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Office Furnishing Other

Lawyer Office Design: Tips for an Inviting & Professional Office Space

If you are a lawyer and thinking about redesigning your office, there are some things you should keep in mind. Designing your law office appropriately is important for not only you and your coworkers, but it’s also important for your clients. 

The way your law office looks will have a direct impact on how clients feel when they enter your office. It will directly influence their first impression of you, before you even say a word.

A lawyer office design should communicate an inviting yet professional atmosphere. Too much of either design element can become overbearing or inappropriate. There are a lot of elements from general office furnishing and interior design that can apply to your lawyer office design. For instance, you will want lots of natural light, areas for meetings, and perhaps a casual kitchen or reception area for guests.

Here are some ways you can find a happy medium in your lawyer office design! Happy furnishing.

Basic principles for your lawyer office design

Your workspace should always look aesthetically pleasing, especially if it is a place that many people are going in and out of. A life insurance attorney pointed out that a law office should be designed with the client in mind. If you haven’t planned for your client’s comfort in your lawyer office design, now is the time to do it.

These design tips can make your law office a professional setting, while also making sure that your clients feel welcome and comfortable.

Pay attention to your decor

This is perhaps the most important design tip to keep in mind as you design your law office. Your decor is what will have the biggest impact on the way that clients feel when they enter your law office. 

In a law office, people are usually emotional so it’s crucial that you make your space a place where they feel welcome and calm.

A middle aged man with a takeaway coffee sits on a beige leather couch and reads a magazine calmly.

Some decor ideas that can make your lawyer office design inviting:

  • Display pictures of your friends and family. Personal pictures will make clients feel a personal connection to you and will feel more comfortable in your office.
  • Place plants around the room. Plants are naturally calming and can make a law office feel more like a home than a workspace. To an extent, it’s important that clients feel at home during a stressful and overwhelming time. Plants also provide fresh air to the space, making it feel less stuffy and more inviting. 
  • Don’t choose a dark color palette. Law offices often make the mistake of choosing decor and paint that is too dark. But dark colors will not make clients feel welcome. In fact, these dark colors may even add to your clients’ anxiety! Instead, choose decor and paint that is light in color.

In addition to making your law office inviting for clients, it’s important that you keep it professional. You want to communicate competence and confidence

Here are decor ideas to make your law office feel professional:

  • Hang your degrees and certificates. This is an easy way to show you are qualified without having to say a word.
  • Incorporate an impressive bookshelf. You can display the books you’ve read that pertain to your area of law. Not only will this make it easy to refer to those books, it also shows clients that you are knowledgeable in your area of practice.
  • Hang artwork. Artwork brightens up the office while making it sophisticated and attractive. Abstract art is a good choice for lawyer office design. 
  • Use rich textures. Leather, wood, and woven textiles can help communicate a sense of gravitas to your clients. They will feel like you take the job very seriously.

Install the appropriate lighting

A group of people sit around a long conference table while someone gives a presentation. Bright fluorescent lights hang on the ceiling above.

The right lighting is imperative in a law office. Lighting has a direct effect on how a person feels in a space. If the lighting is wrong, he or she may feel anxious, interrogated, confused, and in some lighting cases, even tired. 

As you think about your lawyer office design, do some research to see what kind of lighting will benefit your space. Your goal should be to utilize lighting that will make clients feel comfortable while also ensuring they are not distracted by showy or overly bright lighting.

The best kind of lighting which is both professional and inviting is natural light. Therefore, if your law office features any windows, take advantage of that by hanging minimal window treatments.

Alternately, the kind of lighting that most closely resembles natural light is fluorescent lighting. Install fluorescent lighting where possible to resemble sunlight if you don’t have windows. 

Create an open space

Clutter is the enemy when it comes to a law office! Mess can instantly make a law office feel unprofessional and will turn off clients who might otherwise have wanted to work with you. This might look like too many papers on your desk, or too many items displayed on the table or wall.

It can also mean that your law office is too small for you. Make sure that your law office does not feel too small. An office space that is too tight will not make clients feel invited and welcome. 

A man holding a tablet gives a presentation in an open office.

One way to combat these issues is to make your law office an open space.

If you have the opportunity to completely redo your lawyer office design, consider installing glass walls or windows throughout the rest of the office. Glass gives the illusion that there is more space, eliminating any feelings of constriction. It does mean that clutter is more visible, and there are privacy elements to be considered. But overall, creating an open space in your law office is a great way to make clients feel welcome.

If you’re not doing a full redesign, you can simply touching up design elements in your office to make it more welcoming and inviting. Consider getting rid of things that you no longer need. File things away in hidden storage spaces with clear labels. 

In the end, create a law office that’s right for you

As you think about ways to design your office space, keep the above tips in mind. Design elements like the ones above can make your office an outstanding work environment. Good design can improve the quality of your work, and it also benefits your clients. It’s important to find the happy medium between professional and inviting. 

But ultimately, no single piece of advice is going to work for every lawyer office design. A lawyer office design is a project to be taken seriously. Each office is unique.

Whether you have a small workspace or a large office, you may want to consider working with a design-and-furnish company to design your law office. Interior designers can be quite expensive, but design-and-furnish companies like Furnishr are actually more affordable. 

A great way to furnish a law office from scratch is to get a custom design. Furnishr takes your floor plan and then proposes a layout and furniture to exactly match your style and your needs. Not only that, but Furnishr orders, delivers, and assembles all your furniture onsite for you. You don’t have to do anything except take one call with your assigned designer and pay for the service. You could have a brand new law office in just two weeks with Furnishr.


About the Author
Veronica Baxter is a blogger and legal assistant living and working in the great city of Philadelphia. She frequently works with Chad Boonswang, Esq., a busy life insurance beneficiary attorney

Categories
Airbnb Furnishing Furnishing 101 Other Our Customers

Updated Living Room: Noor’s Story

Noor is a busy entrepreneur who loves to entertain. But she struggled with an awkward living room layout in her small one-bedroom apartment in Montreal. She wanted to refresh her entertaining space while sticking to a strict budget.

Homeowner: Noor
Location: Montreal, QC
Delivery Lead Time: 2 weeks
Project Purpose: Living room redecorating
Room: 1 living room
Her Style: midcentury modern

Noor’s Apartment

I heard about Furnishr from a friend, and I hoped their designers could help me update my tiny apartment. I’m starting with the living room first and will gradually work through the other rooms. My living room is connected to an open kitchen. It’s quite a small space, but I still want to fit in a couch, a dining table, and seating for guests. I really love having my friends over, but the living room didn’t feel at all welcoming or stylish.

Over the past few months, I had looked at some furniture myself but I couldn’t figure out how to fit it together in a way that made sense for my small layout. Not only is the space small but there are also a balcony door, a fire exit and a large fridge that are limiting the ways I can place the furniture. I needed some professional help and an updated living room.

The sticky situation

I knew my design style already: mid-century modern. I had done some brief research and found some furniture I liked. The furniture I found is from eCommerce websites and local stores near me. Most of the stores offer free shipping. For items from local brick and mortars, however, I would need to pay extra for shipping or find a way to get the items into my apartment myself. All the furniture from my own sources would have cost well over $4k. The shopping and deliveries would also have taken a few of my evenings and weekends away.

Thankfully, Furnishr’s designers were very willing to look at my inspiration images. My first design call was excellent. I shared some of my furniture inspo photos with my designer Karen. I also asked her to keep the cost to under $4k if possible. She asked me for a floor plan of the space. I likely couldn’t get a floor plan of my unit since it is in an old building, so I measured every wall and door of my living room and sent Karen this hand-drawn floor plan.

Hand-drawn floor plan
Floor plan sketch with measurements of the apartment

Furnishr’s design process

Karen used my images as a guide, and she came back with three initial designs for my living room. All the designs are created based on the inspiration photos I shared. The design package prices ranged from $3800 to$5300 USD. The packages on the low range have upholstered pieces in fabric or faux-leather where the package at the highest cost has a leather chair.

