Indoor Dog Care: Exercise, Companionship, and Health

Keep your pups happy and active all day by introducing little changes to your apartment space.

Apartment Dog Dog Exercise and Enrichment

dalmatian on bed in apartment, happy dog

Independent Play

Have a mix of toys for active and inactive play always available to your dog. Quality over quantity: just a couple will do, but make sure your dog really gets something out of them.

Does your dog have lots of energy to burn? Build an obstacle course around your apartment using tubes, mats, and things lying around your house. Coach your dog to dodge obstacles, crawl under, and leap over objects as fast as they can through your home. Leave the obstacle course out for your dog to enjoy, but don’t forget to play with them on the course every once in a while.

For a fun game your dog can play alone, attach a donut-shaped dog toy to a rope and dangle it from a secure location in your house, then let your dog go nuts! Experiment by spreading peanut butter on the toy and dangling it just out of reach.

Routine

One thing that will help dogs immensely with restlessness and separation anxiety is a daily schedule. Pups can relax when they know play time is coming, and will settle into a routine just like people do. Everyone feels better knowing a break is just around the corner.

Playmates

Most dogs are happiest with companions. If the humans are out of the house throughout much of the day, consider adopting a second dog or another type of pet. Carefully examine breed personality recommendations to find a good match. Of course, all animals are unique, and you can’t rely entirely on online info to find a good pair.

If adopting another animal isn’t right for you and your situation, see about making playdates with other dogs. Ask your friends and family if they’re up for doggie playdates, and chat with other apartment residents about meeting at the on-campus dog park. Having other animals around will enrich your dog’s life while also helping them to become more relaxed around others.
Need somewhere you and your dog can call home? Browse dog-friendly apartments in Western Washington.

How to Find a Roommate

Looking for someone to fill a bedroom or looking for a bedroom to fill? Hoping to save money on rent by splitting a bigger place? It all begins with finding the right roommate. These three tactics, in order, are the most surefire way to fill the vacancy.

The Three Best Roommate-Finding Methods

1. Ask Around

Word gets around fast when someone is looking for a roommate. Your friends, classmates, and coworkers may know someone. Best of all, they can personally vouch for the person and tell you about them before you meet. If you’re not comfortable involving others in your roommate search, or want to look at more options, that’s when you can turn to the Internet.

2. Use a Roommate Finder

Using a roommate service is safer than making a listing on Craigslist. Before making an account, each person must submit their photo ID and get screened by the website. That means everyone is who they say they are and in genuinely invested in finding a roommate. Craiglist may take less time to use, but everyone there is a stranger.

Most roommate finder apps charge a $20 subscription fee, such as Roommates.com, Roomie Match, and Roomster. Roomi is the largest roommate finder service that doesn’t charge admission. On the website, you can browse apartment openings or list your own. You can also search local roommate profiles and get to know potential roommates. Roomi is still growing and may not have coverage in your area, but it doesn’t hurt to check.

3. When all Else Fails, Craigslist

One great and terrible thing about Craigslist is that it’s always there when you need it. The anonymity of the site means you will probably get messages from a few weirdos, but there are also other people like you who are just looking for a roommate. This is the last best option for tracking down a roommate, but still better than posting your name and number on a phone pole.

Before You Sign the Lease

Whether you are planning to move in with your best friend or a total stranger, sitting down with them beforehand is vital to a positive roommate relationship.

To even the playing field, consider meeting your potential roommate for lunch in a public setting. However, this same conversation can be held online.

You may begin by getting to know each other, asking about hobbies and interests. You may find you both like the same activities, which can make apartment life lots of fun.

Eventually, you will have to talk about household responsibilities. How clean do you want the space kept? How will you handle dishes and other chores? Make deals on who does what.

Talk about daily life. How will you work out personal space? When people come over, should you ask permission or just let your roommate know? Discuss which things are common ground: furniture, dishes, appliances, etc.


Find out early how you might end up rubbing elbows. Do either of you have noisy habits? Do you smoke or have pets? What do you want your roommate to know in case it might bother them later? Can you negotiate limits or times of day?

