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Factors to Look Into when Looking for Apartments for Rent in Boston

Moving to a new apartment is a painful ordeal. There are simply a lot of considerations to look into. The same can be said when looking for apartments for rent in Boston. But don’t fret, you may just glean some useful ideas from our years of experience in helping clients grab the perfect home for them in this great city of Boston.

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Crowdsource. It’s still easier to ask from people you know about apartments for rent anywhere. Information could be passed along easier that way. And with social media, you can ask a lot faster and get information quicker. Within minutes, you could get any information you need. Check among your circle of friends to see if any of them or their friends live in Boston.

Price Comparison. Very often, it’s tempting to grab the first offer which is already within the budget you’ve worked out. But hold your horses. There’s a lot to consider when comparing prices. Just because an apartment rents for $200 cheaper than the other doesn’t mean it gives you the best deal. Price comparison involves considering other costs such as transportation and other living expenses. What you should really be looking for is the overall savings an apartment would give you on a monthly basis.

Reliable Realtors. It’s always very easy to fall for sweet talkers. Which is why we recommend talking to as many realtors as possible to get a feel for the way you’re being treated. Most often, sweet talking agents are just there to make quick bucks without really looking after your needs.

Proximity. Where do you want to rent in Boston? Near the city or within the suburbs? Living near your workplace could net you the best savings in the long run. However, living too close to the city could jack up your overall cost quickly, because apartments for rent in the greater Boston area tend to increase faster than in other areas.

We would like to help you look for the best apartments for rent in Boston. For more information, call us at 617-777-6109 today.

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Shopping Around for Apartments for Rent? Consider These Points

In today’s economy, it seems that for most people renting an apartment is the way to go. Which is why apartments for rent in Bostonapartments for rent are on the rise, and realtors are shifting their focus from selling apartments to renting them.

If you’re in the market for apartments for rent in Boston, here are a few things you should consider:

Setting the Budget. Like most other things, cost is the primary consideration when looking for an apartment to rent. Conventional wisdom taught us that you should allocate about 30 percent of your annual income for housing. That’s the usual benchmark anywhere, including here in Boston.

Set Yourself Up as a Reliable Tenant. Nothing turns landlords off faster than an unhealthy financial situation from prospective renters. Prepare yourself for the inevitable. Landlords will ask for financial proof such as bank statements, checkbook, references, and, sometimes, credit scores. Be sure to have these in order before setting out to talk to prospective landlords.

Ease of Access. This is stating the obvious, but starting your search in areas near your work would be great. Renting in a location near your workplace could boost your savings overall. But if the location of the apartment, however near to your workplace, is highly commercialized, you’d probably be better off living a bit farther away if it would put more dollars into your savings.

Ask a Lot of Questions. Before meeting a prospective landlord, be sure to have a list of questions that you want to ask about the apartment ready. You’ll definitely have some more questions as you inspect on-site, but you’ll save yourself and the owner a lot of time and get all the things you need quicker.

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Creating Your Own Little Indoor Garden

Having an indoor garden has multiple benefits. You’ll have a gorgeous lush green setting all year round, boston condos gardenenjoy a relaxing hobby, which is considered to be among the top stress fighters, and give a unique feature to your home. It is possible to start and keep an indoor garden even if you live in a condo simply because you don’t need a huge amount of space for this. Most condos for sale in MA can fit such a special feature. Check out the basics to get started.

Designate a Special Area

You can readily use a corner section which is right next to a window. Ideally, the windows will face south. The living room, kitchen and dining area are all great places for creating a garden. The area that you decide to use for the indoor garden doesn’t have to be big as you can stack the plants on racks and shelves. However, it is best if it is on a tile floor as water and fertilizer which may accidentally leak can damage hardwood and carpet floors. One solution would be to cover the area with a solid linoleum or vinyl rug or rugs.

Design the Garden First

Most people choose to have a set of small or medium-sized plants, but you can include tall ones too, provided that you have enough floor space for bigger pots. Decide on how many levels your indoor garden will have. You can have a shorter and wider rack if you don’t want to block the view from your window. With careful planning, you will achieve a great result without having to make compromises.

Plant and Container Buying Tips

Consider the average temperature in your home and the amount of ambient light which the plants can get to decide on which species to buy. You will discover that most modern condos for sale in MA are warm in the winder and cool in the summer. You should also consider the amount of care required by the different plants. If you are a busy person, you would want to start off with something simple. While most people are naturally fascinated with flowers, you can seize the opportunity to grow your own herbs.