Furniture board of the first design package starting at $3800
Furniture board of the second design package at $4200
Furniture board of the third design package at $5300

The live edge coffee table and walnut sideboard she chose really highlight my love for wood textures and the midcentury modern look. They both have a gorgeous shape that makes my room feel so stylish. And I really loved the blue sofa. Not only is it a nice deep blue, but it complements perfectly all the wood tones.

Since I loved some elements from each of the designs, I asked for a revision to mix and match pieces that I like. Here is the final design package that Karen made after we chatted.

Revised design package

Besides the curation of furniture, Furnishr also plans the layout for each room. Karen resized my hand-drawn floor plan so that all the walls are proportional for the living room area and presented a furniture layout for each design.

From the revised design, I can see from the space planner that the dining table and dining chairs I originally wanted might not work well in my space.

Suggested furniture layout for the last design package

I couldn’t decide whether to keep the dining set or not, so I asked Karen to remove the set for now. As a result, the layout changed to have the TV stand and sofa on opposite sides. I can also use the bench as a side table beside the couch. Now, the living area is more spacious and is easier for conversations when I have company.

New furniture layout after removing the dining table and dining chairs

Below is the collection of furniture I decided to purchase in the end. My final design had the jewel-tone couch I really loved, plus my dream wood console as well as several other unique wood pieces that wouldn’t crowd my small room.

Because I didn’t have much space nor budget for accessories, Karen chose only the essential furniture for me for the living room. The luxurious blue couch is meant to be the statement piece for the room. It makes a really great contrast to my parquet floor, the coffee table and the other wood tones in the rest of the design. As a result, I now have an updated living room that feels inviting and there is plenty of room for people to sit and chat!

Number of Items: 5
Total Project Cost: $3k USD

Final design package

Furnishr’s delivery solution

I don’t spend much time at home since my job keeps me very busy. It was wonderful that Furnishr could arrange an early morning delivery. I received the delivery before I went to work for the day, and everything was carried in and set up in two hours by just two movers.

Results

I love my midcentury modern living room! I will be getting a small dining set soon to complement the Furnishr room. Honestly it was so much easier than I thought it would be, and so much more personalized than I expected.

Midcentury modern living room with blue sofa, live edge coffee table and walnut sideboard

I was worried that I would be sold a generic layout, but it wasn’t like that at all. My designer Karen was very responsive and enthusiastic about my vision. They were happy to get feedback from me about revising their designs.

The customer experience was great! It felt like such a gift for myself to have someone else deliver and set up my new updated living room. I am especially grateful that Furnishr went the extra mile to arrange a special delivery time for my convenience. Thank you Furnishr!

Midcentury modern living room with blue sofa and live edge coffee table


Ready to see your custom room design? Start here.

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Furnishing 101 Other Our Customers

What happens on delivery day?

When you order furniture from us, it’s normal to have questions about how delivery day works!

Do I need to be there in person? Should I tip the movers? How do they know where everything is supposed to go?

This post answers all your questions how delivery day works with Furnishr. Congrats on your new place!

Before Delivery Day

A closed yellow elevator

Q: What time will they come?
A: You choose your time slot!

This depends on your schedule and your building, if you live in a condo or apartment. Choose an early, midday, or afternoon slot to work best with your schedule. We work with trusted moving companies to deliver and assemble your furniture. Occasionally the movers are held up at a previous delivery, but they will communicate any delays promptly. You will work with our Operations team to select the best time slot.

Q: How long does it take?
A: Between 3-5 hours, usually.

Most installations take just under 4 hours to complete, but smaller projects can take much less time! It’s an average of 2 hours per room, plus about 45 minutes for load-in / load-out. Please allow for an entire day.

Q: How will they get the furniture up?
A: Book the elevator in advance.

Our movers will need access to your service elevator. It’s best to contact your superintendent and arrange to book a time. They can advise on which elevator and which loading bay our movers will need. We can coordinate this part, so just put us in touch! If you have stairs, ensure that the walkway is clear. The movers will carry the boxes to your home, and then open them to assemble the furniture (if you use our low-contact delivery service).

Q: Do I need to stay home all day?
A: No, just have someone open the door.

The best part about this process is that you don’t have to be onsite! If you have a concierge (or a friend) that can open your front door, we can take care of the rest. The movers come equipped with your floor plan and the layout you and your designer agreed on. You don’t have to do any pointing or explaining.

On Delivery Day

Q: How do they know where stuff goes?
A: Magic!

Your movers have knowledge of your unique design and layout, selected by you in collaboration with your Furnishr designer. They arrive totally prepared to put everything in its correct place. You don’t have to do a thing!

Q: What do I do with my old furniture?
A: It should be gone before delivery day.

If you have any old furniture, it needs to be out of the way before the movers arrive. However, for a small fee, we are able to offer responsible disposal. Responsible disposal is where we remove your furniture and keep it out of the landfill by sending it to be recycled and reprocessed. Please ask us ahead of time about this service.

Q: What if there’s a problem with an item?
A: We’ll fix it, no problem.

Rarely, an item will break on its way from the manufacturer. Or maybe you discover that you don’t actually like a certain piece of furniture in real life. Our customer success team is committed to making your experience amazing, so just let us know if something isn’t right! We are happy to send you alternate options or order replacements for damaged items.

Q: What happens to the moving materials?
A: Movers will gather and recycle them.

Our movers take care of removing the boxes and packing materials, so that you can enjoy your newly furnished home. Usually the front desk can tell them where the building’s recycling is located, but if you live in a house just show them where to put it. Please note that our movers are not cleaners. They will leave your home tidy and remove their mess, but do not expect them to clean your home. We do partner with a cleaning company to offer discounted services to Furnishr customers. You will get all the details from your dedicated delivery manager.

Q: Do I need to tip the movers?
A: No tip is required (but you can!)

When you order with Furnishr, your fee covers everything including design and delivery. There are no hidden fees and your movers have been compensated for their time. But if you would like to tip them for great service, please feel free!

Q: Who can I contact with questions?
A: Our Operations team, via phone.

You can reach the Furnishr operations team by both phone or email, before and during your delivery day. If you run into any problems or have any questions about your items, just send an email or give us a phone call. Our Operations Team has a calendar for all deliveries and knows to expect you.

After Delivery Day

a newly furnished room with a bed, nightstands, and two framed paintings above the bed

Q: What happens after delivery day?
A: Nothing, you’re all done!

You can enjoy your newly furnished home.

We typically do a follow up with each customer after delivery day to ensure they had a good experience. Expect a phone call or short email from our customer success team.

Additionally, you and your new space are invited to be featured on the Furnishr blog and our Instagram. Show off your new space and help other people discover Furnishr! This is optional, of course, but we find that lots of people want to capture their space looking great.

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Design Tips Other

Best ROI on House Renovations

Every part of your house has a different value, according to the real estate market. If you are thinking about renovating, you should start to research the ROI (return on investment) for different parts of your home. For instance, will a new bathroom or a new kitchen have a bigger impact on the value of your home? This article is going to cover the best ROI on house renovations.

a plastic covered windowsill holds paintbrushes, tape, and a paintroller

If you’re a first-time home buyer, then you should use this article to help you assess potential properties. Buying a house is considered one of the most important financial decisions in an individual’s life. It’s not just about investing money, but also your time and your effort! Maybe you want to buy a house with a lesser quality kitchen, and plan to renovate it yourself. Remember that a simple paint job and high quality furniture can make any home comfortable.

Or if you are already a homeowner, you can make plans to increase the value of your home!

Why should I renovate?

A house is a reflection of the people who live there. If you move into a new house, it’s unlikely that it will perfectly meet your needs or reflect your style. And on the other hand, if you have been living in the same house for many years, then your taste has probably changed!

It takes a lot of effort to convert a house into a home, and that’s the ultimate reason behind renovations and home makeovers. You’ll feel more at home while you live there. And if you ever decide to sell, a renovation will increase your home’s resale value.

What factors affect a house’s value?

