Useful Storage Items for Your Small Apartment

Useful Storage Items for Your Small ApartmentMany people live in small spaces with style. They’re not as concerned about square feet as they are about the location. If they live somewhere they love, they seldom worry about how small their apartment is. Instead, they make the most of the space they’re in by decorating it cleverly.

If you’re a city dweller who wants to continue to live large in a small apartment or loft, you’re in luck. There are tools that make it easy to increase the amount of storage space you have in even the tiniest residence. The following five items cost little to acquire, enhance the beautiful look of your home, and make stowing away essential items easy.

Baskets

Baskets come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and finishes to meet your needs. Some are even lined on the inside, too. If you have a lot of small items that you want to put away, place them inside of the baskets you keep on display in your apartment. You’ll have easy access to them but not have to worry about your belongings getting lost whenever you have visitors in your small space.

Bins

Typically made of plastic, storage bins are stackable, hold a number of items, and come with lids to keep contents secure. They’re available in a variety of sizes and can be bought inexpensively. Grouping like items together and labeling the bins makes it easier to discover their contents without going through each and every one.

Boxes

Decorative boxes are all the rage these days. You can find them in virtually every home décor and craft store in different colors, patterns, and motifs. There are even plain boxes that you can decorate yourself. If you’re more of a DIY type of person, you’ll enjoy the process of painting and collaging the storage items. Best of all, when you’re done, you’ll have a few more safe places to keep your belongings inside your apartment.

Bookcases

You don’t have to store books on the shelves of a bookcase. You can store other things there, too. Better Homes and Gardens suggests displaying books horizontally and vertically to create visual interest. The publication also notes that brightly colored photo frames make great bookends as well, so feel free to use them as such.

Think about housing your collections, plants, and photographs on the shelving. If you don’t have space for large bookcases, choose shelving and place it as high up on the wall as you’re physically comfortable. Retrieve the items that you need by climbing a ladder when necessary.

Over-the-Door Hanging Racks and Organizers

Lifehacker author Eric Ravenscraft suggests using hanging organizers on both sides of every door minus your front door. This allows you to fit more in less space. Hanging shoe holders with clear pockets are great because you can see the contents in each easily. You can use these organizers for everything from craft supplies to toiletries.

Your small space isn’t lacking personality. Think about the different ways you can include additional storage in your apartment and rearrange things until the order of your furniture and belongings makes sense to you. If you need additional storage outside your home, contact urBin Storage for more information about our convenient and affordable storage bins. You don’t have to get rid of what you love when you have a company like ours willing to protect your belongings in a climate-controlled atmosphere until you need them once again.

To store larger items, request a price quote. Keeping your small apartment comfortable and clutter-free is easy when you have a company like ours by your side. We keep your belongings safe until you need them again. When you’re ready to retrieve them, all you need to do is tell us.

 

Recycled Storage Container Ideas

Recycled Storage Container Ideas

If you’re environmentally conscious and on a budget, you can transform average household recyclables into beautiful storage container ideas. It won’t cost you much other than the time it takes to make said items, and it enhances your living space by giving you more storage solutions than you had before. If you’re not afraid to use a glue gun and want to make your new space more comfortable, follow the suggestions below for some fun DIY projects.

Recycling Throw Away Objects into Something Spectacular

Here are five recycled storage container ideas for you to make for your small apartment or loft:

Coffee Can and Spice Tin Containers. Drill a hole in these and mount them to the wall. House small items from your office such as paperclips, staples, and brads in each container. You can even use the cans and tins for plants if you drill drainage holes in the bottom. Make sure to put a mat underneath the containers to prevent water from damaging your floors and countertops.

Cereal Box Magazine Holders. Convert cereal boxes into beautiful holders with a pair of scissors and some scrapbook paper. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you’re able to make this project and just how helpful it is in getting you organized.

Shutter Door Turned Organizer. Find an old shutter door on the curb or at a yard sale and convert it into an organizer for photos, arts, and keys. The slots in the door make the perfect place to house various items. You can attach the door to a wall and remove it easily if you decide to move out of the apartment or loft that you’re in. If you don’t like the color of the door, paint it and create an interesting conversation piece for your home.

Rake Jewelry Organizer. Remove the handle from the rake and hang the metal piece on the wall. Use the ‘teeth’ of the rake as hangers for necklaces and bracelets. It’s a unique and memorable way to organize accessories.

Dish Drainer File Organizer. Organize your files using a dish drainer. Its slots are the perfect size for holding folders and various pieces of paper. Best of all, it fits neatly underneath a desk or shelf, giving you ample room to store your important documents.

You can get a lot of ideas for craft projects from the internet. Before you buy something and throw it away, ask if you can find another use for it. Think of how it can help increase the amount of storage in your residence.

