I recently moved into a new apartment with my younger brother. The idea is to be able to split the bills and make things a lot more comfortable. We’re both at a point in our lives where that’s a pretty convenient way to live, and know how to keep things pretty drama-free.
Our apartment is an older one, but I personally know some of the people involved in the maintenance at the apartments and have a great deal of confidence in them. However, despite that, there have definitely been a few challenges to overcome when setting things up.
Keeping our apartment cool is fairly easy. Keeping my bedroom cool is not. On average, when it is around 72F in the apartment, it’s around 79F in my bedroom. I have a tendency to prefer cooler temperatures which makes that a little uncomfortable during the summer, but it’s pretty easy to get a breeze going with some fans.
My bedroom is also my office. I have a decent amount of technology in my room contributing to the heat in it. As a result, I have had to get a bit crafty to keep the air moving.
- I have one of those window fans that has two smaller fans on it. It has three settings, allowing me to either have both fans push are into the room, pull air out of the room, or have it an even split.
- I have two Vornado fans that aren’t terribly loud that also help push air around the room. I can easily create a cross breeze with them and the AC vent.
- I cut up some cardboard and created my own air vent deflector to guide the air where I want it. That is guided to one of those fans, easily keeping me cool when at the computer. I then make a minor adjustment at bed time to guide it there.
At the very moment I am writing this up it is currently 73F in my bedroom. It is 72F elsewhere in the apartment and 67F outside. As it heats up a little bit outside, I expect the temperature to rise a bit in the room. However, I should be able to keep it comfortable with the current strategy.
One minor annoyance will be removing the fan unit in certain circumstances since I had to route the cord under the bed. It’ll take a couple of minutes to put away and a couple of minutes to put back if I ever need to, but that’s obviously not the end of the world.
This apartment is pretty old and was wired up a bit weird. For some reason, most of the lighting is on the same circuit as my bedroom. Due to a lack of counter space, my brother originally had the microwave set up in the living room. When running the microwave, the draw from that and my computer stuff combined was enough to trip the breaker.
To circumvent this, I ordered a newer microwave that can fit under the counter. The kitchen plugs are on their own circuit, which reduces the overall stress on the other circuit. Upon measuring all of the electronics, I am feeling confident we won’t stress out that circuit in the future.
In the case that we need to run a vacuum or something, I can put my desktop to sleep and run it just to be safe.
On top of this, I have invested in some UPS battery backups to protect some of the core electronics in the apartment and to help protect my machines from power outages. It’s nice being able to safely shut down my computers in addition to my network storage.
Overall this is not the smallest apartment I have ever lived in. It has plenty of space for two people to coexist, but having more space would definitely be nice. I have enough space where my bedroom doesn’t feel cramped. I can actually exercise in here. However, I don’t have much storage space as a result.
The living room and kitchen area actually has plenty of space for storage. However, we want to keep that relatively nice, so we’re reducing the amount of stuff stored there. Luckily, my parents are fine with us storing some of our belongings such as out-of-season clothes and other knick-knacks at their house since they have plenty of space. Overall, their house is probably three times larger (if not more) than our apartment.
I am currently in the process of researching and implementing some basic automation into the apartment. Most notably I am working on lighting automation to make it easier to control the lights. I am planning to install Home Assistant to control some of the tech in the apartment based on different situations.
Current plans are to just enable control over important things in the apartment from a single point for the sake of management and monitoring. However, I can opt to get a bit more creative with it in the future to allow for scheduling and potentially even sensors which can automatically adjust lights based on activity.
While I am getting settled in the apartment, I am looking for different ways I can reduce costs in the long-term. In addition to this, I am focusing on my health. Over the next few weeks I am going to do some research on different ways I can cut costs both on food and through the use of automation.