According to Global Workplace Analytics, telecommuting has increased almost 80 percent since 2005! And while working from home has many perks (hello flexible schedules and cutting commuting costs), there can be days where it’s very difficult to find the motivation and/or energy to get anything accomplished.

home-office

Below are a few ideas for boosting the natural energy (and mood!) in your home office.

Add a Gender-Specific Touch

Are you a woman with style? Bring a feminine touch to your home office with pastel-colored furniture and accessories. When you live in a small apartment, it’s important to utilize all the space you can, so try showcasing your favorite books on a vertical shelf next to an elegantly curved desk or go for attractive simplicity with just a computer and some good lighting. The key is to keep colors and textures balanced, while maintaining comfort.

On the other hand, if you’re a man, your office will likely double as a man cave. Include dark furniture with more rustic or deep hues like forest green or ashy grey. While, you likely don’t want to include any distractions such as a TV, you should surround yourself with images of fishing, hunting or other hobbies that you love.

Regardless of your preferred aesthetics, its not about pretending you’re in an office. Instead, take some creative liberties and make a pleasant and inspiring working environment where your dreams can become a reality.

Beautify Your Surroundings

Oftentimes, people get caught up in work and pleasing clients, but what about your own comfort, energy and mood? Take a look at your home office space: is it cluttered and dusty or neatly organized? Aside from a little tidying, consider adding personal touches like photos of your pets or family. If there’s a specific image or quote that you like, frame it. Then, bring the outside inside with flowers or other greenery, as having an office plant can boost creativity by 45 percent and productivity by 38 percent, according to a 2013 study conducted by by the Identity Realisation research group at the University of Exeter.

Go For a Walk

When you’ve been sitting in your office, eyes glued to your excel spreadsheet, it can be difficult to remember to get up and get the blood pumping every once in a while. One of the best natural energy boosters? The sun! Being outdoors helps reduce the levels of stress hormones we have in our bodies, while also increasing our levels of serotonin and energy levels, reports Mayo Clinic. Try scheduling two 10-minute blocks on your calendar every day, even if its just to sit outside and soak up the warmth.

Don’t Forget the Snacks

When your energy falls into the red zone, don’t just reach for caffeine. You don’t have to scrap your daily Starbucks run, but keep some alternative, out-of-the-box options stocked in your pantry.

  • Whole Grains: breakfast is the time for packing in some wholesome carbs. Consider eating whole-grain cereal and a slice of toast with breakfast. Just don’t OD in the grain department, more than six servings (even of the good stuff) can leave you sluggish.
  • Edamame or soybeans: these are high in energizing nutrients, particularly vitamin-B. Snack on a handful as a source of good fiber and protein, but try to limit the salt.
  • Trail mix: to avoid excess sugar, make your own! Just combine all your favorite nuts, such as pistachios, almonds or peanuts with pumpkin seeds and dried fruit. Add in some pretzels to pack in a few more fueling carbs.
29
Sep

Have you recently just landed your dream job, or maybe your spouse has? Or maybe you are just looking for a fresh start. Congratulations! This is an exciting time for you and relocating should be the least stressful as possible.

So the question is where do you start?

relocatingDoing your research is going to be fundamental. You are going to want to research new apartment homes, your finances, and ways to meet new people. Once you have accomplished that, everything else will be a breeze.

Finding Your New Home

Aspen Square Management manages several communities all over the nation. Be sure to visit our website to schedule a tour at one of our incredible apartment homes near your new city. If you are not able to find a new place with Aspen Square, no worries there are still several other amazing places to call your new home. ­­­­Before you start your search, be sure to write down what exactly is important to you in your new home. Try to avoid using a locater service that can be super pricy. Looking at online reviews can be a great tool for deciding on your perfect place.

Facing Your Finances

Big changes like this can be terrifying and a huge unexpected expense. You do not want to find yourself with empty pockets in a new city. The key words here would be: plan ahead! Make a spreadsheet of your anticipated new income and what you believe your new monthly expenses will be. This will keep you organized and able to decide what you can and cannot afford. Knowing the cost of living in your new area can be resourceful. Visit this site for more information: Living Wage Calculator

Meeting New People

The first step is learning to enjoy your own company and explore your new city on your own. There are several ways to meet new people; you just have to be willing to take that venture. Rather you are an introvert or a social butterfly, meeting people in a new city can be difficult. Do your research by searching local attractions or reach out to your new neighbors and co-workers. Once you have established a social network in your new city, you will begin to feel better about your new situation.

