Move-In Day Necessities

The Woodlands - Friday, June 07, 2019


We feel you, packing up everything you own and moving is a pain. There’s a lot to organize, it’s time consuming, and potentially costly if you need to a hire a team of movers. As hectic as things may be, there are a few things you’re going to want to have on hand almost as soon as you walk through the door of your new place.

Keep the following items in a bag in passenger seat of your car or in an easily accessible box. You’ll thank yourself later!

Checks or Cash

Either you haven’t paid the first month’s rent yet or you want to order pizza for everyone who has helped you move. Either way, there is something you haven’t paid for yet. Don’t think you have it all covered, either. Something is bound to come up that you will have to pay for.

Paperwork

Paperwork is one of the easiest things to misplace. That being said, don’t misplace the paperwork for your apartment. Keep it in a brightly colored folder so you can keep an eye on it and it doesn’t get damaged. Keeping your paperwork handy will eliminate one more thing that can increase your stress.

Toilet Paper and Soap

These two are very easy to forget and very necessary. You’re going to have to use the bathroom at some point before you’re able to head to the store. Grab a roll of toilet paper and that half empty bottle of soap in your bathroom before you move and bring them with you.

A Water Bottle

No one wants to tackle a full day of loading and unpacking boxes without anything to drink. Fill up a water bottle before leaving your old place and then keep it close by throughout the day. It’s going to be a while before you unpack and remember where your cups and glasses are.

Snacks!

Snacks are very important for moving day. You’re going to get hungry, and unpacking, signing papers, and dealing with the people who came to help is a lot to handle on an empty stomach. You can always go out for lunch or order delivery, but having snacks on hand is a lot more convenient. We recommend granola bars, fruit, and packages of nuts.

Ready to make the move but still need a place? Contact us today to schedule a tour!

Organize Your Pantry in Four Steps

The Woodlands - Friday, May 24, 2019


When you open your pantry, does food fall out? Or maybe you’re moving half-empty boxes and bags around until you find what you’re looking for. Good pantry organization allows room for the food you want and need and also allows for you to grab items immediately.

Read ahead to learn how to organize your pantry and stop digging for what you need!

Throw Away Old Food

The first step to an organized pantry is to remove all of the food. Go through and look at the expiration dates. Anything that’s expired (canned and processed foods do expire) should be thrown away. Anything that isn’t expired but that you won’t eat you should put in a box to donate.

Designate Your Space

Make a mental note of how you’d like your pantry to look. You can go one step further if you’d like and actually draw it out. Think about your eating and cooking habits and what will work best for you. Keep the items you use most often easily accessible so you don’t have to dig for the items you need.

Some ideas:

  • One shelf for baking and canned goods and one shelf for snacks and more daily items
  • One side for healthy food and one side for splurges (great for if you’re trying to make healthier choices)
  • Split the shelves up by breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Front of pantry for daily use, back of pantry for occasional needs

Invest in Storage Bins and Extra Shelves

Once you know how you’d like to organize your pantry, go out and purchase some containers and shelving. Consider a spice rack, baskets, canisters for dry food, little shelves to maximize space, and over the door hangers for more storage. Jars or baskets with chalk boards or white boards are useful if you like to label your items.

Commit to the System

Now that you’ve invested time into organizing your pantry, it’s time to commit! Keeping the pantry organized only requires a few extra seconds of your time. When you return things to the pantry, be mindful of putting them back where they belong. Having those storage baskets and shelves with labels will help you!

Looking for more organizing tips? Check out 9 Ways to Organize Your Closet and 3 Tips to Help With Your Spring Cleaning.

How to Improve Concentration at Home

The Woodlands - Friday, May 10, 2019


Even if you don’t work from home, there are undoubtedly times when you need to sit down and get some work done. It could be your taxes, planning a vacation, applying to jobs, or researching a new vehicle to buy. If you find it hard to concentrate on these things while you’re at home, it could be your décor or room setup that’s working against you.

Read ahead to learn how to improve your concentration at home.

Adjust Your Lighting

Lighting can make or break your ability to focus. A lack of lighting can affect your concentration, inhibiting your ability to get your work done. Add lighting that resembles natural lighting, as it’s the most soothing to the eyes. If you can, add dimmers to the lights so you have flexibility as well.

Sit So You’re Facing the Door

When you sit with your back to the door, your brain enters protection mode. It’s on alert for anyone who may enter the room and surprise you, causing your stress levels to rise. Reposition your desk or workspace so you’re facing the door. You’ll have peace of mind that no one will be able to sneak up on you.

