How Apartment Amenities Can Save You Money
When deciding between renting or owning, one thing to consider is the amenities offered by your apartment complex. While they may seem like a nice bonus, they could actually save you hundreds and even thousands per year. Here's how:
Many apartment complexes offer a fitness center. This can range from a simple treadmill and a few weights all the way to including a yoga studio with a full professional quality gym. In my apartment search, I've found that this is one of the most common amenities. I've lived in an apartment community that offered a 24-hour access to the gym. Besides the cost on enrollment fees and gas actually driving to the gym, I was able to save on a pricey gym membership. My husband and I saved $30 a month in two gym memberships.
In some club houses, you'll find free coffee and water. Whether it is a standard coffee pot or a high-quality espresso machine with all the fixings, this could add up to huge savings. If my husband and I grabbed a coffee from this machine instead of heading to Starbuck's every day, those savings would add up. It would even save us the cost of buying filters, coffee to brew at home, and even a coffee pot.
A pool is a great form of both exercise and entertainment. You can save hundreds on a membership to a community pool or maintaining a pool yourself.
This not only provides free internet access, but depending on your computer use, it can save you that cost as well. The cost of upgrading your current computer, paying for anti-virus software, buying a printer, paper, and ink can all be saved with the use of a business center. The business center at my last apartment complex also offered a separate quiet conference --like area that was perfect for those of us who work from home or even those studying for an exam.
I can admit that I didn't think much of the fact that my apartment complex came with an opportunity to use the party room. However, when it came to hosting a holiday party, it saved a few hundred dollars on renting a hall or eating in a restaurant. If you have access to it without having to rent it, it may persuade you to rent a unit with less square footage and therefore costing you less since you can entertain in that room instead of your own unit.
Discounts at local businesses
Just by being a resident of my apartment community, I get discounts at local businesses. Restaurants, bars, retail stores, salons, a movie theatre, and even medical offices all offer a discount. I've gotten everything from 10 percent off a meal, and a few dollars off movie admissions, to buy-one-get-one eye wear. Of course the amount it will save you depends on how much you like to do these things.
Playground, access to trails, and other outdoor activities
A playground is a perfect, free way to entertain kids for hours whether they are yours or a guest's. Tennis courts, basketball courts, places to play volleyball, and so on are just a few of the outdoor recreation activities I've seen. Access to trails for running or hiking are a great way to have free entertainment as well.
Storing a bike in winter months could quickly add up. Having storage on-site is a money saver.
Some apartment communities are now offering a fully furnished apartment for you to use when you have a guest over. This could save you hundreds per month if you were contemplating getting an extra bedroom for when your family or friends come to visit for a night.
Access to a video library could eliminate the cost of a Netflix membership, the cost of renting movies, and could even persuade you to bump down your cable package or eliminate it all together.
I love how my apartment complex offers free events every month for residents. We've had everything from complimentary breakfasts, free wine and cheese tastings, appetizers at restaurants, and pool parties with catering. It's a great way to mingle with fellow residents and best of all--it's free entertainment and food.
Photo by Gregg O'Connell
. Image was cropped.