how to choose the right apartment

Moving is hard enough, so don’t give yourself problems off the bat. Before you start looking, think about what it is you’re looking for.FIRST: what’s most important for the apartment; size, location, rent, natural lighting, finishes, outdoor space…
SECOND: what’s most important for your lifestyle; area for proper home office, room to entertain, room for a queen size bed…

Living within your means financially is often talked about, but what about living within the physical means of your space? If you have hundreds of books, dozens of shoes, or records, think about where you would store/display them when looking at a space. If you have a lot of stuff, don’t get a tiny apartment that you’d have to pack to the rims to hold everything.THINK ABOUT
– If you have especially large furniture, how will it fit in the new space? Will it limit how you can set up the space?
– If your television is important, don’t pick a layout where the sofa can’t be directly across from it.
– If you’re bad with space planning don’t pick something with a weird layout.
– If you have trouble visualizing, take someone with you who is.
– If you have a limited budget and lots of stuff, make sure the space has proper storage so you don’t have to buy all new storage furniture.

For example in my own search, rent and location were the most important things. After that when I saw this apartment I knew the clean open layout would help to keep the small space feeling larger than it is, it had great natural light and the view of the trees in the backyard were the final selling point. And this is a small building (5 apts) not run by a management company, I have greater leeway to make the changes/installs I want. 

q + a: constant moving + staying organized

(me a couple weeks after I moved into my current apt)

samia asks “I’m all about organization as well, but so far am not that successful with my endeavours coz we are frequent movers; as frequent as six months or worst 2 months. It’s just my hubby and his projects… dont ask! Any tips or advice as I’m frustrated with my efforts to organize but still losing things and you know failing…

Moving is truly the worst, so I feel your pain. Sounds like you need to take the time to properly edit and sort all your belongings. I’m guessing from moving so often, there are boxes that stay unpacked which says you probably don’t need a lot of the things you have been dragging around with you. Editing down will not only make your life easier where you are now but that much easier when/if you have to move next time. Note: be respectful of your husband’s things and don’t edit his things without his permission! You wouldn’t want him doing it to your things.
Sort your things together (all kitchen, all office, all memorabilia, all clothes, etc) and figure a way to store them where you are now, and reuse these techniques for the next place. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel when setting your home up each time.
As far as your husband’s things/projects, is it possible to keep those things separate so they aren’t in your way? When working with couples I separate the storage for their personal things; things that aren’t shared like clothes, personal memorabilia, hobby materials. It’s so important to have some areas of the home that’s yours only.
If you find yourself having to move again, here are a couple of good resources for you: Real Simple and the Gilbert Guide.

another note about packing

While packing I found out how filthy the apartment really was. Not only because of the BQE outside but my landlord was doing construction on the floor above me before I left and didn’t think to plastic off the area, and even though I have those plastic strips along the bottom of my door (which I put in the first week I lived there), that contractor dust was everywhere!!

Not wanting any of that dirt coming into my new place, I washed just about everything I owned; all my dishes, decorative pieces, furniture, and almost all my clothes which are mostly hand wash and dry clean only. But considering the changing season, I would have have a lot of cleaned anyway (but not this much, I should have gotten a security deposit from her, not the other way around!). So before the move I took my coats, clothes, and the silk curtains to the cleaners which helped lighted my moving day by about 5 large shopping bags. 
But even for those who don’t live in an obviously dirty place, just living somewhere for a while, you don’t realize how dirty you things can get from just sitting there, especially things that aren’t being moved around a lot like curtains. I remember I did the same thing when I moved the first time from the place I lived for almost eight years.