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Reasons to Downsize to An Apartment in Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, October 06, 2015

When you reach a certain and you are beginning to think about downsizing to an apartment in  Raleigh, NC, it is likely that you’ll have some doubts.

The worries that thinking about downsizing brings may be many.

From losing space to have your family to stay for holiday weekends to feeling like your home defines you, there are a myriad of potential worries that might enter your mind when thinking about downsizing.

But really, you shouldn't worry - it needn't be an identity crisis.

Why? Here is the ultimate list of why downsizing is a great idea.

If you're about to go through with it, or are in the middle of doing so, this is why you should be happy at the prospect.

  • You'll have less space to clean. And tidy. Does this have a downside?
  • It's more cost-effective. You might not have fewer bills - because you'll still, presumably, want the same services from your home - but it's likely they will be reduced, because in turn, you have reduced the size of your living accommodation.
  • With the size comes the added bonus of not having any space. There's no extra space for unwanted guests, and them turning up every weekend when you'd rather they weren't there. And, there is no space for unwanted junk.
  • Just think of the money you can save - and invest. Selling your old house could generate a whole wealth of income that you weren't expecting.
  • There's no expectation for you to be the host. Pained at the thought of hosting everyone and their dog during holidays? When you've downsized, you needn't worry. Someone else can do the work, and you won’t be left out of the festivities.
  • You have the opportunity to make your new apartment your own. Think of it as starting from the beginning: you can choose the location anew, the size, the everything.
  • Added to that, you can make your new home age-appropriate. Not enjoying walking up and down the stairs every day? Get an apartment on the first floor. Want a swimming pool for water aerobics without the gym fee? Check out apartment communities with those luxuries.  

See, not scary at all. Great, in fact. For more information on 2 bedroom apartments in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove Apartment Homes.


The Telegraph

Six Reasons to Move to an Apartment in Raleigh, N.C.

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Raleigh, N.C. is known to residents as the "City of Oaks," a name that becomes quickly apparent when you visit downtown. Traveling east of Raleigh, you’ll find North Carolina’s beautiful coastal regions, and traveling west, you’ll find the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. Beyond the city's natural beauty and convenient location, here are six reasons to rent an apartment in Raleigh, NC.

1. Raleigh combines modern, urban living with traditional Southern flair.

Folks often move to Raleigh looking for urban living with a Southern touch. The neighborhoods surrounding downtown Raleigh make it easy for residents to bike to the local farmers market, walk to a new restaurant or bar, or visit the State Capitol Building.

2. There are lots of options for delicious food in Raleigh, from barbecue to vegan.

When it comes to good food, the Raleigh region offers many options. There are plenty of delightfully small, friendly cafes and restaurants catering to diverse dietary preferences, including those who are vegan or vegetarian.

3. Huge First Friday events showcase Raleigh's great galleries, studios and museums.

Remember to mark your calendars for the First Friday Gallery Walk in downtown Raleigh. On the first Friday of every month, local galleries, studios and museums keep their doors open late. Galleries display new artworks, artists talk about their latest creations, and you can find handcrafted gifts for family and friends.

4. Raleigh's neighbors, Durhan and Chapel Hill, are also great places to visit.

When it comes to where you live, good neighbors make a big difference. Raleigh has two neighboring cities, Durham and Chapel Hill, and they are both listed among Livability’s Top 100 Best Places to Live.

5. Many Raleigh area's restaurants serve locally grown food.

6. Several colleges ensure opportunities for education and a college town culture.

Many folks move to the Raleigh region for educational opportunities. North Carolina State University is the largest four-year university in the state, and it is nationally renowned for programs in engineering, biology and agriculture. Duke University is located in Durham, and it is a prestigious private research institution known for its medical school and medical center. And of course, there's the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, best known for its programs in business, government, law and public health.

For more information on apartments in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove.


Making the Most of Your Apartment in Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 22, 2015

It is not easy to move into apartments in Raleigh, NC when you are moving to this area from another part of the state or country. Most are excited to enjoy the benefits of moving to an urban area that allows them easy access to dining, shopping and entertainment.

With some planning and creative ideas, it can be easy and fun to move into your new home.

