Chadwick Blog: House Hunting
Looking for a new place to live (rent not buy). Seems like a relatively easy process when you say it.
But, when the time comes for one to go through the actions of looking though all of the outlets for housing listings, it is anything but.
I have lived in the same house for about 2 ½ years with 2 of my guy buddies and it has been pretty low key. Most likely the cleanest place I have lived in since moving out of my parent’s house in Great Falls 10 years ago. But it is time to move out and on.
I sat down, pulled up the craigslist and classifieds, and started dialing. After setting up several appointments to view any apartment, condo, in Bozeman or the surrounding area I felt like I was ready and making progress towards finding a place to live. It should be said that I was looking for a 2 bedroom place to live, for the first time, with my girlfriend. She is busy with school as she is graduating this semester and has several classes and a capstone to deal with so I took it upon myself to do the majority of the footwork and then have her come through if I found something that I thought was a good fit financially and also appealing visually.
After the phone calls and the setting up of appointments, if felt like I had accomplished quite a bit, and was ready for the next step and was to show up and move to the next step. Apparently things have changed in the last few years since I have been looking for a place to rent, as credit checks and application fees were new to me and a little surprising at the cost of them. At least $100 to see if it was even possible to get into a place and not be guaranteed anything other than a conversation later on was a little more than disconcerting. I felt like I was an old man in a young man’s game. That feeling in and of itself was a first for me.
I didn’t put the applications in on anything right away as I wanted to be sure that my feelings towards places were the same as my lady’s. I told her about a few places that I thought could work and we took off in my car to drive by them to talk a look and figure out which ones we should call back on.
The first frustration of the day came when the snow that had so beautifully fallen days before was now melting. I spend most my day in one chair at work. I don’t get out much and don’t spend a significant amount of time driving around town in the middle of the day. This was a nightmare I couldn’t have prepared for. Slush all over that drove like a foot of mashed potatoes under my tires. I got stuck over off Fouler, on a street. Middle of a street, and I was stuck. My girl got behind the wheel as I pushed while large slush wads were tossed onto my back and legs and face. We got out. We waded through the potato rivers until we found our way to a main road that had gotten a plowing. Wiping sweat from my forehead I let out a sigh just as I realized I was creeping through a mess of snow and water. I looked to the right, car coming, the left, truck. I had time, but not much and I was too far out to back up now. I tried talking sweet to my little Accord to please move faster, pleaded to the tires to find some traction. We made it. Everything was fine, except my sanity. Needless to say, I was against living in the area. I realize I’m in Bozeman and all that, but I don’t think that a 4 wheel drive diesel should be a requirement to live in a place.
The second hold up showed itself when we had discussed and decided what places we should call back on. I had written down the places, their addresses and everything that they offered i.e. w/d, appliances, what bills they may cover etc. But I had not written down the phone number to get back a hold of the renters or what Rental Company or person. Nice work Chadwick. So I diligently went back through all the listings and websites and followed links I had previously followed and found most of them. Granted I was only looking for 2-3 numbers but that was much more time consuming than I would have liked, and I only had myself to blame, even though I did blame the computer for several things throughout the process.
The third issue wasn’t really an issue it was more deciding what to compromise. Didn’t expect to find the perfect place at all but I was a bit disappointed in the options that were out there. But then a shining beacon of light. A listing for a two bedroom apartment that seemed to be that sounded like everything we wanted. I called, wrote down the number, and set up a time to meet. The two of us headed out to see if this was what we were hoping it would be. It was perfect. In our price range (low end even) and was quiet and beautiful and the folks who are renting it couldn’t be nicer. Plus they are willing to hold it for us until the move at the end of the month
My mom would say that it was thanks to “All that clean livin!” I think it was just Karma testing my patience.