To be honest, it feels like yesterday that two strangers (soon to be roommates) and I signed a yearlong lease to an Apartment in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood. The three of us had met on craigslist and with crossed fingers and toes, decided to make that leap from not knowing the other’s favorite color to knowing what time of day the others prefers to get naked. You know, shower.
Sure, there have been the little issues. For instance, we currently have water bugs because it’s been raining so much. Hello Hurricane Chicago! To combat their presence we moved around the furniture so that it was further away from the windows, got rid of a dingy and damp rug, and so far so good. Oh, and roach spray. Can’t forget that ‘forest scented’ wonder.
And, as some of you have remembered, we had this couch that had a pattern I really liked but my roommate REALLY despised. Our solution was to buy a couch cover and split the cost. Then she got a boyfriend and now spends most nights away. That couch? Still not covered, to my admitted delight.
Our landlord? Yeah, he’s still mildly obsessed with the apartment—as evidenced by the fact that when one of our windows blew in this past February there’s only one place in the entire city of Chicago he wants to fix it. And did it matter that they had a 7-week delay and it was the only window in our living room? Not so much. We were going to invest in an AC for the apt…but without a window…we’ve since invested in fans.
As for advice I have for new renters on this, practically our one-year anniversary? Nothing is permanent. I was really worried about getting furniture that I loved early on, but had a minimal budget. It may not be the most efficient way, but you can buy a side table and use it as a nightstand until you find the real deal. You can turn a coffee table into a TV stand. If you hate your roommates, you can find subletters. Luckily for me, I pretty much love my roommates and couldn’t have asked for better ones. These two strangers have become two of my dearest friends. And together, we’ve turned our first apartment into a home.