Every once in a while I’m faced with making a big adult decision with huge consequences. I’m at the point where I’m spending my own money and should technically be able to handle life on my own, yet that doesn’t mean I have any idea what I’m doing.
This past week I went apartment hunting (much more fun than job hunting, but slightly less fun than duck hunting) and I learned that Realtors are not only the most desperate/clingy people ever to walk this earth, but they’re also willing to take advantage of anyone who doesn’t know what’s going on.
And that someone was most definitely me.
I toured Manhattan with my Realtor and nodded my head to everything he said. I wanted him to think I knew what I was doing. I should have noticed that the more I said yes to his requests, the more he was taking advantage of me. By the time I got to the last apartment he had me convinced that it’s standard procedure for doormen to fondle me as I walked in to different apartments and that my rent was actually going to be 1.5 what they said because he got half of my rent check every month.
It wasn’t until I went out with another Realtor that I found out that it doesn’t cost extra to get running water in your apartment. Needless to say, I felt like an idiot. However I was relieved to find out that i didn’t have to give up my first born in exchange for cable. One Realtor led to another and before I knew it I was signing a lease and committing myself financially for an entire year.
And from there it only got more expensive. I spent four years at school finding my furniture in dumpsters and my decorations in the dollar store. That doesn’t fly in New York; you have to pay for everything. Who knew mattresses cost so much? Answer: not me! And bed bug covers, the must-have accessories of 2009, cost about 10 dinners. Don’t even get me started on the bathroom…toilet paper, shower curtains, and soap. I’ve been surfing Craigslist trying to find good deals but at what point is it worth it to buy a new toilet brush?
But don’t worry. I’ve done a little re-figuring of my budget and if I never go out for the next year AND sell my extra kidney, I’m completely set to live the NYC life!