It’s a little complicated. Some elements are fairly static and can be predicted well by the market and real estate agents.

  • Location
  • # of rooms
  • Size of the rooms
  • # of bathrooms
  • Additional features: garage, patio, extra storage space

Other elements are a bit subjective. We’re talking about interiors.

  • Condition of the walls
  • Lighting
  • Flooring
  • Layout
  • Materials used

How do I know which interior projects will give me the best ROI?

A better interior is more valuable than a shabby interior! But how do you know which give the best ROI for house renovations? Should you just paint the walls white and call it good?

One thing you can do is hire an interior designer.

a floor plan for a renovation by an interior designer

Lots of people resist doing this because they’re afraid of wasting money on something they could do themselves. Unfortunately, these people are shooting themselves in the foot. There are a lot of things that interior designers know that you probably don’t.

Not only do interior designers have technical knowledge, but they also have connections to suppliers and manufacturers that can actually save you money in the long-run. Plus, they are experienced project managers. They can assist you in negotiations and bidding. They can help vet and manage contractors, and ensure your renovation project is finished within the stipulated timeframe.

Some projects are too complicated to DIY. Hiring a professional can save you from making costly mistakes!

How do I plan the renovation budget?

Ask your friends and neighbors who have done similar remodels. They can give you insight into local pricing and connect you with trusted business partners and contractors.

a man in a neon yellow shirt paints a wall in a house undergoing renovation

Costs depend on which room you are renovating, how big it is, and what quality of finish you’re aiming for.

Average Range for Kitchen Reno: $13,059 – $37,044

  • Budget Reno ($10-$15k): sink upgrade, painting kitchen walls, installing tile backsplash, refacing cabinets
  • Luxury Reno (+$50k): high-end appliances, hardwood flooring, granite counters, customized cabinets

Average Range for Bathroom Reno: $5,957 – $14,833

  • Budget Reno ($10k): new fixtures, new flooring, new paint
  • Luxury Reno (+$54k): new shower/bath, expanded layout, fan installation, custom vanity

Average Range for Bedroom Reno: $7,880 – $30,000

  • Budget Reno ($15k): new furniture, painting walls, new light fixtures, new trim
  • Luxury Reno ($1m): top-end finishes, smart technology, high quality soft furnishings (bedspreads), walk in closet

Average Range for Living Room Reno: $6,700 – 7,900

  • Budget Reno ($6k): new couch, new paint, TV console
  • Luxury Reno (+$15k): new flooring, new furniture, paint the walls, recessed lighting, console

Sources here and here.

How does the billing process work?

Talk with your interior designer. Most designers charge fees based on hours. If they are handling the purchase of materials and furnishings, they may ask for a mark-up or percentage. However, some designers prefer a flat fee.

Be clear and upfront with your requirements, and establish good communication with your designer. If you are planning to DIY your renovation, you might just want to hire a designer for an hourly-based consultation fee.

Keep in mind that interior designers have access to trade discounts that can save you a lot of money. Almost all major home decor websites and hardware stores have trade programs. By working with an interior designer, you can save money on materials and furniture that justify the price of hiring an interior designer.

So what interior areas offer the best ROI for house renovations?

If you’re only looking at interiors, then a minor kitchen or bathroom remodel will offer you the best ROI for house renovations.

a bathtub in the center of a bathroom in front of a faux stone column

If you are willing to consider exterior renovations, then you should consider a roof replacement, siding replacement, entryway revamping, or patio / deck additions.

I’m still not ready for a reno yet. What can I do right now to make my house feel nicer?

Good for you! It’s never smart to rush into a renovation.

If you are dreaming of a reno but you’re not ready yet, there is one perfect way to update your space: new furniture.

Check out some design-and-furnish companies!

a living room with dark grey couch, black midcentury chair, and glass coffee table in natural light

These companies take your floor plan and create a custom design just for you. You get all the fun of doing a DIY design, but you also get the added bonus of working with a professional! They ensure a cohesive, stylish design and they measure everything to your layout.

One of these companies, Furnishr, will even order, ship, and assemble the items for you. Talk about one-stop-shop!

It’s free to request a custom room design, so what are you waiting for? The home of your dreams could be only two weeks away!

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Furnishing 101 Other

5 Reasons You Should Buy vs. Rent Your Furniture

Moving into an apartment is a big deal, especially if this is the first place that you’ll be living in on your own! You’ve been searching for weeks for apartments for rent, and you have finally found that perfect place. But now comes the daunting task of actually moving. You need to figure out what furniture you need. Most apartments are not furnished, which means you will have to decide whether to buy vs. rent your furniture for your new place.

One of the issues people face when they choose their first apartment is the short time window. Sometimes, you only have a few weeks to move and to find furniture for your new space. 

Apartments can be on the smaller side, so when you are searching for furniture for your place, you need to keep that in mind. In addition, you need to think about your rental budget and whether or not you are going to be staying in the apartment for a year or more, or if you will be moving again shortly. All of these things come into play when you are considering whether or not to buy new furniture or to simply rent furniture for the short term.

Here are some reasons why you should buy vs. rent your furniture for your apartment. 

Cost

A man opens his wallet and pulls out cash.

As with everything in life, cost is one of the biggest concerns. When you are deciding whether to buy vs. rent your furniture, the cost is going to be a major factor. In many cases, the cost of renting furniture will often be cheaper for the short term. If you are planning to be in the apartment for a couple of months, renting furniture might be the best option.

However, if you are like most people you’re probably planning to be in your apartment for at least a year. In that case, buying new furniture is going to be the much better option.

Renting Costs vs. Buying Costs

When you rent furniture, there are several additional costs you may not have thought about. First, most rental companies will charge you several types of fees.

• Deposit

• Delivery fee

• Rental fee

• Interest charges

• Service charges

• Online payment charges

• Other small monthly fees, such as insurance and cleaning percentage

This means that even if the initial rental fee seems low, the other charges will add up quickly and make renting furniture quite expensive. In addition, when you rent furniture, most companies will have a minimum amount that you have to be willing to spend. This must just be $100 a month, but when you add in all the fees it is closer to $200 a month, depending on the type of furniture you choose.

When you compare the cost of renting furniture (around $2400 for a year) to the cost of new furniture, it’s clear that buying your own furniture is the smarter way to go. Think of it this way. If you keep even just a minimum selection of your own furniture (couch, chair, lamps, bed), you could spend much less on these basics if you purchase them up front and brand new.

• Couch: $1000 or less

• Chair: $500

• Lamps: $100

• Bed: $1000

If you stick to a budget and only buy the furniture that you truly need, you are going to save money by purchasing vs. renting. You can always add furniture to your home as you go! Starting with the basics is a good way to stay on budget and get the pieces you absolutely need.

Cleaning

two teal chairs in a living room with white walls, a dark wood coffee table, and two minimal geometric art pieces on the wall

Need another reason to buy vs. rent your furniture? Well, if you spill something on a piece of furniture you own, you just do your best to clean it and live with it! There are no repercussions.

But if you’re renting furniture, you have to go the extra mile to keep your furniture in immaculate condition. This can be quite stressful, since home should be a place where you relax. When you are always worried about damaging your rented furniture, it can be much harder to create a stress-free home.

If you cause too much damage to your rented furniture, you’ll have to pay to repair it or clean it at the end of your rental period. You may even end up having to buy it if the damage is too extensive. Overall, if you don’t have a lifestyle that will allow you to carefully care for rented furniture, buying will be your best option for furnishing an apartment.

Moving and Selling

Cheerful young woman in casual clothes sitting on soft sofa and surfing internet using cellphone at home

Does moving look different if you buy vs. rent your furniture? Actually, yes! Here are the differences.

If you rent furniture and decide to move, you can call the furniture rental company to come pick everything up and you pay their fees. This can be convenient if you are moving far away and don’t want to pay a moving company. Furniture rental agreements usually include at least one free move, or at least a cheaper fee than a moving company. However, you’ll have nothing to show for all the money you paid over months towards the furniture you are renting.

