Your (First) College Apartment Checklist

Posted by: TheGuarantors on August 10, 2021

Is it your first time moving into an apartment from a college dorm? If so, you may not be sure what essentials you need to buy. To avoid becoming overwhelmed by the multitude of things you need to shop for, try making a college apartment checklist! Here is our guide to creating one!

Bedroom Essentials

Remember that the cost to set up your bedroom can be quite high, but there are some great affordable options from stores like Ikea and Walmart. Also, you may only be living in your college apartment for a couple of years, so no need to splurge on expensive furniture items.

first college bedroom

Things to remember when buying bedroom essentials:

  • Invest in a good mattress and bedding.
  • Make your bedroom functional with storage and lighting needs.

Bedding and Mattress

Essential Bedroom Furniture

Additional Bedroom Essentials



Curtains or blinds for the windows

Mattress pad


Storage boxes and under bed storage

Mattress cover

Desk chair

Trash bin


Additional seating (like beanbags)

Shoe rack




Pilllow cases


An LED floor lamp or desk lamp

Duvet, comforter, or quilt



Kitchen Essentials

Moving from an on-campus dining hall to having your own kitchen is very exciting! You get to show off your culinary skills to your friends. The only downside? kitchen supplies can add up quickly! Thankfully, you can easily find affordable options to add to your college apartment checklist.

A few things to remember:

  • You can buy most of your kitchen tools and utensils from IKEA, Walmart, or Amazon.
  • Ask your landlord if your apartment comes with a dishwasher. They require additional items for use.

first college apartment kitchen


Kitchen Tools and Utensils


Dining Essentials

Dishwashing essentials

Pans and pots


Dining table and chairs

Dish soap

Measuring cups and measuring spoons



Dish towel

Wooden spoons

Food processor


Drying rack

Knife set



Dishwasher pods

Cutting board


Coffee mugs

Sponge and scrubbing pads

Baking tray and baking sheets


Salt and pepper shakers

Dishwashing gloves

Oven mitts










Reusable water bottle




Tupperware to carry lunch and snacks




Bottle and can opener


Vegetable peeler


Cheese grater


Utensil holder




Aluminum foil and cling wrap


Paper towel and paper towel holder


Storage containers


Trash bags


Kitchen trash bin



Bathroom Essentials

Now that you have your own bathroom, no more having to carry your shampoo and towels down the hall! But this also means you must handle all of the cleaning and maintenance yourself. Your college apartment checklist must include bathroom essentials like toilet accessories, cleaning supplies, and of course, toiletries!

first college bathroom essentials

Basic Bathroom Essentials

Toilet Accessories and Supplies

Toiletries and Cleaning Supplies

Bathroom organizers

Toilet paper

Toiletries - shampoo, conditioner, body wash, face wash, toothpaste, etc.

Shower curtains and hooks

Toilet paper holder

Hair dryer

Towel bars

Toilet brush

Disinfectant and cleaning supplies

Bath towel


Air freshener

Hand towel

Trash bin


Bath mat

Soap dish


Mirror (optional: vanity mirror)



Other Necessary Essentials

We’ve covered the three main rooms of your apartment. Now it’s time to add other necessities to your apartment college checklist and make your apartment functional and comfortable.

moving in to your first college apartment


Tech Supplies

Cleaning Supplies

Safety Supplies

Laundry detergent and pods

Wi-Fi router

Vacuum cleaner

First-aid kit

Fabric softener

Amazon Fire Stick or Roku

Broom and dust pan

Fire extinguisher

Laundry basket

Essential Cables: HDMI, USB, and power cords

Mop and bucket

Carbon monoxide alarm

Iron or steamer


Cleaning products


Ironing board

Extension cords


Drying rack

Surge protectors


Rolls of quarter for coin-operated facilities

Smart speaker like Alexa or Google home


So there you go! We hope this checklist will help you streamline the process of furnishing your first college apartment!