Strange business, renting is.
We have been looking online. Digesting descriptions, pouring over small photos, using Google earth to get a feel for the area, and Mapquest to plot distances. After exhaustive looking we have finally secured a place. We have a signed lease!
As you recall, back in March/April we took a trip to scout out potential areas and get a feel for distances. We narrowed down our search to a particular master planned community, and school district. Since that day we have been watching homes come and go and tried to snag one earlier but no one was interested in waiting for us. Their loss, we are a catch.
This particular house had turned down 12 other applicants before accepting ours. Why? Lots of people with less than stellar credit. Thank heavens all that responsible financial living has actually paid off in one way!
A couple of things we learned about finding a home from a distance is that you can't trust the pictures to tell the complete story. They only posted about 15 pictures, none of which included pictures of bathrooms, or a good pictures of the kitchen. Those are some very important rooms to leave out. Come of find out the pictures were not recent!
How did we find that out? We asked the realtor to go over and take pictures of the things we were interested in and walk through it. She knew what we liked and we trusted her assessment. The pictures came back and I thought we were looking at a different house.
Online the main floor living areas were a very light carpet. In the photos the realtor sent they were laminate floors. The landlord used old pictures! Why would they do that? I understand they don't live in the state, but it seems like making false claims if you have changed something and don't mention it. One of the things that I was worried about was having light carpet in the dinning room with 4 small kids. Who puts carpet in the living room? Had they included recent pictures with laminate floors, I would have liked it much sooner.
Hopefully we will still like it when we pick up the keys and move in!
Going through this process confirmed to me, once again, that I am happy to not be a landlord! Thank heavens.