You are at the point where you have your own place; you’ve graduated, have a job and new responsibilities. You’ve worked hard to be where you are now. Below are several tips on how to create or elevate your current bachelor pad. Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither does your bachelor pad have to be. Take your time; you don’t have everything all at once. By taking your time you’ll put more thought into what you purchase.
1. Having a dirty bachelor pad is not an option anymore. It might have been an option when you lived in a dorm or frat house, but those days are over. After working 8+ hours a day you’ll find a certain satisfaction coming home to place that looks good and is clean. Secondly, if you are dating someone and they come back to your place they’ll have certain expectations. If you can’t take care of yourself, how can anyone think you can take care of them?
a. Have toilet paper
b. Have hand soap
c. Clean kitchen and bathroom sinks
d. Clean kitchen and bathroom countertops
For cleaning tips specific for bachelors click here.
2. Your living room is most likely the first room guests will enter. This is their first impression, and it should have a couch, coffee table, and TV console (at the minimum). These three items all should match. Finding a couch by the dumpster and relocating it to your place isn’t acceptable. Neither is hand-me-down furniture. Don’t hesitate to spend money on a couch; you’ll probably own it longer than you think. Find furniture that reflects your personal style. Furniture that doesn’t match creates a disjointed feeling, and is visually unappealing.
3. Your Home Theater System should be nice, but not excessive. You and your friends will probably spend a lot time in front of the TV watching movies, shows and playing video games, however, you wont win many points with the opposite sex with huge speakers. This is an investment; keep in mind your system will also be used to play music at your parties, and friends will join you watch sports games. You can pick up an adequate surround sound system for under $500 that both looks and sounds nice.
4. A stocked bar is a given. At a minimum always have available Whiskey and Vodka; both of these spirits can be easily mixed with either a cola or soda water. It’s ideal to have OJ and cranberry juice available as well. Additionally, have a white or red bottle of wine. Keep the white in the fridge, and the red in a location where heat and sunlight won’t affect it. As for beer, there is a such thing as too much. Remember, those fraternity days are over and as you upgrade your taste you also are upgrading your taste buds. Have a type for when you watch the game, and another for when you just want a hearty beer.
Poor man’s tip: Buy a decent bottle of vodka and a cheap bottle. Have the good stuff yourself, and replace the bottle with the cheap stuff. Put the refilled bottle in fridge, no one knows but you.
5. Every bachelor pad should have a least a few pieces of artwork, preferably something in every room. A few examples are a framed poster or print, an accent (vase, candle holder, sculpture), framed photos or an antique. These pieces should reflect your interests or hobbies, and are used to personalize your space. Having a piece of art will give life to the room, as well as something for your guests to enjoy. Keep the art tasteful and sophisticated. Sorry Pamela Anderson, that Bawatch poster has to go...
6. You are no longer living at home with your parents, or sharing a dorm room. Your bedroom is your own sanctuary, and therefore special attention needs to be placed in the room you spend 8+ hours in every day, regardless if your eyes are open or closed.
First, your sheets and comforter (aka duvet) should not be well worn or falling apart, if they are, get new set. Neutral colors usually work best and match just about anything.
Tip: If possible your sheets should match your towels and hand towels in your bathroom. Women appreciate this, don’t ask me to explain.
As for lighting your bedroom, have a main light that provides most of the room’s illumination and a light for your nightstand. Both of these should have dimmers on them, this helps set a particular mood for when your bedroom becomes the Honeymoon suite. Also, you may want to invest in window treatments of some kind. They help reduce light and soften the room. Sleep studies have shown that the darker the room is, the better the night sleep someone has.
As for furniture, your dresser, nightstand and bed should all match, or at least be the same color. If you are still sleeping on a futon, it’s time for a lifestyle change. Invest in good pieces of furniture as they will last you for most of your life. Spend the money. It’s worth it.
7. Having a well-lit bachelor pad is a must. It’s best to have a few different sources of lighting in each room. This is especially true if the main source is fluorescent. When looking for table lamps or floor lamps be sure they are in the same type of style as your furniture. You don’t want your parents lights from the 70’s and anything that has a football helmet as a lampshade is a definite no-no. Additionally, try and find lamps with dimmers, that way you can control how much light is being emitted, perfect for setting the mood.
8. You need a stocked fridge with food. Not all of your fridge space should be dedicated to beer. Think of the 5 food groups and you should have a 3 or 4 items from each group in your fridge. You never know when guests will come by, and you’ll want to show that you mature enough to host people.
Tip: A great appetizer besides chips and salsa is Humus. People love Humus with anything such as crackers, carrots, celery, and sliced apples. Another favorite that’s easy to prepare is Brie cheese and crackers.
9. Your bathroom should always be clean including the walls of your shower. Have a small garbage can so you can easily dispose of trash. You’re not going to impress too many women when they have your hair and fingernail clippings stuck to the bottom of their feet.
Also, try to minimize how many objects you keep on your countertop, that way it’s easier to clean and looks better.
Tip: Provide an extra shower gel for your guest. Do you really want to put that bar of soap on your face after your friend just washed his equipment with it?
10. Have something that’s living. This shows you can take of another living object, and will add life to your apartment. Besides a dog or cat, grab a plant and invite it into the family. Consider a Bonsai tree, very decorative and low maintenance tree. These indoor plants look great and also help with purifying indoor air: snake plant, lady palm, Chinese evergreen and ficus alii. Also, they are commonly available at any plant nursery. Just remember to water and give the poor things some light.
Always be proud of your bachelor pad!