Top tips for living away from home

Most of you will be moving away to university for the first time. This means you’ll be lookng after yourself – cooking, washing your own clothes and being in charge of how much work you do with nobody nagging you! Whether you’re feeling nervous about: flying to the UK, leaving your family to live alone or, you can’t wait to get your own place, it’s time to embrace the strong independent student you and we know you are!

To help make the transition as smooth as possible, here are some top tips for living away from home.

And no, having Domino’s pizza on speed dial doesn’t count…

1. Learn to cook


True to form, this is always the first thing people bring up when they’re moving away for the first time. Step away from the microwave meal aisle and learn the vital life skill of cooking. If you’re stuck for ideas or want a simple step-by-step recipe, BBC Good Food is always a great starting point and is FREE.

If you turn up to university with a few recipes under your belt, you can share your expertise in the kitchen and socialise by cooking for each other, Come Dine with Me style.

2. Keep your belongings safe


How much money do you have in your bedroom? Smartphones, tablets, laptops, TVs – they’re all expensive goodies that you will be bringing to University… so make sure you keep your room locked at all times.

Research the different insurance options and work out what cover you’ll need, so you and your belongings are ready to take on the world.

3. Bedroom makeover


If you love a craft shop, get those trinkets at the ready! You’re not just moving out for university; you’re moving into your home for the next 9-12 months so you need to give it a personal touch. From posters to photoboards, fairy lights to bedcovers, and a touch of decorating experience from playing the SIMS, you’ll create your own home-from-home in no time.

Is an IKEA trip calling out to you?!

4. Live within a budgetsimpsons-money02

First reality check of student life: the student loan doesn’t last forever! You can still treat yourself to clothes and buy that unexpected album drop, but just remember you’ll also need to factor in rent, food shopping, bills and the other necessary evils.

Knowing your budget before you move out will be great help during Freshers’ week as you’ll know exactly how much you can commit to financially! Martin Lewis’ Budget Planner is a great tool and it’s also FREE for when you’re first finding your feet with becoming an adult.

5. Love your neighbours


Your future housemates will be on hand to help make your time at University memorable and they could end up becoming your lifelong friends.

You can meet your flatmates online before you even get to University with forums on the Student Room and Facebook. Once you have received an accommodation offer you’ll be able to see who’s living in your block and your flat – allowing you to plan just how many toasters and kettles you’ll all be bringing…

6. Build your fancy dress wardrobe

Fancy dress wardrobe

Not that we ever needed an excuse to go shopping in the first place, this is definitely a moving out necessity! Your fancy dress wardrobe can never be too large – think of all the theme nights, birthday parties, society events and more that you’ll be attending!

You’ll receive information prior to moving out about what is lined up for Freshers’ week so you can turn up with an arsenal of wigs, glitter make-up and that trusty neon tutu!

The biggest thing you’ll need to prepare for is having fun and making memories that will last forever!

If you want some tips on what to bring to uni – then check out our ‘What to bring to the UK checklist’ – a lot of this applied to UK students too. You can also check out our induction pages for further info. All the best!

We’d like to hear your experiences of uni – so if you’ve mastered the first year – why not give others a few tips?