It was only last year when I moved to Makati. Though I’m not going to stay in Makati for good, I’m still going to spend 5 days a week. After a year of living in Makati, I am staying at a 3rd (and hopefully last) place. I decided that instead of spending my money on my commute, I’d rather pay for my own rent. It is more expensive, but the time I save is totally worth it. Looking for a good place to stay at is difficult especially when you want to save money.
In my post, 10 of My Biggest Struggles in Adulting, last February, I mentioned that I want to save more money on rental fees, but still being choosy on where to stay. I just moved to a new apartment at that time. 6 months later, I moved again! I don’t have any plans on moving, but my roommate has to leave. I couldn’t afford to pay the rent on my own so I looked for another place again.
Luckily, I saved the contact number of a place I wanted to stay at. I contacted her on a Friday morning, visited the place and paid a reservation fee on the same day. Supposedly, I’m going to move a month after – around early September. But I have had enough of the catcallers in our place, I decided to move as soon as possible. On Monday, I sent a message to the leaser, I told her that I’m going to move in the same week.
Thursday came, I happily moved in! I didn’t want to be impetuous, but I’m sure I wouldn’t regret this decision.
Moving from one place to another, here are the tips and lessons I learned:
Please know that some of the points I listed here may or may not be applicable to you.
Environment and its neighborhood
1. Get to know your environment
Before you move in, try to walk around the neighborhood and familiarize yourself with the surroundings. Check if there are businesses around your place. In my previous apartment, a bar is located right in front of it. Sometimes I can hear music late in the evening. It is disturbing, but I got used to it.
In my previous apartment, street children stay and play in the street. Every night, I can hear them singing, playing and shouting. I witnessed something scary on my way to work. There are two children fighting and everyone was just staring at them. One kid is carrying a broken bottle and he’s threatening the other kid.
In case you are wondering, I lived in P. Burgos Street, Makati.
2. Know if the place is accessible
If you are living in the Philippines, you probably don’t feel safe walking on the street. At nighttime, I cannot get myself to walk outside and buy something unless I am with someone. I look for convenience stores nearby and make sure that it’s not secluded.
Look for a place where you can easily commute from one place to another. As much as possible, I avoid walking to work because of catcallers.
3. Research if there are incidents in the neighborhood
I moved from my first apartment because of a robbery in Mando’s Wingshack in Makati. I lived a few houses from that restaurant. Even though only one incident happened, I cannot afford to stay in that neighborhood. Besides, those men who robbed Mando’s Wingshack have guns! I wouldn’t take the risk.
4. Find the nearest police station
Scratch that out. Why should we trust the police? But for the benefit of the doubt, save their contact numbers so you could report as soon as you can.
1. Terms of the tenancy
It is important to have an agreement with your landlord. Determine how long you plan to rent the place. Some landlords have at least 6 months contract, while some have a 1-year contract.
The most important thing: ask your landlord how long does it usually take for him/her to return your security deposit.
2. Does it have a contract?
In line with what I said above, I find it necessary to have a contract, a written agreement between you and the landlord. I had a drama with my first landlord regarding my security deposit. It took her months before she could return it to me. She even wanted to give it to me in installment!
It baffles me because how come she has the guts to ask me if she could pay it in installment when I didn’t even give the 1-month advance and 1-month deposit in installment. Lol. It should be fair, right?
3. Know the inclusions of your rental fee
You and your landlord should be on the same page. Always know the information that you need. If you are paying a rental fee, what are its inclusions? For instance, water and electricity are already included but you are not allowed to do your laundry.
Packing and Moving
It only took me 2 nights to pack my stuff. Since I am only moving temporarily, I don’t see the need to take everything with me. Besides, I still live in Las Piñas so most of my stuff is there. Nonetheless, I only have my clothes and everyday essentials with me that’s why I don’t have a problem packing and unpacking.
1. Start packing a few days before you leave
I find it easier to pack my clothes first before anything else. If I have to move out in 2 days, I only leave sets of clothes enough for my entire stay. Giving an allowance before you finally move out gives you time to prepare what you need to bring.
2. Prepare a separate bag for your essentials
Even if it is your last day in your place, you still need to use your essentials. Also, when you move in, the first thing that you need to use are your essentials. After moving in, unpacking right after can be troublesome. Preparing a separate bag for your essentials makes it easier for you to locate it.
3. Declutter your home
When I am packing, I usually find things that I no longer need or I no longer want to bring with me. I threw away some of my belongings because I only see it as an additional package without any purpose. If it has no purpose, I would throw it away. Except for the keepsakes, definitely.
4. Use multiple small boxes
Some people prefer to use one large box and put all their stuff there. In my experience, using small several boxes (or bags) is easier both in terms of packing and unpacking. It helps me to organize my stuff accordingly. Carrying one large box is burdensome! I’d rather carry small boxes several times than worry about how to carry on a large box.
I feel like I have fully-adjusted to my new place now. I am staying in a condo now, so almost everything is 10x better than my 2 previous apartments. My leaser is the nicest and sweetest. The rental fee is supposedly for 4 people per unit, but she doesn’t have any plans on advertising it. The good news is, only me and my roommate will be sharing the place!
I know I didn’t list everything, but those are the most important tips and lessons I learned from moving. I hope you found this useful!