MAKE THE MOST OUT OF YOUR APARTMENT

November 16, 2015 admin

I live in an apartment. There are definitely some benefits from living in an apartment. The cost of living in a small space doesn’t break my bank. Having my kitchen, dining, and living room all together in once space makes for easy cleaning. My cat can’t really escape my love, which is probably more of a negative for her.

Then there are the downsides of apartment living: the noise from the neighbors, the inability to HGTV makeover your space, and the lack of room.

Here are some tips on how to make the most out of your cozy apartment or luxurious loft.


Space

Use multi-functional furniture

If you can find furniture that has bonus storage, get it! It will add more functionality to the space. A great example of this is a chest. I have one in my apartment. It makes a fantastic coffee table and it holds a ton of blankets.

Make it feel like home

Most apartments won’t let you go crazy with permanent personal touches like painting or new carpet. Adding your own photos, rugs, and shelving can make the space feel more like home.


Get rid of clutter

Small spaces aren’t great for storage. If you aren’t using it, you should probably get rid of it. Some apartment complexes have extra storage units you can rent out. If all else fails, consider calling your parents and try to use some of their storage space.

Keep Surfaces Clear

You don’t have many surfaces in an apartment. The more you decorations and objects you leave out on your counters, the more your apartment will look like an I Spy book.


Add mirrors to your space

Mirrors has some special power to make your space seem larger. It can also reflect any light you may have, making your space seem brighter. Sounds like a win-win to me.


Don’t have rooms? Use curtains for walls

If you have a super small apartment (like a New York sized apartment) use something like a curtain to make a little separation between rooms.


Shelves can add more space

It is wise to use what little wall space you have! If you can add shelves to your walls, do it! They can add some extra storage.

Here are more space tips:


Bills/Rent

Bills and rent are definitely the worst parts of owning an apartment. You may not want to live in an apartment forever, so here are some ways to save some money.


Open your windows when weather permits

No one wants high heating or cooling bills. Open up your windows on nice days for free heating/cooling. Most apartments use baseboard heaters and wall air conditioners. Keep all of your doors open for efficient temperature regulation.


Energy efficient

Try to choose energy efficient things for your apartment. Even changing the light bulbs can make a difference. A 40-watt LED bulb uses 85% less energy than a standard lightbulb. Also, try to find out the peak hours for energy consumption where you live. Avoiding these hours can help you save some money, too. For more information, check out your local utility company’s website.


Avoid energy suckers

Did you know your toaster is one of the biggest energy suckers? If you aren’t using an appliance - unplug it. Try to unplug everything when you go on away for the weekend, too.


Negotiate rent and/or rent increases

If you are just about to move in, talk to your landlord about your rent. It is best to try and reduce additional expenses like pet rent, instead of the actual rent. If you are notified of a rent increase, try to hold your ground. Chances are they would rather give you a deal then try to find another tenant.


Location


Use the location of your apartment to your advantage

Try to take in everything that is around you for shopping, eating, and activities. Is there a park nearby that is perfect for running? Use these locations to your advantage. Go to a nearby sports bar to watch the big games or a coffee shop for a quiet study place. This way, you have some extra places to do things outside of your apartment.


Noise

There are many things that can cause noise in your apartment, like doors, dogs, people, traffic... or even the elevator.


Find your quiet place or make your own

Try to find the quietest place in your apartment and make that a hangout spot. Cork board is a great sound proofing material. If your door has any space underneath it, sealing that off can help with noise, too.


Make your own noise

A white noise, like some background music, will drown out any noises that may happen during the day. If you are having trouble sleeping at night due to noise, I recommend some sort of white noise like a fan.


If you have to, make a complaint

Try to talk to the individual before reporting them to the building manager. Of course, this is depends on the situation and your comfort level.


People

Meet your neighbors!

You may make friends (or at least have someone to borrow sugar from). Try to stop, look up from your phone, and say hi to someone when passing them in the hall.


Go to events

I also recommend going to at least one apartment gathering event. It lets you put a name to a face. If you are horrible with names, well… you’ll know they live in your building. Knowing your neighbors can be extremely beneficial.


Smells

Living in an apartment results in a lot of smells in a small space. My kitchen and the garbage are pretty much in my living room.


Take out the trash often

To keep the smells low, I have to take my garbage out frequently. If the smell gets real bad, hang some little pine tree fresheners inside the cabinets.


Keep odor killers in the bathroom

Your bathroom is a little too close for comfort in an apartment, causing smells to wander. So, when it comes to the bathroom, candles, matches, or spray are a must. Have an odor reducing option nearby so you and your guests will use it!

Clean often

You might notice your small space can get dirty fast. Your apartment isn’t a huge place to clean, you can do it! As for the weird hallway smells, sorry there’s not much you can do for that!


Parking

Find a place where you will get less door dings

Living in an apartment means your car is stuck in a parking lot 24/7. It also means more chances for damage. Try to find a spot that has less cars like the edge of the lot.


Utilize your parking space

If you have your own designated parking space, use the space around your car. It is a great place to store your bike or other things that may take up space in your apartment.

Get a cart for heavy things

My apartment doesn’t have a community cart for heavy things I want to bring into my apartment. It stinks when you only have to arms to carry a couple of grocery bags. I recommend buying something with wheels that can help you heavy loads. Your back will thank you.

Features

Use your apartment’s perks

Luxury apartments offer awesome features like a gym, pool, or place to wash your car. Use these things. You are technically paying for them! I use the community room TV when I want to watch something on cable. You may even meet some other apartment dwellers in the process.

 

I hope these tips helped you out. Living in an apartment is quite enjoyable when you make the most out of it. If you have any of your own tips, let us know! We would love to add them to this article.


If you are looking for an apartment in the downtown St. Louis area, check out Arcade Apartments. Arcade apartments offer luxury apartments and discounted apartments for artists.