Our Story: Part Two

This post is part of Multi Family Living Mondays, a series of articles on co-housing and multi-family living.

You can read Part One here.

Part Two:

Soon after deciding to start looking for a house to rent together, Jesse and I got a letter from our apartment manager saying that we needed to re-sign a 6-month lease or our rent would go up. Knowing we only had a few weeks to make a decision, we started scouring Craigslist ads and looking for For Rent signs. We drove by one or two dumpy houses in sketchy neighborhoods, and encountered several scams - resulting in a few very entertaining and bizarre email exchanges (I wanted to see how far they would take it before admitting it was a con).

I was starting to feel pretty discouraged, until a golden opportunity came along. A family-run adult elderly care facility was relocating, and the building was only a few years old - with many bedrooms, bathrooms, 2 large kitchens, a few common rooms, and several acres of gardens and woods! It would have been a little too expensive for just the two families, but we had a few other friends we thought might be interested in signing on. Visions of epic communal living danced in our heads and we made an appointment to go see the property.

When we arrived in the circular driveway, we were struck by the grand (read: ostentatious/creepy) style. A very old woman and a young child peered out at us through the windows but refused to come to the door when we knocked. After a few minutes the contact finally showed up - a 19-year-old (apparently the only reliable English speaker) in a totally pimped out Honda hatchback and acid wash jeans. The whole family was Romanian, and as we interacted more, the whole situation reminded me a little of Croatia.

I'll have to dig up pictures for you, this place was really something. But in the end we decided to pass - it was just too weird, too much financial commitment, and too far from town for us to feel confident going through with it. We didn't see anything else come up that fit our criteria, so we officially decided to stay in our respective apartments and re-evaluate 6 months later. One benefit of waiting was the time we would have to work out the kinks with our new babies and establish some family rhythms before complicating things with co-housing.

So we happily put the decision out of our minds, until something unexpected happened just a few months later...


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