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Moving Again

As I wind up my house hunting adventures (very limited!) I submit that the perfect song to browse Craigslist is Pictures of You AKA Pictures of View.

"I've been staring so long at these pictures of view, that I almost believe that they're real..."

Actually, a lot of places brag about having a view, even include it in the tagline, but fail to unaccountably put the view in at all, instead replacing it with two pictures of the same boring-ass hallway from microscopically differing angles. "This is the hallway as seen from eye level, and this is it as seen from two inches lower. Do you see how the generic beige carpet runs the full length of this boring-ass hallway? DO YOU?" What real estate agent thought, "You know what would sell this? A picture of our popcorn ceiling!"

Although I suppose including the hallway picture does you one better than the people that list their properties but show NO PICTURES WHATSOEVER. I pretty much assume at that point that you are trying to rent me a former meth house.

Then there's the entirely erroneous "minutes to downtown!" posts. Without fail, they are never minutes to downtown, unless you happen to be in a Concorde. While hunting, I saw one place optimistically tout itself as being 15 minutes from downtown. 15 minutes from downtown IF it was 3 in the morning, after the entire city had been put under quarantine and you were driving 90 the entire way. MAAAAAYBE.

Another listing showed off the exciting renovations the owner was making--mid-renovation. Dry wall lay scattered around, the kitchen was gutted, appliances were hanging out willy-nilly, aluminum foil and buckets were artfully staged here and there. I theorised that the rental agent had a friend he was trying to save the apartment for but the owner gave him a deadline to post his ad by. That way he could say he posted it and had X number of responses instead of just telling the agent, "So I got this pal, Bernie."

Furnished houses made up a surprising number of listings. Inevitably furnished houses were furnished with Grandma Furniture. Especially tragic were the cases where the apartment owner had renovated the house and touted the modern fixtures, hanging out incongruously above a chintz-covered sofa with ornate side tables and doilies, all priced far too expensively. I think they thought they could raise the rent if they included Grandma's Furniture?
Then there's Nancy Drew and the Case of the Missing Appliances. For some reason, there are people in this day and age who still rent apartments without refrigerators. Truefax. Or the sneaky landlord who knows that in-unit washer and dryers are in demand, so he lists the unit as having a W/D, but means "coin operated and in a dark dingy room three floors below." I feel that this is a violation of the social contract and punishable by never being allowed to list on Craigslist ever again.

People who ALSO shouldn't be allowed to use Craigslist: The assholes that screw up your sorting algorithms. The mega-housing corps that list their 1 bedroom property costs when listing their 2 bedroom spots, so that when you go in, they say, "Oh, starting at 1600, but a 2 bedroom will run you 3600." The assholes that list every neighbourhood and city you might conceivably want to live in. Nope, when I say Seattle, I mean Seattle, not Burien, Bellevue, Kirkland, Bothell, Lynnwood, or Motherfucking Port Townsend. And when I say I want to live in Fremont, I don't mean a neighbourhood that touches the hindermost part of a neighbourhood that touches Fremont. Two bedrooms means two bedrooms, not one master bedroom and a tiny nook next to the kitchen or under the stairs.

Then there are the self-fancied wordsmiths who abuse architectural terms beyond all meaning. "Opulent" does not mean standard 60s construction with no distinguishing details beyond shag carpet. Victorian and Craftsman are not the same thing, and while you can say that something was made IN the Victorian or Craftsman STYLE if it was made in the last decade, it is duplicitous to say it is the same thing as A Victorian or A Craftsman. A duplex is not a cottage. You can not be "cozy" and "spacious" at the same time--the connotations just don't align. "Tranquility" is not evoked by placing your apartment next to a mall parking lot. "Stunning" can not be applied to anything that looks like it was inspired by stacking a lot of cardboard boxes on top of each other and painting them ecru or taupe.

Anyway, tomorrow or Tuesday puts the period to the thankfully brief phase in my life. Best of luck to fellow house hunters. May the Housing Gods be ever in your favour.

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