Here are some tips on how to maximize an apartment space:

  • You need to know the measurements you are working with so you can create a clear plan. Imagine the furniture you have and how it will fit into the space you are working with. Make a list of what furniture you really need. I think we are all natural hoarders, but try to resist that urge. Think small. What do you really need? If you work from home you will need a work space, but you will not probably need that very large sectional couch. When in doubt, throw it out or donate it to a charity.
  • Convertible and movable items are key in a small space, especially in a studio apartment. A sofa bed, day bed or convertible arm chair can be useful to switch your space from sleeping space to entertaining space. An ottoman that has storage can work as a seat or a small table or moved out of the way if it has wheels. It is best if all your furniture has multiple uses. A book shelf can serve as storage and something to divide living space from sleeping space. A curtain is also a good room divider, if you don’t need a book shelf for storage or work space. If everything has its place, it will be a lot easier to enjoy your smaller space.
  • Use every nook and cranny. Every square inch can be used as storage if you add wall mounted shelves. A small closet with shelves or nook can be used as an office nook or storage with storage baskets. A hanging rack in a kitchen is very useful to store larger pots and pans. A hanging wine glass rack can allow you to use cabinet space for storing other items. A small kitchen may not have much counter space, but a butcher block with storage can help extend kitchen work space.
  • Closet organizers can really maximize your usable closet space. If your closet is deep enough, even just a double rail clothing rack can double your hanging capacity. Hanging shoe racks will give you more usable closet floor space.
  • A smaller bathroom’s storage can be improved greatly with shelves and a few hooks especially if you have an attractive pedestal sink that looks pretty, but has no storage.
  • Light colors and a mirror added will give the illusion of space. You may want to work your colors around a piece of furniture to have a theme. Add some personality to it and make it your own and it will be a wonderful place to call home.

Washington Post

Reasons to Rent an Apartment in Raleigh, NC During Retirement

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 15, 2015

In retirement, you don't necessarily need a house with several bedrooms and a big yard. In fact, stairs to climb and a yard that needs mowing can become a significant liability as you age. Renters get to outsource emergency repairs and some home maintenance chores, which can make life easier as a retiree. Downsizing to an apartment in Raleigh, NC can also improve your retirement finances.

Here are some reasons to become a renter in retirement.

Tap your home equity. When you sell your home and become a renter, you can add that home equity to your nest egg, which could significantly improve your retirement finances. Selling the home and renting gives you capital that can produce and earn income. It costs less to rent than it does to own. There are no maintenance costs, there are no property taxes and sometimes utilities are included.

Downsize to a smaller place. Once your children move out of the house, you don't need as much space or stuff. Downsizing to a living space more appropriate for current needs can be additionally helpful if moving from a multi-story to single-story home, i.e., eliminating stairs.

Lower your cost of living. Retirees no longer need to live in expensive areas near the office or in good school districts. Sometimes moving even a short distance can result in a drastically lower cost of living.

Outsource home maintenance. In many rental agreements, it is the landlord's responsibility to maintain the property, including the lawn, exterior of the building and many of the appliances. You are "shifting the burden of home maintenance and repair to the landlord. This includes interior, but also exterior things like lawn maintenance and snow removal.

One phone call for repairs. When something breaks, you don't have to spend your day finding a person to conduct the repair or getting price estimates. You simply call the landlord or administration office and put in a maintenance request. A lot goes wrong with older homes and that's why a lot of people want to relocate. You don't have to deal with it when things break – you just call the super.

Live near the amenities you use. Some retirees choose to relocate to a walkable location near stores, parks and recreational opportunities. You can walk to things like shops or the theater. It can be useful to base yourself near public transportation in case you reach a point when you no longer want to drive.

Relocate near family. Retirement can be an opportunity to move closer to your children and grandchildren. If you rent close to your family or children or grandchildren, you have less travel expenses to see family.

More flexibility. Renting gives you the flexibility to experience a new location or lifestyle without a long-term commitment. Renting gives you an opportunity to try out a place and see what a place is really like to live in. Rather than buying right away, you can rent for a full year and see if you can imagine yourself living in your new community.

