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June 13 2018

Latest in Style: Modern Meeting Room Designs

Open-space design has become mainstream in the workplace over the last decade, but it can make collaboration a challenge. Traditional meeting rooms simply don’t solve that challenge for today’s agile workforce.

As workplaces become more mobile and distributed, teams want fewer, shorter, and more informal meetings. This drives a growing trend for a different type of meeting room design: the huddle room.

Huddle rooms are small meeting rooms that are designed for ad-hoc collaboration for up to six people. Frost & Sullivan estimates there are 32.4 million huddle rooms across the world. Besides the smaller size — the typical huddle room is 10 feet by 10 feet or 12 feet by 12 feet — what makes this meeting room design different is the focus on ideation and interaction.

“When you’re working amidst a group of people out in the open and you need to have a conversation with a couple of colleagues that you’re collaborating with, doing that in the open may be too distracting for your neighbors,” explains Allyson Strowbridge, whose Portland, Oregon, firm ctrl+shift+space helps businesses rethink workplaces and create human-centered environments.

“Huddle rooms have been around for a while, but they’re catching on because a lot of meetings tend to be between smaller groups of people,” she adds. “A huddle room is meant for potentially more active and shorter-term meetings.”

How Huddle Rooms Are Different

Huddle rooms — or huddle spaces, depending on the setup — are often high-tech, but that isn’t always necessary.

“If it’s mainly for conversation, then you don’t need to outfit it with a lot of technology,” Strowbridge says. Unlike meeting rooms, they offer more flexibility. “Huddle rooms are typically not reservable because that provides a certain amount of flexibility and agility throughout the day,” Strowbridge says.

If you’re considering a huddle room, you should first ask one important question, according to Strowbridge: Do you know your employees’ needs?

“You have to do your due diligence to understand how people work and what they need,” she says. “A big mistake that businesses and designers make when they hear about the latest trend is to plunk things in without knowing the user requirements.”

Small Meeting Room Design Ideas

While exploring small meeting room design ideas, considerations include furniture, technology, and collaboration tools.

Technology: As more employees work remotely, technology becomes more prominent. Frost & Sullivan estimates that only about 2 percent of huddle spaces globally are enabled for video, but they expect the trend to grow as collaboration evolves and the “smart” huddle room takes over.

Even if you don’t have distributed teams, technology may be a factor. For example, Strowbridge says many people like to use two computer monitors, and you can add a big screen in the huddle room for a two-monitor experience via a tethered laptop.

Furniture: Don’t make a short-term space too comfortable, Strowbridge advises. Smaller tables or tall, bistro-style tables with bar stools are a good choice. But don’t go too casual by only providing low lounge chairs, which are difficult to use for some people. “Providing variety is best,” Strowbridge says.

Collaboration Tools: To accommodate various styles, the huddle space needs brainstorming tools — writable paint, dry-erase boards, or smart whiteboards. “You need writable surfaces because many people are visual learners,” Strowbridge says.

Other Elements: Other details that Strowbridge emphasizes are supplies, lighting, and acoustics. She recommends adding a small console or side table stocked with things like pens, highlighters, and sticky pads so employees don’t have to return to their workstations for supplies.

“Those kinds of items make the experience better for employees because they can be more productive and efficient in that space,” she says. For lighting, she’ll often use residential floor lamps both for their comfort and their look.

As for acoustics, use fluffy carpeting, live plants (soil dampens noise), and upholstered furnishings to abate noise if you don’t have dropped ceilings. “The important part is to make the space feel welcoming and comfortable,” Strowbridge says.

If you’re ready to create huddle rooms, consider renting your furniture from CORT Furniture Rental. This gives you flexibility as you’re exploring what kind of furniture works best for your employees’ needs.

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The post Latest in Style: Modern Meeting Room Designs appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

June 12 2018

Home Reno Series: How to Style Your Coffee Table

Both useful and versatile, the coffee table is far more than just a functional piece of furniture. When styled correctly, it also serves as an artistic centerpiece that adds visual appeal and makes a statement. Decide what type of coffee table fits best in your room, and then follow these tips for styling a coffee table to create a furniture focal point that looks as fabulous as the rest of your pad.

Choose Your Coffee Table Style

In some cases, it’s the table itself that makes a statement. Coffee table styles range from traditional wooden pieces to modernist and minimalist designs. Consider these varying styles as you choose whether you want to complement or contrast the rest of your space. If you want a table that makes an impact as a statement piece, pick one with many layers or a bold pattern. If the room already feels busy or is full of elaborate furniture, then choose a minimalist shape to add a calming element to the room.

Strike a Balance

No matter which type of coffee table you choose, resist the urge to use it as a display table for a random assortment of knick-knacks. Instead, aim for a balanced feel by pairing an even number of large and small items on both sides of the table. The objects you use don’t have to be identical, but they should be similar in shape and size.

Accessorize Wisely

As long as you strike a balance, a coffee table can and should be a holding place for some of your favorite accessories. When choosing what to display, keep size in mind. Small items tend to get lost against a larger tabletop, but you also want to steer clear of items that are so large they overwhelm the display area.

Opt for Contrasting Colors

When you’re styling a coffee table for a standout look, use accessories that serve as a contrast for the table. If you have a neutral table, top it with bright items that add a pop of color to the room. Alternatively, if you choose a glass or colored table or want to highlight the table’s look, use neutral accessories to draw the eye to the table itself.

Reach for a Tray

Placing items in a tray on top of the table helps with symmetry and keeps the table looking neat and tidy. It’s also a great way to display small pieces that would otherwise look lost. As an added bonus, trays remove easily, giving you quick access to the entire tabletop when you need it.

Once you’ve mastered the art of styling a coffee table, you can update or even transform the look of your living room. If you decide you need a different coffee table or a few accessories to help you achieve your goal, then visit a CORT Clearance Center to find quality discounted furniture and home décor pieces at a price that fits your budget.

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The post Home Reno Series: How to Style Your Coffee Table appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

June 11 2018

How to Choose the Perfect Venue for a Purposeful Event

Guest blog by Elias Grouhi, Social Tables

Being a meeting planner isn’t as simple as getting everyone in a room. Event planning is evolving, and that evolution means planners need to create memorable event experiences in order to achieve success. In fact, 80% of meeting planners report that their job encompasses more experience creation than it did two to five years ago .

So how do planners go about creating those experiences? It all starts with finding the right venue. Today, venue sourcing is a task that goes further than the age-old framework of “rates, dates, and space.”

What Role Does the Venue Play in Experiences?

Janet Sperstad and Amanda Cecil popularized the concept of “purposeful meetings” in their white paper Purposeful Meetings: How to Plan With Deeper Meaning, Insight, and Innovation in Mind. The concept has been adopted industry-wide, now defining successful meeting design, or should we say, experience design.

