Does Square Footage Matter?

Sacha R - Monday, July 08, 2019

When you’re searching for your next apartment it can be easy to focus on the square footage. Most people look for the biggest apartment they can get within their budget. This isn’t always the best plan of action, though. Ultimately, the size of the apartment is not indicative of the experience you’ll have living there. There are a few other key factors you should consider when choosing your new home!

The Layout

Do you like an open floor plan or a bit of privacy with closed off rooms? A large apartment may feel small if there are too many walls and closed off space. Likewise, if an apartment has tall ceilings, large windows, and a lot of open space it will feel bigger than it actually is. The layout of an apartment usually ends up being more important than the square footage.

Consider the Size of Key Rooms

How do you plan to use your new home? Do you like to entertain friends and family? Do you need an at-home office or studio? Or maybe you like to cook! Look at the size of the rooms you’ll be using the most and consider if the size and layout will work for you.

If you like cooking, a small kitchen won’t be ideal. However, if you eat out most nights, sacrificing kitchen space for a larger bedroom may not be a big deal for you. Even large apartments can be less than perfect if key rooms are too small.

Visit the Apartment

Obviously, the best way to know if an apartment will work for you is to take a tour! You’ll be able to get a feel for how large or small the space feels and if it will suit your needs. Don’t forget to measure doorways to know if your furniture will fit, in addition to any stairwells or tight spaces in the apartment. Nothing is worse than realizing your couch or bed won’t fit through the door!

Hawthorne Gardens is proud to offer various floor plans with distinct layouts. Whether you work from home, love to entertain, or are raising a family, we’re confident one of our one, two, or three-bedroom apartment homes will be the right fit.

Get in touch today to learn more about Hawthorne Gardens and to schedule a tour!

How to Put Together An A+ Rental Application

Sacha R - Monday, June 17, 2019

Congratulations on finding the perfect apartment! The next step is to submit your rental application to secure your new home. Rental applications help landlords make informed decisions on who to rent to. This is also your chance to showcase why you’re the perfect candidate to rent the apartment. Filling out the application may seem self-explanatory, but there are a few tips to make your application stand out.

Follow All Directions

Think of a rental application as a test – landlords and property managers use them to see if you pay attention to detail or if you’re careless. Read over all the sections of the application before you begin to fill it out. Make sure you complete all sections of the application as well; failure to do so can result in processing delays.

Be Honest

Lying, and having someone find out the truth, looks a lot worse than just telling the truth about your past. If you’ve been evicted or asked to move out, be honest about the reason why. The same goes for if you’ve declared bankruptcy or been fired from job.

If you have pets, plan on getting a pet, or will be living with roommates you need to state that as well. Many communities require an application from each person who plans on living in the apartment. Trying to hide a pet or roommate will result in major consequences.

Provide References

Unless the application specifically states “no references”, providing a few references provides a potential landlord the opportunity to get to know you. Attach your reference contact to the application and submit it via email or mail. Provide a mix of personal and professional references and always ask the reference first before listing them!

Clean Up Your Social Media

Before you submit your application, take some time to clean up your social media accounts. Any photos or posts that don’t portray your personality in the most positive light should be removed or made as private as possible. Most landlords will search your name to learn more about you – don’t let that one photo from your Freshmen year of college deter them.

With these tips in mind you’re ready to submit an A+ rental application!

Tips for Organizing and Packing for a Move

Sacha R - Monday, June 03, 2019

Let’s face it, as exciting as moving to a new home is, it’s also incredibly stressful. Planning and organizing a move on top of working, taking care of children, or possibly trying to find a job in your new city, is a lot to handle at once. With enough time and a little planning, you can make packing up your belongings much easier!

What Size Move do you Have?

If you’re moving from your parents’ home or into your own place after living with roommates, you most likely have a small move. If you don’t have any large appliances or more than one closet, you can pack with 8 boxes. Two closets full of clothes and couple of appliances will require around 18 large boxes. A large move requires around 25 boxes and consists of many electronics and appliances, clothes, shoes, and books. Try decluttering some of your stuff to make your move easier.

