How to Repair Small Issues in your NYC Apartment

How to Repair Small Issues in your NYC Apartment - Man cleaning carpet at home with gloves and a sponge

It’s inevitable that while living in a New York City apartment, you’re going to come across multiple issues, some small, some large. Suppose you don’t have a building superintendent that’s reliable or want to bother your landlord and have them take money out of your security deposit. In that case, it’s just easier to mend the minor issues that crop up yourself. Here, we’ve put together a shortlist of quick fixes that you can do to keep your apartment running smoothly.

The first and probably most gross suggestion we have is for your bathtub drain. If you have long hair or a dog that sheds, you know the deal. Instead of using Drano to unclog your tub and risk messing up your septic tank, invest in a drain snake. It’s plastic, it’s usually less than ten dollars, and after you’re done snaking your drain, you can also plop in a bathtub hair catcher that will ensure that you will never stick your hand down a drain to unclog it ever again.

Our second recommendation is to know how to fix minor and large holes in your walls. For small holes, grab a putty knife, spackling paste, and some sandpaper. Squeeze some spackle into each hole in the wall, use the putty knife to blend over the hole. Once dry, sand the area light to leave a smooth flat wall. For larger holes, you can pick up a mesh repair patch at the hardware store – cut the patch to fit over the hole and the wall surrounding it. Cover patch with spackle and sand down the edges after it dries so that it’s blended into the wall.

For general scuff marks around the apartment, be sure to use a magic eraser – whatever is in those things works like a charm to make your apartment look new. However, if you have scuff marks or scratches on hardwood, you can use a wood-colored pen from a hardware store to fill in scrapes.

Speaking of flooring, you might have carpet instead of hardwood and need to fix carpet stains or damage to ensure you get your deposit back. For carpet stains, you can use baking soda or a carpet cleaning solution first, and then rent a carpet cleaner machine from your local hardware store to clean up – these really make a difference! If you damage your carpet, hire a handyperson or a carpet company to do this because it’s still going to be way cheaper than your landlord taking a chunk out of your deposit.

Another issue we’ve personally run into is broken blinds because we’ve been wine drunk, had a cat that decided to parkour off blinds, etc. Some apartments will come with additional blind slats, but if they don’t, go to your hardware store and figure out how to install them using YouTube. If you don’t have a lot of faith in your DIY skills, you can also hire a person off TaskRabbit to make your life easier.

Lastly, before you leave your space for your new abode, be sure to deep clean your apartment! This is not only just a courteous thing to do for your landlord and the next tenants there, but it also means that your landlord will be more inclined to return most, if not all, your security deposit back to you.

If you love this list and want more tips to help make your NYC apartment life more manageable, let us know!