I’ve been “apartment hunting” for like 6 months and it’s way harder than people make it sound. The first time I laid eyes on it, I just knew! or I’ve had this place since high school! or I made out with this place on the dance floor (?) The process is exhausting and there are so many dirty, dirty apartments out there; sending me brick pics and telling me they can host, whatever that means. It’s not that I don’t like brick, I just have this quirky thing where I like to give permission before the brick’s exposed, you know? It’s mortar-fying.
But, on the not-too-rare occasion when I’m really vibing on a place, or it’s past 7pm and I’ve had a glass of red wine and could suddenly live in a fucking tent, I’ll take a chance. What the hell? I think to myself, often bypassing figurative and literal caution tape to continue being a goddamn idiot. Who knows, this could be…it.
If by ‘it’ I mean yet another disappointing crusade into the cold, frozen tundra of real estate then yeah, this will definitely be it. Apartment after apartment looks decent enough to swipe for, only to quickly reveal unnerving cracks in the foundation. What kinds of cracks, you ask?
1. The Permanent Residence – I just got here but, I’ll admit, it looks pretty great. I mean, I’ll obviously need to feel it out for a while, but this could – oh, you want me to sign a year lease? Today? Pass.
2. The Hotel Room – In what way is this what I was asking for at all? I was so direct and clear and specific in my request for a place to move into long-term, not a seedy one-night crash pad. I am Courtyard Marri-NOT playing about that.
3. The Frat House – I knew I didn’t want to live here but I just had to see for myself. And it was everything I expected; boastful, so attractive on the outside, and nestled between the gym and the liquor store, but so very far from the library.
4. The Freshman Dorm Space – Small and unassuming, this place is out of its depth; advertising for lease but lacking renter’s experience and immediately investing in every semi-interested tenant. I don’t mean to sound insensitive; I wish it the best, but I can’t be the one to teach real estate because I’m still lost, like, 80% of the time.
5. The Penthouse Suite – This place costs so much and I know I can’t afford it, but when they returned my message, I rode in for the free food. I’m sorry, steak and mimosas at the open house? I’ll endure the arrogant ostentatious nature of the place to shamelessly snag a free meal; that is, right up until I’m invited to stay. Yeah, Parks and Rec is on Netflix and I’ve only seen every episode six times, so thanks for the entree byeeeee.
6. The Family Dwelling Place – I ROLLED UP TO THIS PLACE THINKING IT WAS A DUPLEX OR SOME SHIT BUT THERE IS A FAMILY LIVING HERE. Excuse you for thinking I’m gonna wreck a home today, and excuse you TWICE for thinking I won’t notice?!? I see a car seat and a wedding ring, homeboy, so I’m audi 5000.
7. The Mirage (AKA: 12 Grimmauld Place) – I have sent messages, corresponded, and set up a visit for this address. The pictures look great, it really seems like it might be a good fit, and when I show up it’s nowhere to be seen (hence Grimmauld Place). Baffled, I check my GPS like a trillion times, message with no response, then grab a pint of Phish Food and lament about the state of modern real estate.
8. The Obscure Flat You’ve Probably Never Heard Of – Tucked away in a neighborhood that people who bike everywhere call up-and-coming, this place does come with the perks of having it’s own IPA brewery and it’s grafitti is sexy. But, one of the pre-reqs is eating vegan, it streams a constant barrage of unrecognisable indie music, and is clearly trying to one-up the other douchey apartments on the block.
9. The Model Loft – Pshhh WUT; this place was lovingly crafted by God theirself (#breakthebinary). I think I saw it on the cover of “Better Homes and Gardens.”I hear it does loft commercials… in Japan. And since I, like everyone else, am just a little shallow, I got myself hyped up about it. That is, before I realized I’d need to provide all furnishing…. Because it was completely empty… Or, uh, there were no lights on upstairs, if that’s clearer. #looksnotbooks
And finally, CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE! Do you want Colin to:
Find a Home? Go to #10
Die Alone, You Heartless Bastard? Go to #11, I guess… Dick.
10. The Home – Alright, I’ve been looking for a while now and I honestly think I’m ready to sign this lease! It’s certainly better than the place I have now, which doesn’t exist, and I’ve really had fun on my visits. I’m getting comfortable and caring vibes; in fact, I could really see myself still living here in a couple years. Stop Colin, you’re getting ahead of yourself, I think, blushing across an already crimson face (#gingerproblems). So, I sign the lease. I like this place; you know, the nowhere-near-love-but-maybe-someday-but-no-rush kind of like. Then, after about two years of renting, I make an offer to buy it outright. Of course, it’s not so much a purchase as an eternal commitment to continue accompanying one another on the bright and successful journey forward, from now and for always, Amen. *release the doves*
11. The Month-by-Month Lease – Alright, I’ve been looking for a while now and I honestly think I’m ready to sign this lease! It’s certainly better than the place I have now, which is no place, and I’ve really had fun on my visits. I’m getting comfortable and caring vibes; in fact, I could really see myself still living here in a couple years. Stop Colin, you’re getting ahead of yourself, I think, blushing across an already crimson face (#gingerproblems). So, I sign the lease. I like this place; you know, the nowhere-near-love-but-maybe-someday-but-no-rush kind of like. Then, after about a month, I get back and find all my shit thrown out on the curb. I walk up and look in the window, but it’s dark and I guess my key doesn’t work anymore. No note, no call, no explanation – I just don’t live here anymore. This is terrible, because there’s actually a serious lack of affordable housing and I can’t manage by myself because many places still criminalize homelessness instead of caring for the most marginalized among us. And while I may fare better as a white adult male, homelessness affects disproportionate numbers of people of color, veterans, and LGBTQ youth. Did this metaphor just turn into a PSA? YUP, that’s what you get for picking this option, jerk! Now share one of those linked articles and think about what you’ve done.