Tuesday, August 21, 2012

House Hunters International...The Verdict

I know many of you have been checking in multiple times daily to learn the verdict! Which did they choose? Why did it take so long? What have they been doing?! Don't they know I am waiting!

Welcome to Russia my friends! Where nothing moves fast and everything takes time! Unless of course you call your corporate contact to have someone come fix the shower head mount. That can be done within hours. He'll also fix the shower rod that keeps falling mid shower allowing all of your clean clothes, on what is not the towel warmer, to get completely soaked.  Everything is an experience here.  What you think will take a few minutes ends up taking almost 2hours! 2 hours of your life you will never get back. It important to take food and water wherever you go. You feel like it may just be your last meal. And don't ever pass a clean toilet up. If it is there...use it!  Otherwise you are left to pay a fee to use the porta potty outside a metro. And trust me when I say you don't want to do that! I have never done nor will I ever...but the lady who collects the fees, she has no issues setting up camp in one of these and eating her lunch in one.

I could go on, but you didn't check in to hear me ramble about how slow things move. That would require patience! I have learned a lot of patience Over the last six years.  I think it has all been building up to this relocation.  Good thing I learned it or I would be screwed! Kinda like the weather....the h ugh today was 60 degrees. Winter isn't here yet.  Now, I am screwed! My precious Florida blood is a bit scared of the winter.  Munchkin One, also known as our Siberian Prince, he is freezing. However I think the Munchkin Two stays warm with all the talking she does.

Right! What option did we go with...back on topic. Inquiring minds, I know...so last Thursday we placed an offer on....are you ready for it?! We placed an offer on option one.  We loved the balcony! Gorgeous! You open the doors and yu felt like you were in Europe.  Another advantage is being able to walk out the front door, cross the street and hop on a shuttle to the nearest metro.  We made our offer and it was accepted! Yippee! The landlord came back with some additional questions for clarification; one of which pertained to storage.  Thinking he would most likely go to Ikea to get it, we hopped on the website to size wardrobes.  It all became so overwhelming. I don't know how much storage we need. I know I didn't bring a lot of stuff, but this place has no storage.  We began to see that the storage we would need most likely would not fit into this apartment.  I liked the apartment for the balcony and shuttle but compromising on storage and room size. Munchkin two would end up in the small room, the size of a walk in closet.  I said to the Mr if we were in option four, storage and room size would not be an issue.  It is still within walking distance to school. The down side...no shuttle and walking to grocery, metro and tram.

On Saturday we spent the day exploring at option four. We took the metro, walked the grocery, walked to the apartment, walked to school from the apartment, took the tram back to the metro.  Is this a place we could really live?  The answer was yes.  It wasn't what I wanted, but it meets our needs.  And it is under budget.  So, after much deliberation and a minor cry in the metro, we placed an offer on option four.  We negotiated thru the weekend until today.  And here we are, with a new apartment in option four!

Today we went to pay deposit and sign lease.  What we thought would take a few minutes ended up to take 2 hours...those are the two I will never get back.  Thankfully, we had patience.  There is much more that went on and I will not discuss here...all I will say is for those who are looking to rent in Moscow, keep as much to yourself as possible (as we did), do not give much information (the landlords are the ones to show you their apartments), and stick to your guns.  Be reasonable in negotiations, but know your limits. At the end of the day, we said no, we have agreed to all your requests, we will not give in to even more money.  We are not rich Americans!  And that my friends, is the underlying message.  The misconception that all Americans are rich.

So, friends, what did you think? What did you think we would chose? What one would you have chosen? Are you surprised? Did you guess correctly?


Katey Vanderwyst said...

I need to go back and look at the options again! :) I really enjoy reading your blog - stay safe and enjoy your time away. Congrats on the new place!

Katey Vanderwyst said...

I have to go back and look at the options again to refresh my memory! I really enjoy reading your blog! Stay safe and enjoy your time away. Congrats on the new place! :)