Friday, December 12, 2014

Unwrapping the Dilemma of Wrapping Paper

As the holiday season approaches and gifts are shared between friends, family, and loved ones, mounds of wrapping paper can quickly accumulate. It's best to have a strategy ahead of time to deal with this dilemma before the holiday season picks up so that you know how to best prevent waste. Here are a couple of tips:

1) A good present comes with a good story
"This gift is from a sheep herder who guided me to a secret temple on the steep mountain peeks of the Andes Mountains..." No, no, no. Not that type of story! I meant the newspaper! Why even bother buying overpriced holiday wrapping paper when you can get it for FREE from newspaper distributors around town? You could even try to match the story to the person if you wanted to get real personal. Didn't these people do an elegant job in their wrapping?

2) Recycle it
Most, but not all, wrapping paper is recyclable. Watch out for wrapping paper that is heavily dyed, laminated and/or contains non-paper additives (gold+silver+aluminum lining, glitter, plastics).

3) Get creative!
How about having some fun with those mounds of paper! It's not trash at all, but rather supplies for some fabulous paper mache art. A great activity for those of all ages.

Also, don't forget to take pictures of the decorations outside your place for the Holiday Decorating Competition! Pictures are due by Saturday, December 20th. Send your picture to to win a holiday gift basket. Vote for your house or those in your neighborhood by using our Facebook page to determine who wins. May the friendly competition begin!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Preparing for Winter Weather

Looking for ways to save energy and money this winter? Try weatherizing! It's a cheap solution to making your apartment / house more efficient and cozy during the cold winter months. Menards put together this comprehensive video on how and where to install weathreization around your home. These supplies are available at practically any hardware store in town.

Some other things include reducing the heat used in the first place. Instead of going to turn up the thremostate a couple of notches, cuddle up in your favorite sweater or under a blanket. Snuggie time! While you're away from the house, go ahead and turn down the thermostat 10-15 degrees. There's no use in heating an empty house right? This is made easier if you have a programmable thermostat.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Halloween Trick-or-Treat Station

U-District trick-or-treaters are invited to stop by our table at 405 University Ave. for some Halloween fun! 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Welcome Bags ready to go!

All 100 welcome bags have been filled and are ready to be delivered to incoming University District student renters! Thanks to all of the neighbors that volunteered to help out with the delivery efforts. We could not have done it without you!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

 Moving out?
Drop off the stuff you no longer need. We'll take y our clothes, furniture and appliances. Reusable stuff only please.
         Moving in?
 Come get free stuff for your new place!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Neighborhood Block Party!

Don't miss the second annual neighborhood ambassador block party event coming up THIS Sunday!

  • FREE bike tune ups from ASUM Transportation's Bike Ambassadors!
  • Live music!
  • Big Dipper ice cream truck!
  • Free food!
  • Kids' activities!
  • & More!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Adopt a Traffic Circle!

How much do you love your neighborhood traffic circles?  So much that you want to adopt one and take care of if for life?  The Office of Neighborhoods is able to grant $50 grants to some groups interested in maintaining their traffic circle! It’s a great way to enhance Missoula’s urban forest, keep you busy in the summer, and keep your neighborhood looking marvelous. 

Want to get even more into nature in your neighborhood?  Do you know how many trails the University district and surrounding areas have?  Not only do we have the famous “M” trail and the less famous but just as beautiful “L” trail close by, there are many trails in neighboring areas that are within walking distance! If the switchbacks of the “M” are just a bit too much for you, try the Sentinel Fire Road! For more Sentinel trails visit this guide to trails around Missoula.   The Kim Williams trail is a city long trail along the beautiful Clark Fork River.  The trail is well maintained and a popular walking destination for many in Missoula.

The South Hills have a wonderful trail system! You can find all you need to know about the multiple trails here! There are also many trails in the Pattee Canyon area as well as the Rattlesnake recreation area.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Leaving town for the summer?

