Sound and Lightproofing Your Apartment Bedroom

Sleep is glorious and grand. Everyone feels better after a great night of sleep, but there are tons of distractions that can prevent you from having a good night’s sleep. Your bedroom needs to be a quiet, peaceful place that promotes rest, but that can sometimes be difficult in an apartment. Creating a bedroom that muffles sound and blocks out light can be difficult, but here are some things you can try that will help you find a restful haven. 

Soundproofing with Rugs and Upholstery

Rugs, specifically with a good rug pad, and upholstery can help muffle sounds in your room from both outside and inside. A good rug pad under even the most ordinary of rugs not only makes the rug more plush, it also is a great sound barrier. If you have wall-to-wall carpet that is the best way to muffle sounds, but that is not an option in every apartment. A good, thick rug pad will absorb sound and make your room more comfortable. 

You don’t have to stop at rugs, however. Upholstered furniture and headboards also are great for absorbing ambient noise. The more soft surfaces you can add to the room the better. Consider adding a quilt or blanket that you can hang on the wall to help deaden sounds. This method works best on walls that are shared with another apartment next to you. 

Blocking out Excess Light

Of course, extraneous sound is not the only thing you need to block out. Light from parking lots or other sources outside can also be a hindrance to sleep. That is why blackout curtains can be a great addition. Blackout curtains are made of a heavier fabric like wool, flannel, or velvet. These types of thicker curtains not only block out light, they also act as a sound absorber. Sometimes you can even find blackout liners that can be added to existing curtains. 

You should also check the seals around your windows for light and sound gaps. Insulated foam strips can be purchased from a hardware store and used to fill any large gaps. This not only blocks out light, but sound through the gaps. They can even help in the winter to keep drafts out as well. 

These are just a few ways that you can make sure the bedroom in your new apartment is a restful space for a good night’s sleep. 

used furniture

Save Money with Used Furniture for Your Apartment

When getting your first apartment one of the first things you need to get is furniture. If you’re just starting out, however, there is a good chance that you are operating on a budget. As you get used to having new bills and rent you may not have a lot of disposable income for furniture and decorations. A great way to save some money is to buy used furniture for your apartment. While it may not be brand new, you can find some great used items that will be both durable and comfortable for your needs. Here are some of the best things to buy used. 

Bed Frame – Sure, you can just put a mattress on the floor and sleep on it, but why not get a bed frame? This will allow you to get your mattress off the floor and it can even provide for some extra storage space under the bed. You can get a used bed frame that is both durable and adjustable for the size of your bed for less than $50. An Adjustable bed frame can also be handy for when you get a larger mattress. It will let you size up to something bigger. 

Exercise Equipment – Many apartments have exercise rooms and equipment that can be used as part of the community, but having your own equipment is an option if your apartment doesn’t offer this. The value of a treadmill or exercise bike drops significantly once you bring it home. You can go to a resale store and get them for a fraction of the price. Garage sales are also a great place to find used exercise equipment. You should almost always buy used exercise equipment if you are buying your own. 

Tables – When buying used furniture tables are a great place to start. You should avoid buying anything with upholstery to avoid any possible allergens, but kitchen tables and coffee tables can be found for a pittance at resale shops. Garage and yard sales are also a great place. If you’re allergic to pets though you probably want to pass on a couch. You don’t know if someone had a cat or a dog you might be allergic to. 

What to Buy New

Cookware and Small Appliances – Something like a new coffee maker can cost as little as $25 and will be up to date. It will even be under a brief manufacturer’s warranty in case it breaks down. Most small appliances are inexpensive. When it comes to cookware cleanliness is an issue. This can lead to food allergies and more. 

Bedding – You should definitely spend the extra money on a new mattress. People shed skin cells when they sleep, making any used bedding unsanitary. With a new mattress you know that you’ll be sleeping on something clean and fresh, giving you peace of mind. 

self storage lock

Finding the Best Lock for Self-Storage

Keeping your property secure is the number one concern of anyone who rents a self-storage unit. These are places off of your own property that rely on others to stay fully secure. This is why many storage vendors sell premium locks that will both stand up to the elements and keep your unit secure. Most of the time these locks are heavy-duty locks that function with a key, but padlocks can also be used. To learn which type of lock is good for your unit consider the following:

Shackle Padlocks

These traditional locks have a base locking unit with a rounded shackle that passes through an eyelet on handle to secure the door. Since the shackle is the weakest point of the lock, the length of material, thickness, and material is important. The shackle of your padlock is an obvious point of attack for thieves wielding bolt cutters and the like. Because of that, it is important to strike the right balance between reducing the amount of exposed shackle and allowing sufficient clearance for your purpose.

A close shackle has built-in shoulders that expose only a small amount of the shackle, but this reduces the useable clearance of the lock. As far as thickness, anything over 10 millimeters of thickness for the shackle is considered high security, while anything less than 7 millimeters is low security. They can be made from materials such as plastic for light security situations all what way up to molybdenum, which is the strongest material used in padlocks. 

Cylinder Locks

Cylinder locks are offered by many storage companies and they slide directly into a hole in the door. This tight fit eliminates the exposure of a shackle and a raised area that can be tampered with. It is often a lock flush with the door much like a conventional permanent lock. 

Smart Locks

One way that the storage industry is going is the use of smart locks. These types of locks are completely keyless and can be opened via a keypad or an access card. Some of the more sophisticated models can even use biometric fingerprint recognition or interaction with an app on your smartphone. These are a good option for self storage companies because they do not need to be replaced when a new renter takes over a unit. They can merely reprogram it for the new client. 

These are just a few of the options out there for self-storage locks, and many of them depend on the type of facility you choose. Each storage company is difference and has difference capabilities for locks. Be sure to ask for what options you have up front. 

pet friendly

Finding a Pet Friendly Apartment

When you move you want to find an apartment for your entire family. This includes the furry members of your family. While some apartments will not allow pets because of liability concerns, other will welcome pets as long as you abide the guidelines. This can include an extra pet deposit fee on top of your rental deposit, an extra fee on your monthly rent, or more. Some complexes may also limit you to only a dog or a cat, so finding a place that will accept your emu could be difficult. With some advice, however, you can find a pet friendly apartment that will make everyone in your family happy. 

What Amenities to Look For

How pampered is your pet? If you’re looking for a place to live and only a place to live many apartments are happy to accept pets. Others have amenities that can be specific drawing perks to pet owners. Many newer complexes not only accept pets, they will have dog parks, in-home groomers, and more. They view the dog park as part of the community so residents can connect with other residents, and this includes the dogs. In some larger cities they may even have access to veterinarians and more. 

Know Where Your Pet Can Go

While some apartments and buildings will allow pets, they don’t mean to allow blanket access to all parts of the building. There may be other businesses within the building that are not as pet friendly. While they are fine with you having your pet in the apartment unit itself and some of the hallways it is unlikely they will be welcome in community areas or the gym. You’ll also want to check and see what pet-friendly amenities are nearby. This includes a vet, grooming, and pet supplies. 

Find the Right Apartment

Your apartment itself can be pet friendly, but some apartments work better for poets than others. For example; if you have a pet that sheds an apartment with tile or laminate floors will be easier to clean than one with carpet. Having a unit on the ground floor is easier for dog owners so they can go outside easier. 

Check Your Lease

Finally, if you have a pet in your apartment you will need to learn the terms of your lease and how they relate to your pet. Some communities will have a weight or breed restriction on dogs. Most will have a pet deposit that is separate from the regular damage deposit. You might even have to pay a small fee each month on top of your regular rent. If you follow all of these steps, however, you can find the perfect apartment for you and your pet. 

Local Move

The Cost of a Local Move

Moving is already hard, but moving across the country is even harder. If you’re moving across town that can be taken care of in a day or two depending on how much stuff you have. The cost of a local move can depend on a large number of factors. This includes transporting large items, vehicles, family, and more. Most of the time you’re going to need a moving truck, but it can be cheaper sometimes if you have a complete moving service. Fortunately, over 60% of moves in the country occur within the same county and another 21% of moves occur within the same state. 


Where you live is a major factor when it comes to determining the cost of a local move. Moving a two-bedroom apartment in Dallas costs $729 on average, but in San Francisco it is almost twice as much. That is an estimate of three movers at 6 hours each plus truck costs, and that is just locally. This is just what the market demands because some cities simply have a higher cost of living than others.  When you are moving locally the costs are generally considered to be by the hour, as well. That includes packing, carrying, loading, and more. 

What You Move

Heavier and bulkier items are going to cost more than moving boxes of clothes or kitchen utensils. It generally takes a crew of three movers about five to seven hours to move a two bedroom apartment, but if you have heavier items, excessive stairs, or a long distance to the moving truck it can take longer. You’ll also want to factor in the tip to movers. This is not required, but it is generally considered a courtesy to tip movers 10-15%. Movers generally charge $35 per hour per mover, but the local market can determine the price better. 

When You Move

Moving on the weekend is more expensive, especially with moving services, because they are in more demand. If you’re able to do most of your move during the week it can actually be cheaper because you’re avoiding peak move times. Traffic can become a factor here, however. Be sure to ask your moving service if they have different prices of weekend vs. weekday moves. 

Do What You Can Yourself

While a moving service is great, the more you can do yourself, the better. This means packing up what you can before the movers even get there so your stuff can go on the truck faster. This allows it to get to your new destination faster. If you have everything ready to go when the movers arrive that is less time you’re paying for them to pack it up.