5 Tips for Designing Small Spaces In Apartment

4/25/2015 FlatGradings 0 Comments

Home is a place of Zen, be it small or big. But, decorating a small room poses unique challenges for every designer. Please use the tips provided below to make the best of what is available. For more understanding pictures have been provided in each point to elaborate.
1. Small Furnitures - A living room isn't always about life size sofas and tables. Pick out furniture smaller in size and antique in its look. It not only adds more space to the house but always provides a richer look. Also Love Seats are a great alternative to huge sofas. When it comes to positioning try to keep the love seats towards the edges of the walls with no windows and place the chairs around a small tea table. Pick up a tea table which is can be used not only as a table but also to store other stuff like newspapers, preferably a closed one to have a neat finish.
FlatGradings - Furnitures
Clockwise: Antique brown chair, blue chair, a red one and finally a simple love seat.
2. Bedroom - Firstly see how the room is positioned to find which places can be covered with decoration and where the bed needs to be placed. Secondly try to utilise all the nook and corners to completely. Also use one simple lamp at either one of the corners. Use floating shelves to increase the bedroom square footage. Paint a bold colour to make the room look bright and cheerful. When it comes to the bed try to make it multi functional where additional space can be acquired by backrest storage or under the bed storage rather than having separate racks. For kids try using a bed bunk alternative saves a lot of space, also a built in table along with the cupboards will work.
FlatGradings - Bedroom
A simple lamp above the bed utilised as a book shelf as well, with subtle and calm paintings.
FlatGradings - Bedroom
A kid’s room with an inbuilt study along with the cupboard in a dark colour shade of purple and black with wooden flooring.
FlatGradings - Bedroom
A double bunker bed which slides out for small rooms with limited space.
3. Kitchen - An area where families are most often gathered to talk and cook needs to have sufficient space. Try to combine the walkway, dinning and the kitchen together. The division between the dining room and kitchen can be added with a slab to utilise for dinning. A built in banquette also is an added advantage for more space. A smaller house can have the kitchen and living room shared with a mesh separating the two. If more storage space is required try to use built in storages in walls by adding shelves.
FlatGradings - Kitchen
Clockwise: A kitchen with one slab for both the purpose of dining table and a separating from the living room, a built in banquette and finally a kitchen with the walkway, kitchen and dinning combined.
FlatGradings - Kitchen
Mesh separating the living room and the kitchen.
4. Small Bathrooms - A bold and bright coloured geometric design. Try using just one face mirror and design the cupboards and shelves with mirrors which can provide a reflection and make it look bigger and brighter. Smaller sinks are more efficient, in some cases the sinks has been kept outside the entrance of the bathroom. A lot of Gray shades add a more soothing effect. For a nostalgic look try white and black combination. If the room has high raised rooftops then try adding windows towards the top to add more light and make it seem more airy. Furthermore the shower and bathtub can be combined together.

On the left: A bathroom with combined shower, bathtub, a small mirror and a simple sink. On the right: A geometric bright coloured bathroom with a mirror enclosing a shelf.
FlatGradings - Bathrooms

5. Balconies - Lastly if there is a balcony attached with the kitchen, bedroom or the living room you can always extend the room for additional space. A balcony with glass walls, huge windows makes the room look wider and larger. It could also be reconstructed to be used as a study area or it could be made into a work from home area. If plants are on your mind, yes of course you can add more vibe to the room by adding the right type of plants and using light vibrant colour flowers, chairs and small tables to sum it up.
FlatGradings - Balconies
Clockwise: A balcony attached with kitchen modified with a dining table, an extended room space from the balcony, a work from home area, a balcony with tables and plants and finally a study table modified out of a balcony.

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10 Things You Should Check Before Renting An Apartment

