Tuesday, September 11, 2018

#LifeHacks: Three Resources Every Resident Should Know

Apartment residents are familiar with this scene: it's move in day, and a once empty apartment is now filled with boxes, furniture, and more.  Now is the time to decorate and personalize the apartment!  But where to start?  And how to make the space both organized and unique?

Residents looking for apartment specific decor and cleaning #lifehacks can always read this blog for tips and ideas.  But, residents may want additional advice.  This week, Apartment Resident #LifeHacks wanted to feature several additional online resources specifically for renters:

Apartments.com blog: The Apartments.com blog features regular posts about apartment decor and organization specifically for renters.  The blog also details money saving advice and moving strategies for those looking to relocate to an apartment community.

Apartment Guide Blog: The Apartment Guide blog features weekly posts about topics such as moving into apartment communities, decorating various floorplan options, and cleaning appliances and features in apartments.

Apartment Therapy: Apartment Therapy is an online resource that focuses on decor and design tips for apartment residents.  The tips featured in this blog span across a variety of topics such as "DIY" design strategies and ideas to decorate studio apartments.  Apartment Therapy also runs an active Pinterest page with additional design ideas.  

Are other digital resources great for apartment residents?  Let us know in the comments!

Apartment Resident #LifeHacks was created in 2018 by Grady Management, Inc.  Grady Management was founded in 1965 and continues to provide a full service residential, commercial, and consulting real estate firm in the greater Washington and Baltimore metropolitan area.  Learn more from our website or Facebook page.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Apartment Cleaning Hacks You Need to Know

Apartment Resident #LifeHacks compiled a list of apartment cleaning hacks and house cleaning hacks that will help you keep your home immaculate, without forcing you to waste any elbow grease. Just make sure that you check with the leasing office if you have any questions regarding proper cleaning techniques for specific items in your apartment home.

Buff away water spots with used dryer sheets

There’s something about the texture of a used dryer sheet that makes it perfect for buffing away water spots and rings. Keep your used dryer sheets handy and use them whenever you want to give your smooth surfaces a nice shine.

Use spare jar lids to keep jars from leaking onto refrigerator shelves

Dirty refrigerators have a way of lessening the appeal of any food contained therein. So, when jars start to leak their contents onto refrigerator shelves (or even in cupboards or cabinets), use clean spare lids from previously discarded jars, and place the leaking jars on top of the bottom-side-up lids. This will give the jars a nice, contained area in which to leak, thus saving your surfaces from unnecessary gunk.

Use bleach and cotton balls to clean between bathroom tiles

Mildew and mold hate bleach, which makes it the perfect substance for cleaning bathroom tile. So, get some cotton balls, soak them in bleach, and place them liberally on difficult-to-clean bathroom areas (such as between tiles and on grout). Let them sit for about 24 hours, and then remove the cotton balls, and wash the area with soapy water. Make sure to wear gloves when handling bleach, and don’t let it come into contact with your skin or clothes; after all, cleaning bathroom grout isn’t worth risking your health.

Clean shower heads with vinegar and a plastic bag

Cleaning shower heads not only makes your bathroom look nicer but may also help unclog the shower head of mineral deposits, thus allowing the water to flow more smoothly. To get your shower heads looking like new, just pour distilled white vinegar into a plastic bag, and then fit the bag around your shower head. Secure it with a rubber band, so that the shower head is submerged in the vinegar. Leave the showerhead to soak for an hour, and then remove the bag. Wipe the shower head with a damp cloth.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

#MaintenanceHack: What to Do When You Have a Maintenance Request

One of the perks of renting an apartment is that you generally don’t have to deal with the hassles of repairs and regular maintenance. If something breaks or goes wrong, a simple email or call to your landlord usually gets the problem fixed.

And problems do happen. The dishwasher leaks, the heater doesn’t heat, or the air conditioner only makes noise. A maintenance request helps ensure that your landlord (or the building’s management company) does something about the issue in your apartment home.

To make sure the issue is addressed properly and in a timely fashion, your maintenance request should contain useful information and be thorough. The more helpful and specific the information, the more likely your maintenance request receives an appropriate resolution.

In an apartment building, the landlord is responsible for looking after and cleaning all tenant common areas. This includes areas such as the lobby, halls, elevators, stairs, laundry and garbage rooms. The landlord also cuts the lawn and shovels the snow.  However, you are responsible for cleaning inside your apartment home.

Your landlord is responsible for repairs in all types of rental housing. This includes repairs to heating, plumbing, electricity and appliances that come with the apartment (for example stoves, refrigerators).
If you or your guests cause damage to the unit or building, you are responsible for repairing it.  The resident needs to keep the house premises clean and should inform the landlord about any damages as soon as possible, and not cause any damages to the premises except for the natural wear and tear.

Report maintenance issues promptly

Call your landlord or property manager shortly after you’ve noticed an issue. Read your rental agreement to ensure you call the right party.  Be sure you have the direct number to the onsite leasing office.  Why not program this number into your contact list for quicker access to maintenance?
If the situation is an emergency, such as a broken pipe causing a flooded bathroom, look for an emergency maintenance phone number on your rental agreement, and call it immediately.   You will want this number than the number you used when you were calling for leasing information.

If it’s not an emergency, let the landlord or site manager know whether the maintenance team can enter your apartment while you’re away. If you prefer to be home when the work takes place, offer a block of several hours in which the work can take place.

You may not see the importance of a leaky faucet, but the affect this has on utility costs can be major.  Don’t ignore these types of maintenance issues as doing so could lead to even bigger issues.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Five Surprising Benefits of Paying Your Rent Online

Are you reluctant to pay your rent online? Well, there are a few benefits of paying your rent online that you might not have considered. All communities managed by Grady Management offer online payment options for renters that give you a chance to take better control of your finances, remove some stress from your day, and even improve your credit score. Check out the benefits below:

Build Your Credit with Credit Reporting

 There are lots of advantages to improving your credit score. A good score can help you get a lower interest rate for financing a car or other large purchases, and even help you buy a home one day. If you’re paying your rent on time every month that’s likely your largest recurring payment, which can make a positive impact on your credit score. Many Grady communities now offer the opportunity to directly report your rent payments when you pay your rent online. There’s nothing else you have to do. This system makes it simple, secure and effective to build your credit.

Reduce Your Stress with Automated Recurring Payments

 To make sure you’re always paying rent on time, building that credit score, and avoiding late charges, online payment solutions offer convenient reminders via email and text. Even better, many systems offer autopay options so you can set it and forget it. With autopay you’ll be paying on time, all of the time and any late fees will be a thing of the past.

Accommodate Your Busy Lifestyle with Mobile Payment Options

 If you’re out and about and receive that text reminder that your rent is due, what do you do? It’s simple. It’ll only take a couple of minutes to click to pay online via a mobile-friendly website or payment app. Most solutions let you pay anytime, anywhere, accommodating renters whether you’re at your desk or on the go.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Five Ways Apartment Residents Can Enjoy Summer At Their Apartment Community

Not planning a large vacation this summer?  Not a problem for apartment residents!  Residents can enjoy summer fun at their communities. Below are five apartment community activities that are perfect for the summer months:

Enjoy a movie night: Not a fan of the heat? Not a problem! Apartment residents enjoy a movie night inside during warm summer months.  Some apartment residents can access a community clubhouse with televisions and/ or professional screening rooms to host a movie marathon.  Others can host movie nights inside their apartments. 

Relax by the pool: For residents trying to soak up the sun, the pool is a great amenity open only during the summer months. Apartment residents may have access to a community pool, a perfect, close-to-home spot to spend a hot summer day.

Grill delicious food for friends and family: For residents with access to grilling stations and/ or outdoor grilling features, it is easy to host a barbecue to celebrate the summer season.