apartment living 101

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apartment living 101, Features, Interiors

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we offer up some tips for couples living together in a tiny pad.

When New York City couples move in together, it often means searching for, or being absorbed into, a modest one-bedroom apartment. For many, taking this plunge will be both exciting (think of all that saved rent!) and excruciating, as sharing a space will mean compromises, fights over housework, and the paring down of personal items so everyone’s stuff can fit.

So for those about to take the plunge—and those who could benefit from a bit more squabble-proofing at home—we’ve culled a list of our favorite self-preservation and storage tips for shacking up in small apartments.

our top tips here

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apartment living 101, Design, Features

12 unique wallpaper ideas for renters and homeowners at every budget

By Elizabeth Finkelstein, Tue, January 31, 2017

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we get tips from historic interiors expert Elizabeth Finkelstein, founder of CIRCA, a curated historic house marketplace showcasing the most beautiful old homes for sale all across the country, and columnist at Country Living Magazine. She’s rounded up some fun, beautiful, and modern wall treatments for renters and homeowners at every budget.

If comparing paint samples makes you blue in the face (yes, there are indeed over fifty shades of grey), why not opt for wallpaper instead? It’s fun, it’s an instant conversation-starter, and we promise it’ll look the same in every light. Grandma’s favorite decorating staple is undergoing a fresh, modern renaissance–and thanks to some innovative artists designing with the renter in mind, it’s easier than ever to install. From peel-and-stick options to those you can roll on with a brush, we’ve rounded up our favorite wall treatments for every budget!

See our top 12 picks here

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apartment living 101, Design, Features

7 easy ways to feng shui your apartment

By Hannah Frishberg, Wed, January 25, 2017

As intangible a concept as feng shui may seem, it all comes down to the basic idea of having a space you’re happy to come home to because its energy is positive. “Feng shui is an ancient philosophy about how you can improve your life and create a space that supports and nurtures you,” explained Anjie Cho, a New York-based architect, author, and founder of online mindfulness design blog and shop Holistic Spaces. Indeed, adjusting your apartment in just a few small and informed ways can make all the difference in the look and feel of your unit and, resultantly, your own wellbeing. Ahead are some ideas you can apply to your space, straight from a pro.

First off, take that mattress off the floor

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apartment living 101, City Living, Features, Interiors

7 tips for soundproofing a noisy apartment

By Annie Doge, Wed, January 18, 2017

Image via Mysqft

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we go over how to bring peace and quiet to a noisy apartment.

Most of us will never get used to the sounds of jackhammers, children screaming, or our neighbors getting a little too, um, frisky on the other side of our apartment wall. But luckily there are several solutions that can help you muffle (or hopefully mute) these urban intrusions—and they’re far easier to implement than you may think. We’ve rounded up some simple soundproofing home upgrades, as well as a couple more robust improvements, that will help you achieve a quieter household.

Get started soundproofing here

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apartment living 101, Design, Features

10 ways to warm up your apartment this winter

By Rebecca Paul, Mon, January 9, 2017

Image via Studio Padron–see more on 6sqft

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we share some tips for warming up your space for fall and winter.

With winter bearing down on us, it can often feel impossible to get warm. But in addition to layering on fuzzy socks and turning up the thermostat (if you’re one of the lucky New Yorkers who has this control!), there are some easy tips and tricks for keeping the temperature and mood in your apartment cozy all winter long Not only is it important to reassess some of our more functional home accessories like bedding and window dressings, but it’s also smart to consider how design can help a space feel warmer and more inviting as we hibernate for the rest of the chilly months.

See 6sqft’s list of winter-ready hacks

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apartment living 101, Design, Features, holidays, Products

10 modern menorah designs for Hanukkah 2016

By Rebecca Paul, Wed, December 7, 2016

designer menorahs, modern menorahs

Our ongoing series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. In anticipation of Hanukkah, we’ve rounded up ten modern menorahs for the design-minded. 

For thousands of years, people all over the globe have been celebrating Hanukkah (a.k.a. Festival of Lights), and this year’s festivities are just around the corner. While the holiday invites participants to join in on a variety of joyful traditions like playing dreidel and eating potato pancakes, the eight-night event is centered around the lighting of the menorah. From emojis and dinosaurs, to elegant branches and minimal blocks, you can find a menorah in almost any style these days—so why not give the ancient nine-tiered a contemporary update? To help you find the right menorah design for your living space, we’ve rounded up ten of our favorite modern takes on the centerpiece.

have a look at all 10 here

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apartment living 101, Art, Features

5 places to buy affordable modern art in New York City

By Lori Zimmer, Tue, December 6, 2016

Our ongoing series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week Art Nerd New York founder Lori Zimmer shares her top five shops for scoring affordable art in trendy Manhattan.

Manhattan is a treasure trove of fine art. The gallery districts have shifted from Soho to Chelsea down to the Lower East Side, populating each neighborhood with clean white walls and a rotating collection of pieces from a roster of painters, sculptors, and mixed media artists. Although viewing the art the city has to offer is free, taking a piece home can be a major hit to the wallet. I’ve rounded up a list of great places in Manhattan to not only see art, but to also buy art affordably. Kickstart your burgeoning collection, or find a unique gift, at one of my picks below.