4/17/2015 FlatGradings 0 Comments

If you can’t afford buying an apartment in the metro city, your next best solution is probably to rent one. Though moving to a new apartment is very exciting, finding a good one to rent could be very challenging. There are few things one should consider before taking a big step, so here is the checklist one should go through before renting:
1. Location: People prefer living closer to the places of their choices, be it work, shopping centres, grocery stores, banks or hospitals. They always want to live closest to the places to which they can travel conveniently. It saves a lot of time which seems to be very scarce in the current working environment.
2. Parking: Adequate parking spaces have become equally a very important factor for a lot of people moving in especially if the tenants own a car. Even in the case of bikes tenants still prefer the parking to be a lot closer to the apartment, if not available inside the building.
3. Noise: Staying in a location close to main roads, railway stations or bus stops are some things which are not very preferable due to the noise pollution. Neighbours, who make a lot noise, can also be really annoying (though it can’t always be predicted); Tenants still prefer a calm environment around.
4. Safety: Staying away from our home and family can provide a sense of insecurity. If the place rented seems to very susceptive to burglars or any form of insecurity it would be lead to a complete rejection of wanting to move in.
5. Amenities: In comparison to apartments built about a couple of decades ago the recent ones (ex gated apartments) have a lot of facilities like grocery stores, parks, swimming pools and gym which seem to attract a lot of people cause they don’t really need to go outside looking for these amenities.
6. False Claims by the Landlords: There have been claims provided by the landlords that something would be changed once the tenants move in, like for instance, if the bathroom had to be restored due to a water leakage. If this has not been done, the landlords can get away with the current tenants. However, it would lead to a problem to get new people since many responsibilities were ignored.
7. Ignored Repair Requests: Everything has a period of life. Similarly, a lot of the things in the apartment might wear out and needs to be replaced. However, sometimes the time taken by the landlords to get them repaired seems to be very very long or at times never repaired.
8. Owner’s behaviour: Of course the place is not owned by them but no tenants would appreciate or be happy with a rude owner who is not very understanding, demanding and irresponsible in nature.
9. Renovations: When an apartment has newly painted walls, reconstructed doors or the window panels have been changed, it will not only be a very good attraction for the tenants but, it would also provide a very healthy and clean environment.
10. Storage Space: Most people do have a lot of stuff to be kept with. It would be nice to have adequate space in the apartment to fit in all of them. Nobody would want to give them away or sell them due to limitations of space.
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Using Draperies in Your Home Decor Innovatively

4/14/2015 FlatGradings 0 Comments

Draperies are simple yet effective way of decorating your home. They add enormous personality to a room. Beautiful Draperies on your window can change the boring look of a room into a fabulous one in few minutes:
Two different colour curtains can give the room a whole new perspective and a modern look. Irrespective of the two panels used the material used for both the draperies need to be the same or say one should be thinner and lighter than the other, soft sheers paired with canvas or silk curtains.
1. Multiple Shades on Windows in the Same Room: Generally people tend to have a single shade of panel for the entire room, using multiple colours can give a diverse look for the room provided the entire colours are complimenting each other and the fabric used being the same. If the one set of windows are comparatively larger than the other windows then add more attractive shade to them to make it more prominent.
FlatGradings - Draperies
2. Decorate with a recurring design: Hang each panel, alternating the colours, on one rod to create a pattern. The curtain pocket or hanging mechanism for each panel needs to be the same -- choose hooks, rings or a sewn-in pocket at the top of each panel. Frame the window by keeping the darkest or heaviest-weighted panel on the outermost corners, and use an odd number of curtains so the ending color on each side is the same.
FlatGradings - Draperies
3. Layer the design: Double rod panels are required. Provided the darker shade at the back and lighter at the front. Allowing privacy requirements of covering the house. This look is most often done with a set of sheers and a set of heavier-weight curtains. However, it can work well with panels of the same material in different colors, with the lightest shade kept inside and the darker one in front. This can be done with either leaving the curtains to the frame or vintage style of tying the curtains up the side.
FlatGradings - DraperiesFlatGradings - Draperies

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9 Reasons You Should Rent Apartment Than Buying