Choose the size of the containers depending on the plants which you will grow. While the plastic ones are cheap and functional, the earthenware pots are undoubtedly more beautiful. You can easily make them part of the home decor.

Finally, be sure to get a stable rack and a sturdy set of essential gardening tools to use for your indoor garden all year round.

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Is Buying a Condo Good Investment?

With a growing number of new developments, there are more and better condos for sale in Boston. They buying a condo in Bostonseem like a lucrative investment, but it’s worth evaluating this option in greater detail before you go for it. Here are the essential factors that you need to consider.

Building Equity

Traditionally, condos have been known for increasing their value at a lower rate compared to single-family homes, but this trend is reversing. Among the main reasons for this is the growing demand for smaller and more affordable homes which come with exclusive community amenities like security, children’s playgrounds and sports facilities. This is especially the case in bustling cities like Boston where there are many stronger selling points of properties than space, with perhaps the most notable one being location.

Rental Potential

You don’t have to be a real estate expert to come to the conclusion that condos for sale in Boston have a huge rental potential. The population of the city is constantly on the rise with many young professionals flocking in to work in the healthcare and other growing industries. Condos are much more appealing to this segment of the rental market compared to single-family homes primarily because of the factors mentioned above – location and amenities.

The other major factor which you have to take into account is that demand has traditionally exceeded supply in the Boston rental market and this trend is expected to remain in the long term. This naturally pushes rental prices up and the inventory is practically always low. This results in high and stable rental income and extremely small, if any, gap periods during which you won’t be generating income.

Challenges to Consider

Perhaps the major challenging factors when it comes to buying a condo is the association fee which the owner has to pay for the maintenance of the common areas. It may add considerably to the property expense ratio which lenders take into account when reviewing mortgage applications. This, in turn, can make it more difficult for you to obtain the loan amount that you want at the most affordable interest rate. Your best bet is to do calculations to get your financial position sorted out. In general, you should always include the association fee when determining the total monthly expenses of condo ownership.

Conclusion

Should you invest in one of the condos for sale in Boston? The city is among the 20 best places for real estate investment in the United States in 2017, with home prices marking an increase while still being undervalued.

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The Latest Smart Devices for Your Luxury Apartment

Boston ApartmentsFor quite some time now, luxury has been more than lavish finishes and designer furniture. It’s also about using the latest technology for maximum comfort and perfect indulgence in your home. If you are among the owners or renters of luxury Boston apartments who are looking for ideas on how to make their place more upscale, consider some of the trendiest smart devices for homes.

Amazon Echo

This is the ultimate gadget for automated homes so it makes sense to place it at the top of your shopping list. Amazon Echo is a Bluetooth speaker whose purpose is to serve as the central hub for all other smart devices in your apartment. It is powered by Alexa, the voice assistant of the brand. Thanks to it, you just need to tell your smart devices what to do and that’s it. Forget about pushing buttons and going through lengthy instruction manuals. It’s easy to setup commands with this advanced voice assistant.

Lutron Serena Shades

You can schedule when the shades will open and determine exactly by how much. This is a great way to get a gentle “wakeup” push in the morning and to ensure that you will make the most out of the rare sunny days during the winter in Boston. You will be able to control your shades remotely via an app even from the other side of the world. Voice operation with Apple’s Siri is also an option.

Somabar Robotic Bartender

You love cocktails, but you can’t put time and effort in making them, especially when you are throwing a party for your closest friends at your luxury apartments. Somabar eliminates the need for hiring a mixologist. Choose a cocktail from your app and you’ll get a list of the ingredients to add to the dishwasher-safe pods. Then the bartender will do the work for you. You just need to place a glass under the dispenser and wait a few seconds for the perfect drink.

Neato Botvac Connected

With this smart vacuum cleaner, residents living in Boston luxury apartments will never have to consider hiring a housemaid. It has a state-of-the-art navigation system which uses lasers to detect even the tiniest dirt accumulations. Then it simply goes there and removes them. Thanks to the U-shaped design, it does a superb job in cleaning corners. As its name hints, Botvac Connected has built-in Wi-Fi so you can take control over the cleaning via an app on your smartphone.

The only thing left is to let the coolest smart devices spoil you.

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How to Maximize Storage Space in Your Apartment

The reality is that modern people have lots of stuff and even those living in luxury boston apartments with a good amount of storage space are eager to get more. This is perfectly possible even if you are living in a one-bedroom rental or in your very own studio. You just have to be creative. The following tips and tricks have been proven to work.

