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Apartment Living

26 Movie Night Ideas + Printable Custom Movie Tickets

26 Movie Night Ideas + Printable Custom Movie Tickets

Going to the movies is a great experience. You can completely immerse yourself in a film while munching on sweet and salty snacks. However, it can get expensive –– and given the pandemic –– may not be a viable option. Luckily it’s easy to stream your favorite movies, and even new movies, from home. By planning ahead and getting a little creative with your movie night ideas, you won’t have to sacrifice a bit of the experience.

Below, we offer a few ideas to inspire you to turn your home into a theater. We also offer specific tips and tricks for those looking to host a particular type of movie night:

Finally, when you’re ready to send out your movie night invites, we’ve got you covered. Use our customizable move ticket templates to create your own tickets.

Movie night ideas

Creating the ultimate movie night at home just takes a little prep work. Below we offer ideas for how you can host the perfect movie night from creating a theme to preparing some traditional movie snacks.

Choose your adventure

First things first, decide what kind of movie night you want to host and who you want to invite.

movie night ideas

1. Pick a movie

What will you be showing at your movie night? Depending on what set up or subscriptions you have, you can stream thousands of movies from romance to comedy using services such as Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Amazon Prime.

2. Consider a theme or suggest specific attire

A movie night is a great excuse to get dressed up. Just because you’re not going out, doesn’t mean you can’t get all dolled up or put together a fun costume! If you’re having a date night, consider suggesting that you and your date dress as if you were meeting out for a night on the town. Depending on what movie you choose, you can also suggest your guests dress for a certain theme.

Here are a few movie night theme ideas:

  • Decade theme (60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, etc.)
  • Superhero theme
  • Sports theme
  • Animal theme
  • Spooky/horror theme

3. Invite guests and send them tickets

If you plan ahead of time to attend an event, normally you would purchase a ticket to present upon arrival. To make your movie night that much more authentic, consider sending tickets to your guests and asking that they bring them to present the night of the show.

See our section “Design Custom Movie Tickets” to make your own custom movie tickets to send to your guests.

Set the scene

Now it’s time to create a home movie theater that will wow your guests. Consider lighting, seating and decor to make the night feel authentic.

4. Use string lights to create an aisle

Holiday lights aren’t just for holidays! Create an illuminated aisle that resembles an aisle in a theater with string lights.

5. Create comfortable seating

Make sure your guests stay comfy. Extra blankets and pillows are always a good idea, especially if you’ll be hosting an outdoor movie night where the temperature might drop.

6. Add themed decor

If you picked a theme, add decor that will bring it to life! You can also add movie posters to hang on the wall, put out a red carpet or even display a “Now Playing” sign.

Prepare a snack bar

Do you know why we eat popcorn at the movies? Before movies added sound in 1927, you needed to be highly educated with the ability to read in order to attend. Not until the experience became more accessible did theaters begin opening up to the idea of having food. Popcorn was the initial snack offered to theater goers as audiences during The Great Depression were looking for something cheap to purchase and vendors to yield a high profit margin.

movie night ideas

7. Make popcorn

Now that you know why popcorn is so intertwined with movie going, you likely recognize that serving popcorn at your movie night is a must! This classic movie snack will make your guests feel like they are truly at the movies.

8. Offer a few candies and refreshments

You can also create your very own concession stand by displaying a few different candy options as well as drinks, such as soda or lemonade.

Throw your movie night

It’s the evening of your movie night! Time to dress up, put the food out and prepare to welcome your guests to your curated movie night experience.

9. Collect tickets

To make the experience more fun, play ticket collector and ask your guests to present the tickets you sent them!

10. Build in an intermission

Give your guests some built in time to refill their drinks and snacks and use the bathroom without missing a minute of the movie.

Bonus movie night ideas

For more specific movie night ideas, such as for a date or family movie night, check out our additional tips below.

Date night movie ideas

A movie night at home is a pretty classic date night. Consider the tips below for how you can spice up your movie date night.

movie night ideas

11. Consider a romantic comedy

It’s hard to go wrong with a rom-com, and there are so many sensational romantic comedies to choose from. Here are a few ideas:

  • Forgetting Sarah Marshall
  • Hitch
  • The Princess Bride
  • 50 First Dates
  • How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days

12. Set the mood

Creating a romantic evening at home is all about setting the mood. You can light candles for mood lighting and a relaxing scent. Play music before the movie starts, and if you really want to go all out, toss some rose petals on the floor and around the area you’ll be sitting.

13. Serve strawberries and champagne

In addition to popcorn, you can also go with some more traditionally romantic bites, such as strawberries and champagne. Pro tip: Also have chocolate!

14. Have a blanket to share

As the night goes on, the air may be cooling off, but that doesn’t mean your date night has to. Have a blanket that you and your date can share to ensure your date night only keeps heating up.

Movie night dinner ideas

If you’re looking to do more than snack and actually want to pair the movie with dinner, consider these movie night dinner ideas inspired by traditional movie theater eats. Plus, if you have a dietary restriction (e.g., vegan, gluten free), this could be an opportunity to make versions of these classic movie theater bites that you can enjoy!

15. Make chili dogs and fries

Grab a bun and a hot dog, and smother with chili. You can also top with onion and cheese. Serve with fries!

16. Assemble nachos

Yes, nachos can be dinner –– if you add enough toppings! Add some or all of these ingredients: meat, corn, black beans, onion, guac, salsa, cilantro, jalapeños and sour cream.

