After spending about a year home hunting for a condo in downtown Seattle, I threw in the towel and decided to rent a 475 square foot apartment in the city to test the waters. Living alone in downtown Seattle has been such a dream. Sometimes lonely. Scary. But magical and has allowed so much growth. This was also my first time living alone and I thought I would share some tips and tricks on how to do it on a budget and also share about some of my favorite apartment pieces!
THRIFT LIKE IT’S YOUR JOB
Thrifting became my favorite hobby when I first moved into my apartment. I thrifted so much it started to feel like a job. I figured the things I wanted to save money on were things that you couldn’t see, IE: akeware, drawer organizers, shelf risers, over the door hooks, and lazy susans. However, my favorite things to thrift for were furniture, antiques, and decor. It’s such a fun way to make your space look one of a kind while still saving a ton of money. I went to chains such as Goodwill and Value Village, but I also went to flea markets, the Fremont farmers market, and utilizing online secondhand resources such as Craigslist, Let Go, OfferUp, Buy Nothing, and Facebook Market.
INVEST ON ESSENTIALS TO LAST
There are some items worth investing in to prevent repurchasing in the near future. For me, these were my bed frame, mattress, and television. These were my essential items I absolutely knew that I was going to reuse for years no matter where I end up living. It helps to make a list of things you need a circling these key items, then doing research on what websites have the best deals while keeping your max budget for each item in mind.
SAVE ON TRENDY PIECES
I think it’s so important to honor your taste and style in the moment, even if that means donating or selling the trendier pieces upon moving out. However, budget on these items!! They may not be your forever pieces, so I just feel like pinching pennies makes sense here. Trendy pieces I saved on: my velvet chaise lounge I got on Amazon versus Urban Outfitters or Anthropologie, my tiny home media console I got on Amazon versus West Elm, my bar stools I got on sale at Target versus everywhere else because bar stools are EXPENSIVE.
LIVEN IT UP WITH PLANTS!
Living alone can be isolating and feel extremely lonely. One easy way to liven your space (along with keeping a rolling queue of podcasts playing) is with plants. It’s nice to have something to take care of and it honestly just changes the energy of your home. Plants are also relatively affordable. One of my favorite places to get them is Trader Joe’s. I also enjoy supporting local nurseries, but try to avoid the trendier ones because I find it can get pricey pretty quick.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR WHAT YOU NEED
I know this may seem like weird advice, but think of ALL THE THINGS you have in storage or just in the corner of your room collecting dust because you don’t remember the last time you used it. And by no means am I telling you to go around asking all your friends for a TV, but I don’t think it would hurt to mention that you are in search of one. I mentioned that I was looking for a shoe rack to a friend and she just happened to have one that she wasn’t using! Never hurts to mention or ask!
UPCYCLE WHEN YOU CAN
I mean, there’s a reason why there are so many wedding and home decor DIYs on Pinterest, right? It saves you SO MUCH MONEY. One of my favorite DIYs for my apartment was upcycling old jars of all shapes and sizes (nut butters, marinara sauce, etc.) and turning them into pantry staple containers. Containers from The Container Store, Amazon, and even TJ Maxx really adds up. I ordered a label maker off of Amazon and turned it into a really cute and fun project! Upcycling jars and containers is a great way to prevent waste too!
HAVE PATIENCE AND TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SALES
This is kind of a no brainer but I can’t stress this enough. WAIT FOR SALES. I saved so much money on some of my favorite pieces that I couldn’t say no to, but couldn’t justify paying full price for, IE: my rug from Urban Outfitters, my bar stools from Target, my television from Amazon, my Stasher bags, and my decorative pillows from Urban Outfitters. Turn on your e-mail alerts especially when you know your favorite shops always have sales.
I hope this helps! If you have any other questions or want to know more about my experience living alone or in the city, let me know! Until next time. All the love. <3