No, I’m not looking to leave my beloved Inner Richmond neighborhood. but we have been talking a lot more frequently abuot wanting a bigger place. One with a second bedroom to lock away the computers and their yummy cords from Bolvar. And with a kitchem large enough to accommodate my baking and cooking without it spilling over into the living room.
We’ve started keeping an eye out for For Rent signs in the neighborhood, and I’ve started looking at craigslist more regularly. And the more I search craigslist the more I miss MetroRents, which is how I found the place I’ve called home for over a decade.
MetroRent only sent me listings that met my requirements — things like it being OK for having a cat, laundry in the building, top floor apartment. Searching through craigslist’s rental ads, I find listings that say no pets but were tagged as pets allowed to turn up in my searches. I find rentals that seem to be someone’s unfinished basement, not a habitable apartment. And I find scams.
The last time we entertained moving, we got discouraged pretty quicky due to two really bad experiences with these online lsitings. The first one was a scam. After I emailed the “owner”, I got back an email about how she was called out of the country unexpectedly on business, but if I would give her a good faith deposit, I would be overnighted the keys. Yup, I actually got hit up with one of the classic Internet rental fraud scams. That incident alone made me start questioning some of the ads that ask you to show up with a ton of your personal financial information in hand. How can you identify that the person with whom you are corresponding, or heck, even the person showing the apartment, is authorized to rent it to you?
The second incident was a total bummer. We were strung along by a landlady who had a place a couple of blocks from here that sounded perfect. We had a showing scheduled, and were crossing our fingers that we’d lucked into a flat that met all our requirements and in an even better location than our current place. And that’s when the nosy questions started, about whom would be inhabiting the apartment exactly. After learning it would be me and my boyfriend, she left a message saying our time wasn’t good for her after all. When I called to reschedule, she didn’t pick up.
After a week or so, she finally got back to me to tell me she rented the place — to “a married couple with children, family.” At that point we lost our mojo, and stopped looking.
But the nagging thought that we could find a place that better suits us has again entered our every day conversations, so I know it’s time to start looking again. Wish us luck! And if you see any For Rent signs out here in the avenues– send me an SMS with the # to call…