5 spots to score great art here

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apartment living 101, Features, stuff you should know

A guide to tipping building staff during the holidays

By Cait Etherington, Mon, December 5, 2016

Doorman at the Sherry-Netherland Hotel. Image Steven Pisano/flickr

Every December, building staff across the city leave seasonal cards under residents’ doors. If you’re new to life in a full-service building, don’t be fooled—this card is not simply a chance for staff to extend holiday cheer to you and your family. These cards, which usually arrive in the first week of December and list the names and years of seniority of all building staff, are the first reminder that it is tipping season. While no one is obliged to tip, whether you’re a renter or owner, choosing not to tip is discouraged.

Ahead we go over everything you need to know about tipping, including the economics of it all, when to leave it, how much to give, protocols for renters versus owners, how to present your tip, and what not to give.

A COMPLETE GUIDE FOR TIPPING AT CITYREALTY….

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apartment living 101, Features, More Top Stories, real estate trends

6sqft’s ongoing series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week, now that the city is in high renting season, we’ve researched the best resources for finding a no-fee apartment.

More than half of New Yorkers spend 30 percent or more of their income on rent. Tack on a broker’s fee that could be as high as 15 percent of an apartment’s annual rent, and that burden becomes even worse. Thankfully, there are more and more resources popping up to find no-fee rentals. Aside from the go-to listing aggregators, there’s now roommate-share options, lease break sites, artist-centric search engines, and good old fashioned networking. 6sqft has put together our 12 favorite options, along with the basics of each so you can figure out what will work best for you and how to prioritize your search.

Check out the full list here

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apartment living 101, Design, Features, Green Design, holidays

Our ongoing series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we’ve rounded up some alternative holiday tree ideas for those living in tight spaces.

While you could buy a Charlie Brown tree, or try ask to have a few feet knocked off that pine when you hit the register, if you’re a small space dweller who wants a more eco-friendly holiday arbol this year, there are plenty of options for you beyond the classic artificial fir (which fyi is even more environmentally unsound than chopping down an evergreen thanks to the carcinogens produced during manufacturing and disposal). From edible trees to LED pines to DIY options that smell just as good as the real thing, 6sqft has searched high and low for 10 different types of sustainable Christmas tree alternatives to jazz your apartment up with this year—and years to come.

ten alternative ideas here

Featured Story

affordable housing, apartment living 101, Features, Policy, real estate trends, renting 101

affordable housing

Image via Brad Clinesmith/Flickr

Affordable housing is one of the hottest topics in the real estate market these days. It all started with Mayor de Blasio’s plan to preserve or build 200,000 affordable units over the next ten years, which has resulted in a slew of new lotteries for below-market rate apartments, putting his goal ahead of schedule. And let’s not forget the expiration of the controversial 421-a tax abatement, which provides incentives to developers when they reserve at least 20 percent of a building’s units for low- and moderate-income tenants. But despite the buzz-worthy roll affordable housing has been on, many are still left wondering what exactly it is.

Everything you need to know about affordable housing

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apartment living 101, Features, real estate trends

No, you don’t have to suffer in a sub-zero apartment this winter, nor do you need to dine with mice and roaches in your kitchen during the summer. If you’re one of the many constantly finding themselves up in arms over a negligent landlord, rest assured there’s more that you can do beyond grumbling to your friends. Indeed, in NYC tenants have a lot of power, and the city has established a number of regulations to protect you, your family, and especially young children living in rental properties. Ahead is 6sqft’s list of the most common problems New York renters face—and some advice on how to get those issues fixed quickly.

Your rights here

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apartment living 101, Features, Green Design, Interiors, Top Stories

The 10 best plants for apartment dwellers

By Rebecca Paul, Mon, September 12, 2016

the best plants for apartments

Our new series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we tackle the issue of growing plants indoors when both space and light are limited.

From purifying the air to making your apartment feel more welcoming and alive, there are a multitude of reasons to incorporate plants into your home decor. However, for many of us, keeping these precious specimens alive can be a small but legitimate challenge—especially when space and natural sunlight is limited (like many apartments in New York City). To make the commitment to caring for and sustaining the life of greenery a bit easier, we’ve put together this list of special and very sturdy plants perfect for apartment dwellers like yourself.

Read more

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apartment living 101, Features, Interiors

10 easy ways to give your rental kitchen a makeover

By Diane Pham, Tue, August 30, 2016

rental kitchen makeover ideas

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we’ve got tips on how to give your rental kitchen an inexpensive makeover.

For renters, the kitchen is often the least attractive area of their home. And this is especially true in NYC where landlords often turn to the cheapest finishes, built-ins and fixtures they can find in order to save a few dollars. But even if your apartment ultimately won’t be your forever home, there’s no reason suffer through an interior design nightmare. Ahead 6sqft highlights 10 easy and affordable ways to transform a ugly rental kitchen into a chic space—all without putting your deposit at risk.

