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Apartment Living: Upstairs vs Downstairs

December 21, 2021

If you’re going to lease an apartment, which is better: upstairs or downstairs? There really isn’t a correct answer, it all depends on your preferences. Both upstairs apartments and downstairs apartments have pros and cons, so we broke down the factors that can help you decide what’s best for you!

How to Decide Between Living Upstairs or Downstairs

Noise from Upstairs Neighbors

The number one pro of living upstairs is that you never have to worry about hearing people living above you. On the flip side, this is also the most likely con of living downstairs. However, this really depends on where you live. If you apartment community is older and hasn’t been renovated to help block out stomping/noise or just the walking around of upstairs neighbors, yes, this can be quite an annoying con of living downstairs. However, most new communities are built so that any noise coming from upstairs is muffled to non-existent.

Price

Generally upstairs apartments are more expensive than downstairs. So if pricing is super important, one of the benefits of living downstairs is a slightly lower rental price.

city view at il palazzo apartments in san diego ca
City views at iL Palazzo Apartments in San Diego, CA

Those Upstairs Views

Let’s face it, the higher you go, the better the view you have. Of course, this all depends on where your apartment community is located, but if it’s somewhere with gorgeous views, this is a good pro to consider for choosing an upstairs apartment!

Convenient Access to Your Front Door

If you despise walking stairs or waiting for the elevator, a downstairs apartment might be a better fit for you. It’s easier to carry your groceries to a downstairs apartment and it’s also quicker to get to your car. On the other hand, you might prefer an apartment on a higher floor that’s close to the elevator. In the end, it’s just important to consider the building layout and where your potential apartment falls within it.

model patio close up at the braydon apartments in napa ca 2
Patio at The Braydon Apartments in Napa, CA

Outdoor Space

While upstairs apartments may have better views, one thing they definitely won’t have is an actual yard. Often they feature just a smaller balcony or patio area. While a small backyard isn’t always an option when it comes to apartment living, this is something to consider if you have pets or kids.

Heating & Cooling

Can’t stand that summer heat inside your apartment? Upstairs apartments are generally warmer than downstairs ones since heat rises. You’ll also want to take into consideration higher energy bills if you’re running the AC.

corner view the ian herndon va
Corner apartment with oversized windows at The Ian in Herndon, VA

Natural Light

If you’re a lover of bright open spaces, upstairs apartments generally have more natural light. Take the neighborhood design into consideration to see how much light your new home will have, regardless of if you choose upstairs or downstairs.

Emergency Evacuation

Lastly, in the case of an emergency, downstairs apartments are quicker to evacuate. Of course, your apartment will have an emergency evacuation plan for anywhere in your apartment community, but if this is a concern to you, then downstairs may be more desirable in this situation.

As you can see there are plenty of pros and cons for both upstairs and downstairs living. Tip? Take into account each apartment community you look at and ask your leasing agent what they suggest for your preferences!

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