Time to Organize

Once you’ve figured out what size move you have, it’s time to get organized. Label the boxes on all 4 sides and the top with that’s inside. This way no matter how you grab a box when unpacking, you know where it goes. You should also label any boxes that contain fragile items, so you handle them with care.

Pack heavier items in smaller boxes so you can still carry them. Just because 50 pounds of books can fit in one box, doesn’t mean they should. Save the bigger boxes for lighter items like blankets, pillows, and small decorations.

Plan a Packing Order

Start packing up items in your living room or spare bedroom first. These rooms likely contain items you don’t need on a daily basis, making them safe to start packing a month in advance. If you still don’t know where to begin, pack up any decorations or trinkets first. A bare apartment will be boring for a month or so, but decorations aren’t necessary in our daily routines.

Next you can pack away any extra items you have. This includes extra blankets, sheets, towels, toiletries, makeup, and cooking utensils. Once you’re about two weeks out from your move you should start packing away anything that isn’t absolutely necessary on a daily basis.

The last thing you’ll want to pack up are your clothes. Take this as an opportunity to sort through your closet and dresser and donate or throw out anything you don’t wear anymore. Sorting through your wardrobe will making moving that much easier.

When you’re packing you’ll definitely find thing that you forgot you even owned. Chances are you’ll also find some items you thought were gone forever! Decide if these items are worth coming along to your new home and donate them if they’re not.

A word of advice: don’t get caught walking down memory lane. Looking through your old camp photos and home movies can wait until you’re settled in your new place. Still in search of an apartment? Call us today to schedule your tour!

9 Things in Your Closet to Get Rid Of

Sacha R - Monday, May 20, 2019

One of the great things about living at Hawthorne Gardens is the spacious closet in each master bedroom. They’re perfect for storing all the shoes, purses, and clothing that you’ve acquired and love. However, the bigger the closet the easier it is to keep things that you no longer need. To help you declutter, we’ve put together a list of 9 things in your closet it’s time to get rid of.

Old Costumes

When was the last time you wore that Crayola crayon costume? Probably not since you bought it five years ago. Donate it to a friend who needs a costume or get rid of it. We guarantee you’re not going to miss it. The same thing goes for all of those dance and theater costumes from high school. While they may be sentimental, they’re not benefiting you by staying in your closet. Time to say goodbye!

Bridesmaid Dresses

Bridesmaid dresses are expensive, which makes them hard to part with. You know you won’t ever wear that orange, floor-length gown again though. Into the donation pile it goes.

Stretched Out Clothing

It’s stretched out, old, and doesn’t look right on your body. Let it go.

Uncomfortable Shoes

Boots, flats, high-heels, dress shoes, sneakers, it doesn’t matter. If the shoes leave you limping, give your feet blisters, or are collecting dust because they don’t even fit, let them go. You’re literally hurting yourself by wearing them.

Items You’re Keeping because You Spent A lot of Money on Them

You know that one thing in your closet that you splurged on? Maybe it’s a pair of shoes you saw your favorite celeb wearing, or a jacket that you told yourself you would wear every day. If the item still has the tag on it 8 years later, or you can count on one hand hoe many times you’ve worn it, let it go. You’ve already spent the money, keeping the item will only make you feel guilty.

Cheap Costume Jewelry

Costume jewelry is fun when we’re in high school and college. It’s a cheap and easy way to keep up on trends and refresh our closets. Those necklaces are probably more green than silver now. Throw them out and spend some money on timeless, higher quality pieces you’ll actually wear.

Free T-Shirts

What we wouldn’t do for a free T-Shirt back in college. Keep a few for painting, to wear to the gym, or to sleep in and then let the rest go. You didn’t wear them back then, you’re not going to wear them now.

