Whether you've been living with your family, living in a dorm, or any other sort of situation, transitioning into living in your first apartment in a big step. It's really easy to get overwhelmed or to feel like you're unprepared, and if you're anything like me, you're struggling to make sure you have everything you need and constantly feeling like you're forgetting something. I spend hours of the internet looking at articles like this one, scrolling through Pinterest, and going through every single 'apartment must-haves' printable. But, even with all of this, you may still feel unprepared, and you may think you don't need half of the stuff you come across. So, after I moved into my first apartment I sought to solve that problem. Here are seven things every girl actually needs for her first apartment.

1. If you have trouble sleeping, a mattress topper might help.

Rest Haven 2" 5-Zone Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper


As a full-time, professional insomniac, sleeping is not something I can do very easily – especially in new or unfamiliar places. Getting used to a bed after moving into a new place can take some time, so its best to make sure you're as comfortable as possible. Investing in a good mattress pad may be pricy but in the end, it will definitely pay off. Whether you want a hard or soft bed, want it thin or thick, want a cooling effect or like to sleep in a sauna – there are plenty of options! In my opinion, these are a tried-and-true investment and are well worth the hefty price tag

2. A microwave cart is a crucial space-saver for small kitchens


Unless your first apartment has a five-hundred-square-foot kitchen, counter space is gonna be limited. Microwaves are big, bulky, and take up more counter space than you may realize, so getting a cart or table to put it on was definitely at the top of my list. Overall, it's proven time and time again to be worthwhile! Not only does it hold my microwave, but most carts also have additional storage for other kitchen utensils or food.

3. Having adequate lamps and lighting brings the feeling of openness to your space

Joel Henry

Nobody wants to live in darkness – unless you're a vampire. So, unless your apartment comes pre-set with ceiling fixtures, investing in lamps and other sorts of lighting is a must. I, personally, hate poorly-lit rooms, and uneven lighting throughout the room is one of my biggest pet peeves. It was hard for me to gauge how the lighting was going to look in my new apartment, so I was a bit unprepared. However, after adding some twinkle lights here and lots of lamps there, everything seemed to fall into place.

4. Securing cleaning supplies early on saves a lot of time and trouble down the road

The Creative Exchange

This is probably the one I've found myself least prepared for. Having your own place, especially an apartment, is a whole different ball game when it comes to cleaning. You now have a bathroom, possibly two different types of flooring, a kitchen, lots of table tops and hard surfaces, windows, and countless other things. Making sure you have a vacuum, broom, liquid cleaners, rags or paper towels, magic erasers or sponges, and a feather duster is imperative to have in your house. The worst thing is moving in, making a big mess, and then realizing you have nothing to clean it up with!

5. By including some sort of entryway organization, your daily routine may become more smooth.

Jason Leung

Coming into your new house and having no idea where to put your things after a long day not only throws off your routine, but can descend your house into clutter, and you may even end up losing something. Having a table, hooks, or some sort of structure by your front door – or wherever you desire – keeps you on a routine, keeps you from losing your stuff, and keeps you organized!

6. A detachable shower head can bring an extra element of relaxation in a stressful time


Most shower heads – especially in apartments or condos – don't have settings or even good water pressure. As someone who values a good, strong shower, getting a new attachable shower head was very important to me. It makes a whole world of difference and it's something I can take with me wherever I move in the future, so even as the surroundings change, the shower will always be the same.

7. A grocery caddy may prove to be an unexpected favorite due to it's convenience

This has probably proven to be the most crucial thing I've come to have since living on my own. When you're by yourself, you don't have anyone to help you unload your car or carry your groceries inside, which can often be very difficult when you're going solo. Getting a foldable cart to keep in my car, in which I can stack my bags to capacity, that I can then roll up to my door is a game-changer. Especially if you're a procrastinator like me and you like waiting until the absolute last second to grocery shop and you have a lot to get – not having to slide painful plastic bags up your arms is a comforting feeling.

It's hard to make sure you have everything when moving into your own home, and no two girls will need the same things. No list will be exact, and there may be certain things people swear by that aren't a good fit for you. Recognizing what's best for you is the best way to be prepared, and these little things that may not have crossed your mind before could make all the difference when move-in day rolls around.