Floorplan Friday: The Judd

2 Bedroom Townhome in Ashland

If you are looking for the amenities of a house without the maintenance hassles, then head to the Judd. The Judd is a two-story townhouse with three bedrooms and three bathrooms in 1,982 square feet. The main floor is designed with a contemporary open concept floorplan that seamlessly connects the kitchen, living, and dining areas. This is ideal for entertaining or keeping an eye on the kids while cooking.

The master suite is located in the loft and each bedroom has a roomy walk-in closet. A bonus room on the second floor can be used as a home office, playroom, or guest room. Each bathroom is full-sized with a tub and shower; water features throughout the entire unit are low consumption to conserve energy. All kitchen appliances are Energy Star-rated and have a stainless steel finish. The Judd also includes a washer and dryer and a sunny patio. And don’t forget that your pets are welcome here.

The Judd is located at District in Ashland, a community where you will find a full range of recreational and social activities. You are a short drive away from work or school, as well as shops, restaurants, and bars.

Amenities include:

  • Heated pool with sun deck
  • Fenced-in dog park
  • Social events
  • Online rent payment
  • 24/7 emergency maintenance
  • Outdoor recreation areas include a fire pit, grilling pavilion, sand volleyball court, and plenty of outdoor seating
  • Smoke-free living
  • On-site management

We would love to have you join our community at District at Ashland. If Judd looks like a place you’d like to call home, reach out to us to arrange a tour. You can also submit your application online. We look forward to meeting you!

The District at Ashland is an apartment community located in Ashland, Ohio. Our newly constructed apartment community offers a quiet retreat and access to social life. Reach out today to schedule a tour of the Judd. We would love to welcome you to our Ashland community!

 

 

Closet Organization Ideas

Tips for Organizing Your Apartment Closet

Since sweater weather is here, now is a good time to think about reorganizing your closet so you can swap out your seasonal wardrobe. It also presents an opportunity to take inventory of your clothes, shoes, and accessories. If you are one of the few people who can say they don’t have too many clothes, pat yourself on the back. However, if you are like most people, you probably have garments, shoes, and accessories taking up space in your closet that you rarely or never wear. The general rule is that if you haven’t worn an item for one year, get rid of it. Donate it or consider selling it on one of the many gently used clothing sites. For the stuff you want to keep, here are some solutions for maximizing your closet space and keeping your clothes in tip-top shape.

Store away your seasonal items

There are two recommended ways to do this. You can buy plastic vacuum bags. Fold and place your clothes into the bags and vacuum seal them. You can stash the bags under your bed until it’s time to wear them again. Another idea is to use plastic storage containers. You can buy these almost anywhere, and they can hold a lot. They come in a multitude of colors, and you can label them, or choose clear plastic so you can quickly identify the contents.

Use shoe racks

Shoe racks fit into the bottom of your closet and can hold several rows of shoes. These are great options for sneakers, flats, and Oxfords. Some shoe racks have adjustable widths. Just fit them to the right size and put them on the closet floor.

Use the closet door as a hanger

You can buy plastic storage bags that have multiple separate compartments and hang over the back of the closet door. These are great for shoes, sunglasses, and small accessories. They are usually made of clear heavy-duty plastic, so you can easily find what you’re looking for.

Coat racks are stylish

You can use a coat rack to hang heavy coats, jackets and other bulky outwear that take up a lot of closet real estate. Having a loaded coat rack in the corner can actually add a touch of cozy charm to your entryway or living space.

Add another hanging rod

You can create two rows for hangers by adding a second rod. The second rod hangs off the upper rod and is suitable for hanging folded pants, tops, and other shorter pieces of clothing. Another tip is to use velvet hangers so clothes don’t slip off and fall on the closet floor or on top of other items.

Shelf dividers

Vertical shelf dividers can keep your sweaters and other folded items neat and in place so they don’t tumble over. Shelf dividers can also be used for handbags, hats, and other clothes and accessories that you don’t want to get wrinkled or crushed.

Hang belts and scarves

You can buy special belt hangers that are round or semi-circular. Keep your belts neat, organized, and within easy reach. These hangers are also suitable for scarves and tank tops/sports bras. Thread a round shower curtain hanger through the garment’s straps and hang it over the belt hanger.

