful to how you might be able to bring in a little extra money. If you work full time, you might be able to negotiate a raise. If you don’t ask you don’t get. Asking for a pay rise in the right way can yield results. But even if this is entirely out of the question, there are still plenty of other ways that you might be able to bring in a little extra cash. For example, you might be able to:
- Look at cashback credit cards to get cashback on your spending.
- Sell clothing, gadgets and other items that you no longer need.
- Join the gig economy and work a little on the side. (You could do creative work, writing or other work online in your spare time to bring in a little extra.)
- Monetise your hobby. Do you love to bake? Are you an artist? Do you love to knit? Are you an upcycling wizard? Do you love to grow your own? There are plenty of ways these days to turn your hobby into a business. Even with a full time job, you could still consider selling home-made or hand-crafted items in your spare time. It may bring in a little extra for now, but become a full time business in the future.
Find the Best Place for Your Savings
Once you have identified ways in which you may be able to cut your outgoings and/or increase the money that you are bringing in, you should also consider what you will do with the money you are able to save up. It is important to consider carefully and find the best place for your savings. You could choose:
- A regular savings account
- Peer to peer savings
- High interest current accounts
- An ISA
Money Pug can help you compare the interest rates and other features on a wide range of accounts and financial products. Compare today to discover where your savings would best be placed.
Work Out How Much Money You Need To Move Out
While saving money, it is also important to consider what your plans will be after you move out. You will need to determine how much you will need up front, to move and secure accommodation, and also how much you will need to pay all your own bills on an ongoing business.
If you want to buy a house, you will usually have to save up a deposit. The deposit will usually have to be at least 5% of the value of the house. It is also important to remember that you will also have to pay mortgage fees, solicitors fees and other costs when you buy, so the up front cost can be considerable. This is why many still living at home consider owning a home to be out of their reach.
If you want to rent, there will still be some upfront costs – usually a rental deposit (usually two months rent), also possibly letting agent fees, and of course, there will usually be a cost involved in moving your belongings to your new home.
How much you will need to support yourself on an ongoing basis will depend on your plans, of course. Often, monthly spending will include:
- Rent or mortgage payments
- Council tax
- Service charges
- Energy (electricity, gas)
- Water bills
- Broadband & phone (and potentially television as well)
If you can pay for all these things from your salary and can still afford food and other necessities, as well as the occasional luxury, and have saved up enough to meet initial costs, then it could be time to make your move.
Should You Borrow To Make the Move?
You may be tempted to borrow money to meet the upfront costs of your move. But borrowing money when you are just about to live independently is not a good idea. The cost of borrowing means that it can be easy to get into debt and find yourself in difficulties.
Think Outside the Box About Your Future
It may sometimes feel to you as though you have few options and will never be able to move out of your childhood home. You may already be doing all you possibly can to save money and still be struggling to put anything by. The future can sometimes seem bleak when money is that tight. But remember, no matter how little money you may have and no matter how impossible it may seem to gain your independence and move out of your parents’ house, there are always options.
Struggling to Find Work?
A good job is not always easy to come by. But there are options out there for everyone. If you are prepared to work hard, you have as good a chance as anyone of succeeding and reaching your goals. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. If you don’t have a job, and are struggling to find one, you could consider:
- Continuing your education. You could consider taking a course if you have not already done so. Uni is not the only option. You could also look into your options for a vocational course, or an apprenticeship. Even less formal courses which can sometimes even be taken for free could help you find a job.
- Reaching out to companies rather than waiting for opportunities to come to you.
- Working from home as a freelancer. (There are a range of different freelancing options you could consider.)
- Creating your own job. There are a number of businesses that could be started with little initial outlay. It could be as simple as mowing lawns or cleaning windows, or something far more complex. No matter what your interests or education level, there is potential for you to go out and create a job for yourself rather than waiting for one to appear. There might be something that you could turn from a hobby into a money making scheme. Even if it does not make you much money at first, it could help you feel more positive and be a step in the right direction. Just think about what you enjoy doing and the ideas should spring from there.
Struggling to Own Your Own Home?
Even if you are earning, saving a large deposit and getting a mortgage on a house or flat could still be well out of your reach. Moving out and renting a place of your own is, of course, one option that you could work towards. But there are other ways to build an independent life. By thinking outside the box, you may be able to find an alternative way forward. For example, you could consider:
Becoming a Digital Nomad
Living and working in nomadic fashion. (Becoming a digital nomad, or working your way around the world.) No one said that you have to settle down and stay in one place. If you are having difficulties putting down roots anywhere, and have an itch to roam, you could become one of the many people who work online, or seek out opportunities for work around the world and enjoy the freedom of moving wherever they want. The cost of living is lower in many other countries around the world, so you may find ways to stretch what money you do have a lot further.
Joining the Tiny Home Movement
If you do love to travel, you might even consider taking your home with you wherever you go. The tiny house movement is all about living in a small, frugal way. If you cannot afford a deposit on a home, you might be able to afford a vehicle to do up – an old camper or caravan really could become your home – loads of people are doing it. Tiny home living involves far lower overheads and could allow you to live independently on less than you ever imagined.
Find Land & Built Your Own Low-Cost Home
Of course, the nomadic life is not for everyone, neither is living in a tiny home. Rather than channelling your efforts into buying a property, you could consider looking for land – a place to build your own low cost home. Some people have managed to buy and build a small home for less than the cost of a deposit on the average first home! Could you build your own home and live debt free?
Consider Communal living or Co-Housing With Like-Minded People
Land can often be difficult to find and expensive. But whether you are looking to buy or to build, there are still other options open to you that could make your dream more realistic. One of the options is to go in with a group of friends, or find a group of like minded individuals in a co-housing co-operative. Co-housing is not like a commune or flat-share, as each person involved can have their own private home, but costs will be lowered by sharing certain resources. There are plenty of different ways to co-operate with other people to meet your housing needs and work towards your goals. If you can’t do it alone, explore ways to do it together…
Remaining With Family
Finally, if you are despairing of ever moving out and living away from your parents – perhaps you do not need to. You may be feeling cramped and lacking in freedom sharing space with your parents. But there many be potential to improve the situation for everyone without actually moving out and moving on. Families can live in multi-generational ‘communities’ that have a range of benefits for everyone involved. The key is making sure that everyone has their own space and privacy for when they want it. This can be difficult to achieve in a traditional single family dwelling. But perhaps, planning permitting, there is potential to contribute to an extension, annex or garden build that could give you the extra space you all need? Alternatively, perhaps you and other family members could club together to find a new property that will suit you all? In some scenarios, this may be something to consider.
By cutting spending, increasing income, and thinking outside the box when it comes to work, housing and your future, you could discover that you are closer to reaching your goals and moving out of your parent’s home than you imagined.
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