Adding Character to a Box of An Apartment

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Some of us move into an old brownstone or apartment that has unique architecture and decorative details, while the rest of us end up in boxy, boring homes. Fear not, even in the drab world of the cookie cutter, there are ways to make a less than appealing apartment more interesting. Here are some ways you can add visual interest to your New York City home:
 

Change Cabinet and Drawer Pulls

It’s easy to switch out boring standard pulls with something more curious. Try vintage hardware to give the place an older feel. If you’re ambitious, change your hinges or add decorative ones.
 

Paint

It’s the easiest thing you can do to go from drab to well you know how this goes (fab). Paint is relatively inexpensive and an easy solution to make a room stand out.

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Wallpaper

Similar to paint, wallpaper is another easy solution to give a place some character. And remember what’s out there nowadays is not your grandmother’s wallpaper—there are so many unique patterns and choices that your opinion of wall covering is sure to change.

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Add Molding

Take a trip to a home improvement store and peruse their moldings. Once you find something you like that suits the home, install and paint the pieces. Adding molding is a sure way to give a place that European or pre-war look.
 

Get a Mantel  

If your current fireplace has a boring mantel or doesn’t have one, find something cool to install. If you don’t have a fireplace, you can still get a mantel and place against a wall to give your place a cozy feel. Try vintage shops to find an old piece or shop around if you’re opting for something more contemporary.

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Six Reasons Moving to New York in Autumn is Awesome

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Moving is not usually fun: It often involves lots of pre planning, the relocation itself and unpacking. Then comes the fun part, being in a new place, experiencing fresh environs and hopefully starting friendships. We can’t think of a better place to do that in than New York and fall is a beautiful time to be here, partly because the city’s inhabitants are back from their vacation and things are buzzing with fresh activity. Here are six reasons we think fall is a good time to be a green New Yorker:   
 

Weather

The northeast has finicky weather so we never take for granted low humidity, moderate temperatures and abundant sunshine. And you shouldn’t either. Enjoy perhaps our best season (though some will argue that would be spring) and explore the city on foot, taking in all that you can before you’re confined to the indoors in a few months.
 

Theatre, Shows, Music

Fall is the official start of all things performance. Though there are still plenty of shows to see in the summer, concert, plays, musicals and dance performances really start back up in September and October. It’s a great time to browse various venue calendars and pick a few shows to attend.

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Beach

Autumn doesn’t scream beach, but in September and October the ocean is probably at its warmest, making for a good time to take a dip. Also, with kids back in school the beaches will be empty. Oh and the ones that charge, like Long Beach, will be free. See? It’s beach time in New York City.
 

Art

If you’re a gallery goer, you’re in luck. Fall is when many galleries open after a summer hiatus and there will be good art, and arty folks, to be seen. Head on over to Chelsea or the Lower East Side and feast your eyes.

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Sports

If the baseball, basketball or football, are your cup of tea, check out the various venues like Citi Field, Madison Square Garden and Barclay Center to see who’s playing where and how you can get in to watch a game.
 

Parades

You’ve seen them on television. Now it’s time to experience the Halloween and Macy’s Thanksgiving parade in person. Yes, they are chaotic but are fun and you can tell your friends back home you went to them.

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Six Ways to Treat Yourself After a Move

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Relocating is hard work.  It begins weeks, even months before the actual move day. From finding a new place to arranging the move, packing, unpacking and doing the necessary relocation paperwork, it’s an energy-draining task. Once you arrive at your new place, and put everything in its place though, you can breathe a sigh of relief. You can also help yourself recover a little by treating yourself. Here are six ways you can reward yourself post-move:
 

Take a Spa Day

New York City has no shortage of spas. From simple, no nonsense, spas where you can get a quick massage on the cheap to fancier ones where you can spend a day soaking your tired body and drinking juices to replenish, you can find something that will suit your budget and taste. Either way, you deserve a little pampering.
 

Get a New Do

A new home, a new do! That’s right, go for a whole new look to match your new apartment. Get a cut, or a blow out and enjoy that fabulous “I’m looking good” feeling.
 

Take a Break from Kitchen Duty

Don’t bother with cooking or cleaning, go somewhere nice and enjoy a night of being wined and dined. If you’re by yourself, this is a good time to reboot your head, if you have a partner or roommate you can use this opportunity to reconnect without the responsibilities of everyday life getting in the way.

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Get out of Town

You might think the last thing you’ll enjoy is being on the move, but a day or weekend out of the city where you can enjoy a serene landscape—be it the ocean or the mountains—can do wonders for a tired mind and body. Consider the Long Island coast or the Catskills for a quick getaway.  

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See a Show

You’ve been pining to see Hamilton, or The Book of Mormon but like most of us you don’t want to shell out a few hundred bucks. If you have the cash handy, this might be a good excuse to go see the shows without feeling guilty. You deserve it after all the work you’ve put into the move.
 

Buy Yourself Something Nice

Maybe it’s a dress, a set of nice Egyptian cotton sheets or a new vase for your place, no matter; this is a good time to purchase that item you’ve had on your wish list. If it’ll bring you joy, it’ll be a good reward!

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Five Reasons to Move in the Fall

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Fall is around the corner and although it might seem counterintuitive, it’s one of our favorite seasons to move. Here are five reasons we think you might like scheduling your move for autumn:
 

Weather

Similar to spring, fall is undoubtedly one of New York City’s best seasons. Temperatures are mild, there aren’t a lot of rainy days to speak of and it’s just all around pleasant. Schedule a move then and you likely don’t have to worry about sweating or having to struggle with heavy or cumbersome outerwear.

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Less Demand

With many families already moved before the school year, there are less people relocating in the fall. This means you’ll have better luck booking movers and trucks and taking your pick of the best in the business.
 

It’s Pretty

If you’re moving within the northeast, you’ll likely pass by a kaleidoscope of colors while the leaves and scenery change. It’s a trip you probably didn’t think you wanted but will likely enjoy.

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Save Money on Utilities

After shelling out dough for the move, it’s nice to be able to bank a bit of cash. Fall will allow you to do that since you’ll likely not need to use your air conditioning or heat and enjoy what New Yorkers love about the season—that breeze.
 

Enjoy Activities

From Oktoberfest to the start of the art season, it’s almost like the city is back in full swing after the lull of late summer. Enjoy your new surroundings and discover what’s popping up in your neighborhood for the season.  

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Five Moving Pitfalls to Avoid

Five Moving Pitfalls to Avoid

Each year, one in nine people move. If you’re among those relocating, you want to ensure that your move goes as smoothly as possible without too many glitches. Here are common pitfalls to avoid ensuring moving day is as stress-free and risk-free as possible:
 

Getting the Wrong Sized Truck

Like most people, you want to save money on your move but getting a truck that’s too small is the wrong way to achieve this. Save yourself a lot of frustration and reserve a truck that fits your needs. Truck rental companies will tell you which truck is best suited for your apartment size. You can also ask for the truck volume and estimate the total square feet of your boxes to make sure everything fits. Alternatively, you can figure each furnished room will take up about 200 square foot of space. Though it’s important to note that this is just an estimate.

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Not Hiring Professionals

There’s a reason they are professionals. Hiring expert movers can save you stress, injury and time. Look into a reputable moving company and allow them to use time- tested methods to get your stuff from point A to point B efficiently.
 

Waiting Too Long to Hire Pros

Once you know your moving date, start researching moving companies and book the one that fit your needs. Good movers will book fast and so you’ll likely be out of luck if you wait too long.

Five Moving Pitfalls to Avoid


Not Taking Packing Seriously

Packing is the most important prep work one can do for moving day. Don’t wait until the last minute to do this and definitely don’t do this on moving day—in which case you’ll be slowing down the movers and the move and likely costing yourself more money. Start this as early as possible.

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Not Having an Inventory

An inventory of your items will help you make sure your boxes have all arrived at the new place and to determine that nothing was lost or damaged during the move. Save yourself headaches and make an inventory of your items prior to moving day.

 

Four Apps that Make Moving Easier

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We can all agree that moving is stressful—there are many steps that lead to the big day—and if you’re not organized, the tasks can eat up a lot of hours. That’s why it’s important to be prepared and work systematically. One way to achieve this is to use modern technology to your advantage. Moving apps dedicated to moving will help with scheduling, packing, finding the right company to move you and much more. Here are four apps we like:
 

Sortly

This app is useful for organization and inventory. Put together a list of all your items with photos and videos and other relevant info so you know what you have and where to find it. Sortly will also help you with to do lists and dates by which each task needs to be completed. Get Sortly and get organized!  
 

Moving Checklist Pro

When it comes to moving it seems as though there are a million things to remember. In addition to the move itself, you have to do things like change your address, have new keys made and switch physicians. So how do you remember it all? Yes, you can make all the paper lists in the world and hope that in the midst of the chaos you won’t lose them or will remember to look at them, or you can download the Moving Checklist Pro and use its 210 pre-loaded move related tasks to make sure you won’t forget a single errand.

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Cleanly

This on-demand laundry and dry clean service will hook you up to folks who will come pick up your dirty linens and clothes and drop them back off for you. Because the last thing you want to do when you get to the new place is have to wash those sheets before making the bed and getting your sore body to sleep.
 

Magic Plan

Use this handy app and a smart phone to create a floor plan of your new apartment. Then use it to decide where your furniture will go and what you might need to chuck or purchase prior to the move.

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Six Things To Do Before Moving Into a New Home

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Moving into a new home is exciting, albeit a little daunting given the number of things you have to do get your new life in order. To help you, we have a list some basic things you should do before starting the journey in your new New York City apartment:
 

Start Utility Services

Find out the utility companies—such as phone, electricity and Internet providers—serving the area of your new home. Then call and ask them to start service on moving day.

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Forward Mail

Contact the USPS and make sure they will forward your mail to your new address.  This can easily be done via the link provided on their website.

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Find New Doctors

If you’re moving far enough from your old place that you need new doctors, try and find physicians before the move. Check with your insurance company and ask friends and family for recommendations. You can also read reviews of specific doctors online.
 

Provide Change of Address

Provide your credit card companies, bank, and any other institution you receive mail from, with your new mailing address. Make sure to also change your billing and mailing addresses with online retailers you use often, such as Amazon and FreshDirect.
 

Change Exterior Locks

It’s always a good idea to change exterior locks before moving into a new home. You never know who might have key to the previous lock. You can often do this yourself using a drill or a screwdriver, but if you prefer a pro, find a local locksmith.

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Clean House

A thorough cleaning of the new home prior to a move will ensure you don’t have to worry about scrubbing and mopping on the day you have tons of other things to do. You can do this yourself or opt for pros to come and clean for you.