Never Leave the House Without These 10 Items

AI-generated image of essential items you should never leave home without

Cheapism / DALL-E 3

Cheapism is editorially independent. We may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site.
AI-generated image of essential items you should never leave home without
Cheapism / DALL-E 3

Everyday Essentials

Amid the rush of busy days, it's all too easy to overlook essential items before leaving home. Realizing you've forgotten something important — like your keys or wallet — when it's too late can be more than just inconvenient; it can leave you stranded and stressed. 

But don't worry: We've got you covered with this checklist to ensure you're always prepared for whatever the day may bring. Here are 10 indispensable items you should never leave the house without. 

Saddleback Leather Wallet
Saddleback Leather

1. Wallet

Since your wallet holds important things like payment and identification, it should always be carried with you. Having your ID is crucial for verification purposes, whether you're driving, at the bank, or meeting up with friends at a bar. Credit and debit cards offer a convenient way to make purchases or handle emergencies without having to carry large amounts of cash with you. 

Car Keys and Remote on White with Clipping Path

2. Keys

Keys are essential for securing and accessing your home, car, and possibly your workplace. Losing them isn't just an expensive inconvenience, it can also compromise the security of your personal spaces should anyone find your lost keys. 

To avoid this predicament, consider investing in a portable tracking device (you can buy one on Amazon for less than $20) that can be attached to a keychain and allows you to track the location via an app or Bluetooth.

But why stop at just keys? You can use these tracking devices for other things, too. They can be attached to virtually any item you deem valuable, such as wallets, pets, luggage, or even electronic devices like tablets and laptops.

Texting sms with phone in city outdoor park. Woman sending text message with cellphone. Chatting on instant messaging app. Person using smartphone.
Tero Vesalainen/istockphoto

3. Cellphone

In today's digital age, a smartphone is your gateway to communication, navigation, and information. It helps keep you connected with others through calls and texts, figure out where you need to go with GPS, and allows you to look up information on the go. It's also essential for emergency situations or quick internet access. Don't leave home without it.

For more clever life hacks and other money-saving tips, please sign up for our free newsletters.

New Wayfarer Mickey S20 Sunglasses
Ray Ban
Water bottle
Purell Hand Sanitizer

6. Hand Sanitizer

If you want to avoid getting sick during flu season, it's important to maintain hand hygiene. This is especially true in public spaces where you can easily come into contact with germs by touching things like doorknobs, countertops, light switches, and remote controls. Having just a small bottle of hand sanitizer can reduce your risk of catching these germs and passing them onto others. 

powerbank and cellphone on wooden table

7. Portable Charger

A portable charger (you can buy a highly-rated one for less than $20) can help you stay connected throughout the day by ensuring your smartphone and other electronic devices remain charged. This is particularly important if you don't have access to a wall outlet, or if you rely on your phone for navigation, emergencies, or prolonged use during the day. 

Related: The Best Portable Chargers

Notebook and Pen
pedrosala / istockphoto

8. Notebook and Pen

Despite the convenience of our smartphones and tablets, having a notebook and pen on hand can be helpful for quickly jotting down ideas, reminders, or tasks. It's easy to carry, reliable, and doesn't depend on battery life — making it the perfect outlet for moments of inspiration or important notes. Plus, there's just something special about a hand-written note, don't you think? 

older man with cash

9. Emergency Cash

While digital payments like Venmo, PayPal, and Apple Pay are increasingly more popular, having some cash on hand for emergency situations can still be helpful. Cash can be a lifesaver in situations where digital transactions aren't possible, such as in small businesses, remote areas, or in cases of technological failure.

32 Degrees Ladies' Power Tech Jacket

10. An Extra Jacket

Weather can be unpredictable — switching from warm to cold and sunny to rainy — without a moment's notice. That's why having an extra layer can be so helpful. Beyond its primary function in helping you stay warm, it can also shield against rain, wind, or excessive sunlight. Opt for a lightweight or compact design that can be easily stored in your bag or vehicle without adding too much bulk.