Decorate with Brighter Tones

Calming colors like mellow greens and soft blues are great for the bedroom or living room; they’re not good for an office. Softer shades will cause your brain to switch into relaxation mode which is not conducive to being productive. Instead, decorate with brighter colors through pillows, blankets, picture frames and rugs.

Don’t Look at Your Bed

Your bed is for sleeping and relaxing at the end of the day. When you have a view of your bed, you’re more likely to want to take a nap than complete your work. Either move to a different room or reposition your desk so you can’t see you bed.

Don’t Face the Window

Just like facing the bed, facing the window won’t do you any favors. Things are constantly happening outside, even if it’s just a car driving by or someone walking their dog. These constant distractions will ultimately hurt your concentration. Complete the items on your to-do list before heading outside or enjoying the view.

Don’t Use Lavender

Whether you burn a lavender scented candle or use lavender essential oils, the scent is hurting your ability to focus. Save lavender for bed time and use rosemary instead to encourage concentration and focus. The aroma of lavender has also been proven to impair memory; not good if you’re studying!

Put the Electronics Away

Electronics don’t just mess with your sleep, they interrupt your concentration as well. The constant sounds and notifications coming from your devices will pull you away from your work. Electronic devices all emit Electric & Magnetic Fields that affect energy levels and ability to focus. Tuck them away out of sight and take intentional break to check your phone every hour.

The Woodlands is located in a quiet and peaceful community in Latham, NY. In addition to our spacious apartments, we also have a community clubhouse available to residents to gather and work. Contact us today to schedule a tour!

Six Things You’re Cleaning Too Often

The Woodlands - Thursday, April 18, 2019


What if we told you you were cleaning too much? Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? While some items in your home should be washed daily, weekly, or monthly, other items are better left alone. Apply a less-is-more approach to the following six items and spend less time cleaning and more time enjoying your apartment!

Cast Iron Pans

Step away from the soap! Washing your expensive cast iron pans with soap and water after each use will strip away the seasonings that build up and ultimately ruin the pan. With no protective coating, your cast iron will rust and have to be disposed of. 

Instead of soap and water, add half an inch of water to the bottom of your pan and let it come to a boil. Once the water has evaporated, scrape out the food remains with a plastic scraper and wipe dry with a paper towel.

Dishes

Stop wasting time rinsing your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. A dishwasher is there to clean your dirty dishes, not your pre-rinsed ones. Scrape any food into the garbage and then place your dishes right in the dishwasher, no preliminary rinse required!

Jeans

If you’re tossing your jeans into the wash after every use, you’re doing more harm than good. Jeans are made of durable denim and are designed to withstand long periods of time without washing. The material will actually break down and lose shape if cleaned too often! Put your jeans back in the drawer the next time you wear them instead of in the laundry basket.

Your Carpet

The more carpet cleaner, the better, right? Not really… Saturating a spill with carpet cleaner will break the fibers in the carpet down and lead to damage. For a more natural carpet cleaning solution, mix apple cider vinegar with water and keep in a spray bottle.

Wood Furniture

Wood specific cleaners will make your furniture dirtier over time if used too often. When used more than once a month, oil can build up which attracts dust and dirt. Use a microfiber cloth in between more thorough cleaning sessions to remove any dust or dirt from your furniture.

Your Hands

Yes, you’re washing your hands too much! Keep washing your hands after using the bathroom (please!) and before eating or preparing food. Otherwise, keep hand washing to a minimum. Washing too often or using hand sanitizer every half hour will strip healthy, immune-building bacteria from your hands and make you more susceptible to catching a cold or virus.


Looking for more cleaning tips and tricks? Learn 9 ways to organize your closet or how to properly declutter your home!

How to Work Productively from Home

The Woodlands - Wednesday, April 03, 2019


When searching for jobs, one perk that many people look for is the ability to work from home. Having some degree of flexibility and not having a commute are two of the reasons people love working from home. However, as nice as it may be, working from home can be less productive than going into an office every day. 

For a more productive work day, follow these tips!

Plan Your Day

Working from home means you have to be the one to hold yourself accountable on a day-to-day basis. Write out a schedule or a to-do list so you can cross things off and ensure you’re getting work done. Listing out everything you need to get done during the day will give you a good idea of how long to spend on each task as well.

Limit Distractions

Working from home means you’re surrounded by endless distractions. From Netflix and Facebook to dirty dishes and laundry, there are plenty of other things to do while at home. If you’re lucky enough to have a spare bedroom, turn it into an office! Having a designated space to work each day will put you in “work mode” and set you up to accomplish your to-do list.