At last summer is upon us and winter relaxes its icy grip on our beloved city! For most students, this means a reprieve from the daily grind of classes and a chance to travel home or abroad. The transitory nature of summer break calls for a refresher on leases and subletting. Students leaving town for the summer need to be extra vigilant about the terms of their leases to avoid unpleasant surprises. Here are three scenarios that could arise during your time away:

1)   Sometimes a landlord may have need to enter the rental to make repairs, supply necessary or agreed services, or inspect the rental. It is the duty of the tenant to let the landlord onto the rental property when the landlord has a good reason.
·       Unless there is an emergency, the landlord must give you at least 24 hour’s notice of any plan to enter the rental and only during reasonable hours.
·       If you’ll be away for the summer, let your landlord know (most leases require you to do this anyhow)  and keep an eye out for any emails, voice mails, or texts from them about entering the rental.

2)   It is possible over the summer that your plans may change. A good friend may want to live with you or you adopt a pet and move somewhere pet friendly. What happens if you move out early?
·       Your rental agreement is a contract between you and the landlord and is usually for 12 months. If you move out or stop paying rent before the end of the rental agreement, you may still be responsible for all of the rent until the end of the rental agreement. This may be true even if you do not live there anymore.
·       If you move out early, the landlord must try to re-rent the rental at a fair price. You are responsible for the rent from the time you move out, until the time a new tenant moves in. If the landlord does not try to re-rent the rental at a fair price, the rental agreement ends on the day the landlord first had notice that you left the rental. Then, you are only responsible for rent for the time that you lived there.

 3)   In order to save money, you may wish to sublet your rental.
·       You must get written permission of the landlord. If you sublet the rental without the written permission of the landlord, you are violating your duties under the rental agreement. Your landlord can take you to court for violating your agreement.
·       Are your other roommates ok with having a stranger move in? Discuss this and agree on a plan before signing a year long lease.

Follow these tips to protect yourself and your peace of mind during the hazy days of summer! Above all, communication is key. Landlords and roommates will appreciate the courtesy of timely updates on your situation. For more information on this topic, visit the ASUM Off-Campus Renter Center website. 

Disclaimer:  The information found on this page are not that of an attorney.  Please contact ASUM Legal Services (if a student) or your attorney for legal advice.  The information found here is intended for educational purposes only and should be used for ones own pursuit of mitigating disputes

Friday, April 11, 2014

It's not too late! Run for the Trees race TOMORROW!

It's not too late to sign up for this year's Run For the Trees Race taking place this Saturday, April 12th!

Register online at, call (406)721-PARK or stop by Currents Aquatic Center. You can also register at McCormick Park on race day. Race starts at 9am. 

Run for a great cause! Proceeds benefit the Missoula Urban Forest which plants trees in our parks, streets and schools. 

Runners get a free T-shirt and their very own tree seedling to take home!

The Neighborhood Ambassador team will be there cheering on 10K runners at Bonner Park where we will be hosting a water table. You don't want to miss this opportunity to come out and run for a great cause!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Are you moving out of your apartment soon?

As a renter, you have the responsibility to vacate the premises in good condition.  Also, there is a couple hundred dollars of your money that would be awesome to get back.  Here are some tips to help you get the most of your money when you move out:

Check your lease agreement for your landlord’s deposit refund requirements.

Common Mistakes:

Losing your key or forgetting to return it. Landlords have the right to charge you for changing all the door locks. Sometimes, this could cost you a couple hundred bucks or your whole deposit!
Haphazard cleaning. Landlords can charge you absurd rates for re-cleaning.  Take the time to clean well because this will heavily influence your deposit.

Some Cool Renter's Rights:

Request an inspection from your landlord. You have the right to a move-out inspection within a week of the end of your tenancy. You can then clean things that your landlord mentions in the inspection!
You cannot be charged for “normal wear and tear”. Take pictures of the residence just in case your landlord doesn’t uphold this rule.

Find the best deal on carpet cleaning:
1)      Get moving on this. Carpet cleaners are busy this time of year!
2)      Check for coupons in the Valpak or ask for a student discount.
3)      Schedule an appointment within a week of your last day.
4)      Now you have your carpets looking good for the inspection you scheduled with your landlord!

Get rid of your stuff and make some CA$H: