I’ve had so many homes over the last few years. A somewhat dingy apartment in Germany that I adored because of the open space and how centrally located it was. The home in Turkey that had plenty of space to have our friends over but also saw too many tears. The tiny apartment in North Dakota where our table was shoved under the island bar to have room for everything to fit but we didn’t care because they allowed dogs.
And now a new home to be found. It’s not easy finding something affordable in a big city, but add in having two dogs – both big and one technically an aggressive breed – and its a recipe for trouble.
We found one company that rents to big dogs, but the management was shoddy. Checks were known to go missing, maintenance requests went unanswered, and the neighborhoods and quality were always questionable.
We found a few other sporadic places. The problems were varied. I can live with cramped and dingy. I can live with paying more for my dogs. I can’t live with shower heads that hit the nape of my neck. I can’t live with exorbitant rent markups. And I don’t want to live with an overly ridiculous commute.
When we started searching, my MIL told us to not minimize our lives. It’s a nice sentiment. But. Our budget isn’t endless. Something has to give.
We had a list of what we wanted. Two bedrooms, at least a thousand square feet, in a good location, not too expensive, and of course would take the dogs. And it seemed that finding that wasn’t going to happen. We had to eliminate some requirement somewhere or come up with significantly more money every month.
I would rather have location over size. Somewhere close to where we work. Somewhere that doesn’t require a long period on the road before and after work each day.
I would rather not minimize my lifestyle. I’m okay with downsizing my furniture. I’m not okay with counting every penny to the point that life isn’t fun anymore. I want to go out to brunch and get ice cream on the beach and just live.
We ended up going with location and rent over the size of the space. It will be an adventure. But I’m actually excited to downsize our belongings. We won’t be going minimal by any means, but we’ll trim the fat and make it work. While still being able to get take out when we want.
What do you prioritize when finding a home?