redecorating

Plan It: 5 Apartment Decorating Tools We Love

By | Apartments, Decorating, New Apartments

Photo Cred It is that time again… time to freshen up your wardrobe and living space! Spring is coming and whether you’re simply rearranging or full on redecorating, let’s be honest, bringing your Pinterest dream board to life can be daunting and pricy! And we know you don’t have time or money to be wasting. Don’t get discouraged, there are wonderful tools, diy projects and tricks to make any space feel like home. Plus, redoing your space has even emotional benefits, as it can be cleansing and therapeutic (especially after a traumatic event or break up). So, instead of hoping your space comes together after endless prayers to the almighty decoration gods (West Elm and Ikea), check out these tips to help make any space your own and get’r done! 1. Personalized 3D Designs Photo Cred The world continues to amaze us with all the new technology and apps that help make life so much easier. We know not everyone has the means to hire an interior designer, but most wish they had the professional help breathing life into their apartment decoration dreams. Apps like Modsy and Havenly allow you to get professional help without the hefty price tag. It costs just a small fee and is so simple! Take a style test online, upload pictures of your space and boom! you’re partnered with designers that create photorealistic renderings of what your space could look like after they’ve styled it. Once you pick a favorite look, get links to buy the…

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Downtown Houston

Move To Houston?

By | Apartment Locators, apartment pools, Apartments, Houston, Moving, New Apartments

Photo Cred Moving to Texas is becoming more and more popular by the day! So, if you haven’t already heard Houston is one of the fastest growing cities in America then you’re probably living under a rock. In the past four years, over half-a-million new residents have come to call Houston home, making it the number two fastest growing city. While we at Smart City Houston are biased (H-Town represent!), we chose 3 reasons out of a magnitude on why you should call Houston home in 2019. 1. The Cost of Living Photo Cred Though our cost of living is increasing, Houston is far less expensive compared to the cost of other big cities in America. We pay less in taxes, so you take home a higher percentage of your paycheck meaning more money to play with! Our grocery stores also offer insane savings (H.E.B. where you at?) and our gas prices remain below the nation’s average. 2. The Weather Photo Cred If you live in Houston already, you’ve gotten used to sporadic rainfall. However don’t fret! Houston weather is pretty warm year-round. With only two months of chilly weather, Houstonians can enjoy pool time most of the time. So, put those snow boots away, and stock up on sunscreen! 3. The Amount of Apartments Photo Cred No need to worry about private rentals here! From mid-rise, to high-rise to garden styles, Houston has an abundance of apartments. Houston is taking in the influx of new Houstonians by building new…

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sharing a kitchen with roommates

Split It: How To Share Treats

By | Apartments, Drinks, Food, Renting, Roommates

Photo Cred If you’ve ever googled, “How to share a kitchen with your roommate”, you probably read articles on sharing chores. Not many of these articles talk about the most important part – treats. From sharing food, to cooking food, we’re breaking down the top three kitchen rules for roommates when it comes to food and sharing it. 1. Roommate food sharing list Photo Cred It may seem petty, but creating a roommate food sharing list is a total must. This is a list of kitchen treats that are shareable between all in the apartment. Things not included in this list are clearly off limits. If this is unclear for some reason, create a separate, “Do Not Touch” list. Place these lists on the fridge and pantry. While labeling your items help, having a “Sorry I Touched It” money jar can help you and your roommates stay accountable during times temptation takes over. 2. Roommate cooking schedule Photo Cred One chef in the kitchen is great, two chefs in the kitchen can start to feel claustrophobic and we all know what they say about threes. Scheduling or asking for meal prep/cooking time in the kitchen can help reduce many kitchen catastrophes. 3. Sharing a fridge with roommates Photo Cred This may be the most important rule of them all. Considered the holy place for all things cold and stored, the fridge. Remember these three things when it comes to sharing the fridge. If it smells foul, throw it away. If it’s…

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5 Things You Should Resolve To Do For Your Apartment in 2019

By | Apartments, Decorating, New Apartments, NYE, Renting

Photo Cred Refreshing and upgrading your life is what New Year’s resolutions are all about, but what about your apartment? While you make preparations for the new you, don’t leave your space on the back burner. Here are a five things we think you should resolve to do differently this year with your space. Resolve to tidy up more effectively and efficiently Photo Cred According to the Cleaning Institute, though most Americans spend six hours a week cleaning, many don’t know if they are cleaning enough, if they are cleaning correctly or where to focus their cleaning efforts. We recommend spot treatments and maintenance on a daily basis and deep cleaning a section of your apartment once a week–don’t forget things like dusting the ceiling fan or cleaning the baseboards! With small and consistent effort, you’ll always have a tidy place to come home to. If you’re not convinced, here are the best cleaning practices backed by scientific research. Resolve to never be late on bills again Photo Cred Adulting is hard, and worrying over rent, utilities and other bills can really dampen the mood. If you’re no stranger to late payments and skipping a bill to pay on another, we proudly declare, NEW YEAR, NEW YOU! Pro tip: Creating spreadsheets and calendar reminders can help you stay on top of all of your bills and keep you accountable. First, make a spreadsheet of your total expenses: this includes all your bills, debt, subscriptions and survival needs – ie transportation,…

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holiday decor

Upgrade Your Studio: Holiday Decorating

By | Apartment Locators, Apartments, Christmas, Decorating, studios, Things to do for Christmas

Photo Cred It’s the holiday season, so whoop-de-do, hickory dock and don’t forget to hang up your sock… or not. For those moving into or already living in an open floor plan studio, decorating for the holidays may seem daunting. With a lack of dedicated rooms, you may be wondering where you should put your freshly cut tree, that tray full of glittery plastic balls or your jars of fake snow. Lucky for you, we got you covered! Here are a few holiday themes to give you some ideas! Minimal Photo Cred For those who aren’t looking to do much cleaning after the holidays, a minimal approach may be the one for you. Picking only a few pieces that can hold their own regardless of the season is key. Subtle color changes can also go a long way for setting the tone. The best part is, this theme can be year round with no effort at all. Traditional Photo Cred If you like seeing ornaments hanging, holiday music blaring– a general reminder of what time of year it is, then stick that tree in the middle of your apartment because seeing is believing with this theme. Though a little more work, you can make your decor the center of attention in your studio, or you can keep it to the kitchen. Do what you need to do to set the mood. Bright Photo Cred Lights, lights and more lights. Brightening up a space with Christmas lights always works wonders. It also…

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ultimate guide

The Ultimate Guide To Renting

By | Apartments, Renting, Ultimate Guide to Renting

When do I start my apartment search? What questions should I be asking? What exactly qualifies as a good deal? These are legit questions concerning apartment hunting. There’s so much that goes into finding a place to call home (at least for a year) and sometimes those little things can slip through the cracks and come back to bite you in the butt later. Whether you’re a first time renter or an all time pro, renting can be tedious, overwhelming and just plain annoying, but we’re here to help! Our Ultimate Guide to Renting is broken down into easy to read sections, especially for the skimmers (you know who you are), and covers everything from pre-search prep to move in day! So, sit back, grab a snack and let’s kick some rental ass! 01. Prep Work Before you deep dive into the abyss of internet apartment searches and start scheduling tours, you need to figure a few things out first: Your budget: What can you comfortably afford with your current income? Apartment complexes typically require that you (or the combined household) make an annual income of 3x the monthly rent. But we gotta go a little further and ask that even if you qualify, would spending $1600 on rent every month starve you to death? …we’re not into that. The size of the apartment: One, two, three bedrooms? Figuring out what size apartment to rent depends greatly on your needs, your lifestyle and how many people will be living there. Roommates:…

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The Top Seven Things Covered in Nov. 7th Q and A

By | Apartment Locators, Apartments, Houston

On November the 7th, Smart City Apartment Locating’s Houston Office held a live Q&A via Instagram, answering the questions of its followers. Incase you missed it, here’s a quick recap! 1.What is apartment locating, why do I need a locator and how much does this service cost? Apartment locating is when a person searches for apartments for you. Instead of spending hours online or on the phone with countless properties, you can have a locator do all the dirty work for you. A locator conducts searches 40+ hours a week to find the best prices the market has to offer. It’s their job and it’s FREE. Like a fiduciary, locators are supposed to search for apartments that fit your needs and wants. The only thing you have to do is write the locating company and name of the locator that helped you find the apartment when you lease! 2.Why did Cassie start Smart City Apartment Locating and how is it different from other apartment locating services? Cassie started Smart City Apartment Locating when she posted a deal on Instagram that was so outrageous, it seemed to be a mistake. From that moment, Smart City was born. She and her team of locators dedicate their time to finding you the best prices in desirable areas through hyper-personalized searches. Along with that, one of Smart City’s core values is integrity. They believe that if they wouldn’t recommend an apartment to their  family or friends, they shouldn’t recommend it to you. 3.What is the…