17. Build your own pizza

Pizza is always a good –– and easy –– option. Use a store-bought crust or make your own at home, add your favorite toppings and throw it in the oven.

18. Serve milkshakes

Have one or a few flavors of milkshakes ready to pour. Strawberry, chocolate and vanilla are all great options. If you also plan to serve candy at your movie night, you can top off any milkshake with your guests’ favorites.

Outdoor movie night ideas

If you have an outdoor space you can turn into a theater, this is a great movie night option. Outdoor movie nights can be fun for the family, friends or even a romantic evening.

movie night ideas

19. Use a projector

Using a projector is a great way to display your movie on a larger screen. However, projectors can be expensive. If you don’t already own one, you might consider renting. FunFlicks helps you find projector and screen rental locations near you.

20. Hang string lights

In addition to using them to create an illuminated aisle, you can also hang string lights to create an atmosphere. Depending on where you set up your screen, you can hang lights from your balcony, deck or nearby trees.

21. Use lawn chairs for seating

Provide lawn chairs that recline for your guests to watch the movie comfortably.

22. Don’t skimp on the blankets and pillows

This is particularly important if you don’t have enough lawn chairs for everyone! Put blankets and pillows on the ground for guests to sit on and use to keep warm.

Family movie night ideas

If you have young kids, they’ll like appreciate you going the whole nine yards to really recreate that movie night experience. Consider the tips below to help you create a night they will remember.

23. Set up a pillow fort

Build a pillow fort with the kids where they can watch the movie from. A pillow fort can add an extra layer of adventure to your family movie night.

24. Make it a “drive-in”

Turn cardboard boxes into mini cars! Fashion a steering wheel to the inside the box, draw headlights onto the front of the box and cut out windows on the sides! If you’re able to, showing your movie outdoors is a great way to really recreate the feel of a drive-in movie for the kids.

25. Put together individual snack trays

Use a caddy or small box to create a snack tray that the kids can fill up with their favorite snacks to carry over to where you will be showing the movie.

26. Pair with another activity

Keep the kids engaged by pairing with another activity such as a craft or game. For example, if you’re watching a movie about animals, provide some animal-themed coloring sheets.

Design custom movie tickets

It’s time to send your movie night invites! For added fun and authenticity, send your guests tickets to bring to your event. We created three fun templates for you to choose from.

movie tickets and popcorn

Fill out the form below to create your own personalized movie night ticket. Then choose one of the three themes and save your ticket! You can then print, email or text the ticket to your guest(s).

Choose a ticket theme

Instructions to Save:
Click your ticket to open in a new window. Then, right-click the image to save.

Lights, camera, action!

If you use your imagination and spend a little time planning, you can create the perfect movie night at home. An authentic movie night at home is an experience you and your guests will surely enjoy and remember.

For more movie night ideas check out the visual below.

how to create a movie night at home

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Published at Mon, 16 Nov 2020 21:05:40 +0000

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Apartment Living

Healthy Living Features to Look for in a Neighborhood

Healthy Living Features to Look for in a Neighborhood

Are you looking to relocate to a new rental apartment? When looking for somewhere new to live, no doubt you’ll have a list of things that you would ideally want in a new home and neighborhood.

The entire process of finding another home and relocating to a new place comes with a lot of important decisions. At the top of the list, of course, is what city or neighborhood you decide to call home. More people than ever are seeking a healthy lifestyle, and their choice of a neighborhood can really help with that.

When you’re browsing apartments, it’s easy to get lost in the details of the home and forget to check out the surroundings. If you want to live healthily, the following neighborhood features will help put you on the right track.

Walkability

neighborhood walkability

One of the most important aspects of a neighborhood in terms of allowing for a healthy life is providing the opportunity to be active. Exercise is very important for a healthy lifestyle, so if you can leave the car keys at home when you run errands, you will improve your fitness. Walking also has the benefit of reducing pollution and makes the streets safer for kids thanks to less traffic.

Your neighborhood will need to have good sidewalks, as well as amenities and stores close enough so you can walk to them. It isn’t very useful if you only have one without the other, however. Sidewalks with nowhere to walk to means you still have to jump in the car to run all your errands, although they could encourage you to take walks with no purpose.

Some communities are really helpful for people who want that healthy lifestyle by including dedicated bike lanes for those who love to exercise, while also eliminating the need to use their vehicle everywhere they go.

Green Spaces

neighborhood green spaces

You will be more inclined to go out for a walk if you have some place nice to visit nearby. This could be a hiking trail, a dog park or a wooded area. These sorts of places enhance people’s lives as well as property values.

Green spaces are known to reduce people’s stress and can even help with conditions like ADHD and PTSD. An area filled with trees can offer shade in the hot summer months, as well as make your home a little less reliant on air-con, thanks to the cooling effect.

Many environmentally conscious towns have been building dedicated walking trails for their residents. When searching for a home, you can ask around and research online for some tips on where to find this amenity.

Workout Options

exercise outside

A neighborhood with access to a gym is something people are increasingly looking for. An excellent gym that is affordable, has fitness classes and a good range of exercise equipment will add a lot to the neighborhood.

Sports fields and tennis courts are just a couple of other options to look for in a neighborhood that encourages a healthy lifestyle. It is also good to have some place people can go jogging or ride a bike away from busy roads. The more workout options available to people in the neighborhood, the better.