Find age-appropriate features. Retirees can select apartments with amenities that will allow them to live independently for as long as possible. Features to look for include apartments with a minimum amount of stairs and convenient laundry facilities as well as apartments with fitness centers and pools.

For more information on 1 or 2 bedroom apartments in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove.


Homeownership Myths – Rent an Apartment in Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, September 09, 2015

These mental traps could lead you to make a bad real estate decision.

You’ve decided you’re ready to buy a home — but you find yourself overcome with fear and anxiety. There’s not much you can do about cold feet, but it isn’t a bad idea to pause for a moment and ask yourself if you’re getting stuck on one of these common real estate myths before signing on the dotted line.

1. Assuming that buying is always better than renting

The idea that renting an apartment in Raleigh, NC equals “throwing money away” is one of the most pervasive myths out there. In reality, the decision to buy vs. rent should be based on some measurable factors (along with your willingness): the average housing and rent prices in your location, the amount of time you’ll live in that dwelling, your tax bracket, the mortgage rate you qualify for, property tax, homeowners’ association (HOA) fees and insurance rates in your area, projected appreciation in your area, and inflation assumptions.

Take this rent vs. buy example: You plan to live in a city for three years, and you can buy a home for $100,000 or rent the same home for $1,000 per month. Buying is likely the better option. However, if you need to pay $650,000 to buy the home you could rent for $1,000, renting might truly be the better choice.

2. Believing your current needs reflect your future needs

You may be part of a child-free couple who like to travel, live with minimal possessions, and don’t want to spend too much time maintaining your home. You might want to choose a small home that fits your lifestyle and disregard the school district during your decision-making process. But will you still have the same priorities in five years? Remember that you’re buying a home to suit your future needs and your current ones.

Other factors to anticipate include maintenance costs, HOA fees, proximity to jobs (and potential future job sites), school district, yard size, neighborhood safety, and walkability. Perhaps today you want a swimming pool — but in three years, when your youngest child moves off to college, you’ll want the freedom to travel without worrying about pool and yard maintenance. Or maybe you don’t need a yard today, but in a few years, you’d like to adopt a dog.

3. Fear of getting priced out of the market

Home prices have skyrocketed in the past five years. It can be tempting to believe prices will continue rising indefinitely, and that if you don’t purchase a home today, you’ll get priced out of the housing market. Conversely, it’s tempting to believe that if you buy now, you’ll definitely flip your home for a profit when it’s time to sell.

Neither of those is a foregone conclusion. The housing market, like all industries, is cyclical: Prices rise and fall. In addition, housing is local: Price and appreciation activity in Kansas City, MO, doesn’t necessarily reflect activity in Jacksonville, FL. Leave speculation aside. Purchase a home based on your family’s budget and needs, not your guesses about what the future may or may not hold.

4. Believing all renovations are profitable

Many homeowners update their kitchen, bathrooms, landscaping, and other features to make their home more attractive to buyers. But that doesn’t mean you’ll recoup the cost of your renovations.

While some updates might fetch you a higher price, others simply lack a return on investment. Replacing peeling laminate counter tops with builder-grade granite might help your house sell faster, but upgrading to a rare style of granite with an ornate beveled edge probably won’t translate to a bigger bottom line.

Bottom line

There are plenty of real estate myths and assumptions, but don’t let yourself get distracted. Focus on purchasing a home you cherish that fulfills your needs and wants, both now and in the future. And enjoy your new space!

For more information on 1 and 2 bedroom apartments in Raleigh, NC, contact Auston Grove.


Now May be the Time to Rent an Apartment – Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Have you been wondering if now is the time to buy? If so, the first factor to consider is whether or not you can actually afford to buy. Have a good understanding of where you stand financially right now.

That means finding out whether there's enough money for a down payment — a minimum of 5-10% of the home's purchase price. It's also important to look at what other debts you owe and how stable your employment is.

And the down payment is just one cost to consider. Potential home buyers should set aside another 1.5 – 3 % of the purchase price to take care of closing costs.

Once the papers have been signed and the property is yours, it's not just the mortgage payments that you have to worry about after that.

