What you Need to Bring with you When you go to Live in a Sober House

A sober house or sober living residence is a house that is dedicated to sober living. It is a place to go after you leave treatment but is not ready to go back home. It offers a safe sober place to be while you learn to live the sober a sober lifestyle. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, sober living residences provide a safe place that allows you to learn how to live without drugs or alcohol.

Since sober houses are long term and residential you will need to know what to bring when you enter one.


Most sober living houses do not provide clothing so you will need to bring at least some clothing for the season and climate. Many people suggest packing as if you were going on vacation for two or three weeks. Some useful items are:

  • 7 to 10 pairs of pants and shorts or a mix of both
  • 7 to 10 shirts usually neutral colors
  • 2 pairs of pajamas
  • 1 to 2 sweaters or sweatshirts
  • A hat if you choose to wear one
  • A weather appropriate jacket
  • 7 to 10 pairs of socks
  • 7 to 10 pairs of underwear
  • Appropriate comfortable footwear such as sneakers or boots

Most of your clothing should be comfortable but appropriate.


Need to Bring

You will need to bring your own clothes and toiletries when you move in to a sober house.

Toiletries are a necessity when it comes to a sober house. Although there are opportunities to purchase them, you should consider bringing:

  • Glasses or contacts with an extra pair if you have them
  • Deodorant
  • Nail clippers
  • Disposable razors or an electric one
  • Toothbrush
  • Hair brush
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Body lotion
  • Anything else you use such as lotions and creams

If you need more of any particular product, there are shopping trips available but toiletries are not normally provided for you.


Most sober houses allow some forms of electronics such as cell phones, laptops, and tablets. Ask the sober house before you bring any form of electronics. Some houses provide them while others do not allow them due to theft. Other houses allow them to be locked in a safe place while you are not using them. Since there are other residents, expensive electronics might not be appropriate.

Personal Items

You will need some personal items such as:

  • Your driver’s license or ID
  • Insurance information
  • Personal paperwork for employment if you have it
  • Photos

Any personal items that you bring can be kept with you or given to the staff for safekeeping. If you need any of the items a staff member can help you obtain things like social security cards or other insurance information.

6 Questions to Ask About Sober Housing

Other Things to Consider

Before you can pack for a sober house, you need to find one. You can do this by calling 800-953-3913 (Who Answers?). We can help you find the sober living residence that you need to help you get back on your feet.

Where do calls go?

Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Calls to any general helpline will be answered or returned by one of the treatment providers listed, each of which is a paid advertiser: Rehab Media Group, Recovery Helpline, Alli Addiction Services.

By calling the helpline you agree to the terms of use. We do not receive any commission or fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a caller chooses. There is no obligation to enter treatment.

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