Healthy Eating

healthy neighborhood eating options

Exercise is only part of a healthy lifestyle, the food you eat is very important too. Easy access to a farmers’ market allows residents to buy fresh healthy food.

Farmers’ markets can offer freshly picked fruit and vegetables, organic options, grass-fed meats and other produce grown locally. Buying locally-grown food at reasonable prices helps support local farmers and improves your community as well.

Traffic

Areas with a lower volume of traffic are nicer places to live in. Not only does that mean less noise but less pollution as well. And it means the streets are safer for children and adults alike. There’s a reason why people find a cul-de-sac as one of the most popular neighborhood locations.

Neighborhood Meetings

neighbors talking

If you are interested in living in a particular neighborhood, you can really find out how healthy the neighborhood is if you go to a homeowners’ association meeting. This should give you a lot of information about what it is like to live in that community and any issues that could be affecting it.

You can see how active the community is and how engaged they are in improving the neighborhood. You could find out about recycling programs and sustainability drives that the association operates.

It could forewarn you about future construction plans, or alert you to enhancements to the area. It will also let you observe how friendly your potential neighbors will be, and you could even make friends with a few people before you move in.

Final Thoughts on Picking a Healthy Neighborhood

While there are a lot of amenities which can add value to a neighborhood and encourage healthy living, you should be alert to negative things and the aspects you want to avoid, too. Do you notice signs of vandalism and unrepaired damage in community areas? Even things like litter could be a sign of a community that is heading in the wrong direction and isn’t going to create a healthy neighborhood.

Hopefully, you have found these tips on picking a healthy neighborhood to be useful, and you’ll know what you want from a neighborhood the next time you decide to relocate.

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Published at Thu, 12 Nov 2020 08:17:30 +0000

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Apartment Living

How to Find a Roommate

How to Find a Roommate

Companionship, safety and reduced expenses make sharing an apartment a smart choice for many.

After you’ve debated the pros and cons of living with someone, the next challenge is figuring out how to find a compatible roommate.

You can start the process by accessing your personal connections, social media platforms and roommate matching services. Writing out questions to ask potential roommates, and laying out a basic roommate agreement can help you narrow down your options.

Jump ahead:

friends talking

How to find a roommate through personal connections

Asking your existing contacts is one of the oldest and most reliable ways to find a roommate. People refer individuals that they know and can vouch for their character. The process often feels safer and more natural.

1. Ask friends and family

Start with the people that know you best. Ask family members and friends if they know anyone looking for a roommate in your city. Since the mutual friend or family member knows both parties (and your habits and interests), the odds of a good match increase.

Even if you don’t find a potential roommate, you’ll come away with a list of contacts in your region. They might know someone who is wondering how to find a roommate, too.

2. Use your alumni networks

Common ground and shared experiences can connect roommates, so don’t overlook your educational connections. Some universities offer roommate matching services for current students. And you can always put up a flyer on approved campus bulletin boards or message boards.

Ask former classmates (from both high school and college) if they know anyone who needs a roommate. Post an ad (see tips below) in the alumni magazine. Ask about potential roommates whenever you meet other alumni at mixers, reunions, volunteer opportunities and fundraising events. It’s an unusual conversation starter and an easy way to network.

3. Search within clubs and groups

People who enjoy the same activities are likely to share habits, goals and values — and to keep company with people like themselves. Increase your odds of a good lifestyle match by asking acquaintances in clubs, service organizations and places of worship for a roommate referral. A friend from your book club, a casual running buddy or a familiar face from your mosque, church or synagogue might need a roommate or know someone who does.

Place an ad in a club or service organization’s newsletter. Or, mention you’re looking for a roommate at an upcoming meeting or mixer.

social media

Find a roommate using social media

If your person-to-person connections aren’t yielding potential roommates, try broadening your search to include your social networks. You’ll still have that personal link, but enjoy a wider range of options.

How to find a roommate on Facebook

Facebook still has a major reach (2.45 billion and counting, according to a recent report) so it’s a great place to find a roommate. Asking for referrals here is similar to asking for referrals in person.

  • Start by posting a status update asking for potential roommates in your own feed. Since you know your followers (and they probably share interests, personal history or geography), you and your future roommate stand a greater chance of having things in common.
  • Then branch out to your Facebook groups. Post a short and sweet roommate request in groups that link alumni, volunteers, worshippers or people that share common hobbies and passions. Join groups that connect people in your city or neighborhood and ask there.
  • You can also target your current or desired apartment complex. Just find the page, like it and ask around to see if anyone is looking for a roommate. Just make sure that comments of this nature are allowed before you post. (Direct message the page or group’s administrators to double-check if you’re not sure.)

Write a Facebook ad

If your Facebook friends can’t help you find a roommate, creating a Facebook ad might work. Creating your own ad is easier (and cheaper) than you might expect.

The Facebook Business page offers simple instructions. You’ll want a focused goal like post engagement or brand awareness to help narrow the scope of your ad so it only reaches individuals that match your desired audience and city.

Write about the apartment’s key features (cost, neighborhood, amenities) and what you’re looking for in a roommate. Don’t state that applicants must be a particular age, race or religion. Not only is that a rude way to eliminate potential matches, it’s also illegal.

Tell potential applicants that references and a background check of their criminal history will be required. This should help weed out bad apples early in the process.

How to find a roommate on Twitter

If Facebook is a conversation between friends, then Twitter is like a virtual cocktail party. Your followers probably gel around common interests or a geographic location, which is useful if you’re looking for a roommate on Twitter.