If you cannot possibly find a way to use it, see if it is recyclable. As a last resort, throw it away. You don’t want your tiny space to be clutter with half-finished recycling projects.

Reduce the Amount of Trash You Throw Away

According to DoSomething.org, the average person creates over four pounds of garbage a day. That’s a whopping 1.5 tons of waste per year! Even more alarming is the fact that 75% of the American waste stream is completely recyclable and only 30% is actually recycled. Recycle and reuse and give your stuff a new lease on life!

 

Rent a Storage Bin for the Items You Can’t Store in Your Home

Still don’t have enough room for your stuff? Don’t worry! urBin Storage has you covered with a range of storage solutions to meet your needs. Contact us for more information and to receive a price quote for large storage units.

Signs You Have Too Much Stuff and Not Enough Storage

 

If you’ve lived in the city long, you know how expensive it is to rent an apartment or loft on your own. If you share your current residence with other people, you have even less space to work with. That doesn’t mean that you can’t display what you love, though. It does mean that you’ll have to be more selective in what you keep in your space and what you choose to put in storage.

Too Many Things to Hold Onto

Here are five signs that you have too much stuff and not enough storage:

You can’t enter or exit your area of the apartment or loft without knocking something over. There is a difference between convenience and clutter. If you knew that you could retrieve the storage bin you rented day and night, would you feel more comfortable renting one? What if you didn’t have to retrieve your belongings yourself and instead had them delivered to your residence? Could you justify paying $25 a month for storage?

You got boxes stacked on top of boxes of things. You’re not sure what’s in them but you know you have no room to store the contents unpacked. That’s why they remain where they are. You can’t part with them but you can’t display them, either.

You don’t remember the last thing your friend borrowed from you. Whatever it was, it can’t be too important. After all, wouldn’t you want it back right away? If your friend tells you that they have something of yours but you can’t recall the object, you’re likely lacking in the storage department and need an offsite bin to help you get organized.

You’ve filled every basket, bin, and tote that you own. There is not another place to store a thing. You’ve hidden away nearly everything you own and you just can’t squeeze another inch of space out of your living area. You’ve even rearranged things in an attempt to put another tote somewhere but you’re out of luck.

You’ve got the largest area of the apartment or loft to call your own but you still have no room to work out, study or entertain friends. It’s time to prioritize. If having your stuff at hand is more important than having space to move around, that’s your choice. If you rather be clutter-free, renting a storage bin is the option for you.

You don’t have to get rid of what you own to make more room in your small apartment. City dwellers know just how convenient it is to rent a bin from urBin Storage. For one low monthly fee, they can stow away half a closet’s worth of items safely and conveniently. If you’re looking to increase the space inside your shared apartment or loft, this is the way to go.

 

Donate What You Don’t Want to Keep

Family Circle suggests donating things that you’d rather not put in storage. It’s about blessing others with your abundance. You can give things away to a friend or opt to donate accepted items to a non-profit organization or thrift store.

The point is to only store items that mean something to you. If you’re holding onto something because you think it might help someone else, now is the time to give it to them. You don’t know how appreciative people are to be given an item they truly need.

U.S. News and World Report notes that certain items are tax deductible when donated to charity. This includes things as large as a sofa and as small as a pair of shoes. Keep in mind that donations must be itemized for them to count on your tax return.

 

 

 

Choosing the Right Lighting in an Apartment

Choosing the Right Lighting in an Apartment

The right lighting makes a world of difference in a living space. It transforms rooms instantly by adding to the overall ambiance you’ve created. If your apartment could use a makeover, don’t discount how important light fixtures, lamps, and even light bulbs are. Not only do they illuminate the room, they also add a sense of style to your space, too.

Mix and Match Colors

Houzz suggests mixing and matching colors for a look that delivers year-round. Rooms feel layered and more interesting when you have at least two different colors in them. Think of how specific color combinations evoke certain moods and then have some fun shopping for lamps and fixtures that make it all come together.

Choose complementary colors that play well off of each other. A bright color paired with black never fails to deliver style and sophistication to a space. Neutral colors and warm colors also look great together. Tan and orange is one combination that looks great year round.

Choose Patterned Lampshades

Use patterns on lampshades to add a pop of color and personality to the space. Choose textured materials to add interest. For even more visual appeal, match different colors of bases with the lampshade pattern of your choice. Don’t be afraid to go all out and choose something trendy or kitschy if that’s what you like.

Improve the Lighting That You Already Have by Doing This

Apartment Therapy suggests doing a number of things to improve the lighting in your apartment. One really helpful tip is to consider scale and how it can work in your favor. An oversized pendant or sculptural floor lamp commands attention. It becomes the focus of a room without dwarfing your furnishings.