Free Tote Bags

Just as free t-shirts were “the thing” in college, free tote bags are the popular SWAG to receive now. Put some in your trunk to use at the grocery store and when you run errands and get rid of the rest. You’ll never use them all.

The Fix it Pile

Somewhere in your closet, probably in a deep dark corner, lurks the fix it pile. You know the one. The one you put that ill-fitting dress in, shoes that need to be resoled, and the purse that needs a new strap. If those items meant that much to you, you would’ve fixed them by now. Either fix them in the next two weeks or say goodbye!

Fingers crossed that after going through this list you now have a beautiful, organized closet! If you’re still in need of a bigger closet, contact us today to schedule a tour. Our 1, 2, and 3-bedroom apartments all include spacious closets for you to store your most beloved items.

Double Duty Décor

Sacha R - Monday, May 06, 2019

Whether you’re moving into your first apartment or your fifth, your décor should be beautiful and functional. Instead of choosing pieces that only serve one purpose, pick decorative items that also act as storage or extra storage. You will also get more bang for your buck and save money with these double duty décor items.

Key Hanger or Entry Table

The first thing we all do when we come home is put our stuff down. Having a designated spot to do so will clear some clutter in your apartment. It will also help you avoid walking through your apartment with muddy shoes to put your purse in the bedroom.

If your entry way is smaller, chose a key hanger or coat rack that you can hang on the wall. You’ll be able to hang your keys, coat, and purse all in one spot. If you have a bit more room, consider an entry table. A table is great for putting mail, your purse, keys, and any other items you bring home every day.

Functional Ottoman

Ottomans are incredibly diverse pieces of furniture. They offer a comfortable place to kick up your feet after a long day at work. If you purchase a soft ottoman it can also be used as extra seating when friends come over. No need to keep extra chairs in the closet just for guests! Many ottomans also have built-in storage for throw blankets, games, pillows, DVDs, magazines and more.

TV Stand

A TV stand is a great place to display trinkets and memorabilia in addition to storing belongings. Keep any game consoles, remotes, games, DVDs, and books on the shelves. Bonus points if your TV stand has doors that allows you to hide the clutter.

Storage Bed-Frame

If it fits your décor style, find a bed frame that has built-in storage. Many frames have drawer’s underneath that provide the perfect place for storing extra blankets, pillows, or out of season clothing. If you want a metal bed-frame that is less bulky, put it on bed risers to create under-the-bed storage.

Sleeper Sofa

A sleeper sofa is great option if you don’t have a guest room or you’re just looking to have multiple guests stay over at a time. Thankfully, sleeper sofas have gone from less than appealing and uncomfortable to beautiful statement pieces that guests are happy to sleep on. Many local furniture stores have the option to customize a sleeper sofa so it will fit your design style perfectly!

If you’re looking for a new apartment to decorate and call home, contact us today! We have 1, 2- and 3-bedroom apartments that will fit your needs and wants. Conveniently located in Guilderland, you’ll love the safe and quiet environment.

Seven Spring Cleaning Hacks You Need to Know About Now

Sacha R - Tuesday, April 16, 2019

The season for cleaning is upon us once again! While your list of items and places to deep clean may seem endless, it’s an important thing to do (hopefully) every year. We’ve put together a list of seven hacks to make the process a little less painful, get your apartment sparkling clean, and remind you of a few things that you forgot may need cleaning.

     1. Set A Timer

Set a timer for 10, 20, or 30 minutes and see if you can beat the clock while still doing a thorough job. Turning cleaning into a game can make it seem more fun, or at least not like the most awful thing in the world. This is a great way to get kids to participate in the cleaning as well.

2. Steam-Clean the Microwave

If you can’t even recall the last time you cleaned your microwave, chances are high that it’s a mess inside. To remove caked on food and stains, steam the inside of the microwave before you start scrubbing. The steam will loosen everything up, requiring less elbow grease from you.

Fill a microwave-safe container with 1 to 2 cups of water, 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, and a few drops of your favorite essential oil. Heat the mixture in the microwave for five minutes and you’ll have a clean microwave in no time.