If you can’t spare a bedroom, there are still actions you can take to limit distractions. Download an extension to your web browser that blocks social media and other distracting websites. Save any cleaning or chores for any breaks you take during the day or for after work hours. Listening to music or a podcast will break the silence in your apartment but won’t distract you from your work.

Take Breaks

Breaks are important, even when you work from home. Set a timer for ten minutes and take that time to wash dishes, switch over the laundry, or just watch a video online. Once the ten minutes is up, your brain will be refreshed, and you’ll be ready to go back to work.

Are you looking for an apartment that will be the perfect place to work from home? Contact us today to schedule a tour and learn more about The Woodlands!

10 Essential Items for An Apartment Emergency Kit

The Woodlands - Friday, March 22, 2019


As much we like to think or hope that emergency situations will never happen to us, they do. Thunderstorms, tornadoes, floods and blizzards can all cause prolonged power outages, creating an emergency you will want to be prepared for. 

Putting together an emergency kit is a great way to ensure you’ll always be prepared. Find a cardboard box or go to the store and purchase a plastic bin big enough. It’s important to keep the emergency supplies in a place that you can get to in the dark. If the power goes out and you don’t have a flashlight, you’re going to want to know exactly where to find one!

You should keep the supplies in the kit at all times as well. If your TV remote runs out of batteries, don’t take batteries from the emergency supply. If you do, make sure you replace them as soon as possible! The following ten supplies are what you should have in a basic emergency kit. You should have enough of each supply to last you and your family three days.

  • Bottled water – one gallon per person per day
  • Non-perishable food – canned goods, energy bars, cereal, peanut butter and trail mix are good options. Keep a manual can opener with the canned goods
  • First aid kit – band aids, Advil, rubbing alcohol and gauze are the bare minimum
  • Flashlight
  • Extra batteries
  • Candles
  • A lighter or matches
  • Power bank – your phone will only have power for so long. Keep a charged power bank on hand so you can still use your phone to call family and check for updates.
  • Hand Crank Radio – A hand crank radio is good to have for weather and news updates. You can find ones with built in flash lights and USB ports as well.
  • Utility knife – You never know when a small pair of scissors, a mini saw or a knife will be useful.

With these ten items on hand, you’ll feel prepared to take on any emergency. Residents of The Woodlands also have the added benefit of having our maintenance staff on call in case of an emergency. 

Five Allergy Relief Tips

The Woodlands - Friday, March 08, 2019


Allergies can occur year-round, however they’re particularly bad for many once the snow begins to melt and the temperature warms up. While avoiding exposure to outside allergens is nearly impossible, there are things that can be done inside your home to provide some much-needed allergy relief!

Change Your Air Filters

Residents of The Woodlands are responsible for changing their own air filters. We recommend changing them twice a year for maximum efficiency and to have the cleanest air possible. 

Dust Often!

No one likes to dust, especially when you have allergies. However, not dusting will leave your apartment a mess and increases the amount of allergens in the air. Dust once a week and then follow it up by vacuuming. You’ll have a cleaner apartment and be sneezing less!

Shower in the Evening

Switch up your routine and shower in the evening. Pollen sticks to clothing and hair so it’s best to shower and change clothes once you’re home for the night. Otherwise the pollen will be on your sheets, furniture and floor, essentially bringing the outside in.

Use Allergy Relief Bedding

Once you shower, slip into a bed that has allergy relief bedding on it. The special bedding keeps dust mites that are in the pillow, comforter and mattress from getting into the air. The bedding also prevents dead skin cells from getting to the dust mites, essentially starving them of their food.

Take Your Shoes Off

If you don’t take your shoes off in your home already, it’s time to start doing so. Pollen will stick to your shoes and spread throughout your apartment if you keep them on. Place a shelf or shoe rack by the front door so you have a designated spot to leave shoes when you come home. It will also act as a hint to guests that you would like them to remove their shoes.

Follow these five tips and you’ll have a much easier transition from winter to spring! For more tips including how to keep your bedroom pillows clean and a complete list of our amenities, contact us today and schedule a tour! 

How to Start an Herb Garden

The Woodlands - Friday, February 22, 2019


If you’re up to a challenge and enjoy saving money on your grocery bill, consider creating an indoor herb garden! In addition to being functional and environmentally friendly, herb gardens also add a pop of color to any kitchen. They can be as easy or complicated to build as you’d like and will provide fresh herbs for years to come! We’ve got some tips for you on how to get started.

Decide How Many and What Herbs You Want to Grow

Are you looking to grow only 3 or 4 herbs or are you hoping to fill an entire wall with them? Also think about what herbs you want to grow depending on what you plan to use them for. This will determine where you start your garden and what you put the herbs in. 

