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gone (apartment) hunting finding the perfect pad by Yee-Fan Sun | 1 2 3 4
continued from page 3

If a place looks at all like it has potential, take your time to really look it over carefully. Take stock of the closet space; make sure that the door and windows look secure. Peek out the windows and check out the views; note the direction they face to get a sense of how much sunlight they're likely to let in (if the windows all face north, for instance, you will pretty much be living in a cave). Make sure that you aren't situated over a bar or a club or anything else that might result in long, sleepless nights spent cursing the noise. If your viewing is during the day, come back to check out the neighborhood at night. Most of all, think about what this apartment would be like if it were filled with your stuff, and how you'd feel coming home to it everyday.

Unless you're truly one of the blessed, chances are good that you'll see many, many hideously wrong apartments before you finally stumble across your new home. Try not to get too discouraged as you find yourself traipsing through one dingy place after another, and don't let impatience rush you into settling for something you don't genuinely like. Unless it's obvious that you've been thoroughly unrealistic about the sort of apartment you can get on your budget, it's worth it to hold out for a place you're sure you really like.

As for me, I'm realizing that my dreams of settling into a new place to call home are going to take just a wee bit longer than I originally anticipated. The way things look now, I'll be lucky to be nested by October. My birthday's in October, and I think a nice apartment would be a dandy present. Maybe accompanied by a gift certificate for a pedicure, if that's not too much to ask.

check out these related articles: 
the great roommate search | where to from here?
the recent grad's guide to housing

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