You’ll Love Our Closets

If you are looking for a new apartment community – with lots of closet space, check out Vision Communities. Our facilities are top-notch and based on some of our resident reviews, we think you’ll love the atmosphere, amenities, and our property management staff, all designed to give you a place you are proud to call home. There are so many amenities and things to do in and around our Central Ohio communities

Schedule an appointment to check out our spacious floor plans, and our friendly property management staff will be happy to show you around. 

Floorplan Friday: The Rutherford

Large Two-Bedroom with Balcony

The Rutherford is a two-bedroom, two-bath apartment that features a large living space that’s ideal for spending cozy evenings in front of the TV or having a few friends over for drinks. You can enjoy your drinks or coffee on the large balcony that lets you feel the city vibe without leaving your apartment. Add some lights, plants and outdoor furniture and you’re set!

Indoors, the open space floorplan combines the kitchen, living, and dining area, which give the area a spacious, airy feeling. The eat-in kitchen has granite countertops and Energy Star-rated stainless steel appliances. The cabinetry is crafted from reclaimed wood products which give the space a rustic appeal. The unique layout of this unit adds to its charm.

Each bedroom has a full en suite and low-consumption water features, which underscore the AVE’s commitment to sustainable living. The bedrooms have spacious walk-in closets and oversized windows that let in plenty of natural light.

Your pet is welcome at the AVE and we even have a fenced dog park on the property. Contact us today to tour this 1160-square-foot unit; you can apply only. We look forward to welcoming you to the AVE community.

Other amenities:

  • Heated Pool
  • Clubhouse with Pool Table
  • Planned Social Events
  • 24-Hour Fitness Center w/ Classes
  • Volleyball Court
  • 24/7 Starbucks Coffee Machine
  • Fenced-in Dog Park

The AVE is a luxury apartment community located in Clintonville — a hub of commerce, culture, and nightlife. Don’t miss out on all that this area of town and The AVE have to offer; reach out today to schedule a tour of the Rutherford. We would love to welcome you to the community!

 

 

Dealing with Maintenance Emergencies

Apartment Maintenance Emergencies

Sometimes, life happens and you experience an emergency in your apartment after regular office hours. While apartment management wants to provide the best maintenance service possible, sometimes what a tenant considers an “emergency” isn’t. Basically, an emergency is a situation that if not immediately remedied, can cause injury, threaten health or damage the property. Your property manager may have after-hours guidelines listed in your lease or on their website. In any case, here are some scenarios where it’s appropriate to contact after-hours maintenance.

Fire or Smoke

If there is a fire in your apartment, evacuate immediately, then call 911. Notify your apartment manager as soon as possible.

Smelling Gas

If you smell gas (the odor of rotten eggs), leave your apartment right away. Call 911 once you are safely outside.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, so it is difficult to detect. These days, most apartments have carbon monoxide monitors and if yours goes off, leave the unit and call 911 and maintenance.

Apartment is Flooded

If your apartment is flooding, that is considered a maintenance emergency and you should call it in, no matter what time of day at night. If you can shut off the water, do so. Flooding can seriously damage your property and the building.

The following situations are not always considered after-hours emergencies:

No Heat in the Apartment

Typically, this is not considered an emergency unless it is during extremely cold weather. It will depend on the climate where you live. However, let your apartment manager know the next business day.

Air Conditioning is Out

This is also not an emergency unless it is during a heatwave or you live in a hot climate. Again, report it to your apartment manager the next business day.

No Electricity

First, make sure to check that there is not a fuse blown or that a breaker has tripped. If neither one is the problem, then call the electric company. Most likely, there is a regional outage. However, if the problem persists, contact maintenance.

No Hot Water in your Apartment

This may be considered an emergency ONLY if there has been no hot water for an extended time: days not hours. In the event of no hot water, and it is not during a contractor’s normal business hours, we may be unable to repair the problem in as timely a manner as we would like, so be resourceful in the meantime.

Clogged or Backed Up Toilet

This is considered an emergency when there is only one toilet in the apartment. You can try your best to dislodge the clog yourself with a plunger. If that doesn’t work, then call maintenance.