If you purchase new furniture, you’ll be able to take it with you to your new place. On the one hand, this means you do have to pay for movers. But on the other hand, you won’t have to spend more money purchasing new furniture. If you budgeted well and chose pieces that are solidly built and high quality, your furniture will last you through several moves.

And in a scenario where you decide not to take your furniture with you when you move, you can more easily recoup your money by reselling furniture you own. You can sell the pieces you don’t want and move the pieces you want to keep. This helps give you a bit of money to fund the move, or purchase new pieces for your new space.

More Options

A woman sits at a table with a half eaten slice of cake and looks pensively out the window

When you rent furniture, your options are limited to the company’s catalogue. There are only certain companies that will rent furniture, and they often only use certain brands or models.

But when you choose to buy furniture, your options are endless. You can set a spending budget and find pieces that match your decor style.

You can also work with an interior design (their professional knowledge is not as expensive as you might think). There are decor styles for every budget, and a good designer can help you figure it out. Many even offer a free consultation call. Once you know what you like, it can be much easier to stay on budget and get pieces you love.

Personal Choice

A young black woman wearing glasses smiles and holds an iPad. In the background is a group of people sitting on the floor gathered around a laptop and chatting.

The best part of furnishing your place is personal choice. It’s your home, and you’re free to outfit it the way you like!

When you rent furniture, you will have to live with items that don’t actually belong to you. You have to return them when you are done, even if you fall in love with them.

If you know your own taste and you want to make a good investment, then you should buy your furniture.

As you furnish your apartment, remember that you want to choose items that you enjoy. The most important thing to remember is that you don’t have to buy everything all at once. Look for the basics first: a place to sit, a place to sleep, and kitchen appliances. As you live in the space for a bit, you can add your personal touches throughout.


So should you buy vs. rent your furniture? Everyone’s situation is different, and there are pros and cons depending on your timeline and your budget.

But for most people, buying furniture tends to be the better investment. Buying means that you can own high-quality pieces without worrying about damaging them and incurring fees. Buying lets you have a wider selection of furniture styles. And finally, buying furniture means you keep more money in your pocket, rather than losing it on fees for items you won’t ever really own.

We’ll leave you with one last bit of advice.

If you are moving to a new place and you’re looking to start fresh with a stylish, adult-looking place, then you should look for a design-and-furnish company.

Places like Furnishr have on-staff interior designers who use your exact floor plan to help you create the space of your dreams. Plus, they can get you better prices than the sticker price you’d otherwise pay, since they have special relationships with manufacturers.

Good luck with your new place!

Categories
Design Tips Furnishing 101 Other

How to Decorate a Studio Apartment on a Budget

Living in a small space can be fun, affordable, and downright cozy. But decorating and making a small space comfortable can be a challenge for even the most design-oriented person. You don’t have to be an interior designer to know how to decorate a studio apartment on a budget.

However, if you’re short on time or moving soon, then it might make sense to use a design-and-furnish service rather than DIY-ing it. Don’t worry, if you work with a furnishing company, you still get to play designer!

You start by requesting a custom room design. Then you collaborate with a trained designer to choose a layout and furnishings for your unique floor plan. You can actually get a better price than sticker price because furnishing companies have direct relationships with suppliers. All you have to do is pay a flat fee and they handle delivery, assembling, and set-up for your stylish new room.

Here are some simple guidelines to get you started. Keep in mind that rules are meant to be broken if the final outcome isn’t appealing.

Turn on an episode of a home design show on Netflix while you decorate your studio, and have fun! It’s your space. You have to live in it.

Choose the Right Colors

A living room with a light grey couch and two turquoise cushions.

You know that feeling when you walk into a room or bathroom with dark walls or lots of dark furniture? You feel closed in. Maybe even a little claustrophobic. That’s not how you want your guests to feel when they enter your place. That doesn’t mean you have to have all white walls either.

In the right place, like an accent wall behind a bed, or in the right shade, like lilac or seafoam green, light or dark colors can be used to make your small space more inviting and livable. But before you pick up a brush, check out some pictures of rooms painted in colors decorators think are ideal for small spaces.

The most important part of choosing a color is finding what you like. Start by looking at your wardrobe to get an idea of what colors appeal to you. Do you wear lots of pastels? Or are you more attracted to earth tones? Do you wear a lot of denim and t-shirts? Or do you feel your personality shines best in brights and neons? Whatever colors you choose, make sure they make you feel at home in your space and spark some joy.

Select Multi-functional Furniture

Your furniture will be used to help you relax, sleep, and eat. You also want to be able to entertain guests and maybe even work from home. Choosing furniture that can serve numerous functions in your small space will not only save space but fewer pieces will make your home easier to navigate.

A convertible sofa

A convertible or sleeper sofa is a smart choice for the main piece in your living/entertaining area. There are several furniture brands that make sofas for small spaces that range from the sleek and simple to the plush and luxurious. Or just use a design-and-furnish company to help put together a complete floor plan for you, and ask for a convertible sofa.

During the day you can use it to read or watch television and in the evenings it can be used as a guest bed. Whether your style is strictly traditional or leans more eclectic, choosing a sofa that is proportional to your space is key to keeping your space from feeling crowded. This may mean selecting a sofa with low or no arms and in a light color and fabric type. 

When choosing a bed to decorate your studio, select one that can be used as additional seating. A futon sofa bed is a great option when you don’t have a lot of space or money. They may seem outdated, but futon sofa beds have come a long way since they were developed in the 1980s, now available with durable wood frames, plush mattresses, and removable covers. The mattress and frame can be bought together saving you some money. Futon sets are widely available from numerous retailers ranging from online discounters to big-box furniture stores.

A coffee table with storage

One piece of furniture you shouldn’t pass on is a coffee table. You may think you don’t need or have room for one. But the right coffee table can actually save you some space. A simple ottoman topped with a tray can be used as a small coffee table and doubles as seating for guests. Or elevate the look with a small square or rectangular coffee table with a storage shelf, drawers, or cubbies.

Prefer a coffee table that can be stored to give you extra floor space? Look for folding or nesting tables. A “C” table is a great option if you want something stylish to slip over your sofa or chair arm. Convertible coffee tables are the latest in multi-purpose furniture. Many of these pieces have one or more lift tops so they can be used as a desk or eating tray. Some have wheels so, when moved into the center of a room, they look and feel more like a traditional dining table.

Stylish Storage Solutions

A living room console with multiple forms of storage including drawers, shelves, and box inserts.

Once you’ve decided on your furniture placement, you need to consider how to incorporate storage solutions into your space. Options abound so take into account how much storage you need, how much floor and wall space you have, and how you will style your storage.

If your studio apartment has a closet, you can maximize the space with inexpensive wall-mounted shelves, wicker baskets, and shoe racks. The space on and behind the door is ideal for hanging jewelry, scarves, and handbags. If you don’t have a closet, decorate your studio with storage units that have vertical and horizontal storage options. Home improvement stores, big-box discount stores, or online will have affordable modular shelves or closet systems.

Without a lot of floor space, you need to think vertical when determining how to decorate a studio apartment on a budget. Solutions such as floating open-air shelves will draw the eye upwards and make your apartment appear less crowded. You should also think of all of your unused space for storage. Turn the empty space under your bed into a dresser, book storage, or overflow from your bathroom. Why not add a great bidet to save paper? You can either purchase a bed with drawers or fashion your own from inexpensive under-the-bed containers

Accessories and Lighting

A bright bokeh effect photo of Edison light bulbs in the foreground and blurry bright lights in the background.

Your home wouldn’t feel like a home without the added touch accessories will give. Items like candles, framed photos, and plants are not required but can be an inexpensive way to personalize your space.

Keep in mind the designer’s rule of three when styling your shelves, walls and table surfaces. Try to create vignettes of three distinct items. Don’t be afraid to mix high-end items with thrift store finds. Try to balance your space with books, candles, small storage boxes, baskets, bookends, and clocks of varying shapes and sizes. This will prevent your space from feeling over-cluttered and will make it look like you hired a professional designer. 