Can you afford property taxes, condo fees, heat, utilities and repairs?

When you own a home, you can't call the landlord. You're the landlord. You have to create a cushion in your monthly budget to provide for these additional costs.

Sometimes it does make sense to rent if you're moving around frequently for work or if the money simply isn't there.

Some renters have a different perspective and they have ditched home ownership in favor of renting — some for lifestyle reasons rather than financial.

Many don’t like to own because they don’t like to feel so disconnected from the cultural and social life in the city and the chores associated with keeping up a home.

For more information on renting an apartment in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove Apartments.

Brandon Sun

Reasons to Rent and Not Buy – Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Monday, August 24, 2015

There are a lot of silver linings to renting. From greater flexibility to surprising financial savings, here are 10 reasons to be glad if you are not a homeowner.

1. No worries about yardwork. If you rent, your yard might be a maintenance-free patio or, if there is a grassy yard, the landscaping might be maintained by the landlord. If you have a green thumb, of course you can make the most of your space with a potted garden or raised veggie beds — but the choice is yours.

2. Live in a more walkable area. When buying a home in a densely populated urban area is financially challenging, renting in the same area can sometimes be within reach. Renting can let you take advantage of the conveniences and rich culture of city life.

3. Get repaid for home improvements. While some landlords are quite strict about making any changes to the space, others are open to positive changes that will appeal to other renters in the future, such as refinished floors, fresh neutral paint and new light fixtures or faucets, and might even reimburse you for materials and labor. You won’t know unless you ask … just make sure you do ask before making a change, or you could lose your deposit when you move out!

4. Enjoy more free time. Along with owning a home comes the responsibility for home maintenance — and all of that lawn mowing, gutter cleaning, deck staining and painting takes time. Renting means you can devote more time to doing the things you really love to do.

5. Excuse yourself from costly updates. When you own a home, pouring money into remodeling projects is tempting, even though you are not likely to recoup that money when you sell. As a renter, there is freedom in knowing you can’t remodel even if you wanted to — and the unspent money can become savings for retirement, travel or a special piece of furniture that you can take along if you move.

6. Upsize more easily when your family grows. Buying a small starter home may seem like a good idea … until a child (or two or more) comes along, and you realize you really need more space. If you rent, moving to a bigger place is a relatively simple endeavor. If you own your home and want to sell your old house and buy a new one at the same time, things get more complicated (and more expensive), especially if you end up carrying two mortgages at once.

7. Invest on your own terms. Whether you would like to start a business or invest more in your retirement accounts, choosing to not buy a home opens up other possibilities for saving and investing. Buying a home can be a smart investment, but it’s not the only option.

8. Keep options open. Got an amazing new job opportunity in a far-flung locale? If you own your home, you’d have to contend with selling or renting it out if you wanted to move, but if you rent, the process is more straightforward. Renting in different neighborhoods is also a great way to get a feel for a new city — keep exploring until you find your ideal spot.

9. Something broke? You don’t have to fix it! Being able to call the landlord when something needs fixing has to be one of the biggest perks of renting. From leaky faucets to appliances that go kaput, it’s nice to know you will never need to cover surprise repair costs.

10. Enjoy being mortgage-free. While some folks are able to purchase their home outright, for many, being a homeowner means signing up for a boatload of debt. And while it sounds as if you’d be saving more by paying off a mortgage (and a home can indeed be a wonderful long-term investment), it’s not all sunshine and roses — there are the closing costs, agent fees, interest payments and property taxes to take into account (to name a few added expenses). A savvy renter can sock away as much (or more) savings as a homeowner, without the debt.

For more information on apartments in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove Apartments.


Raleigh is the Perfect Place to Rent

Joseph Coupal - Monday, August 17, 2015

The Raleigh area has won a lot of awards. You want to live in a great city with tons to do, this is most likely one of the reasons why you are apartment hunting in Raleigh, NC.

