Those of you who know us know that we've been planning to move toward Pittsburgh to ease up the long drives that my fiance has to do for work, as well as to get out of our increasingly expensive apartment and find somewhere a little more... private. We're frankly sick of having neighbors above us, below us, and around us. I'm also sick of not having grass and a garden.
Previously, I'd run a few searches in the Pittsburgh Tribune and Craigslist (To the guy who started it: THANK YOU!), but hadn't turned up much of interest. There were about 3 places out of the 40 or so I initially looked at that fit all our requirements: Allowed pets (without an extra monthly fee), had enough parking/a space for Rick to work on the cars, had enough space, and was under our current rent. I posted a Housing Wanted ad on Craigslist myself, just in case.
About a month ago a very nice woman answered my ad, saying that she had a 1-bedroom house for rent, and although it took us nearly a month to get back to her, she called last night saying she hadn't rented it yet and would we like to come look. Turns out she was holding out for us to see it before she posted it in the paper, and we loved it.
The house doesn't look like much, and it's adjacent to an alley, but there's parking for our vehicles, a small patch of grass, and a little Japanese maple tree in the fenced-in yard. The interior has a wood floor in the living room, ceramic tile in the kitchen and bath, and a full basement newly painted and sealed (so it's dry!) with a work bench and laundry area. There's also a little square of dirt outside that the landlady said used to have hedges, which are since gone (except the stumps). When I asked about a garden she was thrilled - so veggies will be going in outside the kitchen window next spring! I might be able to even coax a crop of lettuce and spinach out of it this year, if the frost holds off. It's small, maybe 5x7, but it's already weed-free and edged!
We poked around, stuck our heads in everywhere, exclaimed over the workbench and the wood floors, and generally decided that we like it. It's small, but it's cozy, and at $200 less than we're paying now, plus privacy, how can we say no? As I told Rick - "I feel like we're moving up in the world. We have a patch of grass!". Next step - something with a barn.