Even if your apartment has wall-to-wall carpeting, try throwing down a patterned or colorful area rug in your living or sleeping space. It’s an easy way to define different zones in a large room without using dividers or screens. Don’t forget to continue the color and pattern throughout your apartment with thoughtfully-placed pillows and throw blankets. 

Installed in the right locations, the light fixtures you use in your small space can make it look larger. Fixtures come in a variety of styles so try to stick to your design style and not get overwhelmed. Try placing wall sconces and tall lamps in corners or behind large pieces of furniture. This adds height to your space while adding warmth.


If you’re looking for a more comprehensive budgeting guide, then check out our post, “The Cost of Furnishing an Apartment: A Step-by-Step Guide With Breakdown of Furniture Costs.”

Want to book a free design call? Go here to claim your spot.

This has been a guest post by Steven Wood of Swankyden.com

Categories
Airbnb Furnishing Furnishing 101 Other Our Customers

How to Furnish a Rental Property: Naveed’s Story

Naveed needed style advice and a quick turnaround to furnish his rental property. Furnishr was able to transform his empty condo into an attractive, furnished rental in just two weeks.

Homeowner: Naveed
Location: Toronto, ON Canada
Delivery Lead Time: 2 weeks
Project Purpose: Airbnb Unit
Room: 1-bedroom apartment (living, dining, master bedroom)
His Style: modern comfort

Naveed’s Airbnb Unit

I came to Furnishr with a floor plan and a two-week delivery lead time. The project purpose was to create a furnished Airbnb unit. I’m a realtor and investor and I wanted to start renting out my new condo as a furnished rental unit. I had done some research, and I knew how much I could add to rent for a furnished apartment (versus unfurnished). My target tenant demographic was young professionals who travel to Toronto for short business trips or weekend trips.

Naveed's living room with a dining table, two chairs, and two place settings. In the background is a small couch, console with TV, and a view of the city from his condo.

The sticky situation

I don’t have any design expertise. I knew I needed some style help, but I couldn’t afford to wait for months. And that’s how long most other interior designers take to complete a project. For every day that my place sat empty, I would be losing money on my investment. I needed a stylish place, but I needed it done ASAP.

And what should a furnished rental include? I did research on landlord furnishings and fully furnished apartment checklists. But ultimately, I needed someone to look at my specific floor plan. I ultimately went with Furnishr because they were able to handle everything including the interior design, delivery and set up. Their turnaround was the quickest on the market, and their portfolio showed that they know how to furnish a rental property.

Furnishr’s design solution

After our initial consultation, the Furnishr designers quickly presented me with three different designs to choose from. They covered a good range of styles and costs. Honestly, I didn’t care too much about the design. I trusted Furnishr to know what good design was.

A screenshot of Naveed's style options, including various furniture and furnishings like a sofa, carpet, console, and bed.

One thing that was really important to me was to get items that could survive a lot of wear and tear. Furnishr understands landlord furnishings, since they design for a lot of rental units. So, they only use really durable furniture that can stand up to years of high traffic use. I selected the option with fairly neutral furniture, and some colorful pops in the accessories.

Number of Items: 12
Total Project Cost: $7,236 USD

Furnishr’s delivery solution

This part was so easy. On delivery day, I just left my keys with the concierge in the morning, who let their three-person delivery team inside. When I came back in the evening, everything was completely done. The whole unit was clean, set up and ready to be photographed. I also ordered their move-in package, which included bed, bath and kitchen accessories.

So by the end of move-in day, my condo was furnished with everything necessary to start renting it out ASAP. Now that’s how to furnish a rental property!

Results

It’s clear that their designers know their stuff – my unit was rented out within one week of Furnishr’s delivery. I was really pleased with the look and the quality of all the items they picked. They really captured a style that appeals to my target demographic. Plus, the rental income I get from this furnished property is actually 30% higher than my other unfurnished units.

Overall, Furnishr’s customer service team went above and beyond to make the whole process easy for me. I would definitely recommend Furnishr to other investors. Their design-and-furnish method seems almost too good to be true, but it really does make the most sense for property managers who don’t have a lot of time but need high quality designs quickly.


Categories
Design Tips Other

Spring Art Projects to Tackle While You Shelter in Place

Are you spending more time at home these days? Here are some spring art projects to tackle while you shelter in place.

Due to shelter in place orders around the country, there are now millions of people who have had to forfeit the normalcy of their day-to-day schedule. If this sounds familiar, then you’ve probably realized that this extra time brings unique challenges and unique opportunities. 

Why not consider some spring art projects? School is out indefinitely, and most workplaces have offered options for their employees to work from home. A global pandemic is not necessarily the time you need to pressure yourself to be productive. But this moment does present a prime opportunity to focus a bit deeper on your living space – and just maybe make a few small updates. 

Small projects can be a great way to keep kids involved and occupied. In addition, you will get to check off some boxes from your Spring Cleaning to-do list! 

Here are some excellent family-friendly spring art projects to tackle while you stay at home and help flatten the curve. They all have a creative element and will make your home more comfortable.

Freshen Up Your Walls

Wall updates are a simple task that can be completed in under a week. If you own your own home, you don’t have to answer to anybody! If you’re a renter, just make sure you get permission from your landlord first. Painting can be fun, creative, and fulfilling – the perfect spring art project! Most hardware stores have kept their doors open to the public during this pandemic, so you should be able to place orders for curbside pickup or home delivery. 

We recommend that you compare color swatches online to figure out which color shade is best for you.

If you feel like you need a full interior design consultation before getting started, try booking a free design call with the designers at Furnishr. They look at your floor plan and recommend layouts, furnishing, and accessories to meet your needs.

  1. Select an appropriate paint color.
  2. Order the paint & supplies from your local supplier (delivery or curbside pickup).
  3. Protect your floors, tape it off, and get painting!
A pair of hands in yellow work gloves is holding a can of white paint and a paintbrush dripping white paint.

Painting the walls is a great opportunity to get the children involved. This is especially effective if you can give them some say in the decision-making process! One way to do this is select shades that match throughout, and then give the children the option to pick their colors within the scope of your design taste.

Let the child choose a brush and paint their own room. This can be a great activity for older children that will keep them busy and assist the time frame of your overall process for spring art projects.

Create Art Together with Spring Art Projects

If you do not own your home, arts and crafts can come into the picture. Spending time at home might give you a new perspective on the landscape of your walls. Maybe it’s time to replace those old picture frames or rearrange some paintings. You could also take this time to create art with your family and hang it up on the walls. The Internet is full of free and easy spring art projects to help you create gorgeous, abstract art. Just choose a color scheme that matches your home, and you’re good to go.  

a woman and child paint together doing a spring art project

Need materials? Blank canvases and poster boards remain inexpensive from craft stores or dollar stores. Or you can buy them online and have them shipped or schedule for curbside pickup. 

  1. Collect art materials from around the house (paints, markers, paper, tape, scissors, clay).
  2. Decide if you need other materials, and order online or from local art store.
  3. Choose a color palette that complements your home design.
  4. Look for an online tutorial – especially good at engaging elementary-aged children.
  5. Display your gorgeous, custom artwork.

Not only can this brighten up your home, but you’ll be investing in your child’s artistic skills by creating opportunities to be creative. Each of these activities can be completed within a limited time, and you can have new paint or new art on your walls in just a few days’ time.

Spruce Up Your Backyard

More and more research points to the benefits of green space. As a result, more people are investing in their everyday living spaces as opposed to taking lavish vacations to get their dose of greenery. Outdoor living space is definitely a red hot renovation idea, especially during a period of shelter-in-place when outdoor amenities like parks and playgrounds are closed!

Of all the spring art projects, this one might have the biggest impact on your daily life.

  1. Figure out what your yard is missing, and see what you already have that could be used.
  2. Decide on a budget and enlist help from the household.
  3. Tidy the yard first, then drop in furniture or decking.
  4. Accessorize to perfection.
  5. Enjoy your outdoor oasis!

