Feb 18, 2013

Apartment Living

Home is where the heart is, right?
Here's the result of my weekend beet-stamp cardmaking project. 
We've just signed a lease on an apartment. After ten years of owning our own home why, you ask, are we going back to apartment living? Well, that is a good question. Here are some reasons that quickly pop into my head, although I'm honestly not sure yet how easy this transition will be.

1. Money. We still own a house in Minnesota. It is on the market, but who knows when it will sell. Until that house sells, we are on a tight budget, and an apartment fit that for us. Also, after putting years of time and money into updating our last house only to barely list it for what we still owe on it, I'm not overly confident that buying will ever be the right decision for us again. Maybe, but maybe not.

2. Money. The apartment we found is in a 1920's house. It has all of the aesthetics we like - tall ceilings, lots of windows, wood floors, large rooms - in an area that is really walkable (this house's walk score is 91). Had we tried to get a whole house that met those criteria, we wouldn't have been able to afford it.

3. Money. I really didn't want to move into a place that we would need to buy more stuff to fill. This place is smallish, and once the house sells and we move our furniture here it will be plenty full. I'm hoping that knowledge keeps me from buying home furnishings.

4. Money. I'll be a 20 minute bike ride from work my internship. As such, I'm going to attempt to break up with my car (which I have become thoroughly addicted to in the past two years). If successful, this could save me money on gas, insurance, car repairs, and health bills later in life. I'll try to post successes and failures here as I go.

5. Money. Even if our house sells, the rent on this apartment would help us live within or below our means. That means more money going into paying off our debts more quickly, and once those are gone (will it EVER happen?) more money into savings and retirement. Yippee!

6. Money. And resources. As I've written about before, I love the idea of sharing. I also have a tendency to romanticize things and then be disappointed in the reality. I've always thought it would make so much sense to live in a building with others - sharing heat through walls, only needing infrastructure for one building, living smaller. This move is my opportunity to see if I can actually handle living the lifestyle I imagine myself in. Only time will tell if I will be able to get used to hearing other people walking around above me, running into them in my hallway, and the joys that come with sharing a hot water heater.

I'm searching for sustainable habits for apartment living. If you live in an apartment, how do you make it more sustainable? Suggestions welcome!


  1. That beet stamp card is no joke! 100% valentine's day awesomeness!

  2. Great post! I would use green cleaning products and energy efficient appliances to help me save money at my Harlem apartments for rent.

  3. Great ideas Kris. Green cleaning products are definitely going on my list. My apartment comes with appliances, so I don't know how much I can do there. Perhaps when they need to be replaced I could chip in for EnergyStar. Thanks for the suggestions!