Hal and I are looking for a new apartment. We plan to move in mid to late July this year. The last month or so has been full of trips to various apartment communities to see what we actually like and what we can afford. The trips have given us several places to keep under careful consideration. The real issue is that no apartment community can give us any realistic availabilities for the month of July at this time. This does not come as a surprise to us, it simply allows us to focus on the places that we really like, and to make sure that our interest is known to those communities.
I learned a long time ago to not worry about things that were out of my control. The timing of apartment availabilities falls into this category. All we can do is wait until sometime next month when the communities will begin to get notifications from residents whose leases will expire during July. The waiting is something that I can handle now, because I know that things will work out in the long-term for us.
So far, only 1 apartment community has offered any type of waiting list for us to put our names on. We have done so, and indicated the particular units that we are interested in. Even with that process complete, it will still be roughly the same time before we know anything. For the first time in years, we have the ability to get a place that we truly would like to live in, rather than settling based on budgetary constraints. Our focused search has allowed us to look for apartments with certain amenities and facilities that we will no longer compromise on, plus a few that would definitely be enticements for us to move there.
The primary consideration is we will no longer live in an older building that does not allow for us to control our own heating and air conditioning. The last 2 years have been difficult. There are periods during the year when the apartment becomes unbearably hot even with no heat turned on by us. We found a gorgeous apartment, but sadly, it was run on the same type of centrally-controlled system and we indicated that we would not be interested in it. Luckily, the vast majority of places do not have this limitation.
The second item that we have looked very closely at is covered/secured parking. After this Winter, I am personally tired of having to clear snow off the car, or having to de-ice it before I can leave in the morning. While the parking is not non-negotiable like the HVAC issue mentioned above, a place that offers covered and secure parking at a reasonable rate will definitely be near the top of our list.
Having a washer/dryer in the apartment is another of the nice-to-have features. Currently we use a laundry room in our apartment building. We are prepared to do so at the next place if it is necessary, but having the units in the apartment would be a bonus.
Location is another factor. We both want something that is not too far from our jobs. Luckily, this is not a problem and we like the area we live in now. The prices are much lower than if we looked closer to downtown and DC. Right now we are about 5 miles from work, and we don't want to go much further away than that because of traffic and commuting.
Something that we want will materialize. We just have to be patient for now.