At the heart of the concept is the notion that event planners need to look at the entire event experience holistically to be successful, which means looking at the space as more than just a setting for content delivery. That begins with identifying the elements of meeting experiences that are the most important to prospective attendees.

Tangibles vs. Intangibles

Some elements are directly within a planner’s control, while other elements can be set up for indirectly. For our purposes, we’ll call the former “tangibles” and the latter “intangibles.” Tangibles are elements such as the city, venue, room setup, seating, food and beverage offering, AV, and decor. These elements help set up for the intangibles such as attendees, peer-to-peer interaction, and the overall energy in the room. Choosing the venue is arguably the most important tangible a planner can focus on, as it sets the stage for the rest of a memorable experience. In fact, where a meeting takes place is so important that 72% of all meeting attendees say the destination is a significant driver in their decision to attend or not .

Starting With the Objective

Like every element of the meeting, venue sourcing needs to start with the objective. Recent work from Marriott’s Meetings Imagined initiative breaks meeting objectives down into seven major buckets:

  • Celebrate – when the objective is to celebrate a milestone or accomplishment
  • Decide – when the objective is for attendees to work together to reach a major decision
  • Educate – when the objective is to present new information or teach new skills
  • Ideate – when the objective is to brainstorm, generate new ideas, or develop new strategic frameworks
  • Network – when the objective is to meet new people and forge connections based on a unifying element
  • Produce – when the objective is to collaborate toward a specific output
  • Promote – when the objective is to introduce a new product, service, offering, or message — whether internally or to an external group

It’s easy to see that “celebrate” and “educate” merit different settings or venues, but what about two that seem more similar, such as decide and ideate?

If the objective is to decide, then the venue should probably be closed off from the external world and any distraction or judgment. But if the objective is to ideate, the venue should feel more open, which inspires new and out-of-the-box thinking. Elements like natural light, adaptable workspaces, and proximity to innovation hubs all lend themselves to ideation, whereas they might prove distractions to deciding.

Objective-Based Venues in Action

At Forbes’ Under 30 Summit last October, organizers had divided content into four themes: Tech, Capital, Impact, and Create. Each of the four themes was hosted at a different Boston event venue in an effort to help them reach its respective objective and cater to attendees’ desire for local experiences.

The best example was a day-long event in partnership with MIT focused on closing the gender gap in technology. Five hundred women convened on the MIT campus for a day-long program dedicated to making progress and spurring change in a traditionally male-dominated industry. MIT was arguably the perfect choice, both due to its demographic makeup and its position as a tech education leader.

Changes & Trends in Choosing Event Venues

As elements like WiFi and A/V become more standardized in quality, planners are looking to new elements and focusing on diversifying the space. According to IACC’s Meeting Room of the Future report, planners are looking for different meeting space elements than they were five years ago, and that all starts with the desires of attendees.

Everything Is a Venue

We mean everything: museums, nightclubs, concert venues, repurposed warehouses, and even corporate offices. Social Tables lets groups use their DC office space as a venue for meetings and events, completely free. As demand for these types of spaces continues to increase, so too does the supply. Meanwhile, hotel infrastructure becomes less and less important.

That spike in demand isn’t going away anytime soon according to the AMEX Global Meetings Forecast, which expects it to jump by 3.8% this year alone. Plus, with ever-improving sourcing technology like Social Tables’ new venue search engine , finding the perfect space is getting easier by the day.

Venue is Becoming Venues

Much like the Forbes example, planners are employing multiple venues to get attendees engaged and outside the four walls of the ballroom. For a given event, that could look like:

  • Morning keynote: Repurposed historic space
  • Breakout sessions: Outdoor setup
  • Post-event networking: Rooftop terrace

As Techweek’s Director of Operations Tom Lawlor puts it, “We find that a nontraditional space gives people extra incentive to break out of their shells and enjoy what’s around them with others. By holding our events in multiple venues, it highlights unique companies and spaces in the community that people might not usually get to experience.” The rise of non-traditional venues is making it easier, especially since many of these venues offer a choice of hourly or daily rates.

Setting Up the Space

Just as important as the venue is the actual setup of the space and how it maps back to the objective. Even the most subtle of differences can help set new expectations and have a big impact. For instance, the shift from a classroom setup to a more collaborative setup can go a long way in improving engaged learning and attendee interaction. Working closely with a furniture rental specialist like CORT can help facilitate the perfect set up. After all, everything down to what people are sitting on can create a completely different experience.

Diagrammed using Social Tables’ Free Planner Tools

A Unique Setup in Action

At C2 in Montréal — considered by many the pinnacle of event design — hanging trapeze chairs were implemented to create a unique networking experience. Creative setups like this led to 3,000 face-to-face meetings being scheduled by attendees of the event.

Photo Credit: Sebastien Roy

Where Will You Meet?

Combining these frameworks with new technologies is freeing planners up to do more than ever before when it comes to choosing an event venue. It all starts by identifying the objective. Then, start the search for venues — and most importantly, let your imagination run wild.

The post How to Choose the Perfect Venue for a Purposeful Event appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

7 Design Tips to Steal from a Tech Startup Office

Tech startups are responsible for a worldwide market worth more than $3 trillion. If that’s not impressive enough, they are also at the heart of some of the greatest innovations and the coolest office designs.

It would be easy to dismiss the startup office aesthetic with just a “less is more” approach. Although it’s true that tech startups include minimalism in their design principles, the approach is far more nuanced. Experts in interior design startup principles agree that it’s all about customization, aligning office design with the brand, and stepping outside of the box to experiment with different styles, aesthetics, and functionality.

You don’t have to be a tech startup to use some of their innovative ideas. They are especially helpful as the weather warms up and your office space begs for something a little lighter and brighter to freshen everyone’s outlook and infuse your space with new life. Here are seven startup office design tips everyone can use as part of their summer decorating strategies.

Make Yourself at Home

You might not be able create dedicated nap rooms or invest in sleep pods like some of today’s startup and tech giants, but you can borrow their comfortable, homey vibe. While you’re revamping your office’s look for the warmer weather, take a little time to make yourself (and your staff) feel a little more at home. Employees will thank you, and your décor will look impressively on trend.

  • Create distinct areas within the office with curated furniture selections instead of keeping everything uniform and identical.
  • Include at least one lounge area with comfortable sofas and plush seating like leather accent chairs to design a spot perfect for reading, relaxing, or small team huddles.
  • Keep the break room informal with a large, communal-style dining table (or two) and coffee bars that encourage people to gather to share ideas and brainstorm.

Add Some Pops of Color

Bright colors can really cheer up the office. Even better, they may boost productivity. Pops of color wake you up, energize the room, and enhance creativity.