Shelves Are Your Best Friends

Consider adding more to your closet and in the living room and bedroom and even the kitchen. When you buy bookshelves and cabinets, go for taller models. The addition of shelving is the most effective way to maximize storage space, especially in a tight apartment.

Get Furniture with Storage

In the living room, you can use ottomans, coffee tables and even couches with storage space. Take advantage of such pieces of furniture. You should not expect the integrated storage compartments to interfere with the comfort or aesthetics which you would expect to get. You can also opt for beds with drawers. Alternatively, if there’s free room under your bed, then get beautiful baskets in a matching style that will fit underneath and make full use of them. The situation with desks is similar. If yours doesn’t come with a chest of drawers and/or shelves, add them yourself.

Use Racks in Your Apartment

A coat rack may not seem like a big space saver, but it’s convenient for keeping bulky coats and jackets so you have more room in your closet. You can also use racks in the kitchen for hanging towels and cooking tools. The bathroom racks are also extremely functional. You can easily find models which can match the style even of the most modern luxury apartments Boston.

Be Creative and Bold

Some of the most unusual solutions for maximizing storage space actually work astonishingly well. If you have an old fireplace in your apartment, which you don’t use for getting warm during cold New England evenings, it can be turned into storage space. You can keep books and/or boxes with various types of items in it.

Another fabulous option is to set a not particularly deep, but tall bookshelf right behind your bed. This is how to get more functional space in addition to what your nightstands offer, if you have any. You can use the shelves for keeping books, cosmetics and anything else that could be useful to you.

To take full advantage of the ideas for maximizing storage space in apartments shared here, apply them directly or use them as inspiration to keep your space in order.

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Choosing Accessible Apartments for Rent in Boston

When considering different apartments for rent in Boston, there are always two important factors to consider in addition to the size, layout and amenities of the unit. These are the location and the commute. It’s great to be able to get to work or to your favorite restaurant in minutes without having to hop in a car or use the public transport. However, this opportunity comes at a price. That is why it is worth looking at the various rental options which you have when it comes to accessibility.

Getting Around Using Public Transport

The MBTA public transportation network includes the subway, which is popularly known as the T and has 3 lines, 14 commuter rail lines, 112 bus lines and 3 ferry lines. The majority of neighborhoods in Boston are covered by the subway system. The ones which are further away from downtown have commuter rail transportation. The bus system is very extensive with its main role being to cover the areas which don’t offer walking distance to the T or railway stations.

When looking at apartments for rent in Boston which are further away from downtown, you should always check how close the nearest T or railway station is and how you will be able to reach it. Since parking space near the stations can be an issue, this is another important factor to look into.

Walking and Biking

You will certainly be happy to discover that Boston is the 3rd most walkable of the largest cities in the United States. Still, if you want to be able to walk to work and to the top entertainment spots in the city, you will need to consider centrally located rental apartments.

Boston is covered with bike lanes and their number and length is constantly growing. The number of places for parking your bike near a T station or a railway station is on the rise too. If you love biking and want to get exercise every day, you should definitely check out a map which indicates the locations of the bike lanes when searching for a place to live.

Travelling by Car

Due to the narrow and winding streets, especially in the central part of the city, the well-developed public transportation network and the growing number of bike lanes, ever fewer Bostonians choose to commute by car within the city. If you prefer this option, however, you should always check what the situation with the parking is when comparing different apartments for rent in Boston. Older buildings do not typically have designated parking spaces for residents.

It’s always a good idea to take accessibility into account as one of the most important factors when choosing a rental apartment.

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5 Tips for Couples Moving in Together

From every way you look at it, moving in together with your special someone is a huge step. It is a completely different experience compared to having roommates and living with your mom and dad. It’s natural for couples to be excited about renting a place together, but there are some important and practical matters to take care of. Here’s how to ensure that the transition will go smoothly.

Plan the Move Together

Most likely, your belongings and your partner’s stuff won’t fit together in the new apartment. Even though there are spacious Boston apartment rentals, most city dwellings don’t offer a huge amount of space. Besides who needs two toasters or two sofas which don’t match? You should sit down and discuss what to keep, what to donate and what to get rid of. You should also work out the logistics of the move regarding packing, transportation and unpacking.

Agree on How Your Home Will Look and Feel

Even if you are deeply in love, this doesn’t mean that you and your partner has the same taste, especially when it comes to home decor. That is why you will benefit from checking out ideas and comparing different items that you will have to purchase together. Make sure that you cover all important points, including the wall color.

