Choosing an Apartment in NYC

Choosing an Apartment in NYC

If you’re looking for a place to live in New York City, you’ll want to know what to expect while apartment hunting. Although you may not be able to find the spacious loft you were hoping for, you’re likely to find something smaller but centrally located to all the things you need to access. It’s a trade-off that many people make when moving to the Big Apple.

When searching for an apartment, these are the considerations you need to make:

  • This is among the most important things you’ll have a voice in. After all, you want to live in a safe part of the city and in a central location so you can get to where you need to go with ease. You’ll want to study the statistics for the area so you can make an informed decision about the place you call home
  • How much square footage you’ll have.

    This gives you an idea of how much storage you have to work with if any. The nice thing about living in NYC is that you’re able to rent an urBin storage bin for as low as $20 a month. You can keep your belongings safe and secure but won’t need to account for the extra space they take up in your new apartment.

  • The proximity to grocery stores, public transportation, and work.

    If it takes you hours to travel to a destination, you might have chosen the wrong apartment to live in. If the rent is low but the commute is long, it may be a trade-off you don’t mind making. When researching a neighborhood, see what attracts residents to it. Does it have what you need to feel comfortable?

  • Whether or not you’ll need a roommate or roommates.

    If living on your own is way out of your budget, you’ll need to account for the fact that you’ll have less living space the more roommates you have. This is where it pays to be organized. Choosing home furnishings that double as storage is ideal because you won’t have free reign over the apartment. Whatever you can’t keep inside your space, you can put in a storage bin and retrieve it whenever you need it.

  • Whether or not you’re allowed to alter the space.

    If you’re able to install a loft bed, floor to ceiling shelving, and other alterations, you might not have too much of an issue with storage. If you cannot, however, make changes to the apartment, you’ll want to invest in storage bins for whatever size of belongings you have on hand. An urBin ranges in size from 10’X10′ to 100’X100′ to meet your needs. Best of all, you’re able to monitor your belongings online and ask to have them back to you in no time flat

  • If pets are permitted.

    If you have a dog or a cat, you’ll want to make sure that they’re allowed to live in the space with you. Don’t presume that it will be ok without inquiring about pets first. The last thing you want to do is pay a deposit on a place only to learn that you can’t stay there because of your dog or cat. Most pet-friendly locations state that in their listing. You’ll be able to know right away if having a furry friend live with you is permissible.

Finding the right apartment that meets your needs takes time. You can significantly reduce the amount of effort you put into looking for the perfect space by knowing what to expect and keeping your belongings to a minimal. The things you can’t live without are worth having on hand and the rest of what you own can go into a storage bin where the items are accessible day and night, 365 days a year.


Clever Bedroom Hacks

Clever Bedroom Hacks

Does the state of your bedroom have you tossing and turning at night? Bedrooms are one of the hardest rooms in the home to design. If you feel like your bedroom is kind of bland or drab, you’re not alone. Here are some clever bedroom hacks to make it comfier and more stylish:

Layers of Blankets

Make your bedroom as cozy and snug as possible. Layer on the blankets and make them all super soft and plushy. Opt for a fluffy down comforter, sheets with a high thread count, a washable duvet cover, and one or two knit blankets for when it’s chilly.

Piles of Pillows

Once you’ve layered on the blankets, turn your bed into a fluffy pillow fortress. Buy some soft throw pillows in your favorite shades and patterns and pile them on. This is also a great way to add pops of color to your room.

Wall-Mounted Bedside Tables

Don’t have the floor space for a nightstand on either side of your bed? Take it to the walls with wall-mounted bedside tables or wall shelves.

Wall-Mounted Lighting

You can do the same for lighting to save space on your shelf or nightstand. Get lights that mount to the wall to keep your tabletops clear of clutter.

Keep Décor Simple

Your bedroom doesn’t need to be filled with trinkets—in fact, a cluttered bedroom might make you feel uneasy and won’t help you get to sleep any better. Keep décor simple. Pops of color or patterns here and there are ok, but try not to overdo it!

Pay Attention to Color

Color can affect mood. Painting your bedroom yellow, orange, or red might not be a good decision, considering those colors may make you feel anxious or energized. Opt for shades of blue or neutral colors for a more relaxing environment.

Make a DIY Pillow Mist

Having trouble falling asleep? A soothing pillow mist with lavender essential oil might help you wind down and fall asleep faster. Here’s a recipe to try.

Throw in a Throw Rug

Wooden floors get cold in the winter, and that doesn’t feel so great on your feet first thing in the morning. Put a throw rug down next to your bed so your feet have a warm landing spot when you get out of bed.