They say home is where the heart is but home can be anywhere you feel the happiest. Take time to really get to know your new area to appreciate it and learn to love it. Beautiful memories can come out of relocating.

 

Pine Lake Apartments in Palm Coast, FL was voted “Best Around” by the readers of The Flagler/Palm Coast News-Tribune for the Apartment Community category!  Pine Lake Award-Readers Choice We are committed to maintaining a standard of excellence and preserving Pine Lake as a place our residents are proud to call home.  Our always smiling faces and willingness to go above and beyond for our residents have paid off!  From the efficiency and talent of our maintenance staff, to the kindness and generosity of our office staff, we always strive to be the best at what we do.

It is sometimes as simple as picking up a rent check for a resident who isn’t feeling well, dropping off a package, or answering a late night service call.  We offer great opportunities for our residents to get to know each other such as our monthly community breakfast and summer “dive-in” movie. 

We like to ensure that all of our residents are comfortable and happy in their apartment homes by offering a helpful move-in gift, and following up to make sure everything in their apartment is perfect!  We appreciate all of our friends and residents in the community who voted for us!  We feel so honored to have won this award, and hope to win again next year!

Moving can be a stressful task, especially if you are not a routine mover. First you will need to ask yourself if it is really worth the move. A cardinal rule is that moving costs a lot of money but sometimes it is something that just has to be done. You might get lucky enough to find an amazing deal or you might find yourself with empty pockets after the move is over. Either way you want to plan ahead and make sure you are prepared for and if you’re not, just stay put.box face

Here are 7 useful tips that every renter should plan for before they decide to move:

1. Plan Ahead

If you are in the market for a new home, then you will definitely want to prepare yourself to start getting ready to move at least 30-40 days prior. Be sure to give the proper notice required by your current contract to your property manager to avoid costly fees.

2. Can you Afford to Move? Be Sure to Budget for Extra Costs

Moving sounds like a great idea until the costs start adding up. Sit down and calculate what your moving costs will be before you make that leap. We all know that things come up and stuff happens; you just want to be prepared to spend a little bit more.

3. Are You Going to be Happy in Your New Place?

Have you sat down and really compared the pros and cons of your new living situation to that of your current one? The last thing you want to do is move somewhere that you are not going to be happy at. This is not a decision about what you are going to eat for dinner; this is going to be your new home!

4. Do You Have a Moving Plan?

How will you move? Do you have family, friends, maybe even co-workers that could help you? If you are planning on hiring movers, www.movingguru.com is a great head start on figuring out how much you need to budget into your cost of moving for movers.

5. Find Free Moving Boxes and Pack Beforehand

Save some money by finding free boxes and start packing right away. Waiting last minute to start packing can be a major disaster. If you are paying hourly for movers, this can be a huge money saver. If you are having friends help, this can be a huge friend saver. Also, packing beforehand is the perfect time to get rid of what you do not need by donating or selling it online. Tip: Most package stores have free boxes for anyone to grab.

6. Calculate How Long it Will Take You to Move

If you are not someone that can fit everything in one to two car loads, you are going to need help moving. Be sure to have all of your moving arrangements lined up well in advance. If you are not hiring a professional moving company, it is imperative to make sure your friends are free for your big move.

7. Make a List and Check it Twice

If you are a list maker, that is perfect! If not, moving can be the best time to become one! Be sure to plan out your moving itinerary and try to stick with it. It will make everyone involved in the move less stressed and a smoother transition for you. PS—be sure to put in your change of address with the USPS.

Check with your local pizza delivery providers; some will even give you a free pizza coupon on your moving day. This would be a great treat for everyone to sit down and relax after a long day of helping you move.

09
Sep
stored in: Apartment Advice and tagged:

Not every roommate situation will turn out like the sitcom, “Friends”. Deciding to rent an apartment with a roommate rather than on your own can be tricky. It can also turn into a great situation for you and your future pal. It is important to understand and initiate roommate etiquette prior to making that leap of faith with a new roommate.friends

You are starting this new journey together, so begin your experience with an “in-it-to-win-it” attitude. You will not know if you are picking the right roommate until you have actually lived with that person; however, you can prepare yourself and set up rules and boundaries from the very beginning to help prevent a possible feud.

