Sunday, August 05, 2012

the hunt begins

We arrived in Portland this afternoon and will be here for a few days looking for a place to live. The drive down from Seattle was gorgeous--it's a hot day today, and seeing blue sky and evergreen trees never gets old. We had a view of Mt Hood as we crossed the Columbia into Oregon--I can't wait to go explore closer!

We looked at two houses in a row, and we drove by two future viewings.

House #1 is an older home, very much looks stuck in the 1960s. It's a quiet neighborhood but not super close to lots of things (and south of the 'desirable' part of that area, though it's not in a bad area at all)(Trader Joe's less than a mile away! too far to walk though, maybe). The space was great; it has everything we need/want. Lots of closets, fenced in backyard with a big shady tree, good size bedrooms, a garage, air conditioning, partial hardwood floors, huge but very old bathroom. It's cheaper than we budgeted. Mister M hates that it's older and doesn't like the location.

House #2 is in a good location in a desirable area. Quiet, shady street, but directly next to a high school. The house has a small, crappy kitchen and small living room, two small bedrooms, an upper floor loft type room, a basement with washer/dryer, street parking, stuffy on hot days. It's priced at the top end of what we budgeted. I hate the layout and space; it feels choppy and like a college student rental.

So Mister M is a lot pickier than I am about location (which is not a huge surprise), but I think depending on what we see and how quickly things go here, he may have to compromise a bit. My opinion is that space is going to matter a lot, especially for me, as I'll be 'trapped' in there with two little ones all the time! He will be able to work from home or a coffee shop or an office share, so he'll have options and opportunities to be out and about. 

We drove by places we'll see later in a totally different neighborhood, and from the outside they are both really cute. We stopped by a random cafe nearby and had a great experience. Friendly staff, free wifi, tasty lunch food and drinks.

Overall there are lots of cute houses and neighborhoods--we hope we can find a good space in a good location! But we may have to settle for a not-perfect location, and I hope Mister M can accept that if we get to that. He says he will, that House #1 would be a backup if we don't find anything better. And I surely hope we do! But we may not; this rental market is a quick one.

People here drive SLOW OH MY GOD HURRY UP. There are a lot of stoplights and we seemed to hit most of them when we were late going to the second house. Oh, and it's really difficult to turn left! There are certainly plenty of cute, local eateries, which will be fun to explore in the coming months. It's definitely a car city, but there's a big bike culture here too, which I hope Mister M will take advantage of, since he loves biking around New York City (and I do mean around the city--he rides 60-80 miles around multiple boroughs when he goes out!).

We have two viewings tomorrow, and we should start researching stuff about doctors and hospitals and things...


Anonymous said...

Sounds exciting! Location is important to me too but I can see how space is your priority at the moment.

Anonymous said...

As a PDX resident, gotta say one thing for medical--Kaiser.

Sounds like you are looking on the East Side. If you've not looked in the Woodstock neighborhood, it's well worth a try.

Hedgetoad said...

Location is one thing you cannot change... ugly bathrooms can be updated (fairly easily). Even small kitchens can be reconfigured, but if the house isn't in a good location, you will hate it, no matter what you do.

Hedgetoad said...

Location is the one thing you can not change... bathrooms can be updated (rather easily) and small kitchens can be reconfigured, but if you don't like the location, you'll end up hating the house no matter what you do it.

Also, I like teens. However, as someone who spends a lot of time with them, I would not choose a house next to a high school with only street parking.