5 Reasons Having a Microwave in Your Apartment is So Useful
In years gone by, one would often hear that part of the American dream was to live in a large house with a white picket fence. That need for a sprawling home and lawn is simply a thing of the past. More and more Americans are thinking smaller. As a result, builders are designing smaller homes, and apartment complexes are popping up all over.
There are many benefits to apartment living, with the lower financial investment and lack of exterior maintenance as the biggest plus. That said, luxury apartments are becoming more common too, with cost no longer being a concern. Apartment renters are willing to fork out more dollars for smaller spaces, especially if it provides them with access to shared amenities such as pools, gyms, laundry facilities, and on-site convenience stores.
But what about those benefits inside the apartment itself? And what are the absolute must-haves that apartment renters must have inside the unit? One of the most popular must-haves for your apartment kitchen is a microwave oven.
How do microwaves work?
Microwaves are highly convenient kitchen appliances that turn electricity into electromagnetic waves, and those waves are called microwaves, thus the name of the appliance itself. These microwaves stimulate molecules in food, which makes them vibrate, spin, clash etc., which is how the food heats up. Thus, all the activity is taking place inside the unit, and therefore, placement or location of the microwave itself is not a concern.
Said another way, microwaves leverage high-frequency radio waves to heat the molecules that exist inside the food. The food then pretty much cooks from the inside out while the air around it remains at room temperature. This means that your meal will be heated all at once, which reduces cooking time and energy consumption.
Five reasons why you need a microwave in your apartment
If you have decided that apartment living is for you, a key reason why is likely the convenience that it offers. The space is large enough to have room to spread out, but small enough that you don’t need to spend an entire weekend every other week cleaning. And if you love that convenience, then you know that a great microwave is an absolute must-have.
Some apartments will offer above-the-range mounted microwaves, and others will expect it to be placed on the counter. In most cases, this is simply a design requirement of the apartment space, and doesn’t play and role in the performance of the actual unit. In other cases, you may be able to have your microwave installed under the counter, described here by House Tipster, inside a cabinet, or built into open cabinetry. Other apartment dwellers store their microwave in the pantry when it is not in use. Since microwaves are relatively light-weight, it is easy enough to pull a microwave out, place it on the counter, and plug it in when it is time for use.
Now that you understand how microwaves work and that placement is a non-issue for the location of your microwave, let’s focus on why these nifty appliances are such an essential piece in your apartment.
- If you live on your own or are just cooking for one or two, a microwave provides speed and simplicity. You can divide your food into portions and just heat up what you need for a meal. This is easy to do in a microwave. And better yet, your microwave can be left unattended (different from a stove top). So, if you need to run Fido out for a bathroom break, or want to head downstairs to pop in a load of laundry while your dinner heats up, you can do just that.
- Microwaves make it easy and safe to defrost frozen food. A typical strategy is to defrost food by leaving it in the sink to thaw. But this can actually create an increase in bacteria. With your microwave, you can simply heat up your food using the defrost setting. After the food is defrosted, you can use your cook setting on your microwave, or you can pop the food into the oven in an over-safe dish. Not only is this strategy much faster, it is healthier for you too.
- Using a microwave helps you to preserve nutrients. When heating foods in a liquid, the food starts to lose its vitamins and nutrients. Microwaves require little to no liquid to heat items, which means that your meal will be able to retain more of its nutrition, and it will taste better than if it was boiled too.
- Microwaves use less energy than conventional ovens. Not only will your microwave use less energy than your oven, it will use less energy than a toaster oven too. Toaster ovens are also popular appliances for apartment-dwellers, but know that toaster ovens use approximately 1225 watts of energy, where a microwave uses about 925. Of course this will vary based on the specific appliance, but overall, the microwave has the toaster oven beat in terms of energy efficient cooking.
- If you like to keep your appliances clean, you’ll appreciate that it is far easier to clean a microwave than it is to clean a conventional oven. Of course, many ovens offer a self-cleaning feature, but this can be time-consuming and often creates an odor that other apartment-dwellers in your complex might not appreciate. With a microwave, all you need to do is wipe it down inside and out with a microwave safe cleaner. And if the bottom spin dish is dirty, it can be pleased in your dishwasher or can be cleaned by hand with a sponge and dish soap.
If you are an on-the-go individual, all you will really need in your apartment is a bed, a table and some comfortable chairs, and a few kitchen items, including your microwave and refrigerator. When shopping for one, it is quite convenient to pick up some fresh ingredients at the local grocery store or a farmer’s market, bring it home to the apartment to prepare the meal, and then save the leftovers for lunch or dinner for the next day or two. Using your microwave, it is easy to warm up right-sized portions for those follow-on meals, which means less time before you can get on to your other activities.
With the right apartment, the right outside amenities, the right interior furnishings and appliances, your space will become a highly functional stopping point for you to rest and recuperate at before moving on to the next big thing on your list of things to do. That said, make sure you slow down enough to take a dip in the pool here and there, any enjoy everything else it is that your apartment has to offer.