If you have a yard, there are many things you could do to make it more appealing. Consider adding a deck or a concrete pad, or extending your existing patio slab. Creating an outdoor oasis is easier than you think, and it’s nice to think of the day when you can finally entertain guests again. You’d be surprised at how a few simple touches can totally transform the backyard appeal of your home.

two Adirondack type white lawn chairs sit on a grassy lawn beside an old stone house

The cost of decking is also flexible. A smaller, minimalistic deck averages around $1,200 for supplies and labor. If you’ve already got some type of space in your yard, the cost of adding some character to it is minimal. You can add some lighting accents, or mount some speakers, all for less than $100. 

Rejuvenate Your Balcony

If you have a patio or balcony, now is a good time to look for some potted plants. You could also grow some from seed by ordering from your local hardware store. A little greenery goes a long way on a patio or balcony, and it’s even better if you grow edible plants!

Now that the weather is warming up, you might want to recreate the layout of your outside space. Look for an outdoor rug that can handle the elements. You’ll also want a small table and place to sit. Mood lighting, like twinkle lights or standing lanterns, create ambiance that can make any small outdoor space feel special. If you need ideas for using natural elements to make your home feel more cozy, start here. Spring art projects should be fun, so get creative!

  1. Clean your patio thoroughly to rid it of dirt and leaves.
  2. Figure out where the sun comes from, and design a layout accordingly.
  3. Find lighting, seating, and plants to make your space feel cozy.
  4. Enjoy fresh air from the comfort of your own newly styled balcony.
an older woman sits on her balcony beside potted cacti in a salmon colored building

Think about your daily routine and look for an activity that could be made better by doing it outdoors. You could turn your outdoor space into a meditative morning yoga lounge with room for a yoga mat and a small table for your laptop. Or maybe you’re an extrovert and you’re having an especially hard time with quarantine. So make your balcony a happy hour spot, with bright pennants hung up as a nice backdrop for Facetiming with your friends and family.

Organization Projects 

During this time, the whole family has probably been home a lot more than usual. So, it’s likely that there are some piles of clothing, an accumulation of random toys, and lots of other things that remain out of place. Despite what the younger members of your household might think, organization time is an activity that all family members can (and should) partake in. 

a messy white children's room with papers and toys everywhere

This is another great opportunity for children to service the needs of their own room or playrooms. Plus, they can sort out their favorite toys from unused items as they organize. This means less clutter, and they just might discover a new excitement for a forgotten item found under the bed. A great method for keeping playtime fresh is to batch your kids’ toys into several baskets, and then rotating them every few days or once a week. This way, you have less clutter out at once, and the kids are excited to see new items and be inspired to new creativity.

What kind of organizational strategies and materials can you use? We recommend storage totes for this activity because they allow children the opportunity to store the things that they are not using, gifting additional space. Something stackable is even better. 

  1. Gather up some sorting containers and organizing boxes.
  2. Decide on categories (keep, store, giveaway).
  3. Go through one room at a time and sort everything.
  4. Celebrate and mark your progress – especially important for children.
  5. Set aside items to donate when thrift stores reopen, or post for free online.

The adults can do some sorting, too! Go through your dresser drawers and your closets and you might find some extra space. Sort through your kitchen and garage and look for items that no longer serve you. Maybe you’ll find some things that could be used for spring art projects.

Unfortunately, thrift stores aren’t accepting donations right now due to public health concerns. But you can still set aside items you wish to donate. You may even post them for free to your neighborhood exchange group, since there might be someone nearby who could use those items. Just make sure you have a sanitization process in place if anyone in your house has been sick.

Hour-Long Bursts of Productivity

This is a classic technique promoted by lots of entrepreneurs and busy people. Setting a timer for just one hour can help you overcome procrastination and start to see some visual progress on any of these tasks. You can fight cabin fever by starting with a few small projects.

a close up of a watch face on someone's wrist. The watch face says "better times."

Plus, you probably don’t have hours at a time to spend on spring art projects. Most people are still working from home, and now they’re balancing childcare with housework and their employment. So, it’s okay if you don’t feel any desire to improve your home right now. You need to look out for your mental health, and that’s should be your number one priority. 

But, if you’re starting to feel stir crazy, just look around you. Finding smaller house projects can help you make a major dent in your overall home redesign plans. And investing in your home right now, during this time of global crisis, is a great way to stay connected to gratitude and what’s important. 

  1. Set a timer for a short period of time, maybe 25 minutes.
  2. Start a task that you’ve been procrastinating on.
  3. Stop when the timer rings and take a break.
  4. Congratulate yourself on making progress and breaking the ice!

Finally, if you’re exhausted, it’s totally okay rest. We all need time to recuperate and take care of ourselves right now. But if you find yourself feeling bored, then you may want to tackle one of these projects! 

By doing any one of these spring projects, you (and your children, if you have them) will be even more thankful for your home when the work is finally done.

a father and child playing on a bed in a brightly lit bedroom with white walls and a wooden pallet bedframe

So whether you are focused on making your home more enjoyable for yourself, or whether you’re preparing your space for entertaining guests when all this is over, we hope you find joy in your home.  And remember, if you need help we’re here for you.

Categories
Featured Furnishing 101 Other

Tips for Moving During COVID

Planning to move or relocate soon? Some of your plans may need to change. But we’re here to provide you with up-to-date information so that you can still successfully plan your move and stay safe and healthy. Moving during COVID takes good planning ahead.

Most moving companies and furnishing services are still operational.

The good news is that most moving companies and most supply chain services are still operational. The reason Furnishr is still operational is because our furniture suppliers and delivery partners are part of the Supply Chain sector. Their warehouses are available to ship and receive products. That said, they have moved all non-essential staff to work from home so there is bound to be some communication delay. Warehouses are also restricting hours, so they are requiring all logistics providers to route their shipments more efficiently.

We at Furnishr also continue to help those who need to move by providing regular design services and restricting our time spent at customers’ homes during the home services.

a clip art image of someone carrying a box and wearing gloves doing a delivery while moving during covid

CHECKLIST: PLANNING YOUR MOVE

  1. Start by asking your old & new buildings about move in/move out policies.
  2. Check with your moving or furnishing company about availability and protocols.
  3. Find a floor plan for your new place to help the movers.
  4. Write any special notes about furniture assembly / disassembly.
  5. Add any info about pets or kids on site, and parking and disposal of moving materials.
  6. Set aside some hand sanitizer or soap for your movers to use.
  7. Pack up as much as you can beforehand and clearly label all boxes.
  8. If you’re moving to the U.S. from overseas, start with this article to get prepared.

CHECKLIST: ON THE DELIVERY DAY

  1. Have a copy of your floor plan out and available for the movers, if possible.
  2. Set out the hand sanitizer and soap.
  3. Practice social distancing by staying 6 feet away from the moving team.
  4. You may wish to give your phone # to the team lead. This way, they can text you with any questions rather than needing to speak to you face-to-face.
  5. Keep a garbage bin out for movers to dispose of masks, gloves, and other materials.
  6. If you’re doing an absentee move, check in with your property manager before and after.
  7. Hydrate!

CHECKLIST: AFTER DELIVERY

  1. Wash your hands and sanitize doorknobs and other highly trafficked surfaces.
  2. Spritz your furniture with a 70%+ alcohol spray. There shouldn’t be anything there, since your movers were wearing gloves and masks, but it can put your mind at ease.
  3. Confirm with your property manager that you’re all moved in.
  4. Tidy up – here’s how to clean your whole place in 30 minutes.
  5. Send a thank you note to your delivery team.

Now that you know COVID-19 restrictions don’t apply to essential services, we can get to planning. Most moving and furnishing companies have implemented very strict sanitization and social distancing protocols. 

So while this epidemic may slightly alter your upcoming plans, you should still be able to make your move if you plan ahead and communicate. Just expect some delays because of the added restrictions to normal operations, and you’re ready to start planning.

Did we answer all your questions?

Here are answers to other frequently asked questions about moving during COVID. 