  • Since Twitter limits the length of your messages, you’ll need to write what’s essentially the perfect miniature “roommate wanted” ad to attract attention. Make sure it includes the gender of the roommate you’re seeking, your apartment’s neighborhood (don’t list your actual address for safety’s sake), your potential roommate’s share of the rent and utilities and the move-in date. (You can always start a thread if you need more space, but keep it short for maximum impact.)
  • Mention one of the apartment’s perks (think underground parking, a pool or a walk-in closet) to capture readers’ attention. Then, give a few details about the type of person you hope to live with (neat, pet-lover, non-partier) to help narrow down the pool of applicants.
  • Include photos. A shot of the vacant bedroom, the living space and kitchen area are a great place to start. Or, include a link to the management company’s website so potential roommates can research on their own.
  • Add a hashtag if you have space. The most useful hashtags are focused and specific. Try your college name, your neighborhood or popular hashtags for your city and state.

girls on computer

How to find a roommate online

Still no luck? It might time to broaden your search even more by using additional online tools. Thankfully, there are more options than ever before.

Try a roommate matching service

  • Roomster operates a bit like a dating service, only for roommates. It takes just a few minutes to create a profile, detail your interests, habits and priorities and see who’s a match. You can also connect in 18 different languages.
  • Roommates.com operates in a similar fashion. Applicants can post that they’re looking for a room or renting a room. Just search by city to see who is looking for a place to live near you.
  • Every applicant at RoomieMatch is screened by humans, so anyone with potential red flags doesn’t make the cut. The site also makes sure that a user’s IP address matches their stated region, which helps weed out scammers.

How to find a roommate on Craigslist

If you take proper precautions, it’s possible to find a good match on Craigslist. Find your city, then search for potential roommates under the “Housing” category. You can also write your own notice using the tips mentioned for creating a great Tweet or Facebook ad.

You’ll need to make a list of questions to screen potential roommates on the phone or via video chat. But first, you have to narrow your list of candidates

guys talking

Vet potential candidates

Your personal safety, credit history and reputation matter. So, make sure you research every potential roommate thoroughly.

1. Review a potential roommate’s contacts

Ask applicants for references from employers and previous landlords. Even notes from friends, clergy, professors and former roommates can help you get a sense of their character and habits.

Search each potential roommate’s social media pages to see if they’re respectful in their interactions with others and if they show good judgment in what they post publicly. If you see evidence of illegal activity, angry messages from friends or hostile, hateful, racist or sexist posts from your potential roommate, cross them off the list.

2. Check their criminal background

Search each applicant’s name, and look for arrest records. Some states also have circuit court access websites available for your reference. People with common names are sometimes mixed up, so make sure you’re researching the right individual by cross-referencing details like photos and location.

If you have questions, reach out to the police department that made an arrest. They can offer clarification while still preserving privacy.

3. Ask about financial issues

Of all the questions to ask potential roommates, financial questions are among the most important. You’ll be paying bills with this person, so their bad credit could sink yours. Request a credit check to make sure they have a solid payment history.

Ask about potential roommate’s job. Someone with a stable, full-time job they’ve enjoyed for years is likely to be more financially stable than someone who just started working, picks up a few shifts a week or moves around a lot. You can request pay stubs if their responses don’t add up. Just remember they might also have alternate sources of income like alimony, stipends, savings, investments or allowances that aren’t part of their wages.

women speaking

Other questions to ask potential roommates

Once you’ve narrowed down your list of candidates, it’s time to go a little deeper by discussing your personalities and habits to find the best fit.

Consider creating a rough outline of a roommate agreement and using it as a conversational guide. If you hit it off, you and your future roommate can edit it together before they move in.

1. Additional financial questions to ask potential roommates

You don’t have to be best friends to be successful roommates. But you do have to cooperate and be good financial partners.

Ask your roommate what they can spend on rent and utilities and how much they can contribute to the security deposit. Discuss how and when you’ll pay bills and what will happen if someone comes up short.

2. Discuss chores and responsibilities

The bills aren’t the only thing you’ll be dividing — roommates need to split the chores, as well. Be honest about how often you plan to clean, which chores you’d like to handle and if you’re tidy or messy. If you’re on opposite sides of the spectrum, you could face an uphill battle.

Shopping, deep cleaning and other household management tasks like corresponding with your landlord also fall under this category. Hash out how you’ll allocate these tasks. Handy roommate apps, a shared calendar or a messaging system can help you delegate chores and bill-paying tasks.

3. Talk about personalities and habits

An introvert and an extrovert can live together quite happily, as long as they establish ground rules. Figure out a communication style that works for both of you.

Little disagreements can cause big drama, so chat about seemingly insignificant things like how warm you like the apartment and what you consider a “normal” volume level before you move in. If your views on habits like drugs, alcohol and smoking don’t line up, that’s probably a deal-breaker.

4. Chat about your schedules

Get an idea of how often your potential roommate will be at home. A traveling sales rep has a very different schedule than someone who works and socializes on a laptop in their bedroom.

Learn if your roommate is a morning person or a night owl and if they’re a heavy or light sleeper. Discuss compromises and adjustments to your morning and evening routines so you can live together peacefully.

It’s also smart to talk about how they plan to use your joint living spaces. If they cook three-course dinners every evening, like to throw parties or plan movie marathons every weekend, find ways to make sure their activities don’t interfere with your at-home workout sessions or meditation time.