4/10/2015 FlatGradings 0 Comments

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Owning a home is everyone's dream but in the current economic situation renting is looking better and better every day. No matter how old you are or where you are in your life, renting can have great advantages over owning a home and here are nine reasons to look hard at renting vs. buying:
1. Flexibility: Firstly staying movable has become a key factor for many employers looking to get employees in the right place at the right time. It does not provide us the responsibility of needing to sell the place or stay fixed. Secondly relieving ourselves out of a lease requires a 30 day notice and some form of a “buy-out” fee but this is significantly less than the cost and hassle of selling a home. Provides us the opportunity to switch places easier.
2. Cost: The cost of having an own place has become very expensive. At the same time maintaining the house, paying property tax and insurance adds the burden further. If you are a renter, all it takes is a call to your landlord or property manager.
3. Amenities: Some apartments provide the facility of various activities like gym, pool and spa. This adds to a lot of savings where all these facilities can be enjoyed at one cost.
4. Land Values: In huge cities, renting a home becomes a lot more affordable then getting a place of our own which is not very feasible. The variation of land values can either make the house value more than the buying cost or simply put us at a risk if the area is not developing as expected.
5. Relocating within the city: Travelling around with current fuel rates has become very expensive. However staying in a rented place provides the advantage of reducing the travelling expense, if located very close to work.
6. Maintenance: Home ownership brings with it the responsibility of home maintenance. At times, the cost of maintenance is significantly greater than many people realize. When there is a problem in the electrical line you could simply call your landlord and get it fixed for free or would you like to call the electrician, wait until he comes, procure the items, wait until it's fixed and pay for it ? What if the Geizer broke ? What if there is a leak in your sink ? The list goes on and on..
7. Security: What if you are a working professional and your wife or mother is home alone ? Don't you want to make them feel safe ? Most of the apartments are gated or have 24-hour security. Adding a private gate or a security system to a home can be a costly affair.
8. Metro City Life: In metro cities such as Chennai, where prices of real estate is skyrocketing, buying a new home is not feasible. Renting an apartment is far more affordable for those looking to live in a Metro city.
9. Social Meetup: Apartments are areas of social congregation simply because you have many different people living under the same roof. This can be great way to meet new people and make friends when you’ve moved to a new city.
All being said, it is certainly a personal decision on what and where you call "home" but don't get caught thinking that renting is creating something less than "home". I have so many friends who tell me how much they enjoy living in a rented apartment with all the modern ameneties. All I'm trying to say is, renting is a great option in any stage of your life and should be considered carefully when looking for your next home.
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5 Reasons You Should Care About Apartment Reviews

4/08/2015 FlatGradings 0 Comments

Can you remember the last time you bought something without first reading online reviews? Recent studies show as many as 90% of people read reviews before making purchasing decisions. If you're going to live somewhere for an entire year or more, you're likely looking for some reassurance and online reviews is an obvious choice
1. Apartment reviews not only gives you a voice but also a public channel to engage with the others. At the same time it gives the other people a chance to know about the pros and cons of renting the apartment.
2. Saves a lot of time rather than running around the locality and asking people around their opinion, reviews can be accessed from our home with just a click away.
3. Multiple reviews provide the people wanting to move in a chance to look at a variety of places rather than sticking to one apartment due to lack of acquaintance, unable to reach the owners, previous rented people etc.
4. Fake advertisements, amenities can be identified quickly by the reviews of people who have resided previously or visited the apartment.
5. Last but not least all of us want to get the best with the minimum amount of time spent. A comparative study can be done on all the reviews to see which can be affordable, suitable for our preferences based on neighborhood, safety, water problems etc.
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10 Cost effective ways to decorate your home

4/05/2015 FlatGradings 0 Comments

Refurbishing your home décor does not always need to be a major project and you need not have to spend a fortune to do it.

1. Choose two contrast colours - Black and white, say, or white and one bright colour – and use them as a repeating theme throughout, such as a row of red and white pillows on a sofa, or robin’s egg blue walls and all-white furnishings
FlatGradings - Contrast color
2. Reorganise the house décors - Too much of good thing is too much. Try taking all your home décor accessories and putting them in a box, then putting them back one by one where they’ll have the most impact.

3. Take down all your paintings and other art and move them around to different walls or different rooms. It’ll be like seeing them for the first time.

FlatGradings - Paintings

4. Window dressings - Draperies you can hem to the right size (or leave to puddle on the floor), or you can make your own from sheets or lengths of designer outlet fabric. Hang an attractive new curtain rod, also available in stock sizes.

FlatGradings - Draperies

5. French Windows make a difference, they provide illusion of extra space

FlatGradings - French Windows

6. Multi-Purpose furniture which can reduce the requirement of too many furniture’s and makes the house look more spacious.
FlatGradings - Furniture

7. Modular Furniture - IKEA and other home stores provide the type which can be dismantled and re-formed again when required.

FlatGradings - Furniture

8. Inexpensive frame mouldings from the box store can transform a plain wall or hallway into an instant panelled look. Paint the mouldings in a contrasting shade or white.

FlatGradings - Frame mouldings

9. Placing a mirror between two windows tricks the eye into thinking there is another window there and helps maximize natural light. Casually propping a full-length mirror against the wall brings a relaxed mood to the room.

FlatGradings - Mirror

10. Old unused wood pieces in good condition can be given the expensive look by just using the right type of varnish to have a glassy and shiny finish.

FlatGradings - Old Wood

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