College Life

First Apartment Must-Haves

Moving to your first apartment can be super exciting! But, it can also get overwhelming as your shopping list grows out of control! I definitely had no clue where to begin when I was shopping for my first apartment, and I bought a lot of stuff I didn’t end up using. Here’s a list of things that I actually used in my first apartment that will help ensure your new space actually feels like home.


1. Photo Line With Clothespins ($6) – Displaying photos is the first step to feeling at home in your new place. I like to display postcards from my travels, but another idea would be to print out your favorite photos from Instagram. Seeing familiar faces and memories will help personalize your new space! You can also DIY this idea super easily with some twine and clothespins.

2. Brita Water Pitcher ($20) – I used this all through boarding school and it was a lifesaver. Water always tastes so much better in this filter, plus your water is always chilled in the fridge! Just make sure your roommates actually fill it up after they use it!

3. Magazine Organizer ($18) – I have a ton of these and I don’t even use them for magazines. I find them to be the best way to store important documents, bills, and schoolwork. I keep one on my counter and one on my desk and it stops papers from cluttering around everywhere.

4. Cute Measuring Cup Set ($10.22) – Since you’re moving into your own space, you’ll probably be doing a lot of cooking! Measuring cups are a MUST, and these are so cute you’ll actually WANT to cook!

5. Hello Welcome Mat ($18) – Welcome mats will seriously cut down on the amount of mud and dirt being tracked into your home. That translates to less cleaning, and you know I’m all about that. This “Hello” mat will impress all your guests and instantly transform your apartment into a cozy abode.

6. “I Read Past my Bedtime” Mug ($8) – Coffee mugs are a must-have for reasons I don’t need to explain.

7. Gold Striped Laundry Hamper ($12) – As tempting as throwing all your clothes in a pile might be, having a hamper will make your life feel so much more put together. This gold striped one won’t be an eyesore, and might encourage you to keep things clean and organized.

8. Energy Efficient Lightbulbs ($9) – Stock up on light bulbs BEFORE you move in, or else you risk spending your first nights in the dark. I definitely recommend getting energy efficient light bulbs because 1) you’re saving the environment and 2) you’re saving money.

9. Roku Streaming Stick ($39.95) – I HATE cable. This is mostly because every time I’ve had to call my cable company has been a traumatic experience, but it’s also super unnecessary nowadays. If you have a Netflix or prime subscription, all you need is this nifty roku stick to transform your TV into the perfect entertainment station. This device has a ton of downloadable channels (like youtube, VH1, HGTV, NBC, etc) that let you watch your favorite shows FOR FREE! Why pay for cable when you can just not?!

10. Crockpot ($19.95) – I have recently been super into crock-pot cooking! It will change your life, believe me! There’s a ton of recipes you can find online, and it’s as simple as turning it on before class. You’ll always have a hot meal ready for you when you get home!

11. Fabric Containers ($24) – Since I’m too cheap to buy a dresser, there are a definite must. You can put everything in them, literally. I use them in my closet and in my bathroom to store clothes and other items I like to have tucked away neatly. Your first apartment probably won’t have much storage, so these are lifesavers!

12. “Not All Who Wander” Throw Pillow ($6.20) – Throw pillers are a super easy way to upgrade a space without breaking the bank. Plus there’s so many designs to choose from! Being an English major and total book nerd, I prefer pillows with quotes.

13. Tree Jewelry Organizer ($15) – These nifty devices transform your jewelry into a work of art! I like how easy it is to see all of my jewelry at once, and it looks super pretty on my vanity!

14. “Wild And Free” Print ($5.99) – Prints are another cheap way to express yourself and upgrade your space. You can find loads of these on etsy, most of whic are available for digital download so you can print them yourself! Use cheap frames from the dollar store or the thrift store and hang them with push pins or damage free hangers.

15. Mix and Match Silverware $39.95 – Silverware is one of those things you don’t necessarily think about when you first move in to your first apartment, and you end up eating with your hands for a week because of it. I recommend getting a decent set of silverware with enough forks/knives/whatever that you don’t always have to wash them. Because let’s be real, how much dishwashing are you seriously prepared to do? This cute mix-and-match set will be the envy of all your guests!

There you have it! These are my favorite first apartment items! What’s on your list?

This post contains affiliate and third party links. All opinions are entirely my own, as always.