Individual Leases vs Traditional Leases

As you may have already discovered there are two variations of leases offered when looking for an apartment. There is an Individual Lease and a Traditional Lease.

Individual Leases, sometimes referred to as “By the Bed” leases offer students the flexibility of sharing a 2, 3, or 4 bedroom apartment with roommates, while only being responsible to pay your share of the rent for your bedroom. The advantages of this type of lease is that if a roommate cannot pay their portion of the rent, you are not responsible for it. If they move out, you are also not responsible to cover their portion. Many of these type of leases are for a private bedroom as well as a private bathroom. You share the common areas of that apartment with roommates such as the kitchen and living areas. The management staff may offer to find the roommates for you, or they may offer the renter to bring in their desired roommates.
Traditional Leases, or “By the Apartment” leases, are for the entire apartment, not just the bedroom. If you choose to live with roommates, it is up to you to split the costs associated with rent. If a roommate cannot pay their portion one month you are responsible to cover their share as well.
There are many communities around Gainesville offering both of these leases. Do your homework and decide what is best for you before you sign a lease.

How to work with limited closet space

Not every apartment/ home you move into will a have the best closet space. In cases like that, you will have to learn to work with the small closet that you have. It may take a bit of creativity, but do not fear, it can be done!


As you acquire more and more clothes or just as more time goes by, go through your closet every once and a while and get rid of clothes that you have not worn in a long time, are too small or too big for you, or are just plain out of style. You’d be surprised at how many articles of clothing are stashed up in your closet that you have not worn in ages. You can try to sell the clothes to a consignment store or even better, you can donate it for a good cause.

Try shelves

I for one, hate putting my clothes on shelves, but when you have limited space, those shelves in your closet can be a lifesaver. Clothes that don’t require ironing or clothes that you don’t wear often can be placed on the shelves to make more room on the hangers for clothes that wrinkle easily or that you wear often.

Try outside of your closet as well

Florida, for example, does not have very many cold weeks, so winter clothes like heavy coats and jackets and scarves, can be put in boxes and bins under the bed or in a dresser. Learn to make use of the space around you.

Living in a small space does not have to mean struggling to find a space for your things.

Storing your Bike in your Apartment

Many people who live in an apartment, often have their own car to get around town, however, there are also some people who rely on the bus or even have their own bike. If you happen to live in a small space, it may seem impossible to store your bike somewhere without you feeling like you are bumping into it every time you move. However, there are a few places that you can store your bike and not have it right in your way.

 Your balcony

Not every apartment has a balcony, but if you do, make use of it by storing your bike there. It will be out of sight and out of your way all day long.

 On the wall

This unique way to store your bike makes sure that you won’t bump into your bike, gives you back a bit of your floor space, and it also helps your bike double as some form of cool decoration for your wall.

The bathroom/closet

This may seem unusual, but the bathroom is a great place to store your bike. It is out of sight for the most part, since you really don’t spend that much time in the bathroom anyways. Your closet, if big enough, is also a great place to store your bike.

Quick ways to make your apartment seem bigger

Sometimes having a huge apartment is just not in the budget, but that does not mean you have to feel stuffed in your smaller place. There are several easy tricks to make your place seem bigger and more spacious.

 Paint your walls a light color :   Using colors like white, sky blue, or light green can make a space seem more open and spacious. Darker colors do just the opposite and will have you feeling like a sardine in a can.

 Open the windows  :  The bright lights from the natural sunlight you let in will have a similar effect as using lighter color paints on the wall. Letting in sunlight will illuminate the rooms in your place and make it seem bigger and brighter.

Use vertical storage units instead of vertical ones :  Drawers, dressers, and shelves that go up and are taller, give the illusion of having more space than dressers that go sideways and are longer. They leave you with more floor space, which will come in handy.

 Rearrange furniture :   Apartments that are furnished come with the furniture arranged in a specific way, but don’t be afraid to move beds, tables, dressers, and sofas around so that the apartment flows better and gives you the illusion that the space is bigger than it really is.

Balcony Container Gardening

Spring is here and your green thumbs are itching to plant.  Fresh home grown herbs will add zesty flavor to your favorite recipes.  Vine ripened tomatoes enhance summer salads.  Colorful flowers and plants are a special gift from you to yours.  Create your own small Eden to enjoy quiet moments after a hectic day.  The simple and easy possibilities for container gardening on a balcony or patio are endless.  Check out the possibilities and get more information at: