Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Apartment Review

 I've mentioned the heat being broken in this apartment, which may not seem really all that awful. Except that I have had some pretty stellar luck with apartments.

My apartment sophomore year was enjoyable. It had its quirks: there was a hole in the floor of my bedroom hidden by my dresser, it went to nowhere and sometimes weird bugs with too many legs scurried out of it, but mostly at night when I couldn't see them. But the heat worked, we were insulated, everything worked.

Then junior year. My roommates and I were looking for apartments late in the year and were getting tired and frustrated trying to find a nice place that we could all afford. We found an apartment without trash in it and we were all kind of sold. When my move-in day came in late August, I opened the door to my new room and was hit in the face with humidity. My carpets were wet. Everything I owned was damp and it smelled like mildew. A dehumidifier made an appearance and then a fixture in our apartment. Which, it should be noted, was a basement apartment. One day, walking up the stairs of the front porch to check the mail, I noticed the lattice work under the stairs and thought "I wonder what kind of creatures we have living under the steps" (because I love critters, and if we had a raccoon neighbor I would've started to feed it), then it occurred to me: I was the creature living under the stairs. The roof of my room was the porch. Our living room used to be the garage, apparent by the sealed up garage door on the outside. We had one door into a room with a dirt floor (and spiders and ants) that didn't lock.

We had ants, not just sugar ants but the big black ones that chill outside. They got lost inside because they couldn't tell the difference. Our toilet leaked and our bathroom was on a slant, so there was a puddle of standing water at one end of the bathroom. If you held up your hand to any electrical outlet, you could feel a breeze coming from outside. One wall was really only a thing piece of particle board. Deee-lightful.

The crowning moment of my stay occurred one fine spring day when the snow finally began to melt. There had been snow accumulation on the porch (my roof) and when it melted, my ceiling started to leak.

The puddle on my floor! And the water stains on the wall.

Drip, drip, drop, little April showers...and see the paint peeling away from all the moisture damage?

The puddle on my windowsill. And that little dark patch at the bottom is a hole in my wall.

Then. THEN when I reported this to my landlord, maintenance came over with a carpet cleaner and I said "No, I don't just want it cleaned up, I want this fixed so that it won't happen again." The response? "Fixing it would cost too much, that's not going to happen." I wanted to cry. I did cry, actually. A lot. Especially when it leaked over my bed and all over. Worst apartment ever.

So for senior year I decided I was going to get a nice apartment, something more expensive, something that wouldn't leak. And I did.

Until I moved in and found an ant graveyard by the balcony door. Then I found all the little bitty ants coming in to pay their respects. I ran to Target and bought ant traps and a vacuum cleaner. Everything went swimmingly, until the evening I went into my bathroom to get ready to bed and found my ceiling dripping. Really?! Luckily, this maintenance team is more responsive when it comes to big deals and someone was sent over at 11:30pm and went onto the roof to clear away the drain that had frozen closed. Now it's the heat. Stuck off, stuck on, stuck off. And no hot water this morning. That's back, at least, but it's not as hot as it used to be and all the faucets sort of spit hot water now. 

The epic that is apartment living thus far. I'm looking forward to my next move to see what it holds, but it likely won't get much worse than junior year. And my next apartment will allow me to have pets and that concession will keep me satisfied through a lot more crap.

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