Make Arrangements for Covering the Expenses

This is perhaps the most sensitive aspects of all, but you should not be hesitant to talk about money. Discuss with your partner how you want to split expenses and how you will organize the payments. It’s common for couples to split all shared costs in half, but it is also possible to calculate percentage shares based on the income of each partner. You can also consider setting up a budget not only for the bills, but for other thing which you’ll share like food.

Organize House Chores

While you and your partner may have different habits, it’s always a good idea to share the responsibilities as well as the expenses. There isn’t a need for a strict plan or schedule. However, you should definitely discuss things like throwing the garbage, weekly vacuuming, buying groceries and doing simple maintenance jobs around the house. This will make you feel more at ease once you’ve chosen one of the Boston apartment rentals and are moving in.

Be Open and Flexible

You should be honest with your partner if you have concerns or aren’t happy about certain things. At the same time, the key to a healthy relationship is being prepared to make compromise. Strike the right balance and you’ll be living together happily.

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Tips for Finding and Hiring Cleaners

As a busy modern person living in Boston, you might find it hard to squeeze home cleaning into your weekly schedule. You manage to keep your place clean somehow, but you know that the results are subpar. You can have more time for the things which are important and keep your home spotlessly clean if you hire a professional cleaning service. Find out how to do this.

Rely on personal references.

It’s easy to find numerous local cleaners online, but how good are they, really? While online customer reviews could be helpful, it’s best if you ask around. You will get genuine advice from friends, coworkers and neighbors. You should also consider asking real estate agents offering Boston luxury condos for sale as they know of local cleaning service providers.

Get effective protection.

You should naturally assess the experience, professional conduct, equipment and cleaning products of the company that you plan to hire. However, you should not forget to check how dependable they are when it comes to protecting your property and interests. Consider hiring a company that runs a background check on employees and has liability insurance designed to compensate customers in case something is damaged, broken or goes missing. The service provider should also cover their workers for injuries on the job.

Define your needs clearly.

It’s up to you to decide whether to have your home cleaned from top to bottom or to have the cleaner perform only specific tasks. Boston owners putting their condos for sale will go for the first option, while people who plan to use the service regularly usually prefer the second one. When making a decision, you should consider which tasks won’t affect your schedule and productivity if you do them yourself.

Just keep in mind the cleaners won’t do some tasks due to safety concerns. Most won’t clean computers or other electronic equipment, for example. Similarly, if you have black mold, you will need to hire a specialist to get rid of it.

Make convenient arrangements.

You can decide whether to be present or not while the cleaner works in your home. If you choose the second option, you can leave a spare key and then have it left inside your place after the job is done. If your front door has an electronic lock like many Boston luxury condos, you can give the professional a unique access code.

Finally, it may sound a bit strange, but you should prepare your home for cleaning by picking up objects from the floor and leaving as few items on the countertops as possible. This will allow the cleaner to focus on getting your place spick and span.

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Keeping Your Apartment Cool in Summer

It can get very hot in Boston in the summer. The large number of closely packed buildings making things even worse. At the same time, many homes don’t have central air conditioning. This is particularly true for the older apartments in neighborhoods like South Boston, the South End, North End and Back Bay. Is there a way to keep your place cool when the next heatwave strikes? Use a set of techniques which have been proven to work.

Ditching Major Heat Sources

Keep the blinds/shades closed during the day to lower the amount of heat getting in from the outside. If you have curtains too, the results will be even better. Don’t keep windows open during the day unless someone’s at home. If birds get in or a storm starts, your apartment could suffer considerable damage.

Try not to use the oven during the hottest days of the summer. You can prepare food using the microwave or or by utilizing just one or two of the burners. If you have the opportunity to use an outdoor grill in your building or close to it, take full advantage of this opportunity.

Creating a Flow of Cool Air

Open as many windows and doors as possible during the night to create a cool flow in your apartment. Secure them into open position to ensure that you won’t be woken up by a loud bang.

One way to make the flow of air even cooler is to hang long pieces of absorbent cloth over the curtain rods and dip their lower ends in buckets of cold water. You can do this using cheap curtains too. The water will get absorbed into the fabric and when the air passes through it, it will be become a lot cooler.

You can use another classic trick to make the air in their home cooler. Just place a bucket of ice in front of a fan and make sure that the air is blown over the ice. It works wonders.

Staying Cool at Night

You will benefit from bedding made of light breathable fabrics like cotton and linen. Consider a sleeping pillow filled with hulls as it has great breathability. Another simple trick is to place plastic bottles with frozen water around your bed and under it, if possible. Fill the bottles up to three quarters in the morning, put them in the freezer and they will be ready for the evening.

Finally, spend more time outside in the summer.