5. Be honest about your relationships

How do you feel about friends and family members coming over or spending the night? What happens if you both want company at the same time? If they’re dating someone, discuss how often their partner will be in the apartment.

Pets are like family, so make sure you know the details about your potential roommate’s pets, discuss how they’ll share the space with yours and brainstorm how you might split pet-related chores. If one of you is allergic to animals — or if pets aren’t allowed in the building — move on.

Do your research, then trust your instincts

Once you’ve done your homework, it’s time to make your future roommate an offer. Eliminate anyone who gave you a bad feeling or people with whom you just didn’t click. Basic respect and good communication are the building blocks of a solid roommate partnership.

Figuring out how to find a roommate can be challenging. But it doesn’t have to be complicated. Asking smart questions, leveraging your personal networks and using tools available to help you find someone with similar goals and habits can help you find a roommate who will be a good fit.

Published at Fri, 06 Nov 2020 14:00:29 +0000

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Apartment Living

Brentwood: A Thriving Nashville Suburb

Brentwood: A Thriving Nashville Suburb

Brentwood is seen as one of the most desirable areas to live in the whole state of Tennessee. It features larger-than-life homes, lots of parks and all of the shopping you could ask for, making it the preferred place for many people with children.

It’s one of the more rapidly developing suburbs of Nashville, particularly in the commercial sector. Its growing downtown area is a testament to that so if you’re looking to settle down in an area with convenient shopping, restaurants and lots of entertainment, this is it.

Where is Brentwood?

The suburb of Brentwood is located in Williamson county, flanked on one side by Davidson County (the Metro Nashville area) and Dickson County on the other. It is roughly 20 minutes from downtown Nashville by car.

History

Brentwood has a long and storied history! Records of the area’s settlement began in the 15th century with the Mississippian Native American Culture. There’s so much to learn about the area, especially during the Civil War and the years directly after. It’s been a fascinating journey for the town, and plenty of historical guided tours are available to explore it.

Incorporated in 1969, Brentwood has done nothing but develop into a busy commerce hub, leading to the thriving, prosperous community we have now.

Lifestyle

One of the wealthiest areas in America, Brentwood prides itself on its low-density standard, with single-family homes averaging an acre of land each. Since the influx of more and more commerce to the area, luxury apartment complexes and high-rises are cropping up like crazy, as are open-air malls and shopping.

What to Do

Brentwood has over a dozen parks, not counting its trails and greenways. One of the most impressive is the Deerwood Arboretum and Nature area. It features an observation deck, outdoor covered classrooms, an amphitheater and an arboretum. It also contains man-made lakes, nature trails, the little Harpeth River and tons of indigenous wildlife. Crockett Park is also popular, hosting multiple sports fields, a historic events space and a playground.

Community sports are big in Bretwood, particularly for kids. It boasts plenty of indoor/outdoor recreational areas, too, the most popular being the city’s two YMCA facilities. The more popular of the two, Maryland Farms, features a kid’s water park, Olympic-sized indoor/outdoor pools, professional-grade tennis courts and an expansive fitness area.

Dozens of outdoor shopping centers and one huge indoor mall call Brentwood home, and the shopping possibilities are endless. From upscale grocery stores and specialty wine stores to boutique shops and nationwide retailers, if you want it, Brentwood’s got it.

Brentwood is known for its family-forward atmosphere. There’s no shortage of massive trampoline parks, indoor laser tag games, bowling alleys, roller skating rinks and kid-centric parks to keep them entertained.

Where to Eat and Drink

You can throw a rock in Brentwood in any direction and hit a bar or restaurant. Seriously, if you’re in the mood for it, you can find it. Due to the busy business scene, there’s an endless array of quick, cheap eats for weekday lunches but you’ll find some fancy little gems, too.

Stoney River

Stoney River is an upscale steak house known for its… well, steaks. Amazing steaks. Oh yeah, they carry a beautiful selection of fish and local farm-raised chicken as well. The sides are great; the desserts are incredible. Pretty much everything is good.

Mere Bulles

Mere Bulles has you covered with one of the best wine lists in town. Located in a huge plantation house, it offers a great mix of French and standard American fare. They’re also known to host a mean Mother’s Day brunch, although you have to make a reservation WELL in advance to get a table.

Wild Ginger

Wild Ginger’s menu is packed with fabulous Asian standards like Thai curries, pad-Thai and fresh Sushi. They do pride themselves on blending Pan-Asian, Western and South American cuisine. You’ll find a host of other dishes like roasted kimchi and chicken tacos along with grass-fed ribeye.

Real Estate Snapshot

The average cost of an apartment in Brentwood will set you back $1,495 a month. Not too shabby when you consider that Metro Nashville’s average is $1,428.

Transportation

Public transportation isn’t really Brentwood’s thing. While the Nashville MTA does have a few routes that run from Brentwood to downtown, they’re a little spread out. When it comes to doing some shopping, don’t expect a whole lot of walkable sidewalks between neighborhoods and shopping centers, either. They’re working on it, but in the meantime, you need a car.

Schools and Employment

Brentwood claims public schools that ranked among the best in the state. Public elementary, middle and high schools are abundant. There are several private schools in Brentwood as well.

There are so many office buildings; it’s difficult to estimate just how many businesses there actually are in Brentwood. You’ll see an abundance of professionals on their lunch breaks, frequenting the lunch places and shopping centers in the area on any given weekday.

Healthcare is big business in Brentwood, with nearly half of its employers falling under the healthcare industry umbrella. But companies like Nissan, Mitsubishi and Tractor Supply Co. are big employers in the area, too.

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Published at Fri, 06 Nov 2020 12:25:38 +0000

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Apartment Living

How can you build a pro-quality home recording studio on a budget?

Are you a singer or music producer that wants to create your own studio at home? This is a guide that will set you on the path with creating a home studio for your recordings.

Having a recording studio in their home is something that every music artist dreams of. However, there is a big difference between setting up a few gadgets in your room and creating a soundproof, professional-quality home studio. The latter will cost you big money but be assured that every dollar investment will be worthwhile in the long run.

There are many ways in which you can economize the project even without having to compromise the quality of gear you’re buying. Here are a few tips on how you can build a pro-quality home recording studio on a budget.

Before you start playing around with the idea of the setup, you should do some research. Basically, you’ll need to list out all the requirements in terms of gadgets and musical gear. You can use the internet and browse different websites to learn about music production and marketing. Doing extensive research will ensure that you’re able to start with bare-minimums that are needed in a pro-quality recording studio, without spending unnecessary money on things that you don’t need in the immediate future. Proper research will also help you identify if any software applications can be upgraded. In this case, the upgrade would be the better alternative to purchasing new applications because it’ll save you a lot of money.

Once you’re ready with the checklist of essentials, you should get started with shopping. Of course, you must stay in the budget and to help you do that, look for bargains and discount deals. A smart way to do that would be to look for a dedicated distributor, hunt for any discounts and sales, or you can even buy in bulk to get more discounts. Picking out used gadgets would be a worthy consideration especially if you’re buying quality stuff that others want to sell. Be sure that you avoid shopping stuff that you don’t need urgently. Also, don’t compromise on quality and innovation even if it means you have to pay more.

Why not try to save money elsewhere and stretch your budget for your new home studio? This makes total sense because choosing the latest, high-quality equipment will mean that you might not need to upgrade or re-invest in them for a couple of years. You can try different ideas to save up money. For example, you can buy beats for sale online. This will not only save you time but it’ll also save you money that you would have had to spend on the equipment for producing beats. Of course, you do need musical instruments along with high-quality recording equipment to keep the high quality of the song, but it will still be a decent way of saving up money in the long run.

Now that you’re aware of what you need to do to build a quality home recording studio, time to get to work. These tips will give you the freedom to practice and perform in your private space and record whenever you want. However, if you still want to go with something professionally madeArticle Submission, you can always go online to book recording studios.

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Apartment Living

How to Apply for Apartments if Your Income Changes

How to Apply for Apartments if Your Income Changes

If your income has drastically changed, you may have to move to a more affordable apartment. However, when applying to rent an apartment, you will usually need to show your income to prove that you can afford the rent. Given this obstacle, how can you relocate with a significant decrease in your budget? Here are some ways to apply for apartments if your income changes.

Use co-signers or guarantors

Getting a guarantor may help you get the apartment you want. A guarantor is your landlord’s fallback from whom to pursue payment if you can’t afford your rent or other housing payments. Any person who signs your lease as a guarantor agrees to assume financial responsibility, and your landlord can legally bind your guarantor to pay. 

How to Apply for Apartments if Your Income Changes

Alternatively, you can get a co-signer, which is similar to a guarantor. The difference between a guarantor and a co-signer is that a co-signer usually has more responsibilities under the lease and can live in the apartment as a tenant.

The first step toward getting a guarantor or co-signer is simple: Just ask around. Most commonly, people first ask their parents to be guarantors or co-signers, so start with them. If your parents say no, ask your friends or co-workers. 

If you find someone willing to be your guarantor or co-signer, be clear about what their commitment requires. Often, landlords ask co-signers and guarantors to submit proof of income such as pay stubs, background checks, and credit checks, and gathering all this paperwork can cost money and time. Additionally, if your landlord is charging a co-signer or guarantor application fee, you should offer to pay it.

Show your previous years’ tax returns

Provide your previous year of tax returns to show your landlord an accurate snapshot of how much you typically earned per year before your income change. Doing so is a straightforward way for a potential new landlord to get a sense of your possible future income rather than making them sift through all your checks and direct deposits. It’s also best to show your tax return if you are a contracted employee or freelancer.

Find open rooms on the internet

You can often find room openings online since, fortunately for you, some spare rooms listed online are posted by people who are looking for an extra roommate, not by the landlord. Thus, you might be able to find a room without going through a formal application process. However, ever in this situation, some landlords might still put you through the normal application process, even if just as a formality. 

Local services or support groups

You may be able to find local services and support groups that help people find new living arrangements. If you have recently become disabled or are re-entering society in any way, try contacting relevant grant programs or other support groups. You can also consult a local organization database to find groups that can help you stay in your current apartment or find new housing.

Have you recently moved to a new apartment after experiencing a drastic decrease in your income? Sound off in the comments!

Published at Wed, 28 Oct 2020 19:01:57 +0000

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Apartment Living

FINDING AN APARTMENT DURING COVID-19

FINDING AN APARTMENT DURING COVID-19

FINDING AN APARTMENT DURING COVID-19

It looks as though social distancing will no longer be the new norm, but the way that we will now be living our lives. It was only 2 months ago that we had never heard of PPE, unless we worked in healthcare or unless you were a scientist, flattening the curve was about weigh loss. Mostly about flattening our stomachs. So here we are all settled at home wondering how to move forward. (Source: NAA)

But what about the folks who were thinking about moving or who were in the middle of a relocation? Any sort of housing transition is stressful enough without having to deal with a national health crisis. But during social distancing it could be additionally stressful.  Take heart, there are many technologies that can help us lease an apartment while keeping you and your apartment community staff safe.

