When you live in an apartment, it’s always a struggle to make use of the precious space you have allotted to you. Unfortunately, too many people neglect the special outdoor space that exists just outside their sliding glass door. If you have a patio or balcony attached to your apartment, don’t waste it! It can be one of the most useful parts of your apartment!
Grow Some Groceries
You’d be surprised by the sheer amount of plants that are perfectly content to sit there on your apartment balcony, absorbing rain and sunlight, producing food and looking great. You can grow everything from lettuce, to strawberries, to chives, to citrus trees, depending on your climate and the amount of sunlight you get. Just sprinkle some lettuce seeds into a pot of good potting soil sometime in March, pat them into the soil, and water frequently, and whabam: a salad you grew on your porch! Citrus plants can be grown in large pots or buckets, so long as it’s not too cold for them, and there’s something satisfying about being able to just run out to your porch and snip off a few leaves from your little mint or basil or oregano plant to use in your own cooking! Save money and have a little fun gardening. Most of all: make use of all the space you’re paying to inhabit.
Turn it into a Gym
There’s something magical about getting out into the fresh air to work out. If you have a balcony, all the space you need to make a home gym is at your fingertips. Just get your hands on a yoga mat, a jump-rope for some cardio, and maybe some free-weights and you’re all set. You can get some exercise in without ever leaving your apartment! Who knows, maybe that traffic noise, or the nearby water feature will help you concentrate a little better on your yoga poses. There’s all sorts of workouts you can do on your porch. Pilates, HIIT, cardio with a jump-rope, and just good old bodyweight exercises. If you’re feeling brave about repairs you have to make before you move out, you could even hang a pull-up bar or a punching bag from your porch’s covering.
Need an Office? Look No Further!
A lot of people want a home office but don’t have the money to pay for a second bedroom in their apartment. But why bother when you have a little room just outside? If the weather’s nice enough, take a little table outside and a chair and take your computer with you. You can set up with a cup of coffee and a plate of cookies and get work done outside, in the fresh air, with a view for company and the birds singing in your ear. The chance of place and air will do wonders for your productivity.
If you don’t have a table, even spreading out a blanket or bringing out a bean-bag chair could work. Lean a few cushions against the walls and just set your cup of coffee on the floor. Wrap yourself in a blanket, and there you have it: a cozy outdoor office.
An Outdoor Paradise…
Perhaps the most desirable and most common use of an outdoor balcony: a hangout spot. Lighting is everything. String up some fairy lights, hang paper lanterns, light a candle or two. Set up some garden chairs, ottomans, or a blanket and some cushions. Rugs made for the outdoors make all the difference, too. Get some sweet smelling flowers in some pretty pots, and take a book outside, or your laptop with a treasured movie. It makes all the difference in the world.
The great thing about your outdoor space is that, if you have a bit of storage out there, too, it can be all of these things at once. Grow flowers with your herbs and lettuce. Keep those lights strung up, and store away that yoga mat and weights in your off-the-side closet when you’re not using them. When you’re workout’s done, get your laptop or notebook, get your work done, and then relax. All done in a space that you weren’t making use of before. A balcony can be one of the most diverse and useful spaces in your apartment. All you need is a little bit of creativity.