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Tips Tag

Dirty Dishes in the Sink Living with another human being isn’t always easy, but as rents continue to rise in many urban areas, roommates become a financial necessity. Whether your roommate is your childhood best friend or a stranger you were placed with, combining two different lives is bound to result in a few conflicts. Once you find an apartment, it’s important to try to anticipate future disputes before they arise and set up guidelines for when fights do happen.

Here are 3 of the most common roommate disputes and how to navigate through them maturely:

Pumpkins and Corn as Fall Season DecorationsAs September 23rd approaches, the signs of autumn are beginning to pop up everywhere: the cooler temperatures, shorter days, and infiltration of pumpkin-flavored products. Like spring, fall offers up a chance to freshen up your apartment life for the coming months. Here are a few tips to prepping your apartment for the fall season.

Cleaning Up

Spring-cleaning shouldn’t be the only time for a deep cleansing of your apartment and clearing out unwanted items. Before you snuggle up on the couch for the longer nights ahead, grab your cleaning supplies and scrub down all the nooks and crannies you ignored over the summer. You’ll be glad to have a clean apartment during the colder months spent inside.

ApartmentSearch_ChicagoIf you just moved to Chicago, then you probably have seen or heard of the quintessential tourist places to visit (like Wrigley Field or Millennium Park). Once you’re settled into your new Chicago apartment, it’s time to venture out and find your own beloved local treasures. You probably won’t find any tourists here, but these 5 spots will be your favorite local hangouts.

My Pie

Obviously, no Chicago list is complete without a deep-dish pizza restaurant and there are plenty to choose from. My Pie, our go-to, local pizza establishment, ranks on a lot of Chicagoans favorite pizza places. And what’s not to love? The homemade sauces and fresh ingredients are lip-smacking good. Don’t worry if you don’t like deep-dish pizza, My Pie has delicious thin crust options too!

Unhappy Neighbor Covering EarsTHUMP. BUMP. WHUMP. If you’ve ever lived on the bottom floor, these kinds of noises might be all too familiar — but what’s going on up there? When you go knock on your upstairs neighbors’ door to discuss the noise, they never seem to have any idea what you’re talking about. Here are a few theories that you may want to ponder next time you feel compelled to go upstairs and investigate.

Your neighbors might be…

Boston Massachusetts SkylineIf you’re new to Boston, you’ve probably already heard about all the tourist-y spots the city has to offer (think Fenway Park and Cheers). But when you live here, you’re probably looking for something a bit more personal to explore and call your own. Here are some places around Boston that you won’t see on the likes of TripAdvisor. Tourists may not visit them, but as a local, you’ll truly treasure these 5 Boston spots.

Find Tranquility Downtown

One of the most common complaints about the Kendall Square area is that it’s crowded and bustling. Sure, you can find all kinds of awesome food and killer boutiques, but can you find a place to take a breather? Turns out you can! The roof of the Cambridge Center parking garage is actually a beautiful garden with winding walkways, a picnic area, and beautiful plant life. Just look for the entrance with the simple sign ‘Roof Garden,’ and make your way to the top.

Atlanta Georgia Skyline Over WaterWhen you come visit Atlanta, there is a lot of fun to be had touring classic attractions like the World of Coca-Cola and Six Flags Over Georgia. But when you’re coming here to live, you’re going to want to get deeper into the local culture. Tourist attractions are fun, but they won’t always give you the real Atlanta experience. When you’re ready to venture out of your new Atlanta apartment for a day of experiencing ATL on the street level, check out some of these amazing local spots.

The Buford Highway Flea Market has more than 260 booths full of local vendors selling hand-made, recently-found, or simply zany goods. Just a half-dozen miles out of downtown on highway 13, this international market is rarely over-crowded if you can make it on a weekday afternoon, and the prices range from reasonable to amazing.

Gladys and Ron’s Chicken and Waffles might sound like it is owned by some elderly couple whose soul food recipes are insanely excellent — and you’re half right. Gladys Knight (yes, that Gladys Knight) came up with some choice entrees to craft a menu around, and her son Shanga keeps her ideas alive today at this incredible Atlanta treasure. If you think of ‘soul food’ primarily as ‘that Vanessa Williams movie,’ educate yourself at this eatery. Stop by Gladys and Ron’s, and you’ll never think of chicken or waffles the same way again.

Golden Gate Bridge in San FranciscoRent is one of the many expenses that can vary quite a bit depending on where you live. And the more expensive it gets, the more important it becomes to find the right place the first time. Here are some helpful tips to help you find an apartment in some of the more expensive cities in the U.S.

Los Angeles, California

  • Median studio apartment: $1,405
  • Median one-bedroom apartment: $1,740
  • Median two-bedroom apartment: $2,406

If you want to get an apartment in LA, the first thing you need to understand is your budget. You shouldn’t be spending more than 1/40th of your annual gross income on an apartment. So if you are making only $40,000/year before taxes, you need an apartment that costs less than $1,000 a month. The choices in this price range will be limited, so you may need creative alternatives such as finding one (or multiple) roommates.

Roommates Having a FightThe day has finally arrived. You just moved back to college and into your new student housing apartment. Summer is over and you are gearing up for an action-packed semester. However, the worst-case scenario has come true: you have discovered that one of your roommates is also your worst nightmare. You definitely cannot live like this until December. So what can you do? Use these tips to wake up from the nightmare and into a happier apartment life for the fall semester.

Can the Problems be Resolved?

In many cases, the challenges of a bad roommate are ones of perception. People from different experiences and backgrounds than you often make completely different lifestyle choices. Many times, a meeting of the minds and a discussion about each other’s expectations can provide a mutually beneficial solution. Get everyone in the apartment involved and keep the tone of the discussion light. No one wants to feel confronted.

Penthouse BedroomThere are two kinds of renters who need an interior designer: those who want an apartment that looks stylish and put-together but don’t know the first thing about how to get there, and those who have a vision in mind and need help executing it. There are some relatively affordable options for either type of apartment dweller, and they are actually fairly distinct from each other. To keep your apartment redesign from looking like a home makeover show gone wrong, think about these tips as you hunt for your perfect interior designer.

If You Need Ideas…

If you are an interior-design newbie and what you need is a vision for your home’s redesign, start by finding a designer that fits your overall sense of style. The best way to make sure that your designer fits that category is to look at the work they have already done. If you can find a designer that has a website and a portfolio, that can be an easy job. Think about the things you already like about your apartment’s design, and look for those traits in a designer’s portfolio.

Furnished Apartment with CORT FurnitureThere are several great reasons to rent a furnished apartment, the most obvious being “furniture you don’t have to pay for!” But there is a lot more to take into account when deciding between a furnished and unfurnished apartment. Here are some important considerations:

Rarity

Furnished apartments are significantly rarer, which has a lot of effect on your search. Most importantly, it means that the likelihood of finding a furnished apartment in the best possible location is much smaller than finding an unfurnished one. Location is usually the single most important thing about an apartment since it determines the amount of time and gas money you will have to spend to get to the places you need to go, so this is a big deal. That said, if you do find a furnished apartment near where you need to be, it will often save you enough money on purchasing furniture to make up for the extra rent you will pay versus a comparable unfurnished unit. This also depends, however, on how long you plan to stay there.