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5 Measurements to Take Before You Lease an Apartment

Pivot. Pivot. Pivoooooot!!

Those are the words Ross yelled on an episode of Friends just before his new couch got wedged in the stairwell. On the show: comedic genius. In real life: not so funny. Before you sign a lease on an apartment in one of our UDR communities, take a few measurements to ensure your stuff will fit in your new space and won’t get stuck on the way there.

  1. Interior Rooms

Measure the length, width and height each room and hall in the apartment. Take note of any obstacles that may limit furniture movement and placement, including ceiling fans, light fixtures, banisters and built-in features. Compare the dimensions to your furniture. You can even plug everything into an app like Rooms to try out different furniture arrangements before you move. It’s much easier to sell oversized or unwanted furniture before you move than to deal with it after the fact.

  1. Main Entryway and Secondary Doors

In addition to measuring the height and width of your main doorway, measure it diagonally. This important number indicates whether a tall bookcase or king-size mattress can be tilted to fit through the opening. If the apartment boasts a sliding glass door or French doors that open to the deck or patio, measure the opening just as you measured the front door. You may have a larger opening here that’s ideal for getting bigger pieces of furniture through. Be sure to measure from the ground outside up to the balcony as well, to make sure you have the means necessary to get the furniture up that high.

  1. Exterior Hallways

Measure the width and height of exterior hallways leading to your apartment. You will also want to measure any connecting doorways as you did your primary and secondary doors.

  1. Exterior Stairways

Avoid the pivoting fate of Ross by measuring the width and height of stairways. Take measurements from the first and last steps, using the smallest measurements. The length, height and width of any turns or landings in the stairway are also important.

  1. Elevators

If you don’t have enough clearance for certain pieces in the stairway or regular elevator, ask the apartment manager if there is a service elevator that you could use on moving day. Service elevators often have larger doors and floor space than regular elevators. Measure the height, width and diagonal length of the elevator doors just as you did before.

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