If you follow me on social media, you may have seen me mention that I’ve been house hunting recently. My landlady, as lovely as she is, has selfishly decided that she wants her house back. I KNOW! So Dexter and I have been looking for somewhere else to rent because I have no kidneys left to sell so I can put a deposit down on my own house. (Although I could totally sell one of his … worth remembering.)
Renting a house is a really difficult process. Fellow renters out there will understand just how hard it is. You have to think about how you’re going to ‘just find’ a £1200 deposit (at least), produce books if you’re self employed (I have been self employed for 11 months so don’t have books yet), and dealing with letting agents is worse than getting a bikini wax. Fact.
It soon transpired I wouldn’t be able to rent via an agent which, on the one hand, was a blessing, but it also made finding a house pretty difficult! I had to resort to putting a shout-out on Facebook in the hope that one of my friends may know someone looking to rent their house out.
I honestly didn’t think it would work but amazingly, one of my good friends Daniela, text me soon afterwards to say she had a friend whose Dad was looking for a tenant. Result!
We went to see it but it was far from perfect. It only had two bedrooms, and although Ben doesn’t live with me as he’s at Uni, he is about to take a year out to get a year’s work placement and so was going to be home from this summer onwards. The house was small, but would have been adequate for just Dexter and I. The area wouldn’t have been my first choice and the parking was terrible. However, the price reflected this and beggars can’t be choosers when you’re about to be made homeless.
I went for a second viewing but took the voice of reason with me, AKA my best friend Jo, and I was reassured that she thought it would be fine for us. ‘Coincidentally’, the landlord just happened to be there this time but I’m glad he was because I was happy to put his mind at rest that we’d be great tenants.
However, things then went slightly awry when I asked about the neighbours. The current tenant only mentioned ‘the nice old couple next door’ and nothing about the family the other side. It transpired that the landlord owned that house too and was having ‘some difficulties’ with his tenants. Massive alarm bells rang and when I pushed the subject a little further, he explained he was trying to get them out because, amongst a myriad of other issues, they hadn’t actually paid their rent.
I was gutted. As much as this house was far from perfect for us, the one thing I can’t deal with is troublesome neighbours. I have enough issues with my current neighbour parking like a twat every day … I can’t cope with more than that.
And then another good friend of mine text me to ask if I was still looking for a house.
Her parents had just bought a house for a buy-to-let investment. It was near to Dexter’s new school, in a quiet street full of old people (perfect), and round the corner from lots of shops. AND … it had three bedrooms!
I couldn’t wait to see it. Obviously, my financial history hasn’t been ideal (thanks to my ex), but I’m good for the rent and would make an awesome tenant!
As soon as we saw it we fell in love. It belonged to an old lady and, as you can see from the photo above, needs a complete refurb, but it has so much potential. Dexter chose his bedroom first, as kids tend to do, and there is plenty of room for storage in there (THANK GOD!) Talking of storage, it even has an old fashioned ‘out-house’ … although I’m not really sure what I’ll use that for other than to put my broken lawnmower in it.
As you can guess, the landlord rang me that night to say that they would be happy to have me as a tenant and I am absolutely thrilled!
I currently live in a rented furnished house so don’t actually have much to take with us, and so now begins the hunt for some lovely furnishings … the fun/expensive bit! I have a ‘NEW HOME‘ Pinterest board that I’m Pinning like mad, so if that’s your cup of tea, come and have a look. We’re talking lots of chevron strips, white dressing tables, copper lighting and comfy sofas!
Watch this space for more ‘new home’ posts … I’m afraid you will be inundated!