There comes a time when we all must fly the nest. And, whether you eagerly jumped or were pushed out for freeloading, moving out of home for the first time is a big step into adulthood. Everyone’s got tips about how to tackle this chapter of your life: “be organised, stick to a budget, stay on top of chores”, and while all that stuff is important, they also require a fair bit of work.
But not all parts of independent life require that much effort, and we at The Urban List are pros at making your life easier. And so, behold, we bring you ten essential hacks for when you’ve moved out of home.
1. Ditch The Iron
Despite what your mama told you, you don’t need a damn iron!! When you shower, simply hang your wrinkly clothes up in the bathroom and the steam will make your garments look ten years younger. Dermatologists will hate you!
2. A Toasted Sandwich Maker Is Essential
Forget a frying pan or a stove, because toasted sandwich makers are the bees knees. Use it to reheat pizza, fry bacon and eggs, cook veggies, melt cheese on top of anything, and make toasted sammies of course. Put your chef’s hat on because the possibilities are endless. Even better, if you line the toasted sammie maker with baking paper, you’ll never have to clean it #Doublehack.
3. That Bread Tag? It’s Important!
There’s a good chance you’ll want bread to use on your wonderfully versatile toastie maker, but there’s a better chance you haven’t done a whole lot of bread shopping before moving out of home. Our tip? Look out for the colour of the bread tags because they’ll tell you what day of the week the loaf was baked. Always have the freshest sammies by remembering: pink, blue, yellow, red, green, orange, white = Monday to Sunday. Genius!
4. Bigger Isn’t Better
When out in the big wide world, remember: it’s not the size of your oven that counts, it’s how you use it. So, invest in a little oven—they do all the wonders a normal-sized oven would do, but using a fraction of the energy and they cut down on your oven-cleaning time.
5. Empty Bottles Are Gold
Don’t throw out your tomato sauce bottles! Everything’s better in a squeezy bottle—think liquid laundry detergent and pancake batter. So, fill those empty Watties tomato sauce bottles with those otherwise messy goods and watch your life become easy squeezy. Get creative with other containers as well—a Pringles can is ideal for storing uncooked spaghetti.
6. A Clothes Horse Is Your Best Friend
Even if your new place has a washing line, you should get a clothes horse (AKA drying rack) asap. If you have flatties, this will stop your socks mysteriously ‘disappearing’ and, if it rains, it’s much easier to bring the whole rack inside rather than frantically trying to unpeg shirts, undies, and jammies from the washing line.
7. Make Your Own Cooler Bags
By now you should have your own trusty chilly bin. But, maybe you’ve forgotten that the cooler bags you always used were your parents and now you’re conflicted about whether or not you should sacrifice the frozen peas to keep your beers cold. Spare the peas, because all you need is a couple sponges and zip lock bags! Here’s what you do: wet sponge, put in bag, put sealed bag in freezer. Once frozen, you have a no-leakage DIY cooler bag!
8. Buy A Houseplant
With moving out for the first time, you’re bound to reach the crisis point (we all do). It’s you’re moment of AM I REALLY READY?? There’s the obvious ways of trying to overcome this—organise a budget, keep a calendar to track your chores and bills, learn to cook for one etc. etc. But as well as this stuff, you can do little things to make you feel like you’re totally ready for independent life. For starters, get a first aid kit, because a prepared adult is a superstar adult. You could also get a little cactus or aloe plant. Keeping houseplants flourishing is very adult-y, and these particular plants are pretty damn easy to keep alive.
9. Look After Your Keys (And Your Nails!)
Obviously, with a new place comes a new house key. Keep your ever-expanding key collection looking manicured af by colour coding with nail polish. Spruce up your keychain even more by attaching a small carabiner—now your keys can be safely fixed to belt hoops, handbag straps, your dog’s collar, all the while saving your fingernails!
10. Keep Your Cool
Settled into your new place, it’ll definitely be time for a nice cold drink. If your booze is warm, wrap a wet paper towel around the bottles and chuck them in the freezer. You’ll have a cold brew before you know it! Also, #doublehack—invest in a stubby cooler collection to make sure your hands never suffer the icy wrath of cold beers.
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Image credit: New Girl