In the middle of us trying to find a house, Chad was trying to find an apartment. I’m truly not knocking my little town but there are so many trashy, nasty, gross apartments and in the price range Chad was looking .. what he was finding was pathetic! Some of the places we looked at . . it just almost seems criminal for those landlords to be even offering them for rent. I had no idea there were so many bad rentals out there.
First Chad went to the apartment complex in town and found out they’re low income rentals. The rent isn’t subsidized but the owners get a tax break for renting to low income people. Even with Chad working part-time at Wal-Mart, if that was his only job, he makes too much to live there. We looked at apartments that smelled like a million cats had used the carpet for a litter box; we looked at apartments that had floors so sloped you felt like you were climbing a mountain; we looked at apartments that were so dirty we all felt like we needed to rush home and take showers; we looked at apartments that had ceilings falling in; we looked at apartments that had inches of mold in the bathroom. Chad finally decided that the best one was one right on main street, kind of a duplex type — an old house that had been divided into two portions. The kitchen was terribly crooked (sloping floor). The stove was old. It had an old grungy bath tub with no shower but it was within his price range and the carpet didn’t look like it should have been tossed out 20 years ago. That was all on Wednesday and by the time I was already feeling bad about Chad living in a place like that, and then we got the news about not getting House #1 . . it was a very sad night at our house.
No matter how bad the apartments look, I know that Chad is a college graduate, jobs are hard to find but he could be working a whole lot harder than he’s working to find a better job. It hurts my heart to think about him living in a real dump but he’s the only one who is going to better his circumstances and as hard as it is . . he may have to live in an undesirable place in order to fully realize the importance of working his tail off to find a better job.
On Thursday morning, a local realtor returned Chad’s call about an apartment he had available. The guy was fixing to leave to go out of town til Sunday but Chad talked him into showing him the apartment before he left. It’s only a couple of blocks from our house so I went with him. We walked in and my knees got a bit weak. It’s in an old house that’s been divided into three apartments. The lady who moved out had lived there 6 years. You could literally eat off the floor! It was spotless! Same price (or less) than the apartments we had seen the day before. It has two bedrooms, 1-1/2 bathrooms and get this . . it has a Jenn-Air downdraft cooktop! There’s a basement with a washer/dryer but the best part — he has a basement for when the tornado sirens go off. It has the cutest windows and window treatments in the family room. There’s a fantastic screened porch on the back and halfway around one side. It has central air and heat and the outside unit looks fairly new. Nicole was with us when we looked at it and I thought she was going to hyperventilate. I felt like telling the realtor that the price was too low but I managed to control myself. Many of the apartments wanted a one year lease and this one only required a six month lease. I’m telling you . . I could live in this apartment. It is so nice! It’s a bit dated but as Chad says . . it’s a good dated. It has character. It even has a trash compactor.
The realtor was a bit apprehensive about renting it to Chad because he didn’t have a renting history or landlord references so he asked Chad to give some personal references. Chad gave the county clerk, a friend who owns a prominent appraisal service in town, a member of the Chamber and the contractor who had recently remodeled the realtor’s home. When the realtor called Chad back, he said “Your references were more than adequate!” and Chad now has himself a fantastic apartment. I’m guessing there are places in town that cost twice as much that aren’t half as nice. Monday when he begins moving in, I’ll get some pictures.
Leaving Chad here breaks my heart but on the other hand, my heart sings thinking of him planning his meals, cooking on that Jenn-Air downdraft cooktop, having his washer/dryer in the basement . . he’s so excited about it all and that makes it so much easier for me to leave him here. Aren’t you happy for him too?