Startup office design typically includes residential-style lighting — and that’s just one opportunity to add vibrant color to the space. Swap out your cool metallic lamps for brightly colored options instead. Add colorful organizers to desk tops and a bright throw rug in the lounge area. You can also switch ordinary desk chairs for ones in gorgeous hues that add instant sunshine to the room.

Bring the Outdoors In

This is one of the hottest design trends among startups and other businesses. Best of all, it won’t go out of style any time soon. For starters, consider adding a fish tank or terrarium to the office. Not only does this introduce a natural element, aquariums and terrariums add shape and color while delivering mood-boosting benefits. Other ideas include hanging beautiful outdoor-themed artwork, adding plants, and topping desks or workspaces with gorgeous fresh-cut flowers.

Create a Cool, Coastal Vibe

When it comes to interior design, startups aren’t afraid to push the boundaries. Stir up the vacation vibes by adding some savvy coastal accents to the office. Seashell-studded picture frames and nautical throw rugs aren’t the only options. Some other ideas include:

  • Adding beach-inspired artwork to the walls
  • Decorating with sea glass vases and accent pieces that instantly evoke sandy shores and beautiful water
  • Tossing some cool blue, turquoise, and sandy colored pillows on lounge furniture
  • Infusing the space with natural elements like jute rugs, reclaimed wood art, and decorative accents such as coral or shells

Lighten and Brighten

Just as you want to make your home lighter and brighter for the warm weather, your office décor deserves the same treatment. Although winter is the perfect season for warm, dark woods and cozy, dim lighting, summer begs for bright white pieces and an infusion of tropical, floral accents.

  • Hang mirrors strategically across from windows to double the natural light in the room.
  • Swap out dark wood desks or shelves for bright pieces.
  • Create a focal wall with temporary wallpaper in tropical prints.
  • Add bright, summery artwork for a fresh, light look.

Freshen Up

Fragrance in the workplace can be a touchy subject, especially if you have teammates who are sensitive to smells. But as the weather warms up, it’s always nice to keep things smelling fresh and clean. Plants like English ivy, palm plants, and rubber plants help filter the air. If everyone’s on board, consider adding some reed diffusers in strategic spots, relying on cool fragrances like fresh linen, citrus, or anything that evokes sunshine and fresh air.

Another idea is adding an essential oil diffuser or two to the office for some aromatherapy. Studies suggest that essential oils like lemon, rosemary, frankincense, and peppermint can increase energy and focus for clear, effective thinking.

Stay Agile

Agility is a big buzzword in startup offices. It’s an important concept for everything from business models to interior design. Startup companies experience a roller coaster of changes that demand they adapt. Whether they’re experiencing explosive, exponential growth or changing to meet market demands, startups must be able to adapt quickly and remain flexible. That’s just one of the ways that CORT Furniture Rental shines.

Not only can CORT help you change your décor quickly and easily with a range of artwork, plants, lighting, and mirrors, furniture rental also gives you amazing agility. Scale your office up or down with no hassle. Flexible furniture solutions allow you to design your space like a boss. Discover how CORT can help bring your enterprise vision to life.

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The post 7 Design Tips to Steal from a Tech Startup Office appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

Plan Your Military Move: Week-by-Week Moving Guide

PCS relocations peak during the summer months, but how much warning you receive is highly contingent on the budget and needs of your service branch. Although moving is hectic in any situation, getting PCS orders adds another layer of decisions and stress. However, taking time to develop an organized plan will make any military move manageable and (relatively) stress-free.

Use this guide as a starting point when you’re thinking about how to plan your military move. It will help you keep track of important decisions as well as create a general timeline for moving.

Twelve Weeks Out

Start planning as soon as you get wind of your PCS — even before receiving formal orders. This includes:

  • Deciding whether you want to do a personally procured move (PPM) or have the government do it for you.
  • Scheduling an appointment with your current base transportation office to discuss details, PPM options, and other particulars like vehicle transport.
  • Sorting through closets, drawers, and storage to throw away and donate unneeded items.
  • Scheduling medical, dental, and vet appointments for before you leave, and arrange for records if needed.
  • Taking inventory of your home and taking pictures and video as record.

Eight Weeks Out

Two months prior to your move, make sure you are organizing paperwork into labeled folders and have a clear calendar for the coming weeks. Also:

  • Continue to sort through items in your home. Consider holding a garage sale or selling items online.
  • Have non-military family members give notice to their job and start looking for a new one.
  • Get finances in order. Consult your base finance center, particularly if you are moving overseas and need information on bank accounts.
  • Arrange to have school records transferred, and begin to look for childcare.
  • Have your vehicle(s) checked, and perform any necessary maintenance.
  • If you plan to buy a home or rent off base, begin to look for options and arrange for financing if necessary.

Four Weeks Out

A month before moving, be in regular contact with your base transportation and pay offices as well as other businesses and professionals you are working with on either end of your move. Also, be sure to:

  • Confirm dates with moving companies, base transportation office, and Personal Property Shipping Office (PPSO).
  • Notify your credit card companies and banks, and transfer accounts.
  • Renew prescriptions.
  • Settle all outstanding bills and cancel all monthly deliveries and subscriptions.
  • Return library books.
  • Begin to clean your current residence in preparation for leaving, including attics, basements, and crawlspaces.
  • Empty out refrigerators, freezers, and pantries through meal planning or donation.

One Week Out

This is it! Here’s a look at the most important points to remember during crunch time:

  • Pack smart. Use labels and zip-top bags to keep items in order.
  • Remove any stickers from prior PCS moves from furniture.
  • Disconnect and pad any electronics as you pack them.
  • Make sure to separate personal items from professional items if you are using military weight allowances.

Getting ready to plan your military move can seem like a big deal, but it doesn’t have to be. With a solid plan and with help from services such as CORT Furniture Rental, you can arrange for everything you need to feel right at home after your PCS. Check out CORT’s military packages today.

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The post Plan Your Military Move: Week-by-Week Moving Guide appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

June 08 2018

CORT Partners with Move For Hunger

Did you know one in eight Americans are food insecure? Hunger is a huge problem in the United States, but it’s not always easy to see. In a country known for its wealth and prosperity, 42 million Americans struggle to find their next meal.

To reduce food insecurity, CORT is proud to partner with Move For Hunger, a national non-profit organization that mobilizes the relocation industry to reduce food waste and fight hunger.

People throw away a lot of “stuff” when they move, including perfectly good food. CORT will now provide residents at multi-family communities across the country with the opportunity to donate their unopened, non-perishable food items when they move out. The service is free to residents and turns every move into an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of their community members in need, simply by sharing what they can spare on moving day.

Through a pilot program in select markets over the past year, CORT has already rescued and delivered more than 10,500 pounds of food.

“This is a natural alliance for CORT, as we have the resources already in place, with team members visiting property management companies on a regular basis and trucks to deliver the food we collect,” said Paula Newell, Executive Vice President at CORT. “It’s the right thing to do and a cause that everyone can get behind.”

