5 Tips on How to Survive Moving Home

In August of 2013 I moved to Richmond, VA after transferring to VCU. Moving on short notice—I applied for transfer in May on the last day they were taking applications—I ended up finding a studio apartment with wonderful floor to ceiling windows about a 15 minute walk from campus and just down the hall from my best friend since 2nd grade. Life was good. And I vowed to myself after having that freedom of my own place and my own belongings and my own rules that I would never move home again.

Fast forward to May of 2017 and here I am, living at home. I am proud of the steps that I have taken in between 2013 and now, moving in with my best friend for two years and then moving to Orlando, FL for nearly another year. But the fact of the matter remains, I am living at home again, much to my dismay.

Needless to say it was a challenge going from the absolute freedom I had for the past 4 years to now sharing a roof, kitchen, living room, and driveway with my parents. I want to share 5 tips that have helped me survive this transition, and will hopefully help you too if you’re in the same boat!

Fresh flowers and succulents help to make my space my own at home.

#1. Make your room your own.

I know this sounds so simple and so easy, but it has been one of the things that has helped me most: making my own oasis. Thankfully when I moved home, I wasn’t moving back into my childhood room. My mom graciously decided to uproot the entire room order to give me the largest space possible–essentially my own mini studio apartment. Still, when I arrived back home from Florida, the space just didn’t feel like my own. In an effort to put my own stamp on things, I rearranged a few pieces of furniture and made sure to add some touches of my old spaces to make this one feel most like mine. I have my chairs from my first apartment in my room and a few of my favorite posters from my previous apartments. Having photos around is one way that I find best to make a space my own, so I have a few select photos of my best people.

#2. Reconnect with people.

I’ll be quite honest, there is not a soul in my hometown that I want to reconnect with. I haven’t spoken to most of the people I went through grade school with, let alone just high school, since high school graduation day. Thankfully, Richmond is only a short drive away, so I’ve been able to spend more time reconnecting with my best friends there since returning from Florida. It’s a wonderful thing when you can pick up with people right where you left off, even if it’s nearly a year later. Having my best friends so close by and being able to spend more time with them has definitely made this experience of moving home much better because any time I’m feeling down, I always have somewhere to stay other than home!

One of my favorite things about being home: sharing laughs with my family!

#3. Set some (reasonable) boundaries.

I’d be lying to you if I said that my mom didn’t love having me around the house more. And truthfully there are some things that I like about being back home, like my dog, but I also want—and need— to still have some semblance of my own life apart from just doing whatever my parents are doing. So I had to set some boundaries. Like mom, please don’t feel obligated to wake me up to tell me you’re leaving to go somewhere. Or please don’t come try to wake me up or check on me to make sure I’m getting ready for work; I’ve been able to get ready on time for work for the past 4 years without your help. I know that those might sound like trivial or even ridiculous requests, but they allow me to feel as though I’m functioning as my own person. My parents have also been great about letting me do the cleaning of my spaces, which I recognize for some of you sounds a bit odd because who doesn’t want a maid to do their cleaning? I find some insane sense of zen in cleaning, so I love that together my mom and I set the boundary of me taking care of my own spaces.

Leaving the house to reconnect with friends over good wine. Is there anything better?

#4. Find your reason to leave the house.

When I originally moved home in May, I didn’t have a job so I was literally spending all my time in the house. I was starting to go crazy because I didn’t have a reason to escape the house and it was really taking an emotional toll on me. Just in the nick of time, I managed to secure a job so I finally had a reason to leave the house. Whether it be volunteer work, a job, or even visiting various relatives, I urge you to find a legitimate and satisfying reason to leave the house.

#5. Remember your situation is temporary, but use it to your advantage. 

I want to get out of my parent’s house and back in my own space as soon as possible. It pains me to be reliant on someone else. But I also see the giant blessing I’ve been awarded in being able to save money while living at home. I am working to be better with my finances, and the opportunity to pay off bills and save for the future while being home is not something to be overlooked. When I’m able to get a place on my own again, the hope and goal will be to be a bit more financially stable after this stint at home. With my motivation and need for personal space, I know that this situation is temporary, and I can do just about anything for a reasonable amount of time, even living at home.


If you’re in the process of moving home, or have already moved back home, I hope these tips give you a little insight on how I’m surviving things. And if you live at home or have recently I’d love to hear your tips on surviving too! Post them in the comments and let’s start a discussion.

In my own world,

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