Got our rental home; first offer

On June 30th, after holding our breath the entire day and almost losing hope that the landlady would ever get back to us with positive news, we were considering our options late at night around 9:00 p.m. when we did hear from her.

We got our rental. Our application was successful and she said that after careful consideration, she had decided to rent to our family. We were thrilled of course and instantly virtually transferred her the $1000 to hold the place. The remainder of the money will be due mid-July and when we move in August, we’ll need to give her another month of rent – almost $2600. That is a lot of money but that’s what it’s going to take to live in San Jose and honestly, we are really happy to have this townhome as our new home starting August. The best part of the townhome is the park literally across from the home and because it is a private park only for residents of that development, the use will be more private.

Among other positives is the space – 1200 sq. ft (which is less than our home now but because it has a garage, some of the storage issue will be covered), huge living room space that will fit all our furniture, decent size two bedrooms including a double vanity in the bathroom, and ability to use our grill (typically using a grill on a balcony is forbidden by law in San Jose I hear but because our grill will be on concrete, it is permitted. It is also close to my friend’s townhome in the same neighborhood and located in a nice part of the city within walking distance of the light rail that can take Aaron straight to work.

Negatives – Two tandem narrow parking spots in our private garage instead of side-by-side, too many stairs, both full bathrooms are attached to the bedrooms, very expensive utilities.

Our condo in Chicago is still on the market. We got our first offer today – a complete lowball which did not even deserve a counter offer but I wanted to do it anyway to show them we aren’t desperate to sell, which is the truth. This is not necessarily a buyer’s market. Our property value has risen since we bought it in 2012. We recently learned from our building manager that because we bought our place prior to them establishing a more stringent rental cap, we were grandfathered in to the old rate and that should we want, we could rent our place out without any issues from the Board. This is great news. In other words, if we don’t sell, we are open to renting our place. So we are not desperate and we aren’t going to accept any lame ass offer just because we have the condo on the market.

Anyway, what makes the home rental or selling situation complicated is my unemployment. I really wish I was bringing in some kind of an income, even if it was half of what I make now. Having my own money would allow me to take care of some of the additional but required expenses like utilities or maybe a two-days-a-week daycare for J, buy presents for the family on special occasions, get a guilt free mani-pedi or Starbucks, or anything I want for personal use without feeling bad about dipping into OUR money – his money. As a feminist, I know better than to worry about this and I know that the work I put in as a SAHM is valuable and absolutely immeasurable financially and YET, I know that the materiality of my situation is unveiled in my ambiguity about being unemployed and not adding to the family’s nestegg. Sigh! These feelings are bound to exist and I am still in a process of rationalizing everything. Being busy with research projects makes me feel connected to my work and my professional identity but once all of this is behind me, and I am truly exclusively a SAHM, I will need to reconcile to a whole different way of thinking. Good luck to me!

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