Founded in 2009, Move For Hunger connects with organizations within the relocation industry to provide boxes and supplies to property management companies and facilitates the means to get the food to local food banks, playing an integral role in hunger relief at the grassroots level.

To date, the non-profit’s network of relocation professionals has collected and delivered more than 10.5 million pounds of food – providing more than 8.5 million meals to food banks and pantries across the United States and Canada.

 

The post CORT Partners with Move For Hunger appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

Office Décor Ideas That Will Boost Productivity

The flexible workplace trend is here to stay, and the number of remote workers continues to grow. A poll by Gallup found that 43 percent of American employees work away from traditional offices at least part of the time. The gig economy — with its freedom to work from anywhere — is also expected to grow from 34 percent of the workforce in 2017 to 43 percent in 2020.

Many people feel that working from home boosts productivity, but improvement requires more than a quiet place to work. Your home office needs to balance comfort and function. Additionally, you want a space that inspires you, so aesthetic appeal is also an important component.

As you consider office décor ideas to help boost productivity, start by thinking about furniture, lighting, and storage. Next, look for décor that reflects your style and creates an energetic atmosphere. Here are some home office ideas to help you achieve a perfect balance for a productive space.

Start with a Good Layout

Research shows that natural light can improve cognitive performance, attention, and alertness. If your window view isn’t distracting or unappealing, it’s a great idea to place your desk next to the window. This provides a well-lit work area and reduces glare on your computer screen. If you have a tall desk, arrange the desk against the wall so you don’t block the window.

Add Chic Lighting

The World Green Building Council considers daylighting and lighting one of the eight features that make offices healthier and greener. Even if you have ample natural light, you need supplementary lighting for any evening work you do at home. Choose trendy lamps rather than typical desk lamps. You want to feel inspired, and lamps are an easy way to add a touch of personality to your décor.

Think Beyond Office Furnishings

Besides a desk with adequate workspace, create other areas that serve different purposes. A comfortable sofa can be a great spot for a coffee break, a planning session, or a change of “scenery” when you need to refocus. Think of other ways to creatively use furniture in your office. For example, in a small space, a TV armoire can double as storage and as a work surface.

Plan for Clutter-Free Work

A messy desk may be a sign of genius, but it probably doesn’t do much for your productivity. Use the following office décor ideas to create practical, stylish storage and organization:

  • Colorful, stackable storage boxes for office supplies
  • Wicker baskets for paper stacks before filing
  • A wall “command center” that includes file cubbies and a corkboard or calendar

Add Personalized Touches

There are many inexpensive and easy ways to add energy to your office, but you want to avoid distractions. A few suggestions include:

  • Choose wall colors known to boost productivity.
  • Incorporate natural elements like plants.
  • Add inspirational messages or a vision board for extra motivation.

Try these home office ideas to creatively transform your office from bland to cheerful. If you need new pieces to complete your vision, CORT Furniture Rental offers numerous solutions to help make your space practical and stylish.

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The post Office Décor Ideas That Will Boost Productivity appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

June 07 2018

Home Improvement Guide to Cool Indoor Plants

Home design usually means finding the right furniture and décor, but 2018 house trends are bringing a bit of the outdoors inside by incorporating greenery into the overall look. Cool indoor plants add elements other design pieces can’t offer: a fun and funky look, special benefits like air purification, and the satisfaction of knowing that you’re caring for a living thing. As you’re styling your home, add some of these cool indoor plants to the mix.

Staghorn Fern

The houseplants of today are a little more varied than the potted varieties of the past. Take the Staghorn Fern. If you’re looking to fill some wall space or want to create a focal point for your room’s design, this plant fits the bill. All the leaves hang on one side, making it a good option for a hanging basket or a wall mount. The plant needs ample air circulation, some direct sunlight, and regular watering in the summer.

Peace Lily

If you want a plant that looks good and is one of the top providers of air purification, then look no further than the Peace Lily. This tropical plant is also very easy to care for. If it needs water, it sags a little, eliminating much of the guesswork that comes with deciding how frequently to water your plants.

String of Pearls

Another hanging variety, the String of Pearls lives up to its name, with creeping foliage resembling the pearls of a necklace. If you’re worried about the care and upkeep of a plant or don’t have a green thumb, then this plant is for you. It requires little watering and only occasional pruning in order to flourish. Its low-maintenance style and lush look make it a favorite for houseplant lovers.

Crispy Wave

Pet friendly, air purifying, and funky looking, the Crispy Wave is an all-around standout. It only needs water one to two times per week and doesn’t have to go by a window, as it grows best in indirect light. It’s also bursting with growth potential. Given enough time and adequate space, you could end up with a very large plant or bush, providing super air purification and a standout look that really makes your living space pop.

Air Plants

Some indoor plants are so cool they don’t even need dirt or soil. Air plants bypass these traditional growing mediums and instead grow with good air circulation and regular watering. There are more than 650 types of air plants in a variety of sizes, looks, and colors. The plants are versatile and cling to nearby objects, so place them on a shelf, in a basket, or even paired with a companion plant.

Cool indoor plants add another dimension to your home décor and even clean the air you breathe. Once you’ve found a home for your new greenery, fully embrace 2018 house trends and visit CORT Furniture Rental to give your space a furniture refresh.

Find your style

The post Home Improvement Guide to Cool Indoor Plants appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

June 06 2018

High Quality Living Room Furniture That Only Looks High Cost

When it comes to furnishing your home, the way you do it has changed over the years. Today, there are more options than ever before for creating a comfortable living room space that fits your personality, no matter the size of your budget.

While creating a great-looking space on a budget is a balancing act for any shopper, it can be particularly challenging for single moms. According to a report by the National Women’s Law Center, the median income for single mothers is $35,400 – well below the median income of $85,300 for married couples.

In addition, just shopping for affordable living room furniture can be a challenge for single moms, who face a greater time crunch. That means you may not have the time to do a lot of comparison shopping, but at the same time, you want to put together a space that looks good and makes a comfortable, welcoming environment.

Creating the Space That’s Right For You

Finding inexpensive and attractive living room furniture is easier than ever before, thanks to the rise in ready-to-assemble, or RTA, furniture. This furniture concept makes it possible to put together a home on virtually any budget with a variety of themes, but it doesn’t have the same durability as higher quality living room furniture and is often considered disposable.

“Sometimes, it might seem like a better deal to buy ready-to-assemble furniture, but it’s not always your best choice,” says Julie Knowlton, a home renovator and decorator in Athens, Georgia. “While it may look good initially, you want to think of how it’s going to do over the long term. You might be better off looking for one or two high-quality main pieces, and then build your look around them.”

