Since you’re a concerned parent, one of your most vital jobs is to find acceptable accommodations for your family. Your apartment or house will be the entire world for your kids when they’re young; and when they grow up and go to school, it will be their soft place to land after a hard day.
So putting in the time and research to locate a rental that will fit your family’s entire needs is a crucial part of your job. Unfortunately, kids are very hard on a house, so you might feel a little uneasy about renting.
You will encounter many inconveniences with regard to renting certain places when you have kids. But if you know what you’re looking for, you can find what you need. Here are a few kid-friendly amenities to have in your rental.
1. Semi-Gloss or High-Gloss Paint
If a prospective rental has walls with a flat-paint finish, it might be the last place you’d want to take your kids. Flat paint is almost impossible to clean without taking some of the paint off with your cleaning supplies, and you know your kids are going to draw on the walls at some point!
Semi-gloss or high-gloss finish walls are common among rentals designed for families because they’re easier to clean.
2. Hard Flooring
Spills are much easier to clean from hard flooring than carpet. Laminate and vinyl are best because they’re cheap and have a high-gloss finish that’s not difficult to sanitize. Hardwoods are also great if you know how to clean them properly.
On the other end of the spectrum, hard flooring is more sanitary than carpet. Carpet fibers are highly absorbent, and they collect dust, pet hair, and so many other things you don’t want to think about.
Even if the carpet has been shampooed, it’s not going to be as sanitary as hard floors that have been mopped with a disinfectant solution.
3. First Floor or Elevator-Friendly
You might not consider the value of a first-floor apartment or one that has an elevator until you’re trying to get to your fourth-floor walk-up with two kids and several bags of groceries. Easy access to your apartment is a must-have, especially when you have a family!
4. No Interior Stairs
For some families, having stairs is a nice way to separate the living areas from the bedrooms. But it’s convenient to have everything on one level, as well, whether you’re putting away laundry or chasing kids.
What’s more, interior stairs pose a safety hazard for babies and small children. If you sign a lease for an apartment with stairs, make sure you’re allowed to drill holes in the wall to install a baby gate. Some landlords ask tenants not to do that, and you may not wish to risk it with your little ones.
5. More Than One Bathroom
Don’t delude yourself into assuming you can share a bathroom with your small children, especially if they’re in potty training.
You need an open bathroom at all times, in case of an emergency. Plus, you want a place where you can do your business in peace without wondering what substance is on the floor next to the toilet.
6. A Place to Play Outdoors
Never underestimate the value of outdoor space for your kids to play, even if you have to share it with neighbors. Experts state that kids should be spending at least an hour outside playing, but three hours is better.
Not only does outdoor play keep youngsters away from their screens, but that’s also where they’re able to engage in active free play. Study after study has indicated that kids who get several hours of active free play per day are more likely to be successful academically, emotionally, and creatively.
7. In-Unit Laundry
Think of how many loads of laundry you do per week. Then, think about how horrible it would be to have to go to a laundromat to do all of those laundry loads. What busy parent has time for that?
In-unit laundry machines or hookups will be invaluable for your rental. At the very least, look for a rental facility with a laundry in the building to save precious time.
Whether you’re trying to prevent your rental from destruction or simply hoping for convenience, don’t forget to add the amenities above to your list. As you continue searching for the perfect apartment or home for rent, add your must-haves and wants to your list, and try not to settle!