3. Sort Through the Medicine Cabinet

This isn’t a hack necessarily, but it is an area of the home that often gets forgotten about. Go through your medicine cabinet, cosmetics and toiletries and toss out anything that is expired. Everything from Advil to makeup has an expiration date, you just have to know where to look for it. Check out this list to learn when to get rid of things.

4. Clean Your Dishwasher

You can’t clean dishes in a dirty dishwasher! Please cup of vinegar on the top shelf and run the hottest cycle your dishwasher has. Once the cycle is complete, sprinkle a cupful of baking soda around the bottom and run a short cycle using hot water.

5. Put A Lazy Susan in the Fridge

After you’ve cleaned the shelves and thrown out any expired food in the fridge, add a lazy Susan to one or two shelves before putting everything back inside. A lazy Susan will make condiments and frequently used items more accessible. It will also prevent food from being pushed to the back of the fridge and your mind. Say goodbye to spoiled food!

6. Wax Your Stove top

One of the worst things to clean is the stove top, as it’s a frequent offender of cooked on food. After giving your stove top a good cleaning, apply a thin layer of car wax, and then buff it off with a microfiber cloth. Future spills and cooked on food will be much easier to clean up!

7. Clean Your Shower head

If you have a detachable shower head, put it on the top rack of the dishwasher to give it a deep cleaning. If that’s not an option, fill a sandwich bag with vinegar before securing it around the shower head with a rubber band or hair tie. Let the shower head soak overnight.

Armed with these tips and tricks, you’re sure to have the cleanest apartment in Hawthorne Gardens!

How to Create A Stress-Free Work Week

Sacha R - Friday, April 05, 2019

Ever get a case of the Sunday scaries? Once Sunday afternoon rolls around, many people stop enjoying their weekend and start worrying about the week ahead. While we can’t tackle that big presentation you’ve been dreading or put together the report that’s due on Monday afternoon, we can provide some tips on how to make your week a little easier!

Do Your Laundry

Start the week with an empty laundry basket and a full closet. Nothing is worse than realizing Monday morning that all your dress pants or uniforms are dirty and laying on your closet floor. Take a few hours on Sunday afternoon to wash your clothes, sheets, and towels all in one go. Knowing you won’t have to fit laundry into a busy workweek will lift some stress from your shoulders.

Meal Prep

Preparing your meals ahead of time has several great advantages! If you order lunch most days, you’ll save a lot money by bringing lunch from home instead. You won’t have to scavenge through the fridge and spend time putting together a lunch each night either.

Whether you want to prepare breakfast, lunch, and dinner or just one of the meals is up to you. You can also find meals that take only 30 minutes to cook or an hour depending on how complicated and fancy you want your meals to be. Oatmeal muffins, one-sheet meals, and burrito bowls are all quick and delicious meals that will keep in the fridge throughout the week.

Clean Up

While your laundry is in the dryer and your breakfast muffins are in the oven, take 15 minutes to do some cleaning. Vacuum the floors, straighten up your closet and give your bathroom a quick scrub. A clean apartment will make coming home after a long day feel even better.

With clean laundry, meals prepped and in the fridge, and a sparkling clean apartment, you’ll rest easy Sunday night knowing the week ahead will involve a few less chores. Once you come home to your Hawthorne Gardens apartment , you’ll be able to truly relax!

Apartment Gym Etiquette

Sacha R - Thursday, March 21, 2019

One of the many perks of living at Hawthorne Gardens is that there’s a fitness center right in our community! Having a gym on site means you can workout whenever is best for you, whether that’s before work, on your lunch break or after dinner! Just like any gym, you should always keep good gym etiquette in mind so you don’t make the wrong impression or upset other residents. 

Here are some etiquette tips to make sure you get the most of your workout and the fitness center!

Wear the Right Clothing

You should always wear sneakers when working out, not sandals, boots or flats. You should also wear moisture wicking clothing that will keep you comfortable while you’re at the gym.