Steps for avoiding roommate conflict:

  • Make sure you find an apartment space that works! You want to make sure that you still have your own privacy, and you are able to express yourself in your new home.
  • Be upfront about your must-have’s and your will-not’s. Everyone has annoying habits so sitting down with your roommate to communicate each other’s expectations is imperative to a healthy friendship.
  • Be considerate of each other’s personal property. One of the biggest perks of living with a new roommate is that you can share each other’s stuff–the key word is sharing. Don’t borrow something without asking and be sure your roommate is on the same page with borrowing your belongings.
  • Money matters! You don’t want to chase after your roommate every month for their half of the bills. Make sure your prospective roommate can afford their portion of the bills.
  • Finally and most importantly, be respectful. Follow the Golden Rule and treat your roommate how you want to be treated. Find someone that has that same outlook as you.

What is your advice for keeping peace with a roommate?

Your parents and grandparents most likely found their first home the old-fashioned way: They called the owner or real estate agent, made an appointment to see the property and then closed the deal in person. Today, the whole process can be done remotely, if desired. From meeting the real estate agent or landlord to touring the property and signing the documents, technology is streamlining these steps and enabling buyers, sellers and agents to do things remotely and on the go.tech-image

Bridging the Space/Time Gap

Real estate agents can show clients properties using video conferencing capabilities and online tours. Facetime, Skype and Google Plus Hangouts bring agents, landlords, buyers and tenants together without having to bother with travel or geography.

Tablets like the iPad Air make it easy to use real-time video technology to show homes and apartments. Agents and landlords can go room to room “together” or walk around the front and back yards, holding up their tablets with the video on so clients can see size, details, landscaping and other important factors in sales and leasing. Buyers who don’t have their partners with them can do the same, remotely showing them every aspect of the places they are considering.

Going Digital = Less Paperwork

Mobile technology has cut a lot of the wait time out of real estate transactions and eliminated much of the paperwork. Agents no longer have to go back to the office to finish paperwork; they can simply manage these deals on the go. Two products we like:

  • DocuSign enables agents, buyers, sellers, landlords, and tenants to sign documents from anywhere from any device. They are no longer tied to a file folder of paper documents.
  • NuOffer enables real estate agents and buyers to quickly and easily draft offers and counter offers on the spot, with direct access to the Multiple Listing Service so all the property information is easily accessible. Another benefit of digital document management is the electronic audit trail, which virtually eliminates lost paper.

No More Circling Apartments with Red Pens

Social media is the new way to learn about apartments you may be interested in. Platforms like RentSocial, CrashPad and StreetEasy enable you to see how listings, read reviews, join discussion boards and even find a roommate.

No more searching the Sunday classifieds or driving through neighborhoods you want to live in looking for apartment communities. Go online and use services like Zumper to find available listings in the zip code you specify. See street views, floor plans, amenities, monthly rental charges and other information before you contact the property manager. Compare apartments in different locations quickly and easily.

Get the Gadgets

Realtors have a variety of tech gadgets to make it easier to show properties and make deals. The EyeSee 360’s GoPano Micro attaches to an iPhone to shoot panoramic videos for listings, virtual tours or Skype showings. The Lytro Illum is a light-field camera that enables users to take pictures in motion, then focus them afterward. The Xerox Mobile Scanner lets users scan on the go without having to plug in to anything.

Let’s face it – apartment living isn’t just about the apartment home you are renting; it is about the perks that come with it! However, choosing the perfect apartment community that fits your lifestyle is not always a walk in the park. Before you begin your apartment hunt, create a list of what you are expecting out of your ideal apartment community.pool

There are several amenities to consider when finding your perfect place; some are obvious and in plain view, while others are require some thought and are usually based on past rental experiences.

Here are the top 5 most requested amenities from a typical renter:

  • Private Balconies
  • Pool
  • Fitness Center
  • 24-Hour Emergency Maintenance
  • Gated

However, that’s not all that should be considered. Here are the most overlooked amenities that ultimately matter the most:

Attentive Management

Having to rely on others to handle what you do not want to comes with the territory of renting. An attentive management team is very important when considering your new living arrangement. When you have issues, you want to make sure they are handled in a timely manner. Be sure to check www.apartmentratings.com or www.yelp.com prior to your move to give you the most insight beforehand.

Dog Runs or Pet Parks

With the required leash laws of most cities, as well as a pet policy at most apartment communities, having a dog run or pet park is essential when helping your pet exercise and burn off any excess energy.

Pay Online & Submitting Service Requests Online

Paying online and being able to submit service requests online is probably one of the most convenient features an apartment community can offer you. You can do both from the accessibility of your cell phone while sitting on your comfy couch at home.