There are many digital advertising sources that you can access from the safety of your living room or kitchen. You can search by typing the word “apartments” into any browser. This will give you a very broad search. After you feel comfortable with user experience with an Internet Listing Service provider, narrow your search by location, price, floorplan size, schools and amenities. Or you use a “long tail search”. For example, a “two-bedroom apartment in Richmond, Virginia with a pool”. This may be more time efficient than a more generic search such as “apartments”. It will provide a short and more refined list of apartment communities that fir those criteria.

Another new aspect to think about during physical and social distancing, is the systems that the community uses to communicate with their residents after you move in. Can you pay your rent on-line? How do they let you know about any community events or repairs? Many communities use Call Assist 24/7. It’s a way that you can send a video or photo of your emergency service request to the on-call maintenance technician.  This will keep you informed via text throughout every step of the process. You will even get a photo of the technician coming out late at night. How cool is that!

Most listings have virtual tours of generic units or their furnished model. Seeing a furnished apartment is always a good way to get a feel for what the space may look like with your own furnishings. (Source: Realtor.com) Many leasing agents are happy to use zoom, skype and Facetime to show you the actual unit that is available if it is currently vacant. Ask the agent to walk through the community as well so you may see the location of your apartment home. Is it close to the pool or does it have a view that you like? Google maps is a great resource for information on shopping, parks and interstates. If you are moving locally, go drive through the apartment community at different times of day to see where the sun sets or where the bark park is located. So there a lot of great resources to help you navigate through finding the perfect new apartment home during Covid-19. Be safe and have fun!

Published at Thu, 23 Apr 2020 12:40:08 +0000

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Apartment Living

Home Tour: A Perfectly Autumnal Oasis in CT

Home Tour: A Perfectly Autumnal Oasis in CT

I know many espouse shopping vintage as the only way to inject “authentic personality” into your home. I wouldn’t say I disagree. I enjoy the vintage scavenger hunt as much as anyone, but sometimes you need more expedient options. And if those options look as good as these fall pieces from Anthropologie do, I’m totally ok with that.

I posted about Anthro’s latest collaboration last month and their hits just keep on coming. I’m the first to admit I’ve often thought of Anthro pieces as overly whimsical, feminine and a touch too cottage chic, but this new editorial shows that it all depends on your context. A beautiful home designed by famed architect Richard Neutra certainly helps. This one is for sale FYI!

But what this home tour really illustrates is that a piece can take on a totally different personality in a different environment – so really you shouldn’t rule an option out at first glance. Really think about how something will look and feel in your space regardless if it’s modern or bohemian-inspired.

I could not be more obsessed with this wood cabinet. It has a really unique a mesh overlay, a travertine top an gorgeous rounded corners.

Also I have to mention that this mix of wood tones is giving me all kinds of inspiration for our new cottage. And since I only have about 10 weeks to renovate and furnish the entire house, I’m fully ok with unearthing some gems – big box store or not.

This entire home is a beautiful study in mixing soothing neutrals, a variety of texture and a feeling of pieces being collected over time. But you didn’t have to wait years to stumble across the perfect treasure. And there’s no shame in that!

As we shift into the new season and really think about making our homes our sanctuary from both the colder temperatures and from Covid, you can think out of the box while still shopping within one.

I spy the gorgeous foraged branch work of Colin King.

photography by Nicole Franzen, styling by Colin King for Anthropologie.

Published at Tue, 06 Oct 2020 05:52:17 +0000

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Apartment Living

Seven Questions About Apartment Space That Aren’t Square Footage

Seven Questions About Apartment Space That Aren’t Square Footage

Based on your preferences and lifestyle, you will need a certain amount of space in your apartment. While hunting for your new apartment, you might wonder just how much (or how little) square footage you’ll need. But sometimes, it’s not all about the amount of space you have. Here are seven questions about apartment space that aren’t about square footage.

1. Do I need a workspace?

If you work from home, you might want a separate room for your office. Having a separate office improves productivity because you can focus better when you regularly work in the same environment. However, if you are looking at a studio apartment, you probably won’t have a separate office, but you can always use a section of your room as an office space. 

Seven Questions About Apartment Space That Aren't Square Footage

2. Is there a dining area or dining room?

Some apartments have dining areas and dining rooms, whereas others might barely have a kitchenette. In smaller apartments with less space for eating and preparing food, you’ll need to make the best of the space you do have. For example, some tables can be used to work and eat, or if you don’t have an office, a dining room can also serve as your office if you have the right table and seating.

3. Do I have friends over a lot?

When you invite more than one friend to your apartment, you might struggle to fit everyone in your living room. That’s why your living room furniture arrangement is essential to consider if you often have multiple people over. On the other hand, if you don’t invite many people over or you have a small living room, minimal furniture such as a couch and coffee table may suffice. 

4. Do I have large items to store or place?

If you have extra square footage in your apartment, fitting bulkier furniture might not be an issue. And bulkier furniture isn’t just decorative – larger furniture provides some soundproofing from the outside world by minimizing the amount of sound that travels into your apartment. On the other hand, if you are interested in a smaller space, there are various multifunctional, space-saving furniture items you can use.

