If you invite family and friends over to your apartment for Mother's Day, Father's Day, and other occasions and your apartment building has an intercom system, don't forget that it's not just a convenience. It's primarily a security feature, allowing you to check who's trying to gain entrance to your building and only buzz in people you know.
It's risky to just buzz in everyone as your party begins, assuming each person must be one of your guests. Instead, play it safe by using the talk/listen feature of your intercom to confirm the identity of visitors before buzzing them in. Find out more intercom security tips to help ensure you stay safe.
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If you're planning a move, there's a good chance you've hired professional movers to help you get all your belongings to your new apartment. Of course, you pay the movers for their services, but should you also tip? If so, how much, and does it have to be all cash?
Apartment Guide released the results of a new survey that sheds light on what others do when it comes to these questions of moving etiquette.
The survey found that the vast majority of respondents (71%) tip their movers, although opinions varied as to how much of a tip is appropriate. The plurality of respondents (39%) said 10% is the right amount, while 22% of respondents suggested 20%. Also, almost everyone surveyed (88%) thought it's a good idea to offer your movers food, with 8% going as far as providing a meal.
What amount of tip, if any, do you believe is appropriate to tip professional movers?
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Every apartment building has potential safety risks. But fortunately, you can avoid, or at least minimize, your risk of facing danger by proactively learning how you can spot common hazards and what you can do to steer clear of trouble.
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Housing discrimination comes in many forms. It may be subtle or even the result of a well-intentioned act. In my new book, Fair Housing Helper for Apartment Professionals (Hillocrian Creative, 2013), I aim to unravel all the legal complexities in plain English for landlords, property managers, leasing agents, and staff so that they can avoid even inadvertent discriminatory practices at their apartment buildings.
As a renter or apartment dweller, you can get familiar with your rights under fair housing law. This way, you can spot violations and know what steps you can take to try to remedy an unfair situation if you believe you've become the victim of a fair housing violation.
Here are the basics of what every apartment dweller should know about housing discrimination.
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Perhaps you've got a lot of clothes, books, or files you can't get rid of. Or maybe you're a collector. Whatever the reason, if you have too many belongings to store or display in your living space, you'll need an apartment that offers extra closet or storage space.
Apartment Guide analyzed rental listings by square footage of closet and assigned storage space and came up with a list of top cities that offer the most. If you're looking to move to a different city and you have above-average storage needs, you may want to consider these metro areas:
- Phoenix, Ariz.
- Dallas-Ft. Worth, Tex.
- Kansas City-Lawrence, Mo.
- Omaha, Lincoln, Neb.
- Houston, Tex.
- Atlanta, Ga.
- Salt Lake City, Utah
- Denver-Boulder, Colo.
- Sacramento, Calif.
- Triangle, N.C. (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill)
If you're currently living in an apartment that doesn't offer the number of closets or amount of storage space that you need, what are you doing to compensate? Here are some ideas to help you do more with less.
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May is widely considered "National Moving Month," the start of an increase in moving that peaks in July or August. If you're one of the estimated nearly 40 million Americans who plan to move this year, here's some help to make accomplish a smart and safe move:
- "Get Answers to Logistical Questions to Ensure a Smooth Move." Get all the information you need about your new building so you don't have to reschedule your move at the last minute or face some other hassle that will add to moving-day stress.
- "Guard Against Moving Theft by Accepting Help from People You Trust." Unfortunately, if you're not careful, people who offer to help you with your move may take advantage of their easy access to your personal belongings and make off with your valuables and important items.
- "What You Must Pay When You Sign Your Lease." Paying movers is just one expense you'll have when you get the keys to an apartment you can call home.
Need more help to plan your next move? Diane Schmidt, the About.com Guide to Moving, shares timely tips and more.
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Very often, tenants complain about their landlord not responding promptly to repair requests or refusing to handle problems with difficult neighbors. While there are many unresponsive landlords out there, it's also true that there are many landlords who care about running a successful property and maintaining good relations with tenants.
Do you have a landlord whom you believe is great when it comes to providing services or responding to your concerns? If so, what has your landlord done to make you feel more at home? Here's a chance to share your story!
- Get Results from Your Landlord
- When to Negotiate Rent With a Landlord
- How to Deal With a Bad Neighbor
- My Terrific Landlord
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Tenants who play piano in their home sometimes get complaints from apartment neighbors who say they're disturbing the peace and quiet that they're used to. If you've been considering buying a piano for your apartment, it's possible you've hesitated because you're worried it will create problems with those who live around you.
But there are ways you can enjoy this musical endeavor without coming across as a major nuisance.
Here are neighborly considerations for apartment pianists you should check out.
- How to Be a Neighbor-Friendly Apartment Pianist
- How to Deal With a Bad Neighbor
- Share Your Bad Neighbor Story
- Apartment Neighbor Basics
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Have you been told that you're an outstanding roommate?
If you believe your roommate skills are top-notch, consider entering Apartments.com's fifth annual Roommate of the Year contest. Through May 20 at noon, submit a short, two-minute video that makes the case for why you should be named America's Best Roommate in 2013. You could win the grand prize of $20,000 -- $10,000 cash plus a year's rent (of $10,000) -- or one of four runner-up prizes of $500 each. Or, submit a thirty-second video for the second annual Roommate Video Shorts contest, which aims to reward smaller feats of roommate greatness, by noon on May 15 for a chance to win one of four weekly prizes of a $250 gift card.
To enter the main contest, you must choose one of four categories, including The Loveable Compulsive, The Purr-fect Pet Owner, The Environmentalist, or The All-Star Roomie.
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As authorities hunt for the second suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing, hundreds of thousands of residents have been ordered to shelter-in-place.
If your apartment building becomes subject either to a shelter-in-place or an evacuation order, it's important to understand what it means and take the order seriously.
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