Covered or Garage Parking

Mother Nature is unstoppable, so protecting your vehicle from the elements is important. This also guarantees you a parking spot close to your apartment home at a crowded community.

Business Center

Our personal computers can crash at the worst time. Having a business center allows you to finish your project or search information without being delayed.

What apartment amenity means the most to you? Be sure to check out the apartment communities Aspen Square has available in your area. Aspens Square Management communities are known for having the amenities that matter!

 

Are you marking off the days on your calendar until Football Season? Good chances you are since football is one of America’s favorite pastimes! From the NCAA to the NFL, football is a BIG DEAL! The question is, how are you going to host your Sunday Night Football get together in your apartment home? We have a few tips & tricks just for you!

Pre-gaming and finger foods are kind of like spaghetti and meatballs; you can’t have one without the other. To fulfill your guests’ football night appetite, a crock pot is a must have! For mouthwatering recipes, can you say Pinterest?! Delicious dips, beef tips, and ribs are just a small number of things that you can put together quickly with your crock pot. It also will make your apartment home smell like bliss!

Once you’ve got your food out of the way, next is your seating arrangement. Entertaining can be a little difficult in apartments sometimes. Prepare ahead of time by clearing the room and creating a seating arrangement for your entire guest list. Short on seating? Folding chairs or bean bags are an easy fix! You don’t want your guests to have to sit on an uncomfortable bar stool all night, plus folding chairs are easy to store.

Lastly, the most important thing to consider when planning for your get together is noise level. When it comes to football, there’s a lot of screaming, yelling, and cheering (maybe even crying). You have to make sure your guests keep this to a minimum and be considerate of your neighbors who may not be football fans. Consider creating a new way to cheer on your boys by using hand gestures or facial expressions.

NOW… Who’s ready for some football!?party

There is no denying it is summer time—especially if you live in the South! If you are like most, you are searching for ways to cool off your apartment home without racking up a high electricity bill. Luckily, it is possible to keep your apartment cool without it costing you a lot of money, plus it is good for the environment!

fan

1. Turn off all electronics and appliances. Basically, this means anything that is origins of heat that you do not desperately need to use should be unplugged. This will not only help with cooling off your apartment, it will save on your electric bill.

2. Open your windows for fresh air and use fans to create circulation. Fans can actually make a room feel up to 7 degrees cooler and use much less electricity than your air conditioning system.

3. If you absolutely want to run your air conditioning, be sure to cover your windows. Insulated curtains do the best job of keeping your apartment cool.

4. Be sure to have your AC filter changed frequently and close off unused rooms. This will maximize your air conditioning’s efficiency.

5. Drink lots of water. This not only helps you from becoming dehydrated in the summer heat, it helps your body feel cooler. Try drinking at least 8 ounces a day and adding lemon or mint leaves to make it more refreshing.

If nothing else, you can use this website to countdown the days until Christmas time!

What tips and tricks do you use to beat off the summer heat???

Show off your style in your new apartment home without breaking the bank or any of your community manager’s rules!  Apartment home renting can be an excellent choice for avoiding property taxes and home repairs, plus it offers great flexibility with location. However, it can also be a little challenging when trying to show off your style in your new place without risking your security deposit.

Here are a few tricks to make your apartment a home while staying within a budget and not upsetting your apartment manager:

Creative Curtains:

Looking for something to tie back your curtains with?  Have you ever thought about using bracelets?  Put your rarely used accessories to use as curtain tiebacks and placing them around your curtain panels!   curtains

Removable Wallpaper:

What?! This stuff actually exists and is perfect for renters!  This website has a plethora of different options to choose from such as floral, graphics, chalk board, etc. http://www.chasingpaper.com.

Put Some Paint On It:

Did you parents give you a dresser that they have had since 1960?  No problem!  Save money with a fresh coat of paint on it and call it brand new!  A dresser created by you is the perfect way to show off your style! This also helps add some of your own personal color touches to your apartment home without having to paint the walls.

Good lighting:

Place a few lamps around your apartment home and transform your room into a canvas to show off your décor. Get creative and budget friendly by purchasing a vintage lamp from a garage sale and adding a fresh shade. This is the perfect piece to convert your apartment into your own sanctuary.

The Bigger, The Better:

Enlarge your space by adding a mirror or two.  Group several mirrors together or add a floor length mirror to make your space feel taller.  Mirrors can be one of the best tools to make your spaces look
much larger than they actually are.

mirrors

Share your ideas on how to show off your style in your new apartment home on a budget!