I’m moving out…


I know. Hear me out.

Exactly one week ago, I signed a lease for a house share in the city. I imagine this is shocking to you all as I have stated more than once (1, 2, 3…) my intention to continue living with my parents through the end of the year, when I expected to know more about my status in the medical school application process. However, after time spent on the road with my best friend (more on that later), I realized I very much missed independent living. For this reason, I dipped my toe back into the rental market and found a house share I thought would be a good fit for me and hoped the Pennyfolk would approve. So, onto the questions…

When are you leaving home again? – My lease begins on June 1st (although I am hoping to move in Memorial Day weekend) and goes through May 31st of next year. If I get accepted to medical school in my current city, then I would consider staying put if my landlord is agreeable (she lives abroad). If I get accepted to medical school elsewhere, then my lease would be end and I would move for school. If I don’t get accepted to medical school, I can extend my lease and consider the next life steps.

How much is your rent? – $550.00!

What does that include? – EVERYTHING! The rent includes all utilities and parking in the subdivision.

What is the deal? – One of the perks of working at a university is that at larger universities in larger cities, there are often off-campus housing boards on which only people with a direct association to the university (student, staff, faculty, etc.) may post. My new landlord bought the house while a postdoc at the university but took a job abroad after school. While she could rent it for significantly more or sell it, for now her goal is just to keep it rented consistently so she doesn’t have to spend time looking for tenants and to cover her mortgage.

Where are you living? Is it safe? – It’s actually in a much nicer area of the city than where I was previously living. I will be sharing a tri-level townhouse (Northeastern folks would recognize it as a “rowhouse”) with two university graduate students. The person I am replacing in the home was a medical student at the university where I work. The photo above is essentially what the house looks like and how it is set up. On the first level of the home, which is what I am renting, there is only my bedroom and bathroom. The next level has the living area including the kitchen, living room, and laundry. The top floor has two bedrooms, each with their own bathroom.

While my future housemates seem like lovely people, I love the fact that I will be living on the bottom level alone.

Is this really better than staying with your parents? – Yes and no. My parents were lovely and I was staying at their home for free. While my rent is super cheaper it’s still more than free. However, I will begin class again in late May and the drive from my parents house to campus is an hour and a half each way. And, as my employer expects me to be back on campus in mid-July, I was also dreading the hour commute from my parents home to work in traffic.

Beyond that, I had slowly come to miss my independence in a lot of ways that it is difficult to articulate.

What does this mean for your goals and budget? – Not as much as I thought it would. Certainly not as much in the short term as this month’s long roadtrip I am on with my best friend. I will do a deep dive into the numbers later this month with an updated June budget. But that is for another post…

Thoughts…Shocking? Disappointed? A huge mistake? Not surprised at all?


10 thoughts on “I’m moving out…

  1. I mean, this makes sense! You haven’t been totally sure about staying with your parents this whole time. I figure, you got a few months of free rent and meals, and you certainly found a great deal on rent. Seems like a totally fine call. I would have been worried if you’d run off and signed a lease for a $1900 two-bedroom or something 🙂

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    • THANK YOU for the support, C. It seemed like a reasonable choice to make given how good a deal it is one rent…but there is nothing reasonable about being in $100K+ in student loan debt. I always feel like I should be willing to sacrifice a little bit more for my past financial mistakes.

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  2. I think this sounds like a great idea! The rent is so cheap, and if you subtract what you would have been paying for gas with a long commute from your parents’ house, it’s even cheaper. Not spending hours per day in a car is also worth something. It’s nice you had a break from paying rent, and you got to see your parents a little more, and now on to the next chapter! 😀

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    • THANK YOU so much, Ellen. Your framing is always so positive and you are absolutely correct…I can’t explain how stressful it was commuting from campus/work to my parents home and then trying to get school and work done during the workday after classes. This would only be that much harder in the late summer when I am no longer working remotely and have less flexibility.

      “On to the next chapter”…gonna borrow that 🙂

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  3. Can’t believe I’m so late to seeing such big news! $550 is a steal and it’s so worth it to save time and stress on commute. Time is money after all 🙂

    I was a bit surprised since I didn’t think you were even starting to look at places but 100% think it’s a good decision!

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    • Thank you for the support, Avery!

      I really wasn’t “looking” until my best friend asked me what options looked life if I moved out. I found this place, it seemed like an awesome deal so I went for it.

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  4. Oh yes! perfect! Since I’m such a number cruncher, I actually have spreadsheets going back to the date I bought my car. You’d be surprised maybe, that the tax figure of around 50 cents per mile is pretty accurate. I took a job at less pay, but went from a 15 mile commute in large city traffic (30 -90 minutes, but who ever knew?) to 2 miles from my place. The amount of money on car expenses I saved is unbelievable. When looking at a commute, you have to look at car wear and tear. At the very least, it’s going to depreciate faster and need more maintenance. Brakes definitely wearing out faster. Take the miles you are saving from driving and multiply by 50 cents. Subtract that amount from your rent. You’d be surprised how little that rent may be costing you.

    Of course I also had the added treat of not having to pay vandalism-related expenses of my old job. I generally had one lock replacement and one windshield each year…

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    • Hey, Paula! I’m so glad to hear you thinking I’m making a good decision. Yikes…a windshield and a lock PER year? I’m glad you’ve moved on from that place, for your safety as much as your cars.

      Thank you for sharing this! To flesh this decision out further, I’m going to run your $0.50 per mile calculations over my commute. I’ll include my results in my June budget update.

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  5. I completely understand your decision. I definitely understand the need to have one’s own space. Your rent cost is amazing! I don’t judge you for your decision at all.

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