One Last Thing

Set up an IM chat with all of your roommates. Post memes, invites, random thoughts, and whatever else, but most of all, keep communication open. Use it to let them know your friend’s coming over, or to mention that the washer is loud at night. Use it to work things out before things get heated. Some roommates prefer to talk in person, but this tactic will save you 99% of the time.

Sometimes it’s not about finding a roommate who is just like you. Sometimes your best bet is to find someone you get along with and sort out the details as you go. With a little patience, you can avoid roommate nightmares and enjoy the best years of your life.

Home Decorating Themes for Your Lifestyle

No two apartments are alike, and within each is something that makes it fit the owner like hand in glove. Whether the design is just what you need to relax or the build just suits your lifestyle, your apartment says more about you than you could ever imagine. Who knows, reading about it may even spark new decorating ideas. Which apartment best suits your needs?

Rustic

You look up do-it-yourself and how-to articles before ever stepping into an appliance store. You have a workshop in your apartment that almost looks like a garage. Your idea of the perfect gift is a can of shoe polish or a coffee grinder with a hand crank. If decorating is your thing, you probably already have quilted designs and hand-painted signs screaming for wall space. Your creations will feel perfectly at home amongst old wooden furniture and stained metal accents. Your favorite craft fair finds will sit naturally next to your more functional decorations.

Cozy

Cozy Apartment

Your home is your haven. Your favorite spot on the couch is in reach of blankets, fuzzy pillows, snacks, and your favorite movies. In sight are pictures and posters that make you smile, puzzles, games, and anything else you may need. To make it all coordinate, you will have to give in to the chaos a little bit. Don’t worry too much about theme, and let your apartment be one big splash of color. Let your shelves get covered with friendly knick knacks, just remember to leave room to breathe.

Color-Coordinated

Color Coded ApartmentYou scream at the sight of a yellow accent pillow on a leather couch. You may keep around certain old objects for sentimental value but can never find a place to put them. Each room needs its own theme color, or even better, the whole apartment. Choose carefully as it will not be cheap to replace. Your mismatched items can be tucked away in a charming but well-coordinated drawer.

Low-Maintenance

You don’t care too much for how your apartment is decorated so long as you don’t have to spend too much time cleaning it. You have a cheap throw rug protecting the carpet, coasters on the tables, and a very thorough dishwasher. If you have people over on occasion, it may be nice to put something on the walls. A free calendar and magazine posters will do.

Social

Perhaps the most tricky apartment atmosphere to pull off, this look is not stuffy or unkempt. It has just enough mess that guests are not afraid of making a mess, themselves. There is plenty of room to sprawl around, and plenty of things to do. The apartment is a paradise of clear, open tables and games to set on them. The kitchen has clearly marked snacks and beverages for guests to indulge on. The private parts of the apartment are tucked away in the back while the meeting area is open and welcoming. If you manage to pull this off, please send an invite.

Decorating Your Rental: Do’s and Don’ts

apartment decor decoration natural lighting plants

If you’ve already locked down a rental and found roommates to live with, then congrats! The hard part is done. The next part can be pretty daunting if you’re not as prepared as you want to be: decorating your rental. Especially if this is your first off-campus living experience or away from your parents, decorating your rental is more than just re-using the same bed you’ve slept in since middle school. Continue reading “Decorating Your Rental: Do’s and Don’ts”

Is Living With Roommates Worth the Savings?

living with roommates friends

As you’re thinking about moving out, one of the first questions that probably come to mind is: should I  live with roommates or by myself? Whether you’re a social butterfly or an introvert, it’s pretty common knowledge that living with roommates can be significantly cheaper than living by yourself. Although this will largely depend on your personal preferences, there are some drawbacks to either option that should be taken into consideration. Here are some pros and cons of each option that will help guide your decision. Continue reading “Is Living With Roommates Worth the Savings?”

5 Rental Sites You Should be Looking at for Your New Home

apartment hunting rental sites

If you’ve ever hunted for an apartment or a home for rent, chances are, Craigslist is one of the first rental sites you look at.

While there is an abundance of rental properties, it’s also rampant with scams that make it more annoying and time-consuming to sift through to find the legitimate listings. There is no shame in looking on Craigslist – it’s a fantastic first place to start, but there are many other rental sites with hidden gems that Craigslist may not. Continue reading “5 Rental Sites You Should be Looking at for Your New Home”