04 August 2009

Homeless No More!

Finally some relief! And a huge relief, at that.

Yesterday, our application was accepted from 'American Heritage Property Management' here in Lancaster, for the 1 bedroom apartment on North Lime Street. We arrived at their office at about 5:30pm to fill out paperwork, get the new-mover talk, and got the key. Went to the 'Home Depot' store and got a copy made.

We were extremely happy after that meeting, especially since we weren't sure if the landlord would let us stay for only 1.5 years at that apartment, when they had said (and the lady FORGOT to tell us, from the beginning) that they wanted at least 2 years out of us. Staying in Lancaster for 2 years would be too long, for sure. The lady (name is Penny) who helped us get the apartment is very nice, and I'm glad to have someone who is down to earth, and is fairly understanding. But she is a very busy lady, no doubt, with her type of job - she always has a full plate, endless calls from tenants and landlords, etc.

But that morning and started out rough for us. On that day, we had put in two applications and were waiting to here from people about if they were going to be accepted or not. In hindsight, we should have perhaps put more applications in, and not just two, but most of the other places we had seen, we hadn't liked nearly as much as these two apartments. Penny ended up calling first - with good news about acceptance! - but - we then found out about the 2 year rule....uh oh. So she said she'd ask the landlord if 1.5 years would be ok, and that she would call us back. So we were very nervous about that - would they still want 2 years, no deal?

I decided to call the other place - more bad news. No, they hadn't even processed our application yet because, someone had applied for the same apartment before us, and had been accepted. They said, "The person has until tomorrow to pay the security deposit for the apartment, so if they don't pay it then we will call you instead." But really - there is a small chance, in my opinion, that someone would be stupid and not pay it, for an apartment they want...(And it stands true, I haven't gotten a call from them yet = the person paid it.)

So at this point, Takeshi and I are sitting in the rental car with all of our belongings in luggage, and our moral is crushed. We just sat there for about 5 minutes, not talking. We were just blank. We decide to get a hotel room AGAIN for the night, after about 15 days of staying in hotels. We drag ourselves to the nearest cafe in downtown and I park the car. We start looking for apartment listings again online, something which we had been doing since we got back. I didn't want to slip into another cycle of not finding anything, while spending our savings on mediocre hotel rooms. We wanted to have a home finally to rest at, and we were hoping to hear from Penny about the landlord's decision. While we were sitting there at the cafe, the street-cleaner comes by on the same side of the street where I'm parked - and I didn't read the sign right about the right and wrong times to be parked where they are cleaning on certain days - I get a $20 ticket. Great. Another blow. Takeshi's stomach starts hurting and he doesn't feel well - he always gets this when he's stressed out. This makes me feel worse because I hate to have him low in spirit AND feeling ill.

We decided to check out a printed apartment listing from the Hershey Reality place on Duke Street, again. Maybe there was something new listed that we could look at. We park at a meter and go in. The list has about 3 listings and they're all too expensive for us - about $700-800 a month. The lady at the counter says, "We'll have new listings that are available for September." That's too long. We needed an apartment now. We walk back outside and sit in the car. Since we had gotten back to the States, I had managed to stay pretty optimistic and all - but I was feeling SO frustrated and had myself a cry right there. Takeshi gave me a little hug, and put his head on my shoulder. At least I'm not alone in this. We soldiered on.

But then we finally got the call back from Penny, that afternoon, and the best news in a while came to us. So there ended the huge weight being on our shoulders. Whew!

After we got the keys, we still had enough energy to go to a couple stores and get clothes hangers, bathroom things, etc.
We're planning to go to the 'Ikea' store near Philly to get most of our furniture.

I'm sitting at the Prince Street Cafe again right now. Takeshi's at work today and tomorrow initially, and then we have a little bit of a stretch before he starts full time on the 15th.

Even though there's no furniture in our apartment yet, we are planning to stay and sleep there. We bought pillows and the carpet isn't so bad to lay on. We definitely don't want to spend any more money on hotels...


Corinne said...

Yay for having a home!! That's great news, you must have felt terrible when waiting for that call. I hope you can get a bed or a futon type mattress soon though, sleeping on the carpet doesn't sound fun at all!

Anonymous said...

Sneaking in to say that I'm so glad you guys have found a home. Everything surrounding moving is stressful - I'm in the same situation, myself. Not international, though, thankfully! Here's for hoping for a smooth transition and a happy apartment. :)