Setting up a Garden on Your Apartment Balcony

You’ve probably heard that you should wait until after Mother’s Day to plant any type of plant, and that’s usually the case, especially this year in Wisconsin. We have had a few nights where frost has been imminent.  With Mother’s Day just around the corner, now is the perfect time to start planning your garden.  We’ve rounded up the best tips from Pinterest that will help with setting up the perfect garden on your balcony.

Make a plan

Think about what types of plants you want in your garden and make a plan. Choose plants/herbs that you know you will eat or use. Know when to grow what- see the vegetable/herb grower’s cheat sheet below.


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6 Ways to Save on Your Apartment Energy Bill this Spring

We all dread seeing that gas and electric bill come in the mail each month. Now that spring is here and the warmer weather is arriving, we can start turning off those heating sources and start saving a little bit of money. In addition to turning your heat off, here are 5 ways YOU can save on energy in your apartment this spring.

1.    Unplug/ turn off

Be sure to turn off all lights when you leave a room.  This not only helps with the electricity, but it will help keep the room cooler for any lights that give off any heat. Same goes for fans; be sure to turn off all fans when you leave a room.  No need to use a fan when you are not in the room.  Unplug appliances while not in use, like your coffee maker, computers and TV’s. Even though you’re not using them, having them plugged in still uses some energy.
light siwtch

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10 “Out of the Ordinary” Spring Cleaning Ideas for Your Apartment

spring cleaningSpring has sprung! Time for warmer weather, sunshine, and April showers that bring May flowers. It’s also time for some spring cleaning! We all dread it, but once it’s done, it feels so good!  You’ve probably already read our previous posts about spring cleaning (if not- check them out here and here), but we are here to share with you some out of the ordinary spring cleaning ideas for your apartment.

Clean Your Rugs

Whether it’s a large area rug or a small entry way rug, they may look okay, however they may be hiding lots of dust and dirt. Start by taking them outside and shaking them out. Hang them over your balcony and use a broom to “smack” the dirt out.  Once that’s done, sprinkle some baking soda or carpet deodorizer on them, let them sit and vacuum over them. Another way to clean them is to rent a carpet cleaner and run it over the rugs.

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Renting an Apartment “Sight Unseen”

sight unseenFinding a new apartment can sometimes be challenging.  What’s more challenging is if you are unable to view a unit before signing a lease for it.  Whether you are unable to get off work during the available showing hours, you live out of state, or you are moving from another country, we have a few tips for you when it comes to signing for an apartment “sight unseen”.

What does “Sight Unseen” actually mean?

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5 Quick Tips for Planning Your College Spring Break

Beach
Planning for spring break in college can be exciting, yet sometimes tough.  Now’s the perfect time to start your planning! We put together 5 quick, yet important tips for planning your college spring break!

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6 Quick Tips for Online Dating in Madison

online datingOver the past years, online dating has become the “norm”, especially among college students and young professionals. According to the Pew Research Center, “80% of Americans who have used online dating agree that online dating is a good way to meet people,”  so we’re all for giving a dating app or online platform a try in order to find that special someone.  We have provided 6 quick tips for online dating below.

  1. Make sure your online dating profile is YOU!

Your online dating profile should portray who you are, not who you used to be, or some exaggerated version of yourself. Be honest and be yourself.  If someone is going to reject your honest online profile, it’s better to weed them out ahead of time anyway!  If you can narrow down the pool of people you connect with online by being your true self, the odds of actually liking the people you choose to meet up with in person will be much higher.  Madison may seem like a big city, but the world gets a lot smaller when you start dating online.  The last thing you want to do is exaggerate or be dishonest on your online dating profile then get caught out on the town acting or looking like a completely different person.

If you’re not sure if your profile shows the best and most honest side of you, feel free to ask a friend to look it over.  Friends are actually much better judges of our best characteristics than we are.

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How to Graciously Accept Unwanted Holiday Gifts

gifts
First of all, let’s start off by saying that the holiday season is about being with loved ones, giving thanks for all of the good in our lives, and the spirit of giving. But, we’ve all been in a situation where we have received gifts that we, in all honesty, just aren’t that excited about. If you’re at your family gathering this year and you receive a gift that you won’t use or just plain don’t like, don’t sweat it! Things don’t need to get awkward. We have some tips on how to keep the holiday spirit alive by graciously accepting unwanted holiday gifts, as well some suggestions for what to do with those unwanted gifts when the party is over.

It’s the thought that counts, right?

Regardless of the gift, be sure to thank the giver! Even if you’re not over the moon about the present you just opened, be sure to smile and thank the person who gave it to you. Remember that this person still thought of YOU when making their shopping list this year. Even if they missed the mark, the giver may have put a lot of thought into the gift, and they definitely took the time to buy it, wrap it and get it to you. Smiling and thanking them shows that you appreciate their efforts.
(Pro Tip: Whether you receive the gift in person or in the mail, we recommend always sending a hand-written thank you card. Your grandmother would be proud!)
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Decorating your Apartment for the Holidays, Plus a Chance to WIN!

Just because you live in an apartment, or have a small space, doesn’t mean that you can’t make your space look great during the holidays. We’ve hit up Pinterest to give you the best holiday decorating ideas for your apartment or small space.
 
Let’s start with the tree…
 
Christmas Tree:
Do you like real trees or faux trees? If you love real Christmas trees, check with your landlord first to make sure they are allowed in your building. Faux Christmas trees are a great alternative and although they may be a bit pricey at first, you can use them year after year, so you get your money’s worth. They even make pine scented ornaments now that will make your apartment smell like you have a real tree. Make sure you pick the right size tree to fit in your space. If you have a small space and don’t have much room for a tree, try a tabletop tree, or a half tree as shown below. You can still decorate them just like any other tree, but they don’t take up as much space as a regular sized tree. Don’t have space at all for a tree? There are several alternatives to choose from instead of a tree. Take advantage of your wall space and use lights to create your own tree. Use chalk on a dark wall or create a tree shape with wood pieces or branches on the wall as shown below. We also love the idea of using your books to create a tree against your wall. You could do this on the floor, on a shelf or even on a table.



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Is Renter’s Insurance Really Worth It?

Apartment flood

What is the point of having renter’s insurance anyway? Do I really need it? Aren’t I just throwing away money that I could use on other things, such as that new sofa chair I’ve been wanting for my living room? These are some of the questions you may be asking yourself when thinking about renter’s insurance. Whether you’re renting an apartment, condo, or home in Madison, renter’s insurance is a must. It is required for most rentals now a days, but even if it is not required, here is some basic information on renter’s insurance and why it’s worth having for your apartment.

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Stay Cool in the Summer and Save Money

The simplest way to save money for the rest of summer and warm early fall is to cut down on your air conditioning usage.  The downside of turning off your AC is that it will definitely get hot! We have compiled a list of ideas to help you stay cool.  The three biggest things to think about are air flow, heat sources, and your personal body temperature. Continue reading