Well, I thought I’d check in and give you a little update. These last few weeks have been stressful. But, as with all things, you just have to keep your head up and keep going! This is long, so buckle up! Here we go:
The Move – We FINALLY moved…out of our apt. This is a victory!! We lived in our apt for 5 years and it started off being a pretty great place. It was pretty quiet, as most of the tenants were older, retired people. There were some issues with noise off and on, but overall, it was great. Fast forward to this past year and things have changed. For the most part, it was quiet. However, some people moved in on a higher floor and they insisted on blasting their music at all hours of the day and night. We believe they were college students. We figured this because, a) they had parties during the week and b) they played their music loudly day and night (sometimes, they began playing it around 11pm and would go until 2 or 3am). When this all started happening, we must’ve submitted noise complaints over a dozen times. It was ridiculous. And when I say the music was loud, it was probably an 8 or 9 on a scale of 10 (being the loudest). They were three floors above and you could hear the music clearly, as if it were playing in OUR apt! It was insane. Then, they’d have gatherings during the week, in which you could hear them all talking/laughing & playing music late into the night (well past midnight) on weeknights. Sheer madness!
The other issue was our neighbors across the hall. I’m not sure what was going on over there, but there were around 10 different people coming in/out of the apt at all times the last year. At one point, our neighbor (the only person we knew by name), moved out and 4 different people moved in. I knew they were family members because I had seen them before, but it was just a weird situation. The new people/family that moved in had 2 small twin boys (maybe 2 yrs old) and an older child (around 8 or 9). I cannot even express how loud they were at all times of day. There were times when they’d let the little boys run up and down our halls, screaming at the top of their lungs. Our halls didn’t have carpet and the walls were very thin (the building is 100 yrs old). It was a nightmare. And before I go further, no, I don’t have children. BUT, if I did, you can best believe I would not allow them to disrupt neighbors and let them run and scream in the hallways as if they were at a playground. They’re young, so of course I don’t expect complete silence. However, the parents clearly had no respect for the others on our hall. We would have to often peak out into the hall and ask them to be quiet. They’d apologize, but they didn’t really care. The next day or so, they’d let the kids do it again. Absolutely unacceptable.
Long story short, I’m SUPER happy we are out! I know apts are subject to noise, I get it. I’ve been living in apts since I was 19 years old. I’m very accustomed to apt living. However, the noise we started dealing with this past year was terrible. In all my years living in apts, this one was by far the loudest. And I lived in building with 99% college students! I know loud apts, but this one took the cake!
Where Are We? – Still in NYC. We’re floating around the city until we figure out our next moves.
What IS the next move? – If you’ve been keeping up with me, you know we have been
dying itching to get out of NYC. We still have that goal and we plan to keep it. Some folks know that my husband was interviewing for a big company and we were waiting to hear back. Well, that position did not come through unfortunately. For now, we have to stay here a little longer until we can move. We’re bummed, but hey, we just gotta keep trying.
As for me and the neverending job hunt, I have to get something going by the end of the year. I’ve debated for well over a year about returning to school. I really didn’t want to do that because it would mean taking out loans. I currently have enough loans under my belt, that taking out any more is not really an option. But, I think at this time, I have to do what I have to do. I have a few ideas in terms of what I want to do, so hopefully once we’re settled, I can get started on things. It’s just too much to think about right now while we’re in flux. But, I think what I have in mind will be awesome and will lead to great things!
P-O-S-I-T-I-V-I-T-Y ! 🙂 🙂 🙂
This Weekend: [WARNING: This is a mini-rant/vent.] We went looking for apts. I say it all the time, I don’t know how middle-class people live here. [What’s middle class? Do I really want to get into that here? Hmm…let’s not. Just go with your idea of middle-class for now.] If you can get a newer/newish apt in a nice, clean & safe neighborhood, then well, you’re lucky (or, more than likely, you have the money to afford it). Some of us, aren’t that lucky (read: financially able) to afford the above. For those of you that have never lived here, I think I’d have to put this into picture form to really illustrate what I mean by “nice” and “new”.
Saturday, we saw a couple of nice & new (read: renovated) apts. Here’s the first one we saw: (Sorry for the pictures, they’re a bit dark and I’m sure, all over the place on your screen).
I laugh (a lot) when I look at apts in this city. The word, “staging”, is nonexistent here. So, no, you don’t get to see a model apt all decked out so that you can imagine what it would be like to live there. No. You get it blank. I don’t mind that, but at the same time, staging does help. The first pic is the living room. The other not obvious room is the bedroom.