5. How big of a bed do I need?

Picking the right bed is a key apartment decision. Some people decide to sleep on an extra-long twin-size bed to save space, but with more apartment space, you can choose a wider bed so you have more room to move around. If you need more space than a twin-size bed or if you have a partner who often sleeps in your bed with you, a full-size or queen-size bed may be better for you.

6. What is my new furniture budget?

If you upgrade to a bigger space but don’t have furniture to fill it, can you afford to spend money to do so? Perhaps you have some money to buy a few pieces of furniture, but not a ton, and in that case, you can use thrifting apps to buy affordable furniture in good condition. If you don’t have enough money to buy any new furniture, moving to a smaller apartment you don’t have to fill with furniture may be a more budget-savvy move.

7. How big is the average apartment?

To know how your options compare with others, know the average size of an apartment. In 2019, the average U.S. apartment size was less than 900 square feet, and Seattle has the country’s smallest apartments, with an average size of approximately 711 square feet. Manhattan and Chicago’s apartments are second-smallest at approximately 733 square feet each.

Whether you’re looking for a large apartment or a smaller one, square footage isn’t the only factor to keep in mind. You can find the best apartment based on your furniture preferences and lifestyle – you can make your apartment hunt easier.

Published at Mon, 19 Oct 2020 17:25:46 +0000

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Apartment Living

People are Moving 14% Less in Boston

People are Moving 14% Less in Boston

If you live in Boston, you are probably no stranger to moving truck permits. Aside from packing everything in boxes and contacting the movers, you also need to apply for a moving truck permit and post the “no-parking” sign so you don’t have to stack up everything on the corner of your street on the moving day.

Moving truck permits in some ways reflect the housing demand in the city of Boston. While the number of issued moving truck permits usually surges each year from August through the first couple of days of September in accordance with the college move-in days, generally speaking, the more moving truck permits issued, the more real estate activity there is.

As one of the major cities hit hard by COVID-19, Boston saw a huge decline in renter demand. In our report this year, we examined how the pandemic has affected the Boston housing market, specifically by looking at the number of moving truck permits issued.

The number of moving truck permits issued by the city is down 14.7% this year

Figure 1 below summarizes the number of issued moving truck permits with an expiration date between January and September, from 2015 to 2020. In total, 11,885 permits have been issued so far in 2020, 14.7% less than the same time period in 2019.

Knowing the totals is not good enough. By comparing the number of moving truck permits issued by month in the past six years, we could better understand the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Figure 2 below breaks down the number of issued moving truck permits by month, covering the period from January 2015 all the way through September 2020.

The first confirmed case of COVID-19 in the U.S. was reported on January 20, 2020, and on February 1, Boston announced its first confirmed case. As cases soared, the city entered the lockdown in mid-March. Moving came to a halt in April, with the total number of moving truck permits issued fell to 458, the lowest since January 2015 and 47.7% fewer than April 2019. The number continued to stay low through June, putting downward pressure on rents. In Boston, one-bedroom median rent was down in 2.6% year-over-year in June 2020, according to RentHop data.

While August topped all previous months in terms of the number of moving truck permits issued in recent years, mostly because of the college move-ins (for most colleges, the move-ins were twice as long), remember, many students moved into dorms, not rental properties, and the surge might not fully represent the demand in the Boston rental market. Once the move-in madness passed, the rental demand could fall again. Based on the data, it looks like September 2020 is on track to be the worst month of September compared to previous ones. The pandemic has driven down the rental demand across Boston – one-bedroom median rent currently sits at $2,350, 6.0% lower than last year.

West Roxbury, Seaport, and Fenway-Kenmore Experienced Drops in Permits Issued

While overall fewer moving truck permits have been issued so far in 2020, some areas saw more significant drops compared to others. The map below highlights Boston zip codes as well as the number of permits issued in 2020, the year-over-year change, and the difference from the yearly average (2015- 2019). The darker the shades, the fewer permits were issued compared to 2019.

 

Of the 40+ zip codes included in this map, zip code 02132 (West Roxbury) saw the largest drop in the number of issued moving truck permits (22 permits, YoY -53.2%), followed by zip code 02210 (Seaport), which saw a YoY of -46.7%. Table 1 below features the 10 zip codes with the most number of moving truck permits issued so far in 2020. Note how the numbers are all lower compared to the same period in 2019.

Rent Dropped in Some Zip Codes Amid Moving Downtrend

In addition to grouping and analyzing issued moving truck permits by their expiration dates, we also explored the relationship between rental prices and moving truck permits. To assess the correlation between year-over-year median rental price changes and differences from average yearly issued permits, we plotted the two against one another and calculated the correlation coefficient.

We noticed a slight positive correlation (R2 = 11%) between the year-over-year rent change and the difference from the yearly average of permits issued among zip codes, which states that as zip codes experiencing fewer moving activities compared to the yearly average from 2015 to 2019 saw bigger price drops.


Methodology

This report examines how COVID-19 has impacted the Boston rental market, specifically through the number of issued moving truck permits and rental rate changes. The moving truck permit data is made public by Analyze Boston. Median one-bedroom rents and year-over-year median rent growth by zip code were calculated using RentHop’s proprietary listing data. For the regression analysis, we included only zip codes with over 10 moving truck permits issued in 2020.

Our previous Boston Move-In Day studies can be found here:

Published at Wed, 16 Sep 2020 02:57:58 +0000