Almost a year has passed since we moved from our cozy apartment to a cozy private house. My work and son care didn’t allow me to tell you about it, but I am correcting myself 🙂
It must be said, this is our third place of residence in Texas – first we lived in Plano (T.X.) in an apartment complex in a one-bedroom apartment , then, before the birth of our son, we moved to a two-bedroom apartment, but in the same apartment. complex.
And now for almost a year, we live in the nearby town of Frisco (Frisco, TX), in a private house on the ground, with a garage, lawn and back yard. About how we decided to move, and go further story.
Then there will be a lot of photos, but for now a little bit boring text, do you mind?
HOW WE DECIDED TO MOVE
Our very bright and spacious 2-bedroom apartment cost us when we only found it – $ 1,350 per month. After a year of living there, the price rose to $ 1,450. By sober reflection (believe me, not from the bay of floundering – moving this business is still that !!) and considering the housing market around, we came to the conclusion that it’s not profitable to continue to rent an apartment. You can add 200-300 dollars and it will be a full-fledged house on the ground, with a double garage, and other amenities. And one day, last spring, I brought home 40 cardboard boxes from U-Haul, and we began to gradually pack things, and also to look for a new home for ourselves.
We searched for the house through, which I have already recommended to you before. We noted the options we liked within a radius of 20 minutes from our office, sent a “message to the realtor”, made an appointment, came, inspected the house, went home, digested, noted our feelings, and proceeded to the next
HOW TO RENT A HOUSE IN THE US
Here, people are extremely rare (read: “almost never”) renting the house themselves. It is much easier to use the services of a realtor. They themselves organize photography, they themselves come to an agreement with potential buyers, come, show them your house, take upon themselves an inspection of future tenants, drawing up all contracts and so on and so forth.
For this, the landlord pays a certain agreed amount to the realtor, usually tied to the monthly rent – most often in the amount of one monthly rent, although this is not an ironclad rule. Beginning private realtors can ask for less, and superstar realtors can ask for rent in two months. It is convenient that the tenant does not have to worry about anything: he just gets good service, signs the contract, and quietly enters his apartment. The landlord pays for everything.
Interestingly, when a realtor (or a real estate agency) receives a house in his care, they share information about this property among themselves. There is a certain common database to which they “connect” – and I will explain further why this is convenient.
When you agree and come to watch the house – you are met by a realtor. This may be a private realtor, or an agent of a large brokerage firm – this is not so important. The important thing is that once you meet, the realtor always wants to give you a very, very good impression and find the house for you. And not necessarily this house. A realtor is interested if you already have a realtor, and if not, he suggests that you use your services. If you specifically like this realtor – you agree, and he or she then begins to offer you different options, taking into account your wishes. You agree on home visits, and if you finally find your dream home, sign a contract. Through this realtor – he draws everything. And receives a percentage from the landlord. You get these services for free. And it may happen that you never will never meet with the owner of the property! 🙂
OUR NEW HOME
We reviewed, probably, 10 options, until we settled in the opinion on one of them. You know my passion for a systems approach – I tried to take into account everything that was possible, and especially worried, since I never lived in a private house in America, and I do not know any details or pitfalls – what to look at? What to pay attention to? I tried as much as possible to deduct tips from the Internet and rely on common sense.
Our new home is located half an hour from the old apartment, 15 minutes from work, in the city of Frisco (Tris). In a very nice residential area: around – only residential buildings, all with green lawns and nice mailboxes, paved with bricks. Here we are a little unusual – to the nearest store, if you walk on foot – then 30 minutes. By car – 5-10 minutes, and you are at Walmart, Kroger, Tom Thumb – for every taste. So now we do not walk on foot (unless we are just walking around the area on weekends), but we only drive.
A typical street in our area looks like this:
Our house is located on the corner, the intersection of two small streets. In front of him is a large green lawn (on both sides, as the house is on the corner) and a stair / walkway to the front door.
Attention! Here and further there will be not our photos, but photos of the realtor. When we moved into the house, the house had just been renovated and all the furniture was missing (with the exception of kitchen furniture, a stove and a refrigerator). So all the furniture and decorations in the photographs are not ours, but old residents.
The house has three bedrooms, two bathrooms with toilet, a spacious kitchen with an “island” and a dining room, a double garage. The total area of the house is 153 m 2 .
So, when you enter through the front door, you see the living room:
Very high ceilings (closet on the left – the height of a person) and large windows make it very spacious and comfortable.
Before our entrance to the house, we carried out a complete repair and put vinyl tiles in the form of parquet on the original filler floor. In appearance – parquet. To the touch – embossed linoleum. This is how the hall looked like at the time of our entry:
Our room is so bright that we, in addition to the blinds, hung curtains, and almost always they are at least half-closed.
The hall is unusually divided into two unequal parts by a fireplace in the middle of the room. Thus, we have two whole halls, as it were. Here is the “second hall”, which is “behind the fireplace”, and even a little visible is the entrance door where we just stood:
Turning around. The view from the “second hall” to the kitchen is visible to the “bar counter”, which either connects or separates the kitchen from the hall. The photo shows a children’s “gate” so that the child does not crawl into the kitchen. Then we got exactly the same gate, which Yang soon successfully outgrew.
Very spacious and bright kitchen with a kitchen island and a dining area. The dining table is to the right of the photographer, and the frame does not fit. Above it hangs a separate chandelier.
Turn around. View of the dining table:
Master bedroom (master bedroom) – the largest room in the house, after the hall. Very spacious and light. We have a whole treadmill in it, and there is still room left!
Spacious master bathroom (with shower and jacuzzi bath):
Two small bedrooms – much smaller than the master, but nevertheless in each fit on the Queen-bed, and there is still room.
From the third bedroom in the photo below I made myself an office:
Guest bathroom (next to the living room) – smaller in size, but nevertheless – a full bathroom and toilet. Now it is almost Yanchik’s personal bathroom 🙂
From the kitchen – right at the dining table – access to the backyard. The backyard is completely enclosed with a fence, which was freshly painted before our entry and now looks much more neat.
The scaffolding – the “deck” was also trimmed and painted, and now it looks just wonderful, not like in the photo. He is just huge. You can just sit on it with friends, sunbathe, and play football (which we are already learning to do with my son!) 🙂
In the corner of the backyard there is an economic shed – I have a lawn mower, buckets, rakes, hoses, and other garden nonsense there.
The garage didn’t get on the picture – it’s a two-car garage, now besides our Ford, there is my motorcycle, and I, as I like tinkering, set up a mini-workshop there: a workbench, a vice, and all sorts of tools.
WHAT IS IT WORTH?
House rent – $ 1,650 per month. Soon the year will pass, as we live here, and, perhaps, the fee will increase slightly. But still, on average in the USA (and especially comparing with California), this is a very, very good price.
The house has a climate system and a boiler, everything is electric. On average, a year, a month a house consumes 1,600 kW / h, which costs us $ 125 a month. Again, this is an average. In the spring and autumn there are months when we pay $ 15-20, and in the summer heat and cold weather – at $ 200-300.
We also pay city fees for water, sewers, storm sewers and garbage collection. It turns out about $ 80 per month.
Internet – 100 Mbit / s from Time Warner Cable (they were recently renamed Spectrum). The connection is very good, the speed is stable. We pay $ 39 per month, and another $ 9 for renting a 5G router. We mainly look at Netflix (this is still $ 10 per month), they are not connected to the cable one – this is the last century!
That’s all the costs. It is necessary to mention that we ourselves take care of the lawn – I purchased a lawn mower, a trimmer and a “duvka” – all electric, from batteries. This saves on lawn care, but it would have to pay (in season in spring and summer) another $ 30-50 every two weeks, so that we cut the lawn in front of the house.
Well what can I tell you. Living in the house turned out to be much better than in the apartment complex. In any case, for our family. We love solitude, tranquility, silence.
You go out into the backyard – the birds are singing, no one of your neighbors sees you (the fence closes us well), you sit for yourself, you drink coffee (you can – in shorts), you enjoy. No one hears you, you can sing loudly or play the piano at home, or you can just shout loudly (which Jan likes to do), without worrying about “what people think” – grace!
Utilities were not as expensive as I was initially afraid of, taking care of the house itself is practically not required. Well, there, the filter at the air conditioner needs to be changed every 3-6 months, and lubricate the garage doors if they creak.
A double garage was an extremely convenient thing – especially if you had a motorcycle. Or if there is hail on the street! The hail happened literally the day after our move, and our car was not damaged. I then visited our old apartment community – and there all the parked cars were terribly beaten by hail. So, count, that’s how lucky we are 🙂
My wife really enjoyed taking care of the lawn. She gladly mows it (calls it free “physical exercise”), and has already become a local expert in the types of weeds and garden chemicals 🙂 Honestly, people are already approaching us and asking who “made” the lawn for us. When Luda says that she herself is terribly surprised and wondering about grass varieties 🙂
In general – now you will need to really try to persuade us to move back to the apartment!
That’s all, ask questions (below, in the comments) – I will answer with pleasure!