Getting Locked Out

Check your property management company’s policy on lockouts. In most cases, they will ask you to contact a locksmith to let you back into your unit. Most apartments now issue key fobs, which are easier to deal with than regular keys.

Living in a Vision Community

While no one likes to deal with inconveniences in their apartment, they happen. However, knowing in advance what constitutes an emergency and when to call after-hours maintenance will go a long way towards realistic expectations and minimizing frustrations. The property managers at Vision Communities are committed to creating a safe and properly functioning apartment and providing the most efficient maintenance possible. Open communication … with a side of patience … can go a long way towards reaching this goal.

If you are looking for a new apartment community, check out Vision Communities. Our facilities are top-notch and based on some of our resident reviews, we think you’ll love the atmosphere, amenities, and our property management staff, all designed to give you a place you are proud to call home. There are so many amenities and things to do in and around our Central Ohio communities

Schedule an appointment to check out our spacious floor plans, and our friendly property management staff will be happy to show you around. 

Bathroom Cleaning Hacks

Bathroom Cleaning Hacks for your Apartment

It’s the smallest room in the apartment, the most used and the grungiest to clean … the bathroom! There are plenty of cleaning products you can pick up anywhere, but here are some quick hacks you can use between deep cleanings. A lot of the stuff you probably already have on hand or can source the next time you do a store run. So, get ready to raid the pantry, roll up your sleeves and get to work!

Clean your shower with vinegar

Vinegar has natural antibacterial and antifungal properties. Heat some in the microwave and spray it in the shower. Rinse with water. While you’re cleaning the shower area, soak the showerhead in vinegar. Vinegar will get rid of mineral scale and calcium deposits caused by hard water.   

Remove soap scum with dryer sheets

Everybody has dryer sheets. Put a few drops of water on a dryer sheet and buff away the soap scrum. Rinse with water.  You can also use dryer sheets to clean up the faucets in the sink and shower.

Use a denture tablet to clean your toilet

Now, this is something you probably don’t have lying around the apartment, but it’s worth buying a box. Between scrubbings, you can keep your toilet bowl clean by dropping in a denture tablet. After the bubbles and foam have subsided, flush. It’s great for removing stains and rust.

Air-dry the toilet brush

The next time you scrub the toilet the old-fashioned way, air dry the brush. The water that builds up in the bottom of the toilet brush holder is just nasty. Sandwich the toilet brush between the toilet lid and bowl and let it air dry.

Try black tea to clean mirrors

Brew some strong black tea and use a soft lint-free cloth to wipe the mirrors. The tannic acid does the work. Dry the mirror with a clean cloth. Black tea is a natural alternative to ammonia-based spray products.

Hopefully, these hacks will help you when you need to quickly clean the bathroom. Who knows?  Maybe your parents are dropping by, or you’ve been nominated on the fly to host tonight’s watch party. By using products you have on hand, you will save time and money and keep the bathroom presentable between cleanings.

A Bathroom You’ll Love

At Vision Communities, we welcome you to explore our communities, floor plans, amenities and of course, our bathrooms. Many of our floorplans feature single or multiple bathrooms to clean, but with these tips, you’ll love walking into a clean, fresh bathroom. 

If you are looking for a new apartment community, check out Vision Communities. Our facilities are top-notch and based on some of our resident reviews, we think you’ll love the atmosphere, amenities, and our property management staff, all designed to give you a place you are proud to call home. There are so many amenities and things to do in and around our Central Ohio communities

Schedule an appointment to check out our spacious floor plans, and our friendly property management staff will be happy to show you around. 

Mixed Use community - Makley Place

Living in a Mixed-Use Community

The Benefits of a Mixed-Use Community

How would you like to live where you can walk to work (even if it’s just from the bedroom to the living room), or go out for coffee, grab a bite to eat, shop for groceries and take in an art gallery, live music or farmers’ market — without having to drive anywhere? Sounds pretty appealing, doesn’t it? You will find all of that in a mixed-use community. Mixed-use communities are the newest development in sustainable community living. Based in primarily centralized urban areas, mixed-use communities combine logistical convenience with the social connections that people crave — especially during these trying times. These developments combine residential space and commercial/retail with an area’s cultural amenities to create an all-in-one living experience.