Or an Area Rug

Whether or not you have wooden floors, a large area rug can add a lot to a bedroom. Choose either a 5×8 rug and place it horizontally at the end of your bed, or a 9×12 rug and place it horizontally under your bed.

Get a PJ Set

Invest in a comfy PJ set or two. You know you’ve always wanted to. Plus, it’ll get you into sleep-mode, and keep you warm (or cool,) throughout the seasons, without running up your heating and cooling bills.

Add a Plant

Every room deserves a little life, even the bedroom. Plants can help purify the air and create a more comfortable environment for sleep.

Don’t Forget a Candle

What’s more relaxing than a scented candle? A good rule of thumb is to always have two larger-sized candles: one for the living room, and one for the bedroom.

Make Your Bed

Making your bed has been shown to increase productivity and mood. Start incorporating this step into your day and feel the difference!

Skip the TV

Unplug before bed, and keep the TV out of the bedroom. The light from our screens messes with our circadian rhythms and can cause trouble sleeping. This is a great article about the techno dangers to watch for in your apartment.

Transform your bedroom with these clever hacks for a better night’s rest. And if you find anything you can’t hang onto while you’re redesigning, check out UrBin Storage. They’ll come to you!

Painting Envy: The Best Paint Colors for Small Spaces

Painting Envy The Best Paint Colors for Small Spaces

A lot depends upon color: your mood, the lighting, and yes, the illusion of space. It is true that certain colors can make a space look larger and more open, but is there a truly perfect shade for small spaces? Many would argue that white walls are the only way to go in a small apartment, but that’s up for debate (although a crisp white color does do a lot to open up a room and awaken the senses.)

You don’t have to limit yourself because of square footage. In fact, you can make practically anything work somehow. Opening up your small space is more about strategic furniture placement and accent pieces than the color of the walls. That being said, there are colors that are more difficult to use in a small space, and there are certainly colors that are easier to work with.

Shades of Blue

Blue is a great color for small spaces. Not only will it create the perception of depth in a room, it also has the added bonus of boosting your mood and creating a sense of calm. A lot of smaller spaces lack an abundance of natural lighting. Pale shades are a go-to for boosting the lighting in a darker room. But don’t shy away from darker shades, if that’s what you’re looking for. A darker, sharper shade of blue can create depth. Darker colors are perfect for rooms for unwinding. Just make sure you have plenty of artificial light in the room for when you need to brighten things up a bit.

Brighten Your Bathroom

Pastel shades are great for the bathroom, but you can really step things up in there with a brighter shade, like orange or bright yellow. The bathroom is a great place to go bold. If you’re really feeling courageous, you could even paint a pattern or used patterned wall paper in there. On the other hand, if you’re a little hesitant, keep the walls neutral and instead paint the accents, like the cabinets and mirror frames for a pop of bright color. This bathroom looks crisp and clean, and the bright blue bath mat makes for a great color combination with the green cabinets.

Paint the Ceiling

One great way to add depth to any room is to paint the ceiling a different color than the walls. The best strategy here is to keep the walls a neutral color, like white, and paint the ceiling a crisp, dark color. This is another place to go bold: dark blue, dark gray, even turquoise or orange work here. And no one ever said you couldn’t put a pattern on your ceiling. Stripes are a fun pattern to play around with, and on the ceiling they won’t make the room feel too busy.

Go Crazy in the Kitchen

The kitchen is a great room to experiment in—and I don’t mean with your baking skills. There’s usually plenty of lighting in the kitchen, so you don’t have to worry too much about painting the room too dark. Bold colors like red, orange, or yellow might not work well everywhere, but they do liven up a kitchen. Experts suggest hanging lots of artwork and dishes on the walls in the kitchen to reflect light and add color.

As you can see, there’s no one way to paint a small space; the options are endless. We hope these tips give you some inspiration! Before you get painting, it might be a good idea to move some things into storage. Check out UrBin Storage for fast, convenient service—they’ll come to you!

Top 6 Couches for Small Spaces

Just because your living room is on the smaller side doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style. Or comfort, for that matter. Everyone needs a good plushy couch to snuggle up on and binge-watch Netflix on the weekends, or evenings, or when you’re sick, or just lazy…you create the occasion, okay? But you don’t have to cram a big bulky sectional in there either. There are plenty of small options out there that will help you save on space and still make a statement. Just for you, we rounded up our top 7 favorite couches for small spaces. Maybe one of them will work for you!