Knowlton advises that parents, in particular, think about what is required from the furniture in the coming years: “You want the look to be able to fit your lifestyle, but you also want to know it’s going to be high quality and safe as your children grow.”

Affordable Options, High-End Look

Getting the right furniture within your budget could mean thinking outside of the usual big box store when it comes time to shop. These days, finding furniture that’s within your budget but doesn’t look cheap is easier than you might think.

In fact, this is a time when it’s possible to get a lot of great deals on furniture, experts say. With Baby Boomers downsizing, there are great finds at resale stores. Opting for gently used furniture gives you access to higher quality pieces at a much lower price than if you bought them new. Another option is to buy refurbished furniture.

Gently used furniture means the furniture has been used, but still has some life left in it. It may have small stains or other imperfections, but probably has a good structure. Refurbished furniture has been cleaned and restored to return it to as close to its original condition as possible.

When buying used, keep in mind that it might take a little shopping around to find the look that’s right for you. This is where online shopping can be a real timesaver.

There are several different ways to shop for used furniture, including garage sales, thrift stores, and consignment stores, but you may not be able to buy a complete set, or the furniture might be a little more worn than you’d like it to be. (Another downside of shopping for furniture this way is the time it takes to go from one store or garage sale to the next, since they don’t have an online inventory to browse.)

Buying refurbished furniture from a respected outlet like CORT Clearance Center can provide the best of both worlds. As with buying new, you have an ample selection of high quality items, but the prices are much lower and on par with the cost at consignment or used furniture stores.

A grading scale helps CORT determine the level of discount given to each piece of furniture sold. That scale ranges from A, which is showroom condition, to D, which are pieces that have some wear and tear but are still very functional and usable.

Even better, CORT Clearance Centers also sell items like accessories, rugs and artwork, so you can create an entire look in a single shopping trip.

Furnishing your living room with high quality furniture means you have solid, attractive furniture for years to come. When it’s time to invest in furniture that looks great without costing a fortune, CORT Clearance Centers provide you with a one-stop solution.

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The post High Quality Living Room Furniture That Only Looks High Cost appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 31 2018

Insider Insights: A Russian Living in San Francisco

Over the past 18 months, CORT has been posting a series of Expat Interviews. In 2018, our focus changed a little and we’ve been interviewing our Destination Consultants and posting their very special ‘insider insights’ into their home cities. This month, we are doubling up!

Natalya Ogle is one of our Consultants but also an expat in her own right. We hope you enjoy learning about what life is like for an expat Russian in San Francisco working to help new arrivals settle in.

When did you come to the US?

I left Russia to move to the US in 2001 with my American husband. I was born in the village of Selizarovo , Tverskaya Oblast and was raised in the nearby village named Selishe. It has about 3,000 people, and it is about four hours’ drive from Moscow.

What do you miss the most from home?

The village I was born and raised in. It was nice there and I have many good memories. I miss friends and folks I used to know, some streets and areas where I used to spend a lot of time, and long warm summer evenings. We don’t have those here in SF. That’s one of the things that people don’t know about SF.

What’s the one thing you can tell us about your city that people would be surprised by/ the best kept secret perhaps?

Everyone knows SF is famous for being very expensive of course! But what they don’t know is that it is foggy in the summer time and gets warm to hot in the fall. We have a ‘micro climate’, so a jacket is a must at all times, as one neighborhood can be warmer or cooler within a 10-15 min drive!

How did you get into relocation?

One of the local CORT representatives got to know me while I was working at a property management company and she told me she thought I would love this work.

How long have you been with CORT?

I started with CORT in 2014 and have been living in San Francisco since 2009.

What do you like the most about your job?

I love the opportunity to show beautiful houses and getting to look around and learn about new areas that I’ve never been to before. It’s also really satisfying to get to know new transferees and help them orient to the area and understand local life.

What do your assignees like most about the city?

Landscape, hills, social life, activities and history.

What’s usually their biggest worry before they come?

They are afraid of how expensive it is and they will not make it here. They also worry that their dream house will not appear – but it usually does!

I’ve got 24 hours on the ground in your city, what should I be sure to go and see or do?

Go to the Embarcadero shores to walk by the Bay, visit Downtown SF, the Farmers Market, City Bee Bus tour, a Bay Cruise and finish up at the Top of the Mark Restaurant & Beach Blanket Babylon show. If you have a good budget, there are many more things including great shopping!

Is there a local/regional food item that is both awesome and unique to your home town (in Russia) and one that’s become a favorite for you in San Fran?

San Francisco sea food stew with clams, mussels, fish and crab in rich tomato sauce with crunchy sourdough bread and garlic. It’s my favorite, but of course we don’t have it in Russia. We mainly cook recipes using potatoes, carrots, onions, beets and pork there. My favorite Russian dish is skinny pancakes with berry jam and hot tea with lemon.

We wanted to say a special thank you to Natalya for her ‘double interview’ and sharing pictures of her gorgeous family!

If you’re moving this summer and would like help from one of our team with your move, please reach out to us at info@cort.com.

The post Insider Insights: A Russian Living in San Francisco appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 22 2018

Step-by-Step Office Relocation Checklist

Moving your business to a new location may be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. A new space marks a new opportunity to expand and prosper. It’s a progressive and exciting step in the life of your business, not unlike when you just started out. And, like those critical first days, taking time to develop a plan is essential for a successful office relocation.

Unfortunately, there is no magic formula for the perfect office move. That said, you can make it easier on yourself and your employees by taking a systematic approach and using an office relocation checklist to ensure that everything gets done on time and stays on track. The only “trick” is starting early and planning, planning, planning. In fact, depending on the size of your office, you may need to start developing a timeline as far as six or eight months out from the actual moving date. For smaller offices, start at least three months beforehand.

It’s also important to consider everything from floor layout and the location of electrical outlets to potential issues such as storage. This is why using a checklist makes sense. It allows you to make sure you consider everything from files and paperclips to conference tables and reception areas. This is one way to ensure that the details of your office relocation are all under control before you even bring out the packing tape. Another important consideration you may make is a temporary solution such as furniture rental, which can ease the transition and get your new location up and running as soon as possible.

Need more help? Check out our step-by-step guide to see what you need to do — and when — to make sure your office relocation is smooth and stress free.

Ready to execute your office relocation plan? See how CORT can help you design furniture rental solutions fit for any size business.

The post Step-by-Step Office Relocation Checklist appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 21 2018

Honoring the Fallen With Folds of Honor This Memorial Day

When most people think about Memorial Day, they envision cook outs, beach trips, and kicking back and relaxing on a day off. While we certainly support people enjoying the long weekend, we hope they will use the day for what it was intended for – to honor our former United States veterans.

Whether recognizing our fallen heroes with a moment of silence, or stopping by a local veteran’s memorial or cemetery to lay flowers in remembrance, take some time this Memorial Day to honor our military members and their families.

