I can’t tell you the last time (if ever) I posted on the weekend, but here I go! Yesterday Lexi, Alana, and I went out apartment hunting. I had a budget and from the research I’d done online I thought sticking to my budget wouldn’t be a problem…. yep, #naiveproblems! I couldn’t find a 1 bedroom apartment within my “ideal” price range. When the leasing agents would ask what my price range was, no joke, I swear they were stifling giggles. Despite what I’d thought I’d found online, real life was a little different.
I met the girls Saturday morning. It was a little under 70 degrees and overcast. By the time I grabbed caffeinated beverages for us all (if they were going to spend hours on a Saturday looking with me, I figured a cup of coffee was the least I could do!) and we all found each other, a slow sprinkling rain had started. By the time we arrived at our first place, Lakewood on the Trail, it was downright POURING. Big, heavy raindrops were pelting my car. The rain came and went throughout the day, it seemed to pick up and start raining harder right when we’d go near a door to go outside. But it shockingly didn’t stop us from moving forward. (BTW- I was totally and completely ready for my sweet friends to ask to call it a day, it was miserable!) By the end of the day I’d seen 9 different places, but it was worth it, I ended up finding a place. That first place I looked at, ended up being the place I chose! (If you’re looking at the website, I’m moving into one of the “Vickery” floorplans).
Remember what I was looking for in a new place?
These are most important.
- Keep my rent as close as possible to $650/month! Yeah, this didn’t happen. The budget wasn’t reasonable. $850/month would get me about a 550 square foot show-box apartment. Since I’m hoping to stay put for a bit, I didn’t want to go in to a new lease knowing I’d have to find a new place as soon as I got out of debt and could afford more.
- Safety. CHECK! This is an incredibly safe neighborhood. The complex is also gated, which to be honest I completely loathe gates, but I know they keep us safe.
- In unit washer/dryer hookups. CHECK! My unit comes with a full-size washer/dryer in it, not extra $$ to spend there!
- Covered parking for my car. CHECK! It’ll cost me $40/month, but again, to keep it safe I think it’s worth it. I even may look into a cover for the car that I can put on if/when I know a storm is coming.
Here are the nice-to-haves.
- Not a giant apartment complex. Sort-of-check. It’s a complex, but it isn’t a giant one. Or it hid its size well.
- Location. CHECK! I’m still in Lakewood. I’m still close to White Rock Lake (though a different side of it) and it’s actually closer to work than I am now. Working in downtown, my commute should only be about 15 minutes!
- Easy access for friends so I can easily have people over. CHECK! I think anyway, having the additional square footage should make having people over much easier. In a 500 square foot apartment, any more than 2 people would make the place feel even smaller than it already is. I’m not sure how the on-property parking will work, but I’m hoping it’s no big deal for guests.
- Safe neighborhood to run in. CHECK! It’s one of the nicer neighborhoods in Dallas and I actually had a friend who I went to high school with whose parents used to live just a block or two from this complex. Other than there aren’t sidewalks, I can run to my heart’s content there! And the complex runs alongside the Santa Fe Trail, so I have new places to run and ride my bike!! Yes, please. It also has a decent size pool that I can do training-swims in during the summer. Since I want to get back into triathlon-shape, this is awesome.
On the whole, I think I did a great job of sticking to my guns on what was important, and I met nearly everything on my list! It actually feels like a huge weight has been lifted off of my chest to have made this decision. But of course now that I’ve checked “Find a new place to live” off of my To-Do list, I’ve added about 10 new things. But such is life! And to get to be excited about the process now is a lot more fun than being anxious about the uncertainty!
PS- In sticking with my New Years resolution, I ran budgeting numbers several times and triple-checked my math. I may not quite be completely out of debt by the end of the year, but I’ll be very close. I think I’ve found something I can live with! And, I will be able to afford basic cable Look at me, I’m a big girl now!