This morning, on a whim, I checked the rental home listings this morning and called one that was a little north of the area I am looking at, but not by much. By the afternoon, I had toured the place and filled out an app. Amazing! The place is in the mid price range I am looking to get–specifically, cheaper than where I am living now. Plus, it has as much, if not more, space! I had looked at a similarly sized place that went for $1300 directly off Hawthorne. The place I looked at today was significantly less expensive and just a couple of blocks north of Belmont. It has a garage, washer/dryer hookups, a nice fireplace, hardwood floors, a master bedroom that is palatial (with this section that almost seems like a balcony, but is not outside), a basement that is literally the entire size of my current house's downstairs floor, a really fancy kitchen with new cupboards (a few with glass doors), entirely too much storage space (closets, basement, attic)…all sorts of great stuff.
I drove around the neighborhood, and it seemed nice. There is a Wild Oats within easy walking distance. The fun stuff on Belmont is also within easy walking distance. Hawthorne is a bit more of a walk, but nothing major–and would be trivial on a bike. A number of friends I talked to indicated that it was a good neighborhood–similar to Belmont/Mt. Tabor/Hawthorne/20th rectangle, but a lot less trendy/alternative and therefore much less expensive. It also looks to be not too bad of a walk from Lloyd Center, meaning Max rides will be easy.
So, it seems this place that I just whimsically decided to visit is now my #1 choice. As I understand it, the place just went on the market in the last couple of days (they had not even keyed the locks to the rental company's master keys yet) and I should be the first in line. I will get word back from them in the next couple of days.
The only things I am not entirely sure about yet are:
* No garbage disposal — it seems NO place in that area has a garbage disposal…or a gas stove, for that matter.
* I have to handle heating, which is oil. My only experience with this is the crappy-ass radiator system one of the places I lived in Boston had. I never had to deal with it because the landlord always came to fill it. He also paid for the oil.
* Like a lot of old houses, the internal doors have a lot of paint on them and can be quite sticky. (Not sticky like Scotch tape. They are difficult too entirely close or open.
* I will need many more rugs and floor pillows (I tend to sit on the floor).