Most apartments have a limited living space. So, even a little bad smell can make your days quite uncomfortable. Bad odors can creep into every nook and cranny; even if you get used to it, your guests will not be.
What Causes Those Funky Smells?
If you have recently noticed a bad apartment smell, the first step is to locate the source. These could be garbage disposal smells, something rotting in the trash can, carpet smells due to a spill, the pet beds or their litter box. Look around a bit; the smell could also be due to your own stinky shoes!
Once you find the source, it should be easy enough to sprinkle or do something else to absorb bad smells. Fortunately, there are many household items that can help you make any room smell fresh again. These include the following:
- Cinnamon sticks
- Baking soda
- White vinegar
- Essential oils
- Dryer sheets
- Rubbing alcohol
- Room freshening spray
- Vanilla extract
- Coffee beans
Knowing how to make your apartment smell nice is part of running a home. While you are at it, do read up on some general maintenance tips for apartments.
How to Get Rid of Bad Smells
Before you work on making the house smell good, you have to get rid of the bad smells. Simply spraying air fresheners or using scented candles might make your house smell fine for a bit. However, the scents from these items will soon mix with the unpleasant odors, making things even worse.
The right way is to first make the place smell fresh, and then see what can make the apartment smell amazing. If you live with roommates, work on your own room first, and then brainstorm the best way to freshen up the rest of the apartment.
How to Get Your Apartment to Smell Good
A bad smell is one of the first things we notice about any home. There are several factors to look for when renting an apartment, and a horrible smell can cancel out all the advantages. Whether you are giving tours with the intention of selling or just want to make the apartment smell good for yourself, there are some steps to take.
The good news is that it does not cost much to make your apartment smell good for the long run. It also does not require heavy chemicals. As long as you stay consistent in your efforts to make your home smell amazing, the bad smells should not come back.
Wondering how to go about making your apartment smell wonderful each day? Here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind:
1. Get Out That Baking Soda
Once you detect the areas responsible for the smell, you may want to sprinkle baking soda on them. These include your furniture, rugs, carpets, throw pillows, and so on. Baking soda has natural deodorizing properties, which means it can absorb all those weird smells overnight. After you have given it around 12 to 24 hours, vacuum the areas well.
The vacuuming will suck up all the absorbed odors from the fabric, as well as the baking soda. After this, open all the windows in the rooms and let the place air out for about an hour or more. This will hopefully make the apartment smell fresh and nice for some days. The air blowing through your apartment will also get rid of any baking soda residue.
2. Make Your Own Cleaning Solution
You do not have to invest in expensive cleaning solutions for treating bad smells. Simply mix bleach and water in a 1:10 ratio – one part bleach and ten parts water. Change the ratio according to your requirements.
Dip a rag into this solution and use it to clean up the fronts of your cabinets, the counters, and even the walls. The doors and baseboards should also get a once-over with the bleach mixture, effectively removing all the grime, grease, and dirt buildup on these surfaces. This practice will make the place look amazing and leave a fresh, crisp smell once the bleach fumes fade away.
You can also invest in wall air fresheners to maintain a nice scent. If you notice the buildup coming back too quickly, check out how to reduce dust in an apartment.
3. Use Scented Candles
Once everything is clean and fresh, you can make the place look and smell amazing with the right scented candles. These come in all sorts of scents, sizes, and price ranges. You can find them in dollar stores, department stores, thrift stores, and even yard sales.
Use them to scent the apartment for weeks; the larger ones are very long lasting. Make sure to place the candles on a sturdy, stable surface where children and pets can’t get access to it.
What Type of Candles to Buy?
If you are alright with heavy fragrances, any store bought candle will do. If you are looking for something more delicate, get the soy or beeswax ones. You can also make your own candles and add a few drops of essential oils for the required scents.
4. Homemade Potpourri
You can make a fragrant potpourri right at home. Simmer some spicy herbs on the stove and add things like cloves, vanilla beans, cinnamon sticks, and orange peels. You can also mix things up and add whatever makes your favorite scents.
5. Make a Baking Scent
The smell of freshly baked cookies or brownies can make an apartment smell amazing. The scent is comforting and warm, but you may not feel up to baking every single day. No worries; you can now imitate the scent by putting a few drops of vanilla essence or vanilla extract in a baking tray or dish. You can also just wipe the oven with a vanilla extract and water mixture, or add some extract plus lemon zest in a ramekin before baking it. In case you don’t have any of these, baking coffee beans can make your home smell like a cafe.
All of these scents can certainly help to make the place smell amazing and reflect your personality as well. Here are some more ways on how to make your apartment feel like home.
6. Make Use of Activated Charcoal
The kitchen and bathroom are most likely culprits of those bad smells in your apartment. Fortunately, you can use activated charcoal, at least in the kitchen, to absorb most of the offending gasses and vapors. You can make use of this charcoal by hanging a pound of it in a porous bag near the window. Alternatively, put some in a few small bowls and place those near the main smell sources, including the trash can and garbage disposal.
7. Make Your Own Room Freshening Spray
While you might use a store bought option like Meyer’s Room Spray, it might be easier and cheaper to make one at home. For this, you can steep some herbs, such as lavender, lemon myrtle, and eucalyptus, in hot water. Once you think the solution is strong enough, let it cool down. Put it into a spray bottle and use it for freshening up any room on a daily basis.
Using Old Tea Leaves
If you are a fan of recycling and a tea drinker, you can also dry out your tea leaves to make a mixture. Put the dry tea leaves in the fridge to absorb odors if you don’t have baking soda. Coffee beans and grounds will also work in the same way.
8. Use Dryer Sheets
The smell of freshly washed laundry is also a nice one to have at home. If you like this scent, you can replicate it with the following hacks:
Freshening Up Shoes
Crumple up some dryer sheets and put them in your stinky shoes. This practice will neutralize the odors and prevent them from spreading to the rest of the apartment.
Absorbing Smells from Dirty Clothes
Put a dryer sheet in your dirty clothes hamper, right at the very bottom. It will prevent the dirty clothes’ smell from permeating into the room and beyond.
Freshening Up a Room
If you have an A/C unit in any room, put a dryer sheet on its filter. It will stick there by itself when the AC is on and give that fresh laundry smell to the whole room. If there is no proper unit, putting the sheet over a heating or A/C vent will also do the trick.
9. Invest in an Essential Oil Diffuser
Essential oils can quickly freshen up a place without the risk of synthetic fragrances that you find in candles and air fresheners. Diffuse essential oils for a natural, simple scent. You can choose from a variety of options, like lemon, rosemary, grapefruit, lavender, cinnamon, orange, and many more.
There are a lot of things to know for first-time apartment renters. Doing away with bad smells is one of them. After that, you can work on giving your apartment the most amazing smells and scents possible. If you are not sure which method will work best, try out a few of the hacks above. Start today and you will hopefully have a great-smelling apartment all year round!