Apartment Hunting

Apartment Hunting: What Do Renters Look For in a Property?

When prospective tenants are looking for while apartment hunting there are many things they look for. This goes beyond the usual square footage and amenities questions. They want a location that is convenient to their work. They want good schools nearby if they have children. It is a competitive environment for landlords, but even tenants want to know what renters are looking for.

Here are some examples of what renters want while apartment hunting.

Location is Key

As mentioned above, location is critical for tenants. It goes beyond just a location near work, however. They want to be located close to shopping, grocery stores, and more. If a property is close to everything a prospective wants they might be willing to pay a little more for rent. Of course, everyone’s tastes are different. What one person desires in a place another person may want something different.

Security

If you own a home you want to make sure it is safe and secure. If you’re renting, the landlord is responsible for maintaining a secure environment. Many landlords may look into having an alarm service or extra security on the property. Most tenants will look into nearby crime statistics too before signing a lease.

Condition of the Apartment

Moving is already a large hassle. If a tenant is looking to move into a unit that needs repairs they might look at another place that is more move-in ready. Appearance is everything. When a prospective tenant arrives, they want to make sure they have a property that looks like they could move in immediately. This is also where the age of the property factors in. An updated and renovated property definitely appeals to prospective tenants.

Outdoor Spaces and Amenities

One of the downsides to renting an apartment is that you don’t have your own yard, but outdoor community spaces are an important draw for many renters. Does a property have a playground on site? Are there areas for cookouts? Is there a basketball court? These are all things that can help attract renters. Having a wide variety of community amenities is important in this day and age. It makes a property have a sense of community and residents are encouraged to interact with their neighbors.

A Good Tenant-Landlord Relationship

A good tenant-landlord relationship is not something that is established in a day. It is built over time through trust and respect. If a landlord makes promises like renovations or upgrades the tenant should expect them to be fulfilled. As long as the landlord fulfills his or her promises, the tenant is usually happy. Happy tenants become tenants that renew leases and stay longer.

Finding a new apartment is a process. When tenants and landlords have a good relationship and a tenant finds what they are looking for in a place that process can go much more smoothly.

heating bill

How to Lower Your Heating Bill in Winter

Apartment living comes with many perks, but utilities are often still part of the cost of living. In the summer that can mean higher electric bills when it comes to cooling, and in the winter that often means a higher heating bill. When winter’s chill sets in it can start to get expensive. It seems like the heater is always running, and that means costs are rising. There are ways you can save on your heating bill, however, even in the middle of winter.

Keep the Thermostat Low

This is one easy way to lower your heating bill. While you may not be able to install a power saving programmable thermostat like a NEST, keeping the heat lower helps save a few coins. Most experts recommend keeping the thermostat between 62 and 68 degrees in winter. That maintains a comfortable temperature and you can often make up the difference with blankets and sweatshirts.

Monitor Your Hot Water Usage

The hot water heater in your apartment is also a major user of electricity, and when it is cold out few things feel better than a long, hot shower. If you have a dishwasher in your apartment this also is a major user of electricity. Try to run it only when it is full and not for just a handful of dishes. This conserves both electricity and hot water.

Install LED Light Bulbs

Energy efficient bulbs may cost a little more up front, but they save money in the long run with how much energy they save. LED bulbs use a fraction of the energy that conventional bulbs use, and even when you put up your Christmas lights most newer light strands are energy saving LED lights.

Plastic Window Sheeting

This one may seem simple, but most hardware stores and even regular retailers sell window sheeting plastic that can got over windows and be easily removed. This type of sheeting helps to seal out drafts and helps your heater work more efficiently. Since they go up with a special dual-sided tape they are also easy to remove when spring comes.

Saving money on your electric bill is not hard. It only takes a little bit of work. With some simple tips like are outlined above you can make sure that your apartment stays warms and you have some extra money in your apartment.

 

First apartment kitchen

Things to Stock in Your First Apartment Kitchen

You’ve done it! You’ve moved out on your own for the first time and you have your first apartment. It can be a daunting experience because of any number of reasons, especially after you move in. Now that you have all of your things in the apartment it is time to start making it a home. A great place to start is the kitchen.

The thing is, you may not know what you need in your new kitchen. Here are a few ideas for what you need in your first kitchen to make many great meals.

Boning Knife

Every kitchen needs a good knife that is also versatile. A mid-sized boning knife can serve many purposes. It can slice and dice fruits and vegetables as well as meat. Boning knives can serve a variety of purposes across many food groups. They are a great prep tool for any meal. If you want to save space by having just one knife this is the choice to go with.

Saucepan

The saucepan is the do-everything utensil in every kitchen. The common size is three-quarts, but going with a five-quart saucepan can also work. These pans can be used soups, sauces, hot cocoa, or even a frying pan if needed. As long as they have oven-safe handles you can even use them for roasts and more.

Measuring Cups

These are essential devices for almost any time of cooking, but especially for baking. Stainless steel measuring cups are the best choice. If you select plastic cups they can break easily, while stainless steel cups are durable and can even last in the dishwasher.

Mixing Bowl

When it comes to mixing bowls, the larger, the better. It is easier to use a large mixing bowl for small tasks than a small mixing bowl for large tasks. If cost or space is an issue a large mixing bowl is the way to go because it is one tool for many purposes. If you can get a tempered glass bowl it will be even more durable.

Spatula

Rubber spatulas are hygienic and they last longer than a traditional wooden spoon. They also work well with hot saucepans. Their flexibility allows you to scrape ingredients out of bowls so nothing goes to waste.

These are just five tools, but they are great for stocking your kitchen and getting life in your new apartment off to a great start.