Choose the Best Spot

Once you know how many herbs you want to grow you can pick a spot! A window or large wall are usually the best two options, however there are some things to consider. Low temperatures are not good for plants, so if it gets too cold at night a window sill may not be the best spot. If you choose to use a wall, make sure it still receives enough sunlight. 

Decide on the Best Containers

Some herbs do best in small pots while others need larger ones. It’s also important to pick containers or pots that allow water to drain out the bottom. If there’s no way for the water to drain you could risk over watering your plants and killing them.

Set Up Your Garden

Once you know what herbs you want to plant and where you’re going to make your indoor garden, it’s time to get started! Use a couple of tension rods to hang baskets off of in front of the window. You can also buy a bar cart to fill with your herbs, watering can, extra soil and scissors for when your herbs are ready to be used! 

The possibilities with an herb garden are truly endless, and the result is something beautiful and useful. Need a bigger space before you can start growing your own? Our 1, 2, and 3-bedroom apartments have plenty of space (and light!) that will make growing herbs simple and fun. Schedule your tour today!

5 Things to Measure on An Apartment Tour

The Woodlands - Friday, February 08, 2019


Touring apartments can be a fun and exciting experience! What’s not so exciting is realizing on moving day that your couch won’t fit through the door. To avoid any moving down meltdowns, remember to measure these five things during any apartment tour.

Counter Height

Did you know counters can be different heights? It’s important to measure the counters if you’re looking to buy stools to provide some extra seating. Bar stools are 30”-32” high while counter height stools are lower at 24”-26”. A good thing to keep in mind is that you’re going to want 8’-12” of leg room between the stool seat and the counter.

Widths of Doors

You’re going to run into a real problem if you find out on moving day that your bed frame or couch doesn’t fit through the door. If you take the measurements and realize that’s the case, you’re either going to have to pass on the apartment or buy a new piece of furniture that will fit through the door.

Widths of Hallways and Staircases

We all remember Ross yelling “pivot!” at Rachel and Chandler as they struggled to get a couch up the stairs of his apartment building. Don’t let this be you! A quick measurement of the hallway and staircase could save you hours of grief.

The Size of The Bedroom

If you haven’t caught on by now, most of these measurements are to ensure that your furniture will fit in your new apartment. If you have a king size bed in addition to a few dressers and nightstands, measure the bedroom so you know it will all fit. It’s not the end of the world if a dresser or night stand won’t fit, but if the bed won’t then you may want to rethink renting that apartment. 

Height of the Shower Curtain Rod

While this isn’t an absolute must, it will save you an extra trip to the store! There is no standard height placement for shower curtain rods, only lengths of rods, so be sure to measure! You don’t want to end up with a shower curtain that is too long or too short.


Now that you’re prepared, grab your measuring tape and give us a call to schedule your tour

Design Ideas for Small Spaces

The Woodlands - Friday, January 18, 2019


Stumped on how to style your space? Whether you just moved in or simply want to refresh your existing space, knowing how to decorate smaller spaces can be difficult. There are some tips that everyone suggests, such as hanging mirrors and investing in multi-use pieces, but we’re here to suggest the not so obvious.

1. Clear the Clutter

A great place to start is to adopt a decluttering mantra and clear the clutter. We tend to bring clutter and unnecessary furniture from apartment to apartment and this can quickly make your space feel small. Devote a day to cleaning out your home and watch the space open up!

2. Play with Color

While apartment living doesn’t allow you to paint the walls, there are other ways to use color to brighten up a space. Set a color scheme for each room of your apartment and then go from there. Add pillows, blankets, fake flower and rugs to tie the room together and add visual interest. 

3. Buy the Right Size Furniture

It may be time to ditch the oversized sectional from your college days and invest in a smaller, but better-quality sofa. Cramming too much furniture that’s also too big will make a space look and feel small. It will also have you stumbling around the room as you trip over end tables and chairs!

Spend some time measuring your space and putting some thought in to the pieces you’d like to have in your home. The result will be beautiful and sophisticated. 


4. Use the Space Under Your Bed

The space under your bed can often be over looked. Use the space to store clothes and shoes you aren’t wearing at the moment. You can also store extra blankets, sheets, and pillows in organizing bins.

5. Install A Vertical Garden

The lack of yard is no problem when you install a beautiful vertical garden. The project can be completed with just some steel mesh, an empty wall and a few potted plants. The garden will add color to your space and bring the outside in!

Don’t have a green thumb? We’re sharing some tips on how to keep your plants healthy!

Now that you have some fun ideas on how to style your space, it’s time to design your Woodlands apartment exactly how you want it.

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