Living in an apartment or house that includes a balcony or patio can seem like a blessing when there’s warm weather, and it makes perfect sense to take advantage of this extra space to suit your lifestyle and needs. There are a few things to consider when it comes to decorating and using your balcony or patio — don’t forget that there are likely other tenants living around or under you! Today, we’ll go over some essential tips on décor and etiquette to ensure you enjoy your outdoor space but also don’t negatively impact those around you.

Music, Guests, and General Noise

It’s summer — and almost a given that people are going to be out on their patios and balconies hanging out with their friends and family and enjoying the beautiful weather while it’s here. That said, people still expect one another to be respectful. Keep your noise level in mind, and if it’s getting late, take the gathering inside. If you live in an apartment complex, chances are your neighbours’ patios are very close to yours — that’s not very far for sound to travel!

Plants and Water Drainage

Most of us love to have plants growing on our balcony or patio — but what about the water that you give them? Don’t just allow it to drain through the bottom of the pot or planter, as it will leave a trickling trail of mulch and dirt that can seep onto people or objects below, including outdoor spaces used by other tenants. Be sure to add drainage trays and change them regularly to protect against this, allowing you to enjoy an outdoor garden with peace of mind and respect for your neighbours.

Outdoor Pet Care

Perhaps you have a dog that needs frequent grooming, and you tend to take care of it out on your balcony or patio. If so, bear in mind that this can cause animal hair and other debris to be blown about by the wind — possibly affecting nearby tenants. Try to find a place indoors to care for your pet so that airborne debris can be more efficiently controlled. After all, doing a good sweep and opening the windows is usually enough to air out your home.

Bird Feeders

Hanging a bird feeder allows you to enjoy new visitors every day, but they also come with a downside — they continuously need to be refilled with messy birdseed. It’s all too easy to overfill and spill seeds onto areas belonging to neighbouring units, so be sure to inspect the design of any bird feeders you have set up (some come with catch basins to protect against this occurring).

Patio Furniture & Storage

If you have a set of heavy, metal outdoor furniture, take a moment to consider how much noise it makes. Are your neighbours greeted with loud scraping and grinding sounds every time you go to get in and out of a chair or move a table? Do away with these and opt for a lightweight alternative that can be neatly stowed away when not in use. This will also protect from damaging paint and finishes on your balcony, deck, or patio.

If you have other items stored on your balcony, make sure it is within reason. Having your patio stacked to the brim with boxes or other household items doesn’t look great and creates a real eyesore for your neighbours. Keep it within reason and be courteous!

Smoking

If you are a smoker, you first need to ensure that your building/complex allows for smoking out on your patio/balcony. If it does, be respectful of your neighbours and of the complex around you. Make sure you dispose of your butts properly — never toss them over the edge, as this is bad for the environment, ruins the property around the building, and can even start fires. If it is very windy and your smoke is being blown right into your neighbour’s area, maybe wait until the wind dies down. Your consideration of others is always appreciated.

At Sleepwell Property Management, we have a wide selection of beautiful, spacious rental units with balconies or patios that are perfect for many different lifestyles and needs. Contact us today for more details! Enjoy the summer!