If you are considering moving here, this is a list some of the accolades the City of Raleigh has been awarded recently! Not that we need to give you any more reasons to check out apartments in Raleigh, NC and move to the area…

  • #2 – “Best Large City to Live In” Wallethub Study, August 2015
  • Top Ten Fastest Growing Cities Wallethub Study, August 2015
  • #2 Among Top 10 Music Cities Other Than Nashville (Raleigh) - Music From The Row, July 2015
  • Among the 20 Best State Fairs in America (N.C. State Fair, Raleigh) - Vacations Made Easy, July 2015
  • #2 Among the Next Top 10 Cities for Tech Jobs (Raleigh) - Fast Company, July 2015
  • #4 Among Most Innovative, Pioneering Digital Counties: 500,000 or More Population Category (Wake County) - Center for Digital Government, July 2015
  • Among 17 Most Underrated American Cities (Raleigh) - Urban Insider, July 2015
  • Among Top 100 Cities on Twitter (Greater Raleigh CVB) - Encore Alert, June 2015
  • #3 Among 12 Music Festivals You Should Actually Attend This Summer (Hopscotch, Raleigh) - The Huffington Post, May 2015
  • #3 Among Best Cities to Work - Economic Environment (Raleigh MSA) - WalletHub, May 2015
  • #10 Among Best Cities to Work - Small Business Environment (Raleigh MSA) - WalletHub, May 2015
  • Sports Tourism Organization of the Year (Greater Raleigh Sports Alliance) - National Association of Sports Commissions, April 2015
  • #1 Among Mid-Sized American Cities of the Future (Raleigh) - The Financial Times, April 2015
  • Among 2015 Award of Excellence Winners (Greater Raleigh CVB) - Corporate & Incentive Travel, April 2015
  • #2 Among the Cities Creating The Most Tech Jobs (Raleigh) - Forbes, April 2015
  • Among 29 Cities All Twentysomethings Should Pick Up and Move To (Raleigh) - BuzzFeed, March 2015
  • Among Top 100 Places to Live - RelocateAmerica
  • One of the Coolest Small Cities in America (Raleigh) - GQ
  • Next Big Boom Town (Raleigh-Cary) - Forbes
  • Among Best Places for Business and Careers (Raleigh-Cary) - Forbes
  • Among 2011 Best Cities for Job Growth (Raleigh-Cary) - Forbes
  • Top Metro for Small Business (Raleigh-Cary) -
  • Best Labor Market for Young Adults (Raleigh-Cary) -
  • America’s Cleanest Cities (Raleigh-Cary) - Forbes

And this isn’t even all of them. For more information on renting an apartment in Raleigh, NC, contact Auston Grove Apartments.

awards listed on

Apartment Living is Perfect for Those in Transition - Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, August 11, 2015

There are many  good reasons to rent. Many people, young and old, debate the question of if they should rent or buy a home. Often it is a financial decision. But renting is often the right decision when your life is in transition. As a college student, a new graduate, if you are newly married or just starting a family, if you are new to the region, divorced, widowed, or retiring are all great reasons to rent an apartment in Raleigh, NC.

If you’re new in town and want to evaluate several different neighborhoods, renting is a smart option. If you’re older and tired of managing a big house and yard, then rent and free yourself of responsibility. Do you want to live near the beach or a golf course? If you live alone and want the security of a high-rise building with garage parking, a concierge and amenities, such as a swimming pool on site, then rent.

It can be a liberating kind of lifestyle that is gathering greater and greater appeal with people of all ages.

For more information on 2 bedroom apartments in Raleigh, NC, contact Auston Grove.


Excerpts- Herald Tribune

Raleigh, NC: Ranked #2 “Best Large City to Live In”

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Chances are, if you ask people what they think of Charlotte, reviews are favorable. It's a great place. Not too big, not too small.

But, the latest Wallethub study however, finds Charlotte isn't quite up to par with neighboring Raleigh.

Raleigh is ranked No. 2 as the "Best Large City to Live In." Charlotte, comes in at No.19.

The study compares US cities in terms of livability, education, health, and economic growth and tax rates.

The two North Carolina cities are also ranked among the fastest growing cities in the US by Forbes magazine. Once again, Raleigh outranks Charlotte in terms of growth.

In Raleigh, colleges, and universities are all around. UNCC is growing, and uptown is too. You get a feel of a major city.

For more information on renting an apartment in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove.