Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Thrifty Habits that Actually Waste Money

Often you think you are being extra frugal, but it turns out what you're doing isn't really saving money in the long run.  Apartment Therapy gives a run down of places where you may be costing yourself money.

Clipping coupons may seem like a great deal, but often you will buy things you wouldn't otherwise have just because you have a coupon for it.  Also, coupons are usually for name brand items which often have a store brand version that is much cheaper than even the price of the name brand after coupons.

Another mistake people often make is always grabbing the cheapest version of something.  This can be a mistake because the cheaper version may not last as long and need to be replaced sooner.  Think carefully about how much the item is going to cost per use or wear and if it will make sense in the long run to go with the more expensive option.

Do It Yourself isn't always the cheapest option.  Think about what materials you will need, as well as what the cost of your time will be, and you may decide that buying an already completed version makes more sense.

Another big thing that may seem cheaper is spending time to save money.  But if you drive all over town to find the best price, was your time really worth a little bit of savings?  Think about whether the money you save is worth the time and effort you are investing.

Looking for an apartment with a cheaper rent so you can save money the smart way?  Give Austin Apartment Specialists a call today at 512-241-1111.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

What You're Forgetting to Clean

When cleaning house, it's easy to forget some things that are usually out of sight.  Apartment Therapy reminds you to clean seven places that usually don't get a good wipe down.

If you have a refrigerator with coils that can be cleaned, do so.  All that dust can keep your refrigerator from working at its best.  Find instructions here.  

If you aren't regularly cleaning your make-up brushes, you are rubbing not only old makeup, but even bacteria over your face on a daily basis.  The solution is to wash brushes with shampoo until the water runs clear and then soak them in white vinegar to disinfect them.

If you regularly skip vacuuming under your bed, like most people, that area is probably full of dust bunnies.  Vacuum under the bed on a regular basis to prevent nighttime allergies due to sleeping in such close proximity to an overload of dust.

Food, toys, change and more collects between and under couch cushions.  Remove cushions regularly and re-home all the missing items, then vacuum to get rid of dust, hair, pet fur, and dirt.

No one wants to clean grout, but the longer you wait, the worse of a job this is.  So go do it now and put it on your regular cleaning schedule to make the job more manageable.

Vent grates tend to gather dust that you don't want being circulated through your home by the air conditioner or heater.  Wipe them down with a microfiber cloth or duster.

Finally, that little groove where the window fits into the bottom of the frame gets all kind of disgusting things in it, from dust to bugs.  So clean them out!

Ready to find an apartment you can put your new cleaning skills to work on?  Give Austin Apartment Specialists a call today at 512-241-1111.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Finding Time to Workout

Think you're too busy to workout or eat well?  Use About.com's tips to make sure you find time for getting and staying in shape.

Make a decision to make time for your workout and then examine what is a realistic amount of time you can devote to your goals.  Then set aside time each day to do your workout, make meals, etc.  Set that time aside in advance and make reminders for yourself so you keep up with the pledge you've made to yourself.  Then do your activity no matter what.

Don't let others sabotage your new habits.  Block that time out on your calendar and plan for things that will knock you off track.  If you need to make sure you have childcare, or that your workout gear is packed, do those things in advance to set yourself up for success.

Don't be afraid to adjust what you're doing if it isn't working for you.  If you just can't get yourself up early to get in your workout, look at whether you can move it to your lunchtime or in the evening.  If the activity you're doing isn't one you enjoy, keep trying something different until you find what you love.

Ready to find a new apartment with a great fitness center where you can set yourself up for success?  Give Austin Apartment Specialists a call today at 512-241-1111.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Decorating for Who You Are, Not Who You Want to Be

A lot of us make the mistake of decorating our home for the person we want to be, not the person we are.  Apartment Therapy's tips help you examine what time of person you are and avoid designing your house for an unrealistic idealized version of yourself.

One of the mistakes people often make is purchasing a giant dining table in the hopes it will make them sit down to dinner or invite people over more often.  Be realistic.  If your family always eats in front of the tv, or if you hate to cook and get stressed out at the thought of large parties, save your money for something that's likely to get use.  Another kitchen-related aspirational purchase is fancy cookware.  If you bake all the time, then go ahead and get the high-end stand mixer.  But if you just make cookies at Christmas, don't waste your money or valuable counter space, on a non-essential kitchen appliance.

Often a reading nook seems like a tempting way to use an unused space in your home, but if you usually read in bed or on the couch, perhaps that spot would be better served as place for storage or a plant.
People often buy exercise equipment with the hopes that they will be inspired to use it.  However, that is usually not the case.  Unless you are already an avid exerciser, don't waste your money on a treadmill thinking the mere purchase of it will make you workout.

A lot of people's fantasies about themselves revolves around organization.  Whether it's getting a container with lots of little sections for small belongings, creating an elaborate filing system, or spending a ton of dough on a high-end closet system, just purchasing the items doesn't mean you will suddenly be organized.  Be realistic about how you live your life and what sort of systems work for you, rather than pigeonholing yourself into an idealized organizational freak that's more fantasy than reality.

Looking for an apartment that's just right for you and the way you live? Give Austin Apartment Specialists a call today at 512-241-1111!