Moving out of home – From flatmates to furniture, figure it out before you move out

Share This Post

Moving out for the first time is exciting. Make a plan so you don’t get stuck with an unexpected bill. Use our checklist to stay organised.

Work out what you can afford so you can cover all your expenses. If you’re going to be sharing with a partner or flatmates, agree on the ground rules before you move.

Costs of moving out

Moving out means more than just paying rent and other bills. You also need to plan for one-off moving and connection costs.

If you have a credit card or a loan, you’ll have to keep up with those repayments on top of your everyday living expenses.

Here are some costs to consider:

Ongoing costsOne-off costs
– rent
– utility bills including gas, water and electricity
– internet and phone bills
– groceries
– transport
– contents insurance
– rental bond
– up to four weeks rent in advance
– connection fees for utilities and internet
– removalist fees or van hire
– furniture and homewares
– parking permits


Make sure everyone’s name is on all the bills. If a bill is addressed only to you, you’re the one legally responsible for paying it.

Work out what you can afford

Before you move out, create a budget. This will help you work out your income and expenses, and what you can spend on your new lifestyle.

Sharing with your partner or flatmates

Sharing a place can be cheaper than renting on your own. But make sure you and your partner or flatmates agree on responsibilities at the outset.

Set the ground rules

Organise how each of you will:

  • pay for bills, including rent and utilities
  • pay for groceries
  • withdraw from the rental lease (if one of you moves out)

Make sure you arrange to pay your rent and utility bills on time. Not paying on time can affect your credit score and rental history. You could even be evicted.

To sign or not to sign

If you sign a lease contract, you’re in a formal living arrangement. You need to add your name to utility services connected to the property like electricity, gas, water and the internet.

You may rent part of a house from another tenant. If you haven’t signed the lease, that means you’re in an informal living arrangement.

Get a written agreement from the other tenants about how much rent you’ll pay and how household costs will be divided. If you don’t and something goes wrong, you may not be able to get your money back.

Before you sign anything, make sure you understand your responsibilities.

Money matters in a relationship

If you’re moving in with your partner, have a chat about your finances. Get to know one another’s attitude to money. Think about your financial goals, both short and long term. You don’t have to have everything figured out, just start a conversation.

Getting to know these things helps build a strong foundation for a healthy relationship, with each other and with money.

Moving out checklist

There’s a lot to organise when you move out. Use our checklist to help make the move as smooth as possible:

BudgetDo a budget to work out what you can afford.
Research the areaMake sure the area has what you need, for example, public transport, or a supermarket, petrol station or pharmacy.
FurnitureFind out if the place comes furnished. If it’s unfurnished, budget for new or second-hand furniture.
Unwanted itemsGet rid of unwanted items, or sell them to raise extra money.
BillsPay off any existing bills before moving.
RemovalistsBook a removalist, hire a van, or ask family or friends to help.
UtilitiesSign up for electricity, gas and water connections.
InternetSign up to an internet provider.
InsuranceGet online quotes if you want to insure your home contents. Your new address may also change your car insurance premium.
Contact detailsGive your new address to organisations that will need to send you information like a bank statement or driver’s licence.
MembershipsChange or cancel any memberships you won’t use (for example, local clubs or the gym).

Case Study

Georgia finds a flatmate

Georgia wanted to move out to be closer to her uni. She worked out that a lot of apartments in the area were $350 a week or more. It sounded like a lot, but Georgia thought she could make it work.

Georgia’s older brother suggested she do a budget. He explained that it would help her work out how much she could afford to pay on rent, bills and everyday expenses like groceries.

Georgia hadn’t actually thought about bills and other expenses. She took the time to do a budget, and it showed that most of her income would go towards rent. She wouldn’t be able to afford much else, including paying off her credit card from her holiday last year.

She decided to wait a few months so that she could pay off her debt and save up some more money. In the meantime, she found a friend that she could move out with. Sharing a place worked out a lot cheaper than living on her own.



Wealthness Pty Ltd ABN 13 231 248 112 [t/a Better Financial Planning Australia] is a Corporate Authorised Representative of Infocus Securities Australia Pty Ltd ABN 47 097 797 049 AFSL No. 236523. It is important to be aware that Better Financial Planning Australia is not authorised by Infocus to provide advice relating to credit services or property advice. Infocus is not responsible for any advice outside of the scope of this authorisation and should you wish to act on any of this general information, please first seek professional financial advice.
Wealthness Pty Ltd t/as Better Financial Planning Australia will endeavour to update the website as needed. However, information can change without notice and Wealthness Pty Ltd t/as Better Financial Planning Australia does not guarantee the accuracy of information on the website, including information provided by third parties, at any time.
This information is of a general nature only and neither represents nor is intended to be specific advice on any particular matter. Infocus Securities Australia Pty Ltd strongly suggests that no person should act specifically on the basis of the information contained herein but should seek appropriate professional advice based upon their own personal circumstances. Although we consider the sources for this material reliable, no warranty is given and no liability is accepted for any statement or opinion or for any error or omission.
Wealthness Pty Ltd t/as Better Financial Planning Australia does not give any warranty as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of information which is contained in this website. Except insofar as any liability under statute cannot be excluded, Wealthness Pty Ltd t/as Better Financial Planning Australia and its employees do not accept any liability for any error or omission on this website or for any resulting loss or damage suffered by the recipient or any other person.
Wealthness Pty Ltd (ACN 613 313 250) [t/a Better Financial Planning Australia] Corporate Authorised Representative of Infocus Securities Australia Pty Ltd ABN 47 097 797 049 AFSL Licence No. 236523.

Source: ASIC MoneySmart

More To Explore

Teaching kids about money

Start early to get your kids on track for the future Raising your kids to be smart with money gives them vital life skills. As

Banking and credit scams

How to spot a scam and protect yourself against scammers If someone asks you to verify or give your personal details or offers you a


Our Podcast ‘Sharing More Than The Sheets’ is designed to help Australians like you, DO BETTER, BE BETTER and FEEL BETTER with your finances.