Limit Your Time on Machines

If the gym is particularly busy, keep your time on cardio equipment to 30 minutes. In addition, don’t place a towel on a machine to save it while you use another. You never know who is wanting to use the same machine or piece of equipment as you.

Rerack Your Weights

Along the same line, make sure you rerack your weights. If you leave weights on the floor someone may not know that you’re done with them. It also keeps the gym looking neat and ensures that no one will trip over dumbbells. 

Keep the Noise Down

Whether it’s loud conversations or unnecessary grunting, chances are that other residents don’t want to hear it. Keep your conversations short and the noises to a minimum. It’s also considered rude by many people to play your music out loud. Make sure you bring a pair of headphones so you can listen to your music without bothering others.

Wishing you had a gym in your apartment complex? Schedule a tour with us today and move into a community that supports your healthy lifestyle!

How to Make Your Apartment Presentable for Company

Sacha R - Monday, March 04, 2019

Does this sound like you: you’re enjoying a quiet day at home when a friend calls to let you know they’re nearby and will be stopping to say hi? All of a sudden, you’re rushing around your apartment to try and tidy up before they arrive. Fortunately, there are a few quick tasks you can do to make your apartment presentable and ensure your guests feel comfortable when they come over.

Clean the Bathroom

This should be the first thing you do. Nothing is worse than having to use a dirty, untidy bathroom.  Give the sink, counter tops, and toilet a quick scrub. Clean the mirror with some glass cleaner and then close the shower curtain. Lastly, put out a fresh hand towel. Five minutes later you have a clean bathroom that smells fresh and is presentable. 

Tidy Up

Fold any blankets laying around, put remotes, chargers, shoes and any other miscellaneous items away where they belong. Of course your apartment should look lived in but you also shouldn’t have it looking like a mess when people come over.

Do the Dishes

A dirty kitchen is the same as a dirty bathroom – no one wants to see it. Clean and put away any dishes you have in your sink or laying around the apartment. Dirty dishes can also make your apartment smell so it’s best to keep up with these on a daily basis anyways.

Light A Candle

A candle is a great way to freshen up your apartment and make it feel cozy and inviting. Be careful not to light one that is too strong, though. Some guests may be sensitive to strong scents. If you don’t have a candle you can spray some air freshener to ensure that your apartment smells nice.

As long as you have a 15-minute heads up, you should be able to tidy up your home in time for guests to arrive. They may love your apartment so much they’ll want to move to Hawthorne Gardens as well. Tell them to schedule a tour with us so they can find their dream home too!

3 Ways to Get More Bathroom Storage

Sacha R - Thursday, February 21, 2019

It seems that no matter how big our bathrooms are, we always need more storage! Between hair products, styling tools, cleaning supplies and makeup, there’s a lot that we store in our bathroom. If you’re looking for ways to create more space and organize your items, keep reading for our favorite tips!

Install A Tension Rod

Tension rods aren’t just for the shower! Install a short tension rod under the sink cabinet to make space for hanging cleaning products. This clears up space to place baskets under the rod for more storage! You can also use S hooks to hang storage baskets from the rod. 

Make Use of Cabinet Doors

There’s a lot of unused real estate on the back of cabinet doors. If you’re constantly wondering where to keep styling tools or small items like nail clippers and combs, head to your local dollar store and pick up a few plastic baskets. Use adhesive hooks to attach the baskets to the doors and instantly create more space. No more wondering where to keep your blow dryer!

Add Shelves Above the Toilet

You can either hang a few shelves or purchase a shelving unit made specifically for this purpose. Whichever method you choose, the shelves will provide the perfect space for extra toilet paper, towels, lotion and perfumes! Bonus: the shelves will make a great statement piece and bring visual interest in to your bathroom.

Is your bathroom too small for even a few DIY enhancements? Contact us today to schedule a tour at Hawthorne Gardens and find your new home!

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