Our 10 tips here

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apartment living 101, City Living, Features, real estate trends

6sqft’s ongoing series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week, we cover everything you need to consider when raising chickens in the city.

In a city where simply finding a balcony large enough for a pot of basil can be a challenge, one may be surprised to discover that chicken coops can be found across all five boroughs. Chickens were once primarily kept by older city residents, including many who come from places in the world where a backyard supply of fresh eggs is taken for granted. More recently, everyone from Park Slope housewives to Bushwick hipsters appear to be embracing the backyard chicken craze.

More on Raising City Chickens

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apartment living 101, City Living, Features, Products

Barbecuing in NYC, grilling in NYC, indoor grilling, best grills

6sqft’s ongoing series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week, we provide a comprehensive guide to indoor and outdoor grilling in NYC.

Nothing says summer like a perfectly charred burger or buttery ear of corn, but for many New Yorkers these warm-weather goodies are reserved for weekend jaunts to the suburbs or sub-par restaurant versions. If you want to get in on the grilling action without leaving the boroughs, there are plenty of options to barbecue both outside and in. It’ll just require a little insider knowledge of the city’s rules and regulations, so to help in the process, 6sqft has done the research, as well as put together handy tips and some of the best products.

Things are heating up right this way

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apartment living 101, City Living, Features, Green Design, Interviews, Technology

fred maxik of lighting science

Studies have shown that getting a good night’s sleep is critical to keeping one’s self happy, healthy and fully functioning. But with advances in technology, modern humans have increasingly found themselves typing and swiping into the wee hours of the night without any regard for what time it is. Unfortunately, exposure to light before bed can have serious negative effects on our body, messing with our circadian rhythms and suppressing our ability to produce melatonin—the hormone that controls our sleep and wake cycles. But beyond feeling tired and irritable the next day, not getting enough sleep also has tremendous long-term effects that include, but are certainly not limited to, depression, immune stress, weight gain, premature aging and disease. Luckily, there are researchers out there harnessing the power of the light spectrum to engineer light bulbs that work with our bodies and environment, rather than against them.

To help urban dwellers sleep better, we tapped Lighting Science Group founder and Chief Technology Officer Fred Maxik to learn more about the challenges we face when it comes to city and indoor light, as well as for some tips on how to improve health, productivity, sleep, and even happiness by simply switching bulbs. Lighting Science is one of the world’s leading LED manufacturers and they’ve worked with everyone from NASA to national sports teams to the creators of the Lowline Underground Park.

Learn more about what lighting is best for your home and health here

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apartment living 101, Features

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we’ve rounded up tips on how to get rid of and deal with mosquitoes this summer. 

New York’s hot and humid summers bring all sorts of agony, but the bites of unrelenting mosquitoes may be the worst of all. While in past years these buzzers haven’t been much more than a itchy nuisance, this year, the Zika virus has everyone on high alert. In February, the World Health Organization declared the virus a threat to public health across the globe. To date, no vaccine exists.

As of June 8th, there have been 133 cases of Zika reported in NYC. However, the species of mosquito spreading Zika (the Aedes aegypti) has not yet been spotted in the city and all cases caught the virus while abroad. Nonetheless, with a potential threat looming, the city has launched a campaign to get New Yorkers to do their part (maybe you’ve seen the ads in the subway?), which includes tips on how to prevent the mosquito population from propagating. Ahead we’ll cover some of the same ground, on top of other tips to keep mosquitoes from entering your home and attacking your body—because any way you look at it, mosquito bites are no fun!

What you can do, this way

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apartment living 101, Features, Products

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. This week we’ve found products that can help turn your fire escape into a mini warm weather oasis. 

If your fire escape is the closest you’ll get to a backyard this summer, fear not–6sqft has dug up some products that will turn this tiny space into much more than a place to set up some potted herbs. From grills to desks, we’ve found six clever items that require nothing more than the railing of your fire escape. Of course, consult your lease and talk to your landlord before installing them (technically putting objects on the fire escape is illegal, however they’re becoming a thing of the past due to safety concerns), but once you get the go-ahead these designs are sure to maximize your outdoor enjoyment.

See them all this way

Featured Story

apartment living 101, Features, Products

6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. Now that Memorial Day is behind us, and the temperatures are only going to get higher, we put together the best products and tips for keeping your apartment cool this summer.

If you’re not one of the lucky ones who has central cooling in their apartment, the summer months can be a challenge. A regular old fan won’t always do the trick, and traditional wall-unit air conditioners are bulky, hard to install, loud, expensive to run, and often associated with health risks such as respiratory issues, headaches, and skin irritation. If you’re looking to try something new this season, 6sqft has rounded up several products and innovations perfect for keeping apartment dwellers from sticking to the sheets when the mercury rises. We’ve also put together a list of tips for those who want to go completely off-the-grid and for those who simply can’t give up the wall unit, but want to be less wasteful.

Get it all this way

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