apartment hunting: the wishlist

That's right, folks, I'm moving out! ...eventually. Okay, okay, stay with me:  as someone who watches a lot of HGTV, I obviously would like my apartment hunt to be just like that:  a helpful (yet sassy) real estate agent takes me to three equivalently priced but subtly distinctive domiciles which I consider the pros and cons of before selecting the one I like best. Fast-forward to me three months later, all set up and thrilled with my new digs! Unfortunately, there is very little fast-fowarding in real life, and I won't have a real estate agent (which is probably for the best...the sassiest ones are all in Canada) to help me along. But even away from HGTV and in the gritty real world known as The Internet, the process of apartment hunting is truncated and glamorized. Most of the apartment-hunting experiences I see are written by people who already have apartments, which is the best place to give advice from, but not quite what I'm looking for to relate to as I (slowly) embark on my own first hunt. Lucikly for you, I've decided to fill that gap with my own real-time apartment hunting adventures. This gives me something to blog about (yay!) and an outlet for my repressed apartmenty desires.
So, first up, the wishlist. Picture this appearing in split-screen while I talk about what I want, in classic HGTV fashion. Of course, I won't be on this adventure alone; the (future) apartment is to be shared with (surprise!) none other than the wonderful Kaitlin Disdainbrook, who I'm sure has her own list of wishes that will butt up against mine (as all HGTV pairs must...hopefully I'm the wife in this scenario, the wife always gets her way). The bolded elements are my must-haves.

  • Location - I'd like to be close enough to downtown to go back and forth easily but in a neighborhood that's relatively quiet. Not college student-land.
  • Clean/well-maintained
  • 2 BR/1 BA
  • Separate dining room OR den - K and I are both writers (obviously) and would love a shared office space. Personally, I'd lean towards dining room because I also would like to entertain
  • Hardwood floors
  • Historic charm
  • On-site laundry
  • Non-hideous kitchen
  • Parking for 2 - preferably at least one that comes with the unit, the other can be street parking
  • Central air
  • Preferably upper level
  • Walkable to restaurants/groceries
  • Tall shower - we are both tall ladies
  • Outdoor space for DIY projects

  • So that's my preliminary list! I've just been browsing the listings to figure out what neighborhoods are going to be the best fit for our personalities (and the price...oh yeah, the budget, frequent crusher of HGTV dreams), so I'm sure things will evolve as I start to see actual places, but at least there's a starting point! Hopefully soon I'll be able to jump out of hypothetical browsing and start hunting in earnest - until then, I'll try to keep my hopes high but my expectations in line with my budget - the greatest lesson TV has taught me.

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