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Upgrade Your Studio: The Kitchen Of Endless Possibilities

By | Apartments, studios

Studios are great! You can find great options in prime locations, but the open layout can leave one confused as far as decor and product placement goes. On this edition of upgrade your studio, here are 5 great ways to maximize your studio kitchen! 1.Vertical or hanging garden Photo Cred Greenery is in, free food is never out. Hanging herb gardens and vertical vine fruits can be a great touch to your kitchen and can save you big bucks. 2. Multi-functional kitchen furniture Photo Cred It’s a total mouthful, but getting furniture that has more than one use is essential for studios. Dress up sturdy wooden boxes into bar stools. That’s storage and seating all in one. 3. Turn corner of your kitchen into a work station Photo Cred If you’re like the vast growing part of America, you work from home time to time. If your studio comes with an island, a bar, or a nice enclave, you can make that section work as an extended office. Through a Keurig in the corner and call it coffee shop. 4. Shelves or mirrors Photo Cred Adding shelves maximizes storage options and adding mirrors makes your space look bigger. You can check yourself out while grabbing something from your shelf. 5. Containers Photo Cred Mason jars, glass jars, box containers, cups, bottles, the list goes on. Containers add uniqueness and can house ingredients and utensils. Get containers with cool patterns or colors the fit your style! Every studio has the potential to feel…

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The Ultimate Moving Checklist

By | Uncategorized

No one likes moving, but sometimes an opportunity that you just can’t pass up presents itself, and the only way you can take advantage of it is to move. The Houston area is one of the fastest growing cities in the state of Texas, which means more people are moving there every day. In case Houston is on your list of cities to consider, we’ve put together the ultimate “Moving to Houston” checklist to help make your move a little less stressful. Step One: Find an Apartment You want to have somewhere to live when you get to Houston so that you don’t have to spend days or weeks in a hotel while you search for a new house or apartment. Start by figuring out your living expenses — establish a baseline using your city’s median rental rates. In Houston, the median rental rate as of October of 2018 is $1,082 per month, but that cost can vary dramatically depending on your needs. For instance, a studio apartment will cost you around $784 a month while a three-bedroom home will cost an average of $1,434 a month. Make sure you aren’t budgeting more than 30 percent of your income for housing costs. If you’re moving to the city for a new job, try to negotiate a relocation package with your new boss. Once you’ve found a potential rental, take some time to research the neighborhood — things like walkability, public transportation, shopping, restaurants and nightlife can all help you determine…

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Moving Boxes

7 Signs You’re Ready To Live On Your Own

By | Houston, Roommates

There comes a time in one’s life when the urge to have your own place fills your every waking thought–like, after your roommate leaves their dishes in the sink AGAIN! The luxuries of going solo are pretty sweet. No more mysteriously vanishing food or the unsolicited “borrowing” of your favorite jacket, and definitely no need to wear pants (praise be). While living on your own has major perks, it also comes with some serious responsibilities. Wanting your own place and being ready for your own place aren’t exactly the same phase of life. So, before you lock in that lease, consider these seven things a diploma on the readiness to live by yourself. 1. You can afford it. Photo Cred This sounds harsh, but evictions aren’t sexy and definitely don’t boost your dating profile. Calculate your expenses. Figure out how much you spend monthly vs. how much you make monthly. This is a good way to gauge how much spending power you have when looking for your own place. 2. You aren’t scared to sacrifice. Photo Cred You may have an idea of the ideal unit for you, but you aren’t afraid to sacrifice granite counter tops for an easier commute to work at a reasonable price. For you, it’s all about the bigger picture and getting the best bang for your buck. 3. You have a furniture/home goods plan. Photo Cred We all have that friend that moved out and slept on an air mattress for six months, and…

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