Like many of you, every year we make a list of resolutions and every year we stick to all (okay, maybe some) of them. As we kick off a new year, we want to help make your life at home the best it can be, so we've put together a list of the top resolutions all renters should try to accomplish this year. With a list spanning paying your rent on time to learning a new recipe, these are resolutions you can actually keep.
Here's to making 2014 the most successful year yet.
Meet a New Neighbor
If you need help hanging a print you got over the holidays, want a convenient friend to share a bottle of wine, or you're swooning over your new neighbor who moved into the apartment down the hall, then this resolution is for you. Channel the extrovert in you and knock on your neighbor's door to introduce yourself. If you're feeling a little shy, give your neighbor a knock for a reason (i.e. you're in desperate need to borrow some sugar, can't reach to change your light bulb, etc.). Being a good neighbor has some great perks like having someone to accept a package or water your plants if you're away, and who knows, you might actually make a lifelong friend! So stop falling victim to being the anonymous neighbor and get out there and make some new friends.
Keep Your Apartment Organized
For most renters, keeping an apartment organized and clean can pose quite a challenge. With limitations such as size, shared spaces and minimal incentive to invest in big ticket furniture or storage items, it can be difficult to keep your apartment clutter-free.
Let 2014 be the year when you change status quo of clutter and make a conscious effort to keep your space tidy and live-able! You can find great strategies for getting (and keeping) your rental organized from the founder of NEAT Method, Ashley Murphy, in this post, Ask An Expert: How Can Renters Maintain a Clutter-Free Apartment?
Schedule a Weekly Roommate Night
With holiday festivities behind you, it's time to make your way back into a routine. Before your schedule gets hectic at the start of the year, pencil in some roommate-bonding time! Schedule one night each week where you and your roommates spend time together duking it out on game night, quoting your favorite film for movie night or uncorking a bottle (or two or three...) of wine!
With 51 weeks left this year, you have tons of opportunities to try creative roommate night activities. Besides the standard movie night or game night, try mixing it up once a month and assign one roommate to plan the roommate event. You might try a theme like Taco Tuesday where you all make your own tacos and sip on fresh margaritas, or Workout Wednesday when you transform your living room into an exercise haven with the latest version of P90X.
Pay Rent On Time
Start off 2014 on the right foot with your landlord and make it your number one priority to pay your rent on time -- every month! We know there are endless excuses as to why you didn't pay your rent on time in the past: ran out of checks, forgot to buy stamps, your calendar reminder didn't sync with your phone, and the list goes on. Fear not, we have a solution so you'll never have these excuses again!
This year, automate your monthly rent payments with a service like Rentmatic so you'll never be charged a late fee again. Rentmatic notifies you via email 5 days before your rent is due and automatically pulls money from your account on the due date specified by your landlord. You never have to share your bank account information with your landlord and can rest assured that you will successfully achieve one of your 2014 resolutions with minimal effort. Say goodbye late fees in 2014!
Perfect a New Recipe
Did you get a cookbook by your favorite chef for the holidays this year? Trying to dine out less in 2014? Want to eat healthier? Dying to experiment with new food challenges? Then get ready to explore some new recipes.
If you're a novice chef, start small and focus on perfecting one new recipe that can be your "go-to" meal when you need to whip up something on the fly. If you have a bit more experience in the kitchen, put your chef hat on and try a new recipe every couple of weeks. Keep it interesting and experiment with different cuisines, courses and level of difficulty. Need some inspiration? We love The Kitchn for great recipes and advice on all things food related. Before you know it, you'll be inviting friends (including the neighbors you've met!) over for weekly taste tests.