If you live in a mixed-use community, you’ll drive less. In fact, you may not even need to own a car, especially if there are reliable public transportation options in the area. Not only will you save on car payments, insurance and gas, but you’ll also get more exercise and do your part in reducing emissions. By patronizing area local businesses, you’ll boost the economy, which is especially beneficial to small businesses that have been hit hard by the pandemic.

Mixed-Use Development Communities

Most mixed-use communities are new developments, which means that they were retrofitted or new builds that embrace energy-saving practices such as solar panels and recycling, and include among their amenities, community gardens. Community gardens are a great way to know where your food is coming from and to connect with your neighbors. And there is nothing like an outdoor concert or art opening to draw like-minded people together.

Safety is another benefit to mixed-use communities. The apartments, condos, and commercial properties are equipped with safety features such as doorbell cameras, hard-wired smoke detectors, and security systems. Neighbors also look out for one another and it has been demonstrated that crime rates have dropped in mixed-use communities. Being in a centralized location also means in most cases, closer proximity to police, fire, and EMT services.

If mixed-used community living sounds promising to you, give us a call. Makley Place offers luxury condominiums and apartments located on the northern edge of Columbus’ Short North Art District. We combine ease of living with vibrant cultural experiences and social life — with local commercial space thrown into the mix. We are leasing now, so contact us for more information and to arrange a tour.

Find out about your rights as a tenant in the state of Ohio on the Vision Communities blog.

Tenants’ Rights in Ohio

If you are getting ready to rent an apartment in Central Ohio, congratulations! There are many fun and functional communities to choose from that will suit any lifestyle. However, before you sign that lease and start packing, there are a few things you need to know that will pave the way for a congenial tenant-landlord relationship. The following are the highlights of tenant-landlord rights and obligations in the state of Ohio, from the American Association of Apartment Owners and the Ohio State Bar Association.

  1. Security deposits

This is probably the biggest point of contention between tenants and landlords. In Ohio, a landlord has the right to request a security deposit to hold the apartment until you are ready to move in. It is your obligation as a tenant to pay the security deposit. It is the landlord’s obligation to repay your security deposit after you move out. The landlord has the right to withhold any portion of all of your security deposit to compensate any damages incurred to the unit beyond “normal wear and tear” or to apply to any unpaid rent. When you give your notice to vacate, you must provide your landlord with a mailing address to return your deposit to. The landlord must return any or all of your security deposit within 30 days. If any amount was withheld for damages, you must receive an itemized statement of deductions.

  1. General tenants’ rights

Tenants are required to pay their rent on time and keep their apartments clean and sanitary. You must not also damage the property or allow your guests to damage or deface the property. In addition, you (and your guests) should conduct yourselves in a manner that will not create a disturbance or be disruptive to other residents in the building. Some examples include excessive noise, loud music or TV, using illicit drugs, etc. You must also give proper notice (usually 30 days) when you plan to move out.

  1. General landlords’ rights

Landlords are required to keep the property in good working condition and safe and sanitary. They must also supply basic needs such as running water, electricity, trash removal, etc., Landlords are also expected to keep all appliances and fixtures in good working order and make any requested repairs in a reasonable amount of time. “Reasonable” is subjective, depending on the circumstances, but general estimation is within 30 days. Some leases allow tenants to pay for their own repairs and deduct the costs from their rent.

  1. Entering the premises

This is another hot-button topic with tenants and landlords. Landlords must give tenants 24 hours’ notice if they plan to enter your apartment and do so during appropriate times of the day. As a tenant, you must comply with these requests. If a landlord enters your apartment without proper notice, you may have a legal right to recover damages.

  1. Rent increases and Evictions

Landlords have the right to increase rent by any amount to any tenant(s) on a month-to-month lease..However, they must give tenants 30 days’ notice. A tenant can be evicted for reasons such as non-payment of rent or violating the terms of your lease. Evictions are complicated and beyond the scope of this post. In the case of a pending eviction, you would be best served to consult with an attorney. However, a landlord cannot evict you or increase your rent for retaliatory reasons, such as reporting health and safety violations to city agencies.

At Vision Communities, our goal is to provide the best living experience for our tenants and the reviews that we’ve received from current and past tenants demonstrate our commitment to you. If you are looking for a new apartment and want to experience luxury apartment living, check out our Vision Communities and learn what it means to Live the VC. 

 

Learn how to reduce your utility costs in the summer without sacrificing comfort.

How to Reduce Utility Costs in the Summer

You don’t need to look at the thermometer to know that summer has arrived. As the heat and humidity soar, so can your energy bills if you aren’t careful. Summers in Central Ohio can get pretty hot and if you want to stay comfortable without blowing your budget, here are some easy, inexpensive ideas you can try to keep your apartment cool and your reduce utility costs in the summer.

  1. Unplug appliances when they’re not in use. Even if an appliance or device is turned off, it is still consuming energy. You can buy smart power strips that will completely shut off the gadget when it goes into sleep mode. 
  2. Keep the drapes and blinds closed. When it’s cool in the mornings, you might open your windows. That’s great, but when you close the windows, close the blinds and drapes, too. This will block out the sun and heat. 
  3. Insulate. This might sound counter-productive, but insulation can also keep your apartment cool.  Like in the winter, use weather-stripping around the windows to seal any gaps. You can also roll up a towel and place it against the bottom of your front door to prevent cool air from escaping.
  4. Get a smart thermostat. You can program the thermostat to raise the indoor temperature during the day when you’re not home. Towards the end of the day, the thermostat will kick the A/C on, so it’s nice and cool when you get home from work. If your apartment doesn’t already have a smart thermostat, you can buy them online and some utility companies provide them to reduce utility costs in the summer.
  5. Don’t use the oven. That’s why microwaves were invented (and carryout/delivery). Turning on the oven heats up the entire apartment and your AC has to work extra hard to cool the place down. If you must use the oven, try to do so in the evening when it’s cooler.
  6. Put your ceiling fan to work for you. As heat rises, the ceiling fan will trap it above the blades and reduce the overall temperature in the room. If you can, adjust the fan’s rotation to counterclockwise, which will provide even more cooling benefits.

Summer doesn’t last forever and you can survive the sweltering heat and not blow your budget. By implementing even just a few tips, you can reduce utility costs in the summer without sacrificing comfort.

 

Learn how to set a fair budget with your roommates.

Budgeting with Roommates

Living with roommates is no longer reserved for college days. In today’s economy, it makes sense to split expenses by budgeting with roommates, especially if you are just starting out in your career or are trying to save money to eventually rent your own apartment or buy a house. In addition to saving money, some people just enjoy companionship. Just keep in mind that expenses are the major cause of disagreements among roommates, so it makes sense to have everything in writing by drawing up a roommate agreement — which we will get to in a few paragraphs. Also, when you are looking for roommates, aim to select people who have a solid job and the income to afford the apartment. Obviously, life happens, so your roommate agreement should address contingency plans in case of job loss, relocation, etc.

Here are some of the main expenses of apartment living that you will be budgeting with roommates:

Rent

It’s usually easiest to divide the rent between each roommate. However, if one roommate has a bigger bedroom or separate bathroom, then they should pay a larger share of the rent. Double-check the clause of your lease about other residents in the apartment. Inform your property manager when new roommates move in or out. The person whose name is on the lease should be the one to pay the rent; they can collect their other roommates’ shares.

Utilities

This category is more flexible. Typically, roommates evenly divide the cost of electricity, gas, and cable/internet. A popular practice is to divvy up the smaller expenses and have each roommate pay the entire bill. This could include streaming services, water, and trash.

Pet rent

If each roommate has a pet, then split this fee evenly. If only one person has a pet, then they should pay the full amount.

Groceries and miscellaneous expenses

Food is probably the second major cause of roommate showdowns and is usually resolved by having each person buy their own food. If you are having a party or want to have a fancy dinner, then you can split up the grocery bill. Otherwise, it’s best to keep food (including condiments) completely separate. Roommates can divide the cost of cleaning supplies or you can have each person be responsible for the cleaning supply inventory for a specific room.

Finally, get this all down in writing by initiating a roommate agreement. This is a document that spells out who is financially responsible for what. It can be a simple Google doc or you can go online and find more formal templates (full of legalese). Everybody should agree to the terms and sign the roommate agreement. And if any problems surface, you have a written record to refer to when you sit down to talk.