Interested in alternative options to show support? Consider supporting a military-focused charity like the Folds of Honor Foundation (FoH). FoH provides education through scholarships to spouses and children of soldiers lost or severely disabled during service to our country. Currently, there are more than one million dependents of military service men and women, 87 percent of whom do not qualify for educational assistance. FoH helps make up that difference.

CORT has been a proud partner of FoH for the last five years, helping FoH award over 16,000 scholarships to-date. Scholarships are used to subsidize the costs of tuition, books, fees, on-campus room and board, tutoring, and other approved educational expenses that a student’s school may deem appropriate.

To hear some of the scholarship recipient stories, click here. If you would like to make a donation, become a wingman, fill out an application or learn more about the Folds of Honor mission, please visit www.foldsofhonor.org.

This Memorial Day – have fun, be safe, but most of all, take time to honor the fallen heroes of the United States military.

The post Honoring the Fallen With Folds of Honor This Memorial Day appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 17 2018

Top Considerations for Tenting Your Summer Party

As warmer weather approaches, we all look to spend more time outdoors. When an afternoon in the sun turns sour with a summer storm, having a tent for your event can save the party. Tenting your event gives your guests the best of both worlds by offering the fun of the sun and protection from some of the less glamorous elements. Keep the following in mind to help you plan the party of the season.

Photo courtesy of Bethalee Photography, Sinclair and Moore Events

Plan It Out

Once you have decided on the location of your outdoor event, there are certain things to consider before the tent installation. The first factor to consider is the ground surface where the tent will be placed. Take a good look around the area and consider any obstructions that could get in the way. This could include fountains, power lines, or pipes underground that can pop up as problems on the day of your event. Be sure the ground is level and that there is plenty of perimeter space, at least ten to fifteen feet on all sides. Besides ease of mobility and construction, you’ll need to factor in room for the stake lines that lead from the tent to stakes. Plan your logistics in advance of the event for smooth sailing on set-up day.

Photo courtesy of O’Malley Photographers, Vows Wedding Planning

Safety First

When it comes to tenting an event, guest safety is the most important element. Any seasoned tenting professional will tell you that staking is a better option than ballasting, but your venue may make that decision for you. Some surfaces, like patios or parking garages, do not allow for staking, which would mean you need to ballast your tent to secure it during your event.

When staking the tent, you’ll want to keep in mind that the stake ropes run 5-10’ away from the tent and attach to the stake. Ballasting, the use of steel or concrete weights, is another option to secure the tent. Tents are engineered to be staked and that is the manufacturer’s recommended process to secure a tent. Tents can be dangerous if not installed properly, so be sure you’ve made the safest choice for your guests as prepare for your event. Also, ensure that you have an emergency evacuation plan in place for severe weather.

Safety is always the priority, so ensure that your event is planned in advance and follows all your local tenting codes. Choosing a professional tenting partner will keep your event guests safe and your celebration one that your attendees will remember for years to come.

Photo courtesy of Matthew Land, Gather Events

Make it beautiful 

Depending on your vision for the event, selecting the right feel and look for your gathering starts with your tent. Different tent styles require different set-up processes, so factor in logistics and budget when deciding which is right for your venue. Pole tents use center poles, which can obstruct views, but can be used to add lighting and decorations around the tent. In addition, pole tents like the Tidewater tent have a unique profile and canvas that evokes a vintage feel. Frame tents are easily constructed and can range in size from 10×10 all the way up to a 50’ width and infinite lengths. For larger projects, structure tents are commonly used with sizes ranging from 10’ up to 164’ in width. Want to bring in a little natural light for your event? Opt for clear canvas instead of traditional white canvas and let nature be part of your décor plan.

Depending on the type of event you’re hosting, you can deck your tent with many fun options. Tent walls can provide privacy and protection from the elements. Opt for elegant French doors to provide a grand entrance for your guests the moment they arrive. String lights across the top of the tent for a starry effect or hang majestic chandeliers from the beams to create a unique environment within your space. Upgrade the floor in your tent to a carpeted surface or even a wood deck to add a completely different feel for your celebration. Add in heat or cooling options to keep your guests comfortable. The options are only limited to your imagination!

The post Top Considerations for Tenting Your Summer Party appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 16 2018

College and Beyond: A Guide to Moving Away from Home for the First Time

The college years are a time of rapid, frequent change filled with exciting new adventures and, in many cases, a steep learning curve. Many of those lessons have nothing to do with the classroom and more to do with learning how to navigate the new world around you. If you are moving away from home for the first time, it can seem a bit daunting, but learning how to live on your own is an important part of becoming an independent young adult.

Roommates 101

Chances are, when you move away from home for the first time, you’re going to share your space with others. Whether you are moving away for college or just moving into a place that doesn’t belong to your parents, having a roommate (or two) usually goes with the territory.

Start out on the right foot by establishing some ground rules that will make sharing your space easier. From how to handle privacy and overnight guests to how to split refrigerator space and chores, discussing real-world situations before they arise is a great way to keep the peace with your roommates.

Making Ends Meet

It can be overwhelming to suddenly take on the financial responsibility that accompanies moving away from home. Learning how to create and stick to a budget is a skill that will serve you well for the rest of your life.

If you are sharing space with a roommate, you’re also sharing costs, so decide up front how costs will be divided, who will be responsible for collecting the money and making the payment, and whose name things like utilities, internet service, and cable television service will be in.

Keep in mind that in addition to covering all these basic costs, you’ll need to have enough for groceries, entertainment, and any other financial obligations, such as a car payment and car insurance. Then make a practice of putting aside money for savings or an emergency fund so you’ll have cash on hand if you need it unexpectedly.

Dining and Dollars

Food is essential, but it also can become a big expense — particularly if you develop a habit of eating out. Before you move away from home, it’s wise to take some time to learn your way around the grocery store as well as the kitchen.

Eating out is an easy way to blow your budget, so learn how to cook a few basics like pasta, chicken, and vegetables. This can save you the cost of buying frozen dinners or ordering takeout, and it’s going to be much healthier for you, too.

Decorating Like a Grown-up

Your first home away from home doesn’t have to look like you furnished it from a yard sale. If you and your roommates are all moving into your first apartment, student rental packages that provide all the necessities can make for a smooth transition. Splitting the cost of furniture rental makes it manageable for your budget, and it gives you the freedom and flexibility to stay on trend as your decorating needs change.

Moving away for college is an adventure that should stretch you to grow but not stress you out. Make things easier, and let CORT Furniture Rental help you create a space that you are proud to call home.

Find Furniture

The post College and Beyond: A Guide to Moving Away from Home for the First Time appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 15 2018

VIP Event Inspired by Orlando

The CORT Events team approached the Orlando VIP Event, hosted at the Varsity Club at Camping World Stadium, as an opportunity to be inspired by the spirit of central Florida. By focusing on the effervescence and heart of Orlando’s bustling downtown, the result was a showcase of the urban tropical jungle that is the city of Orlando.

We realized our vision for an event that celebrated the diversity of the semi-tropical city by combining exciting on-trend products with expert design consultation. The result truly captured the multifaceted personality of Orlando. Because Florida is known for its tropical climate, palm trees and year-round sun and fun, we wanted the event to reflect that cool, casual effervescence. This VIP Event showcased the ways that CORT can help create special events using client inspiration and go beyond their expectations.

Evan Carbotti, owner and designer at Carbotti Experiences, spoke to how Florida’s unique aesthetic led to the hip, yet elegant event that included so many hot trends, like mixed materials, and floral and tropical patterned pillows and graphics. Carbotti said, “We’re bringing in the new energy that’s happening downtown. We’re bringing lots of printed elements and modern pieces with eclectic mixes. We’re using all new CORT products that we haven’t used in the past. They’re really on trend. They’re funky. There’s a lot of different textures.”  They combined different style furnishings, like the modern Island double sofa with the classical Napoleon collection to surprising and successful effect.

Clients always come to us with an idea for an event. We take that inspiration and through design consultation as well as 2-D and 3-D space planning, create environments that will realize that design vision. Then, of course, we can deliver it anywhere.

Leaning into the whimsical personality of Orlando allowed us to create an unforgettable event that spoke to the spirit of the city.

The post VIP Event Inspired by Orlando appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 14 2018

#WorkspacesChat: Key Takeaways for Small Business Owners

Starting a business is hard and learning to scale it can be even harder, which is why CORT assembled a team of experts for the 2018 CORT Small Business Week Twitter Chat to break down smart business practices.

During the chat, CORT engaged with small business owners, industry professionals and entrepreneurs to share ideas on how small businesses can grow successfully. Chat co-hosts included Allison Ballard, Executive Director of Tapdn™; Brian Moran, founder of Small Business Edge and advocate for entrepreneurs; and Michelle Guilbeau, columnist and radio host for CBS Small Business Pulse.

For those who missed it, check out some of the key takeaways from the discussion below.

Create a “GPS Plan” for your business

Brian Moran recommends creating a “GPS Plan” to help business owners envision where they want to be and map out an effective pathway to reach that destination. Once this initial plan is established, you can review and reference your growth throughout the year to stay on track. Moran points out this approach will not only give your business much needed direction, but will also help in addressing possible stress points.

Invest in your employees

The co-hosts and participants all agreed that a key strategy in growing a business is investing in the right people. As stated by chat participant and creative agency, ThreeSixtyEight, “Hire people smarter than you, treat them well, give them the power to execute the vision.” Allison Ballard also urged businesses to prioritize talent acquisition to create a well-oiled machine and drive growth.

Promote productivity with smart technology

It’s important to utilize technology within a business to streamline workflows and optimize efficiency. Ballard suggests harnessing data to empower employees and maximize productivity with Tapdn, a new IoT platform that acquires and analyzes real-time data to interpret patterns of workplace operations for businesses.

Consider alternative options to furnish your office space

EVAN, a network of IT professionals dedicated to assisting small businesses, said that the company initially went to Craigslist and consignment stores for furniture, but ran into trouble when repairs or replacement furniture was needed. Michelle Guilbeau recommended furniture rental as a creative solution to furnish the new space without stressing about capital and avoid roadblocks.

All in all, there are many obstacles than can pop up for small businesses, but being proactive can alleviate preventable stress.

Thank you to everyone who participated! To read the full discussion, search #WorkspacesChat on Twitter.

The post #WorkspacesChat: Key Takeaways for Small Business Owners appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

Make Your Home Lighter and Brighter with Easy Summer Decorating Ideas

Summertime, and the living is easy — or so the song goes. After a long, hard winter and a fickle spring, summer finally gives you the chance to get outside and enjoy some sunshine.

But you don’t have to spend all your time outdoors to enjoy the lighter, brighter days of summer. Just as you switch your clothes to a summer wardrobe, you can change your home’s look to suit the carefree, breezy days of summer. Here are some tried-and-true summer decorating ideas that will help make your home instantly look and feel lighter and brighter.

Start with Your Walls

One of the simplest and most effective ways to bring all the freshness of summer indoors is with a couple of coats of paint. Paint is a great option because you can lighten up a room for spring and summer with bright greens and yellows, or perhaps a pleasing pastel, and then transform it into an entirely different room for fall and winter. If you don’t want to commit to repainting an entire room, then use light, summery paint to cover just one wall or even a few small décor items.

Embrace the Accents

You don’t have to completely renovate your rooms; you can reinvent them with the right accent pieces. Swap out those darker winter throw pillows and table linens with some summer-friendly colors. Lighter-weight fabrics help carry out the summer theme, and consider storing that cozy winter rug in exchange for a lighter-colored and lighter-weight floor covering. Experiment beyond fabrics with natural materials like sisal, jute, and seagrass.

Give It a Pop

Small pops of color can have a big impact in any room. Look for ways you can bring just a touch of brightness to every room in the house, whether that means fresh, colorful flowers in the dining room, brightly colored serving dishes in the kitchen, or vibrantly colored soaps in the bathroom.

Create a Theme

It’s summer, so why not pick a summer decorating theme that you can enjoy until fall? Give your home a beachfront feel with accents like white linen curtains, throw pillows with tropical prints, or vases adorned with seashells. Bathrooms are a great place to celebrate summer, with shower curtains and towels adorned with pineapples or palm trees.

Take It Outside

This is the time you want to spend as much time as possible outdoors, whether it’s just you and your family or a weekend party with friends. Set the mood for summer by breaking out the bamboo torches, paper lanterns, and string lights. For your outdoor furniture cushions, choose super-bright colors and patterns that proclaim “summer fun.” (You may also consider giving your patio a complete summer makeover.)

Bring the Outside In

When you can’t be outside, you might as well look at ways to bring all the joys of summer inside. Plants, especially seasonal favorites like succulents, are an easy and natural way to bring a little bit of summer to your home. Plants are versatile and work in all styles, so you can never go wrong with a little touch of green.

When you’re ready to give your home a summer facelift, CORT Furniture Rental can help. With summer home décor like plants, rugs, and throw pillows, you can turn your cozy winter hideaway into a cool summer retreat.

Find your style

The post Make Your Home Lighter and Brighter with Easy Summer Decorating Ideas appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 11 2018

5 Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Military Moms

All moms deserve recognition on Mother’s Day (and every day). Military moms get extra credit for their sacrifice, as they accept the stress, uncertainty, and changes associated with military life because they know it’s for a greater good. This Mother’s Day (or any other day), give the military mom in your life one of these gifts to show her how much she means to you.

1. Jewelry with Meaning

It’s nice to have bling, and it’s even nicer when the bling has special meaning. Online marketplace R. Riveter, featuring artisans of American-made products, donates a portion of its proceeds to fund the Military Spouse Entrepreneurship Award, which is granted to military spouses to help grow or start their own businesses. Any item from its collection of jewelry, handbags, and wallets would make the perfect gift.

2. A Flying Scarf

Flying Scarfs is an all-volunteer team of military veterans that employs widows in Afghanistan who otherwise wouldn’t be able to work outside the home to provide for their children. Not only does the company exist for a good cause, it sells gorgeous Pashmina and silk scarves.

3. Charm Her

Personalize a charm bracelet by adding silver engraved tags for children or a spouse. Customize with names, dates, or trinkets with special meaning. Every time she hears the charms clink, she’ll think of you.

4. Send a Care Package

Is mom the one on active duty? Send her a care package with lots of goodies. Fill it full of mom’s favorite things from home. What are her favorite snacks? What are her favorite scents? Get creative. A few ideas to get you started include:

  • Chocolates and/or other snacks
  • Good books
  • Lotion and hair accessories
  • Gift cards to shops that ship to APO/FPO addresses
  • Handmade cards and/or love notes
  • Photos of her family and friends

5. Home Accessories

From furniture to art, even the smallest touches can give a room a fresh new look. Give mom something to complement her home that’s easy to move when it’s time to relocate.

Suggestions include:

  • Artwork
  • A storage ottoman
  • Framed photos
  • Decorative mirrors
  • A vase
  • A fleece throw

No matter what you decide to get her, CORT Clearance Centers has a great selection of home and office furniture, as well as accessories at up to 70 percent off retail prices. All furniture is inspected and CORT-certified, so you know you’re getting quality items. Shop at a CORT Clearance Center today to find a gift your military mom will love.

See how CORT can help you set up your home

The post 5 Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Military Moms appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 09 2018

Productive Things to Do Over the Summer to Gear Up for College

With graduation behind you, it may seem like the hard work is over. You toured campuses, scored that coveted acceptance letter, and walked across the stage to retrieve your diploma. While it’s true that summer is made for having fun, it’s also the perfect time to prepare mentally and physically for your next life adventure: college.

Use your time wisely, balancing the minutes between sun and fun and checking off these ideas for productive things to do over the summer to smooth the transition ahead.

Get Organized

It could take an entire summer to do this. Use your free time to figure out what you need to buy for college, what you want to take with you if you’re going away to school, and how you can keep your schedule straight once you start classes. Invest in a calendar — either an app on your phone or an old-school print calendar — to note important dates like when classes start and stop, midterms, finals, and vacation dates. This helps you set good study habits and prioritize your time right at the onset.

Organize Your Finances

When it comes to productive things to do over the summer before college, this one is possibly one of the most important steps for minimizing stress once you start school. Having an upfront understanding of the expenses you are expected to cover and the expenses covered by parents and financial aid is essential. Depending on the state of your bank account, you might need to take on a part-time job during the summer or during the semester to supplement your income.

Spend More Time with Family

While many summer activities for college students revolve around connecting with friends, it’s important to also include spending a little extra time with your parents, grandparents, and siblings in your plans. Once you’re in the groove with college, even your summers could be filled with extra classes, internships, and working.

Connect with Your Roommate

If you will be living in a dorm, you’re going to be sharing living space with a roommate for at least the next semester or two. Start by making a phone call or friend request on social media to break the ice and hopefully start a friendship. You could even set some early ground rules for visitors and noise at the dorm so you can both be good roommates.

Invest in Some Furnishings

Having a good desk lamp, comfortable bedding, and fun décor can really help make college feel like your home away from home. If you’re moving into an off-campus apartment, consider easily outfitting your space with furniture rental from CORT. You get the convenience of having stylish furniture delivered and set up for you at an affordable package price that never changes for easy budgeting.

Find your style

Don’t forget to be kind to yourself. It’s natural and normal to feel a little anxious when you’re heading off to college. When you follow these tips for summer activities for college students, you start feeling like a campus pro in no time.

The post Productive Things to Do Over the Summer to Gear Up for College appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

May 07 2018

Forget the Cookout: Put a Fun Twist on Memorial Day Celebrations

There’s certainly no shortage of Memorial Day activities during the last weekend in May. The long weekend traditionally serves as the kick-off to the summer season, making it a popular time for hitting the lake and hosting a backyard barbecue.

Of course, Memorial Day is a special day to honor those members of the military who made the ultimate sacrifice, and the holiday is particularly special for anyone currently serving in the military. It’s fun to gather family and friends for a cookout, but it’s also a great day for creating new traditions. Put a fun twist on your Memorial Day celebration this year by trying one of the following fun ideas.

Host a Patriotic Picnic

Picnics are a terrific way to celebrate any occasion; they honor a sense of old-fashioned values and remind us of simpler times. Give your Memorial Day celebration a twist by adding a patriotic theme to your outing. Look for plates and napkins with a red, white, and blue motif, and visit your local party store to pick up small American flags to decorate your picnic area. As a finishing touch, break out your iPad and Bluetooth speaker and fire up a patriotic playlist.

Catch a Parade

Memorial Day parades are fun for the whole family, and they bring out your most patriotic tendencies. With marching bands, floats, and probably more than one or two vintage cars, a parade is a great way to start your day. Look for one near you, grab the lawn chairs, and go.

Try a Progressive Dinner

This is a great way to get to know your neighbors better. A progressive block party — where each home hosts a different part of the meal — can be a fun way to spend an afternoon and evening. Keep a Memorial Day theme going at each home with red, white, and blue decorations, and work together to create a menu that makes everyone happy.

Plan a Getaway

Memorial Day is a popular time for gathering at the home of friends or family, but it can also be the perfect time for a getaway. Look for a place that has enough accommodations for everyone and is near fun activities that all can enjoy, whether that means renting some cabins in the woods, a big house in the mountains, or a campsite by the lake. It’s a relaxing way to escape the norm while bringing together those you care about the most.

Get Chic

For something entirely different, throw an upscale cocktail party with a patriotic theme. While the rest of the country reaches for shorts and swimsuits, host a party in your home or garden with cocktail attire and sophisticated food and drinks.

No matter how you choose to celebrate Memorial Day, this is a time to remember fallen soldiers and pay tribute to the sacrifices they made to ensure every American enjoys freedom. As you plan your event, remember that CORT Furniture Rental can help you find the temporary furniture you need for every celebration as well as outfit your entire home.

See How CORT Can Help

The post Forget the Cookout: Put a Fun Twist on Memorial Day Celebrations appeared first on CORT Furniture Rental Blog.

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