As you can see, it’s a nice looking apt….for NYC. I will say, our previous apt looked 50 times better, as we had stainless steel appliances, beautiful light hardwood floors. It was great. This is nice though, I’m definitely not knocking it. Although, that bathroom is…well, you see it. I’ve seen worse, that’s all I can say, lol! And this is an upgraded bathroom! 🙂 Again, I just have to laugh. Does anyone want to guess how much this lovely apt rents for? If you guess anything below $1,000, you clearly live in the Midwest or South. LOL! This cozy beauty rents for a mere $1,725/month. And no, there are no amenities like a washer/dryer in the unit. There’s no pool. There’s nothing else. No-thing. Nada. Zip. What you see, is what you get…for $1,725.
The area we found this in was also nice. It was very residential, so it seemed quiet and the area looked very clean. We also saw another apt in the same area (I have pics, but I don’t feel like uploading them. It looked similar to this one, except bigger and more money).
Sunday, we saw an apt that was not great (needed major updates to the bathroom) in a
nasty very outdated building, in a blah neighborhood. And by blah, I mean, littered and nothing nearby in terms of … well, everything! It was another residential neighborhood, but this time, it was pretty much the opposite of the one we saw on Saturday.
It’s super hard to find what you want in this city if you’re not able to drop a considerable amount of money on an apt. I think the magic number is $1,800. At this amount, we’ve seen much better places than at lesser rates. Even still, as evidenced by this weekend, paying more doesn’t necessarily equate to a better neighborhood, or even better apt for that matter. It’s really what we struggle with living here. If we even dared to pay $1,800 in RENT in MI, you can bet your a** we’d be living in an awesome (new/new-ish) building and neighborhood. The building would have every amenity you could imagine (pool, tennis court, basketball court, clubhouse) and we would definitely have a washer and drying IN the unit. And the area would be full of, if not very close to, shops, restaurants, movie theaters, etc. The area would also look great and most likely be pretty safe. Here, you MIGHT get a nice neighborhood. Or you might not. Your apt MIGHT be gut renovated, it might not. It’s amazing that paying that sort of money MIGHT get you something nice.
To live here, it means you are willing to either a) rent a subpar apt (i.e. outdated appliances, building, etc) to live in a great neighborhood, or b) live in a lackluster neighborhood to rent a great apt. The latter was us for the past five years. Our building was old, but luckily, it was very well-maintained and clean. Our super was very responsive to any issues we had. Our unit had been gut renovated, so we had new everything (appliances, walls, floors, etc). But our neighborhood was hoooo-hum. What’s “ho-hum”? Imagine living somewhere with plenty of shops & restaurants. Ok, now imagine 98% of those shops/restaurants being the exact opposite of the stuff you like. Yeah. That’s where we lived, and I’m not exaggerating. The only thing I frequented in my neighborhood for the first few years was the Rite Aid. There was a Starbucks about a 12 minute walk away, which I’d go to when the weather was warm. I didn’t consider that to be my neighborhood, but that’s just me. Perhaps others would consider that distance “in the neighborhood”.
Last year, a lovely coffee shop opened last year, which was awesome. Two nice restaurants also opened within the last couple of years. These establishments are/were constantly busy/packed with people, so it is/was clear that other people in our area wanted better businesses too. Anyway, we didn’t complain too much at first about the area, since we could hop on the train and get to nicer restaurants/shops within a few stops. However, even though we got used to it (not really), it was still somewhat of a downer to always have to get on the train to go just about everywhere. To some, it’s no big deal. But I’m sorry, transit costs in this city are not cheap! To have to get on the train to go just about anywhere, the costs definitely add up. In this city, you’ve got to save money however you can. Therefore, being in a neighborhood with more establishments we could frequent, would be ideal.
Let me just say, though, that you CAN live in this city for less than $1,800/month. Many people do and we did too. But, like I said, we dealt with living in a less than desirable ‘hood (for us) so we could have a suitable apt. It’s all about trade-offs and what’s more important. For us, everything is important! And because we are well aware of what we want, we will continue to try to move out of the city. We cannot have what we truly want living here, that’s just the bottom line.
Well, hopefully we’ll find something soon. We only have a couple of weeks before we have to be out of our temp place. I shall return in a few weeks with hopefully some awesome news!