Obtain Three Sources of Lighting in Shared Spaces

Thinking in threes helps keep your room well-lit and comfortable. Consider adding three light sources in shared areas of the apartment. For example, an overhead or pendant light fixture, a task or table light, and ambiance lighting in the form of candles or sconces in the living room transforms the space that you’re in, making it comfortable and easy to entertain in.

Energy Efficient Bulbs are Key

Making your apartment energy efficient is likely a priority for you. For that reason alone, you’ll want to invest in CFLs and LEDs. If you want softer light, choose full spectrum versions which are less harsh than the standard reds and blues you find in energy efficient bulbs. You’ll lower your home energy costs and still have a well-lit apartment which is ideal.

Install Dimmer Switches

If you don’t want to be sitting in bright light all day long, a dimmer switch is a sound investment. For about $20, you’ll be able to turn down lighting whenever the need arises. It gives you the opportunity to experiment with different types of lighting for the different rooms in your apartment without investing a lot of money into lamps and fixtures, too.

Choose the right lighting for your apartment. Now that you have a greater sense as to how to do this, you’ll be able to select your next light fixture, lamp or box of light bulbs with ease. You won’t wonder how to make your space cozier because you’ll be able to do that naturally with the lighting you choose for your residence’s rooms.

If you don’t have the luxury of a lot of space in your apartment, you’re in luck. UrBin storage bins help you store what you don’t have room for in your residence safely and conveniently. You’re able to retrieve your belongings whenever you need them and storage starts as low as $20 a month which is very affordable.

What to Toss and What to Keep: Baby Items

What to Toss and What to Keep: Baby Items
What to Toss and What to Keep: Baby Items

Pregnancy and raising your child give certain items value beyond their dollar worth. That’s because those beautiful moments you shared with your baby and the memories you made together often become linked with the things around you. Deciding what to keep and what to get rid of can be an emotional experience, one that you might not be fully prepared for. It’s hard to move on and face the fact that your little one is growing and changing faster than you feel comfortable with.

But while some items are definitely worth storing away, you can’t hold on to everything. Even if you do plan on having more children, there will always be changing safety standards, recalls, and the wear and tear of time that will make certain items worth saying goodbye to. Plus, there are always people in need: pregnancy crisis centers, the homeless, and friends who are expecting. It feels good to give back, and things are replaceable. It’s the memories you make that count.

Safety Standards

One thing to consider when sorting through baby items is that safety standards are always changing. If you plan on having more children, it might turn out that certain items that you once thought were perfectly safe could pose a hazard, however small, to your future child’s health. These are the kind of items you should throw away, rather than donate or give away. Stay up-to-date on recalls here.

Seasonal Items

Another thing you should think about? Seasonal items. Season-specific clothing isn’t necessarily worth hanging on to, even if you plan on having more children. If your first child was born in the summer, and your second child is born in the winter, those clothes likely won’t fit by the time the next season rolls around. Consider selling them, donating them, or giving them to a friend or relative. They’ll appreciate it, and you can always buy appropriate clothing when the time comes. It’ll be worth it.

Gender-Specific Items

Just as seasonal items might not hold over very well, gender-specific items may not either. You’ve got a 50/50 chance here. Is it worth taking? You could box up all those clothes and cross your fingers, or you could donate them to a family in need and purchase new, up-to-date clothes when the time comes. It’s up to you!

Items that Weren’t Used or Needed

Between the baby shower and the overflow of gifts and hand-me-downs from relatives and friends, there’s a good chance you acquired some things that your baby didn’t really need or use. These items are the easiest to let go of. If they’re still in the package or even just lightly used, you could sell these items and put the money towards new toys or clothes as your baby grows.

Things to Keep

If you’re planning on having another child, there are some items worth hanging on to. Large furniture, like cribs and changing tables, are expensive to replace, and as long as they’re made from durable material they’ll hold up over the years. Keep a few toys and clothes that you think will be a hit a second time around.

And if you aren’t having another child, that doesn’t mean you’re expected to get rid of everything! Absolutely not. Save sentimental items, like the clothes your baby wore on your way home from the hospital, his or her favorite toy, and gifts that hold a lot of meaning for you and your family.

You don’t have to part with everything. UrBin Storage is a great way to store baby items that you would rather hold on to. Their storage facility is heat controlled, so your items won’t wear down from heat exposure.

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!

Clever Book Storage

Clever Book Storage

Calling all bibliophiles! Stacking your books up all over the floor of your bedroom and living room is relatively effective, sure, but what if we told you there is a better way? Actually, what if we told you there are multiple better ways? And that they include super comfy reading nooks and offer convenience and functionality like you’ve never seen it before? What if we listed a bunch in this article for you?

Here are some clever book storage techniques that might pique your interest:

Continue reading “Clever Book Storage”