Guys, can we get really hippie for a minute? (lights incense, crosses legs and sits on the floor)
Most of us spend the majority of our time in our homes. We eat here, sleep here, share secrets here, fall in and out of love here. When we have a living space that makes us feel safe and supported, just about everything in life goes smoother. We’re on time to things, we’re well-rested, we even spend less money going out because we actually like being at home!
Now, there are lots of lovely, decor-based things you can do to make your space feel amazing (here are my favorite ways to decorate on the cheap). It’s just as important to make your space safe and uncluttered and make sure you understand your rights as a tenant.
Here are 8 ways to show your home you love + respect it!
1. Make sure your space is really, actually safe
Do you have a deadbolt? Do you have a safety chain on your door? Do you have a peephole? Do you have a carbon monoxide detector and a smoke detector? Do they really work? Do you have a non-slip mat in your shower? Are your knives sharp? (Not because you’re going to use them to protect yourself but because dull knives are more dangerous)
Do you know a few of your neighbors? Do you know where the nearest urgent care/emergency room/police station is? It sounds alarmist and mom-like, but it’s all super important!
2. Clean out your fridge at least once a month
It’ll keep things from getting to gross, it’ll help your fridge run better (thus lowering your utility bill), and it’ll give you a clue to the foods you keep buying and not eating. I’m looking at you, kale.
It would also be nice to spring for some of those fancy glass storage containers. You don’t have to worry about them leaching chemicals into your food and since they’re clear you’ll never be to lazy to open them and see what’s inside.
3. Turn over your mattress and sofa cushions
Obvious. Easy. And yet I always forget to do it.
It’s demoralizing to paw through tons of clothes you hate every morning. Who needs to be reminded of bad dates and old jobs via blazers and mini skirts? I certainly don’t. Let’s make a pact to pare down to just the things we know + love + wear regularly (and we all know that’s about 20% of our wardrobe.)
Then let’s slowly, carefully fill in holes in our wardrobe with things we lovelovelove. Not just something that’s okay, or something that’s on sale, or something that we got as a gift.
5. Get renter’s insurance
6. Actually read your lease + know your rights
I’m sure I read my lease before I signed it but at the moment, I couldn’t tell you where my copy is, how much notice I have to give before moving, and if I need to paint my accent walls back to white before I move out.It’s also important to know your rights and responsibilities as a tenant.
I’ve had to reference MN renters rights and responsibilities website more times than I care to count and even call their hotline before (because no, I’m totally not covering the cost of that damage we both know was here when I moved in.) Just give the site a once over to make sure you’re not getting screwed.
7. Make a copy of your keys and give them to a trusted friend
Because it’s a million times easier to walk to a coffee shop and wait for your friend than it is to call a locksmith.
8. Stock your kitchen with the makings of a few easy, cheap meals
I’m always buying fancy, weird produce for a complicated recipe, forgetting about it while it rots, and eating popcorn for dinner. I bet I’d be better off if I kept some frozen peas and rice on hand for sweet pea risotto or used up my can of chickpeas on this casserole. Of course, fancy soups and steam-in-the-bag frozen vegetables are always good, too.
How do you go about maintaining + managing your home? Leave your favorite tips + tricks in the comments!
photo credit: zara walker // cc
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