HEALTH AND SAFETY

a woman wearing safety glasses and orange gloves smiles in a warehouse

Q: How are moving & delivery companies adapting their services to protect my health?

A. Each company is responding to this crisis differently. Many moving companies are scaling back their operations and adjusting to the circumstances with new protocols to protect their clients’ and employees’ health. Some companies are asking their movers to practicing social distancing. Others are sending hand sanitizer, gloves, and masks onsite with their employees. If you are planning a move, make sure to ask your movers beforehand what additional health and safety precautions they are taking.

For Furnishr customers expecting a furniture delivery, we will ask our delivery team to assemble as much as possible at the warehouse prior to delivery. On the delivery day, we will blanket wrap each item and move in each piece to each room. Our goal is to limit the number of hours we spend at customers’ home. (Normally, we would assemble everything at customers’ home after we arrive.)

While our team is on site, we ask customers to keep a 6-feet distance from our team members. When each room is completely set up, we ask customers to walk through the home before we leave.

Q: What’s an example of a health & safety protocol that moving companies are taking?

A: To understand how moving companies have responded to the crisis, we reached out to Oz Moving & Storage to learn how they are implementing increased health and safety measures. Oz is following social distancing by instructing all their non-essential employees to work from home. They are also adjusting how they set up their moving crews. Their movers are now working in small teams, which means each mover works with the same group of people, equipment and trucks on every job. This practice limits unnecessary contact and reduces the risk of contamination. 

When it comes to the safety of the movers, Oz is monitoring and screening the health of their staff. They are advising their workers to strictly monitor their own health and to stay home if any symptoms appear. Oz movers are wearing masks, gloves and booties as needed. 

Moreover, movers are working diligently with buildings that have implemented additional precautionary measures to ensure that they can safely complete moves during this time. 

clip art showing hand sanitizer bottles on a purple background

PREPARING FOR THE MOVE

Q: What information will the moving company need from me in advance? 

A: To address clients’ concerns, clients should provide as much information as possible regarding the details of their move beforehand. Be prepared for last minute changes in your plans. Before the scheduled move, clients should ask their movers as many questions as possible to ensure every step is well communicated. You should discuss the anticipated schedule, vehicle parking and permits, disposal of materials, presence of pets or small children, allergies, and responsibility for any damages. Make sure that your contact information and address are up to date. Check that you have a floor plan available if the movers will be helping you at your new place.

Q: How can I prepare my furniture & personal items to make it easier and safer for movers?  

To prepare for your move, please have everything packed and ready for when the movers arrive. If you’re moving during COVID, please practice social distancing during the move. Leave soap and water (or hand sanitizer) for movers to wash their hands. 

Another popular alternative is to work with a design & furnishing company. Rather than packing up all your old furniture and paying big money to move it, design-and-furnish is a model where you start totally from scratch. You collaborate virtually with a professional interior designer. Together, you choose furniture that works with your new floor plan and your lifestyle needs. Many of these furnishing companies work with delivery & assembly partners. So, your new place will be furnished from top-to-bottom without paying any moving fees. A slightly different model is rental furniture. These companies do utilize sanitization protocols between rentals, but during a public health crisis it’s not something we would recommend. 

Overall, design-and-furnish can actually be a surprisingly affordable and efficient solution to relocating, especially during a pandemic. 

HOW TO LIMIT IN-PERSON CONTACT

a pair of hands holding a box that says 'contactless delivery' on a yellow background

Q: In my new place, will I need to be onsite with movers so they know where everything goes?

A: You will need someone who can let the movers into your space. But it’s not always necessary for you to be onsite yourself all day. You should provide a comprehensive floor-plan for the movers, instructing them how to arrange your personal items. Send this to them before the day of your move. Inform the movers about specifics regarding the layout of the new house. How should all they arrange the furniture? Provide information about assembly and disassembly of furniture. Moving is an intimate process, so providing movers with this information beforehand helps limit contact between movers and customers, to further reduce unnecessary risks. 

If clients need to schedule an absentee move, in that they have already left the unit, but did not have time to retrieve their belongings, they can arrange for movers to have access to these units and perform this move. 

Q: What is an absentee move, and what health & safety benefits does it have?

A: If you’re moving during COVID, you may prefer to schedule an absentee move to reduce contact. In these situations, you can request movers to facilitate a full-packing service and pack your belongings for you. Those who need this service must provide as much information as possible regarding the assembling and disassembling of furniture. The key in all of these situations is communication, which reduces unnecessary risks. The goal is to help both clients and movers work in as safe of an environment as possible. 

CANCELLATIONS AND DELAYS

a city scape at dusk by a large lake

Q: What if my building isn’t allowing people to move in or out because of COVID-19?

A: In these situations, moving companies should work with the building to make an exception or re-schedule the move. If this means a sooner date or attempting to coordinate with the building, moving companies will adjust for that. Moving during COVID requires flexibility from all parties. If the move cannot be completed at this time, moving companies can provide a solution for you. Many moving companies have fully operable storage facilities. They can transfer your belongings into a safe and sanitized storage unit until the situation improves and movers can gain access to the building. 

Q: If I have to cancel my move last minute, will I be charged cancellation fees by movers?

A: There are many operational challenges that have arisen throughout this crisis. A major challenge is the unpredictability of this situation. During this time, most companies understand that people might need to cancel or postpone their move without much notice. As a result, professional movers are responding to this crisis and providing customers with increased flexibility. At present, many moving companies are waiving any cancellation and rescheduling fees. To reduce uncertainty, companies encourage clients to schedule any future moves as early as possible. The situation is changing daily, and moving companies want to ensure that clients are able to safely complete their move. Moving during COVID will naturally be more complicated than moving at any other time, so be prepared to be flexible.

MAKING NEW PLANS

a busy airport scene with people and their suitcases

Q: What are some temporary housing options that are still available?

A: There are still some hotels and Airbnbs that are accepting reservations. You’ll need to research local options, and communicate directly with the front desk or property manager. It’s important to consider what safety and cleaning protocols they have in place. For instance, an Airbnb in a mother-in-law unit might see less traffic than a hotel. Many Airbnb hosts are experiencing lost revenue, due to a new policy that allows guests to cancel reservations without a penalty fee. 

Finally, remember that circumstances can change last-minute. You may think you have a reservation, but any hotel chain or Airbnb host may decide last minute to close down. If you’re moving during COVID, always have a backup plan. This could be a friend or family member who might allow you to stay over. Be sure to practice safe protocols wherever you go, including sanitizing regularly touched surfaces, washing hands regularly, and covering your nose and mouth. Some experts recommend changing your clothing and mask as soon as you enter the building. 

Q: When will this all be over, so I know when to schedule my move?

A: Experts are predicting a wide range of dates. Some think that restrictive measures will lift as early as June. They estimate the peak will occur in mid to late April, depending on your location. Historically, we have seen other pandemics last between 12 – 36 months. Vaccines take between 12 – 18 months to develop, so that is likely when full relief will come. Summer may be a time of reduced infection, as the virus can’t survive as long in hot weather. Plenty of moving and furnishing companies have already adapted their policies. So, you may still be able to schedule your move very soon. Depending on how close or far your new destination is, you may wish to wait until flights are running regularly. You may also wish to reschedule for when your new workplace begins to resume in-person office hours. 

Overall, our society is more prepared to combat the spread of COVID-19 than at any other time in history. 3D printers and collaborative manufacturing initiatives are uniting people around the country to help flatten the curve and reduce risk. It is probable that restrictions will lift gradually, as we develop systems to protect vulnerable people while industry resumes. Because moving is considered an essential service, you should be able to continue with any planned relocation if absolutely necessary.

a woman sits smiling at her laptop

We hope this guide to moving during COVID answered your questions! Please reach out if you have lingering concerns about relocating, and we’ll do our best to help you find a solution.

If you’d like to start your home design process with a free 15 minute video consultation, sign up to chat with one of our designers today.