It’s a pretty open field for tracking expenses. There are Google and Excel spreadsheets and numerous apps you can use. Some apps link to your bank and will even transfer money between roommates’ accounts for bill paying or reimbursement.

Living with roommates has many advantages. If everybody is on the same page, then your apartment life should run smoothly and harmoniously.

Questions to ask before renting an apartment

What to Know Before Renting an Apartment

Important questions to ask when renting an apartment

If you have recently graduated and are ready to start a new job and get your own place, now is a great time to be looking at apartments. The same can be said if you want to buy a house or have sold your home and are waiting to move into a new one. Currently, it’s a seller’s market in the housing industry and mortgage rates are predicted to increase, so if home ownership is your goal, it might be best to wait it out.  An apartment offers many amenities that you won’t find in a house, like a swimming pool or fully equipped fitness center. And if you’re new to the area, apartment living is a great way to meet people and get acclimated to your new community.

One of the benefits of living in an apartment is that you aren’t locked into a long-term mortgage. Most leases renew annually and some property management companies offer month-to-month leases. You will be required to put down a security deposit, which will vary by property, and it should be returned to you when you moved out, provided that the apartment didn’t incur any major damage while you were living there. There may also be a pet deposit and if you are just starting out, you may need to pay deposits in order to establish utilities in your name.

Here are seven important questions to ask when renting an apartment:

  1. How much is the security deposit? Most apartment deposits amount to one month’s rent and you may also be asked to pay an application fee. Make sure you understand that upfront and be sure to get clarification on how you get your deposit returned when you move out.
  2. Is there a pet deposit? Many apartments now require pet deposits and some also charge a small monthly rental fee for the pet. The deposit and monthly rent are usually based on the weight of the animal, and most communities have restrictions on how many pets a resident can own. Some cities and apartment communities also have breed restrictions, so be sure that your pet is on the approved list.
  3. What are the terms of the lease? You want to be very clear on this one because it is expensive to break a lease. Are you bound to one year or can you go month-to-month? How much notice are you required to give if you intend to move out?
  4. What utilities are covered in the rent? In some communities, your rent also includes water and trash removal. Be certain to check as you don’t want to be surprised by unexpected utility bills. As an incentive, some properties offer free internet/cable services like Google Fiber. If that is the case, make sure to find out how and when the rates increase, how soon you will be notified, and if you have the option to decline this service.
  5. How are maintenance requests handled? This is important to know in advance so you will not have unrealistic expectations. Find out if there is a dedicated maintenance staff for your property and when they are available. Also, ask if there is after-hours emergency maintenance and what constitutes an “emergency.” Do residents submit maintenance requests online or do they need to call their property manager? Some properties allow residents to perform simple DIY repairs themselves and deduct the cost of any supplies from their rent.
  6. Do residents have dedicated parking spaces? This can be a huge headache for apartment residents — where to park. Are there reserved parking spots or is it a free-for-all? Some complexes charge more for reserved parking spots or carports. In addition, find out where guests are supposed to park. Guests parking in residents’ “usual” spots can get ugly quickly.
  7. What is security like? Every property is different. Some have locked outside security doors, while others have passcodes or gates at the entrance to the complex. High-rise apartments might have a concierge or on-site security guards. Check all of the windows and doors to make sure they close and lock properly. In addition, check for working smoke/CO monitors in the unit and for fire extinguishers in the hallways.

These are some tips to get you started on your apartment search. Your main goal in finding a new place to live is that it is safe, comfortable and fits your lifestyle. By gathering basic information upfront, you will understand your obligations as a resident and the responsibilities of the property management company, so your apartment life will be harmonious and stress-free.

At Vision Communities, we welcome you to explore our floor plans and find the right one for you and your furry friend. Our facilities are top-notch and based on some of our resident reviews, we think you’ll love the atmosphere, amenities, and our property management staff, all designed to give you a place you are proud to call home. There are so many amenities and things to do in and around our Central Ohio communities

Schedule an appointment to check out our spacious floor plans, and our friendly property management staff will be happy to show you around.