Apartment Elevator Etiquette for the New Tenant

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Apartment Elevator Etiquette for the New Tenant

Staff Writer · Oct 5, 2009

When you’re a new tenant, you might be oblivious to the unwritten rules of apartment elevator etiquette. No one is going to come out and tell you these rules. You’re expected to know how to treat others when using the elevator. Here are a few things you ought to know.

Don’t Make Any Calls

Don’t irritate your fellow tenants by making a cell phone call every time you’re on the elevator. Many people don’t seem care that they’re disrupting everyone else’s thoughts, and seem to get louder and louder over the course of the elevator ride. Worse, some will curse even when little children are around. This is not proper elevator etiquette. Instead, make your calls after the elevator ride. If making your call is so important, make it before you get on the elevator.

Don’t Receive Any Calls

The same rules apply for receiving phone calls. Unless it’s an emergency, you should avoid answering your cell phone in an apartment elevator. You’ll end up in a conversation and raising your voice which will be a nuisance to others. If it is an emergency, then keep it as short as possible. You could even explain to them that you’re on an elevator and ask them to hold until you reach your exit, or offer to call them right back.

Don’t Use the Elevator

There are certain times when using the elevator would not be proper etiquette. If you’re just going up or down one floor, you shouldn’t use the elevator. The same applies if you have a barking dog. If you’ve been running or exercising and are sweaty and smelly, you should continue your workout by taking the stairs. You shouldn’t use the elevator to make out with your spouse either. You might be having fun, but it’s a distraction for others on the elevator ride.

Move in During Off Hours

When you first move in, you may have to use the elevator to unload your things. This is understandable, because you’re not expected to take very heavy things up and down the stairs. However, you can avoid making it inconvenient for the other tenants, if you move in when they’re less likely to use the elevator much. Try to schedule any moving help or moving company during these off-peak times. Sometimes you can’t control when a moving truck arrives, and therefore you may not be able to wait for a better time to unload your things. In those cases, make sure you apologize to anyone waiting to get on but can’t, and try to make as few elevator trips as possible.

Wait to Get On

A simple rule to remember is wait until others exit the elevator before you attempt to get on. Otherwise, you may bump into people or force them to try to get around you, which can be awkward. Don’t stand close to the doors when they open. Step aside, peek to make sure no one is getting off, and then board the elevator.

All of these rules and others can be summarized by: do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Remember this rule first and foremost, and you won’t be guilty of poor apartment elevator etiquette.

photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/danielmorrison/

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