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How to Organize Your Apartment in 5 Easy Steps

How to Organize Your Apartment in 5 Easy Steps

We’ve all been there. Organization is not always a top priority when you’re drowning in other tasks. It’s easy to fall behind and get comfortable with chaos. But if you’re ready to step things up and get organized, here are five steps to take (and they’ll help you stay organized too!):

1. De-clutter

The very first step you should take to seriously organize your apartment is to get rid of some things. The more junk you have, the harder it is to stay organized. Go room by room and decide what absolutely needs to stay, and what’s just taking up space. Make a bag for donation and a bag for garbage and lighten your load. You’ll find yourself with so much more space to work with—and less stuff to organize. Try putting some items into storage with UrBin Storage. They’ll come to you and store all your items in a safe place until you’re ready for them again. That way, you won’t have to say goodbye forever. And they’ll bring them back to you too!

2. Get Thrifty

The dollar store is your friend. They have everything you need to organize your apartment, and it’s affordable too. Stock up on baskets, tension rods, command hooks, and racks. These are the tools of the trade. Buy baskets in all sizes. You can use small ones to organize bathroom and kitchen drawers, and medium and large ones to organize your closets. Tension rods can be used for a plethora of things: hanging cleaning products, providing extra hanging storage in closets, and even as separators in your cabinets. Command hooks are just as handy. Use them on the inside of cabinets, the side of your fridge, or in your bathroom. Racks will help you organize particularly your kitchen and bathroom. Here are some links for inspiration on how to use your new tools:

30 Wonderful Ways to Organize your Life with Command Hooks 

Pantry Organizing Ideas

Perfect Use for that Cupboard Above your Fridge

Dollar Store Bathroom Drawer Organization

3. Invest in a Label Maker

Ah, the satisfaction that a label maker brings is like no other. Not only are labels pleasant to look at and extremely functional, they’re a huge help if you live in a multi-person home. They are constant little reminders to keep putting things in the right place, so you can stay organized no matter how chaotic your life is, and no matter how terrible the people you live with are at staying organized. They also make finding things significantly easier. Rather than searching around your cluttered home for items when you’re in a hurry, you’ll have everything clearly marked and easy to reach. Label drawers in your medicine cabinet, items in your pantry, the baskets in your linen closet—label everything. You won’t be disappointed.

4. Make the Most of Your Space

This one is a biggie. Most of us do not make the most of our space. Even if you live in a tiny one-bedroom apartment, you probably have more space than you realize. Use wall shelves to create vertical storage, utilize the backs of doors and cabinets, and squeeze small racks or sets of drawers into unexpected places. Give yourself the room to stay organized. Here are a few links that will help you make the most of your space:

Organized Linen Closet

Cleaning Tips – DIY Cleaning Closet

29 Sneaky Tips for Small Space Living

5. Get Smart

Items that work together stay together. Make sure when you’re organizing that you put items that you typically use together with each other, and put them close to where you use them. This way, you won’t leave items lying out when you’re finished with them because their storage place is out of reach, or in an inconvenient place.
We hope these tips help! Now go get organized!

10 Kitchens We Love

Ready to feel inspired? Here are 10 kitchens we love. But be warned, you might not be able to resist the urge to redo your entire kitchen!

  1. Swedish Kitchen with Open Shelving

10 Kitchens We Love

Why do we love this kitchen? Could it be the white tile black splash? The hardwood floor? The refrigerator chalkboard? Or the gorgeous open shelving above the sink? We’ll tell you: it’s all of those things. This kitchen, spotted at My Scandinavian Home embodies so many of our favorite trends!

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Make a Big Design Impact on a Small Budget

Make a Big Design Impact on a Small Budget

Sigh, we all have a dream home. But our budgets don’t always work in tandem with our dreams, do they? You can dream all you want, but what if I told you it’s the home you’re in now that matters? And that you could design it however you want, all within your budget, however small? It’s possible. It’s more than possible—there are a million ways to feed your inner interior designer without breaking the bank.

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Design Highlight: Contemporary Apartment Living

Design Highlight: Contemporary Apartment Living

Is it time to update your old digs and redesign your apartment? Playing around with different styles is a fun way to express yourself and make your home feel truly yours. Contemporary design is easy to pull off. Since it’s so simple, it’s relatively inexpensive to create, which is perfect for a rental where you don’t want to put too much time and money into painting the walls and filling it with knickknacks you’ll just have to move later.

So, if you’re ready for a simple, gorgeous apartment makeover, here’s what you need to know about contemporary apartment style:

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How to Clean You Entire Apartment in Half the Time

How to Clean You Entire Apartment in Half the Time

So, you want to clean your apartment in half the usual amount of time. Maybe you’re suddenly entertaining unexpected guests, or maybe you’re like me and just don’t like spending time cleaning when you could be doing literally anything else besides cleaning.

Whatever the reason, we have some tips for you!

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