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How to Survive Quarantine As an Extrovert

If you’re reading this, then you’re probably anxious to leave the house and you haven’t seen your friends for too long. If that’s true, may we be the first to say — thank you! Thank you for doing your part to flatten the curve and save lives during this pandemic.

Now, we know you’re here for tips on surviving a quarantine as an extrovert.

Extroverts need other people’s energy to survive! They need adventures! Quarantine means isolation, silence, and sitting still and slowly dissolving into a puddle of boredom …right? WRONG!

a woman in a fedora looks longingly out a window

We’ve got six actionable ways to stop feeling like a dud and start feeling better.

Here’s how to survive a quarantine, extrovert edition. (Psst, pass it on)


Panic #1: I won’t see my friends & family for months!

Well, actually: They aren’t unavailable to hang out, you’re just temporarily stuck in different buildings!

a young man in a turtleneck and glasses sits on the floor and smiles at his laptop like he is video chatting with someone

Here’s how to solve this. Switch to virtual hangouts!

Firstly, if you are under quarantine, please please DO NOT try to meet up in person and attempt to maintain social distancing. Someone will forget, someone is bound to touch a door knob, and then all those people stuck inside with vulnerable immune systems will stare at you through the windows and judge you.

Got a standing date with a friend? Keep it! Just switch it to online. Post-work happy hour at the pub near the office? Get everybody on Google Hangouts and BYOB. Missing your gym buddy? Schedule a home workout on Skype for the same time you’d normally be at the gym. Call your grandma on Fridays like you usually do. Keep it as close to normal as possible.

If you didn’t have anything planned, but you’re craving some socializing, reach out and offer to ‘host’ a virtual dinner party. Look for multiplayer games that have online versions. Find pals with complementary talents and make something together.

Panic #2: I feel so claustrophobic! My home is boring.

Well, actually: You’re right. But let’s not focus on what you can’t change. Focus on what you can.

beside an open window is a maroon pillow and a tray with a candle, mug, and books

We get it. Being stuck inside is not fun for anyone. But it’s ESPECIALLY hard for extroverts to survive quarantine because they thrive on new experiences. So how can we make quarantine more exciting?

First, do not spend the entire day in the SAME spot. Of course your home feels boring and claustrophobic if you stare at the same four walls every day. Don’t stay in bed from morning to night. Don’t sit on your couch for 12 hours. And don’t just sit at your desk or dining room table.

Move between the available spaces! Your body and your mind will thank you. Try choosing a different spot for each part of the day. Mornings on the couch, afternoons at your desk, and evenings in the kitchen. Think about where the best natural light is, too. Make sure you can enjoy that sun on your face at the time when it’s coming through the window. Coffitivity is a free app that generates ambient noise like you’re in a coffee shop. Figure out what helps, and plan for it.

You can also rearrange your space. Swap out some art work! Move your sofa. Start using your coffee table as a Japanese-style dining table. Get out your old acoustic guitar and lean it against the wall. Enjoy the freedom to experiment with your interior design. Now’s the time to make a change and figure out what you like, since you can always switch it back later.

Panic #3: Cooking for myself SUCKS.

Well, actually: If your biggest food worry is lack of cooking skills, then you have a lot to be grateful for.

a man cooks something over a stove in a kitchen with white tile

After nurses and doctors, the people on the front line of this pandemic are grocery store employees and meal delivery workers.

Uber Eats is amazing, we agree. It’s essential for a lot of people, too. Meal delivery helps get food to people who work long hours, live in food deserts, or have accessibility challenges. Meal delivery folks are especially vulnerable during this time, but many keep working because they need the income. Lots of businesses have switched to take-out or delivery only.

To survive quarantine as an extrovert, you have two food options.

Option one, if you’re determined to order delivery, try to switch to a local business that might be hurting. Rather than ordering Dominos, look for a neighborhood pizza chain. And keep in mind that the virus can still be transmitted on plastic containers and delivery bags, and occasionally on food if it’s not heated thoroughly. Here’s a comprehensive guide to food safety and COVID-19. Option two, try to see this as your opportunity to learn more cooking skills. Odds are, your favorite dish isn’t too tricky to cook at home! There are a ton of amazing tutorials online, including some by master chefs. Or call up your mom and ask her to teach you her secret recipe. You have plenty of time to perfect your technique.

By cooking at home for just a couple weeks, you help minimize the exposure for everyone around you. You also help lessen the overall time we need to spend in quarantine. And hopefully, you gain a new appreciation for the act of feeding yourself.

Panic #4: I feel like I’m going to die without fresh air!

Well, actually: Depending on your area and what kind of quarantine you’re under, you don’t need to stay indoors 100% of the time.

a person in a ponytail wears a virtual reality headset in front of a blue sky with clouds

This is a touchy topic. It’s absolutely true that people under 30 who don’t show symptoms are the biggest group currently spreading COVID. We feel fine, so we go out like normal. But unfortunately, non-symptomatic doesn’t mean you aren’t contagious. The virus takes time to make you sick, and you can even have it without showing symptoms, and then pass it on to someone else.

So use your best judgement here. If you have a patio or a backyard, then get your fresh air at home where you’re not putting anyone else in danger. Sit out with a chair and take deep breaths and soak it up. If you can go to a park or walk around the block alone while still keeping 6 feet away from other people, you might still be able to get fresh air and move your body. It’s harder in busier neighborhoods.

If you can’t go outside, then as a last resort you can fake it. To survive quarantine as an extrovert, sometimes we gotta do weird stuff. If you have a VR headset, thrown on a game that simulates a forest adventure or arctic exploration. Or just play an hour long video of waves crashing at a beach or a rushing river on your laptop. Throw open a window or turn on a fan! Sniff some sunscreen and imagine you’re outside.

Research shows that sensory stimulation like this can actually trick your brain into releasing the relaxing chemicals associated with being outside.

Panic #5: My partner / roommate / pet is annoying.

Well, actually: They’re stuck with you, too! Try to find a way to get some alone time inside the house.

a person sits at a dining table and holds their head with one hand in distress

This might seem like odd advice for an extrovert. But when you’re forced to socialize with the same one person for days on end, it can start to grate on your nerves.

Schedules are your friend right now. Let your housemate know that you’re not available between 9 and 5 because even though you’re home now, you’re still working. Tell your partner that you love them, and then tell them to go to the bedroom to take calls with their friends. Practice setting some boundaries of your own, and invite your housemates to do so with you, too.

And as all stay at home parents know, sometimes you just can’t escape the person in front of you. You’re stuck together and you have to make the best of it. Can you make it a game? Could you learn a new skill together? Can your relationship grow? Find some curiosity and have some grace – for them, and for yourself. Remember that it’s a trying time and we’re all just doing our best.

Panic #6: I have too much free time.

Well, actually: Lots of people need help right now. People with accessibility needs, parents struggling with childcare.

a woman with long black hair sits at a table with her laptop and coffee. she is holding her phone and smiling at it.

Free time can feel scary. This can be doubly true you have a mood or personality disorder, and it’s exacerbated during self-isolation. But if you are an extrovert trying to survive quarantine, free time doesn’t have to be scary!

If you function better with a schedule, then make one for yourself. Do you need accountability? Get your housemate onboard or schedule stuff with friends. If you’re new to working from home, start with these tips. Or if you’ve been laid off, schedule a couple hours each day toward looking for a job or skill building.

You can also start on projects that have been on your to do list for months. Tidy the desk, clear out that closet, mend that shirt, read that new book. Redesign your apartment. Or look for volunteer opportunities, whether virtual or close to home. Maybe you have elderly neighbors who need groceries delivered, or maybe someone with depression needs help meal planning with what’s in their cupboard.

Take care of your mental health, and take care of your community. A global pandemic is not the time to force yourself into intense productivity. Just because you’re an extrovert trying to survive quarantine doesn’t mean you should destroy yourself just to keep busy.


The world is going to look different when this is all over, and in some ways, that might be something to look forward to. Remember to be as generous as you can, with yourself and others. Who will you be when all this is over?