Downside to our new place: living with other people’s stuff.
Upside: enjoying this spectacular view while I drink my morning coffee.
Day one of apartment searching with our relocation consultant was pretty bleak. We arrived at a bad time of year and the rental market was thin. Most available rentals were being let as short term accommodation for the TT Races. The consultant had also told us that most apartment buildings wouldn’t rent to children. She was also sure that after looking at a few places we would really want a house. Who wouldn’t want a house if you had a child?
We did see a nice bungalow quite close to Chris’s work but… it just wasn’t us. It was relatively small for a house but still felt too big. The yard was really nice but all I saw were frustrating hours spent mowing the lawn and trimming hedges. Not my idea of a fun Saturday.
The relocation consultant: let’s call her Mary – this is a small island – was great. While she did give us a few nudges towards looking at houses she was overall very respectful and, she gets things done. She knows everyone here. So when day one was a bust she made some more calls and found out a furnished apartment had just become available. Mary actually placed a client in it a year ago and he had recently left. The landlord was a-okay with Henry living there.
There was just one snag, or what they thought was a snag: the landlord was putting it on the market and could only do a 3 month lease. After that it would go month to month and if he sold the place we would get the last month free.
This snag was actually a blessing. We now get the chance to try out living in this area and see how we like it without committing to aone year lease. We’re a 12 minute walk from Chris’s work and a 25 minute walk from town. In the next few months we’ll evaluate if we’d like to be closer to one or the other. And if the apartment sells in a few months the rental market will be better than it is now and we’ll have more options. Win, win.
So we’re living in a two bed, two bath, probably 800 square foot bachelor pad. And we like it. Despite the art.
The unit is completely furnished and that’s really helped reduce our start up costs in the UK. There was already dish soap, hand soap and even a can of WD-40 under the sink (which I used to get the squeak out of Henry’s stroller the other day). The old tenant, who we know by proxy, even left some kitchen basics for us. I don’t think this was an act of kindness, more forgetfulness, but I don’t care. Saves me having to buy flour, oil, sugar and curry powder.
We’re still figuring out what life over here is going to cost us but taking on a smaller home is putting us ahead financially. We could have easily spent 20-30% more on rent for more space. But we didn’t. In return we have more money in the bank and spend less time cleaning. Yeah!
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