Wednesday, March 5, 2014

I Put My Quarter In, Now Gimme My Apartment!

Big news today - we signed the contract for our new apartment! In just over a week, we will get the keys and officially be residents of Neuk├Âlln, Berlin! Here's the story...

We saw a couple of mediocre places around town, and then we visited our future flat. We were charmed instantly - we applied for it the same day of the viewing, and even mentioned it on the blog. It was so sunny in each room, was in a fantastic location, and came in right under budget. However, we didn't pin all of our hopes on this place, and kept looking.

It's the purple and yellow one. Yeah, the one with the
inexplicable cartoon snail mascot.
Like an episode of House Hunters, we found other apartments that wooed us, and we applied for a few of them. Again, like the show, each of the places we applied to had their pros and cons. The drama was high, a few tears were shed, and we found ourselves as indecisive as the couples on the show that we mocked in the past. But this week was the final segment before the end of the episode. Cue tense music and sensational VO.

Time had run out on our apartment search (our two month sublet ends soon), and we'd only been accepted by two real estate agencies. We had heard that it was difficult for foreigners, but we were shocked when one of the companies demanded a year's rent up front to compensate for our lack of German sources of income. The choice was pretty easy. Unfortunately, we've heard from Berliners that the apartment we chose is overpriced, but in the end it doesn't matter, we really do love this place and we know we'll enjoy our time there. Especially since we may only be in Berlin for a relatively short time.

We arranged a second viewing before committing, and sure enough we were ecstatic to confirm our feelings about the apartment. We set up an appointment to sign the lease, and decided to explore the neighborhood. We had already been in the area a few times, but while we wandered we were happily surprised to find that it was even closer to the vibrant spots than we thought. Not only that, our particular neighborhood is very interesting, diverse, and a bit kooky.

Today we signed the papers and breathed a huge sigh of relief together, knowing that the stress of the hunt is over and that we have taken a big step toward actually living our life here and becoming real Berliners.

Now it's on to Ikea, which is apparently the only place that anyone here gets their furniture.

Oh, hey! There's a Forever Twenty-- wait...

One thing we'll miss about our flat in Prenzlauer Berg -
the amazing pizza here, handmade by Andre.

Ciao, bella. We'll never know why there
are green circles on your boobies.

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