In addition to the new baby (he's enormous!), we're apartment hunting.
Listings are slim pickings at the moment, so we're looking at anything in our price range which is anywhere from $50 less than our current rent to $200 more that meets our requirements (neighbour hood, etc.) .
This was at the low end of that spectrum, but the photos looked decent, it had hardwood in the livingroom and dining room (For that matter, there was a dining room at all.) The master bedroom was huge, The kitchen, looked like it was probably just poorly photographed.
The first sign was that the landlady called me to ensure that we were employed. She mentioned that the previous tenant had been evicted, and that the apartment "might not show as well as it could." I told her that I'm home with our baby, and that my husband is indeed employed and would be the one paying rent. This prompted her to tell me she was likely evicting the upstairs tenants as well, in case we wanted to look up there. Then she says that she left the front door unlocked and just to walk right in.
So already, we're of to a spectacular start.
We pull in the driveway and turn the car around. The first thing we notice is that the upstairs tenants have a door leading out to a roof. They've been throwing garbage out there. There is a smashed attic window.
"You don't really want to look at this place do you? Let's just leave..." my husband groans
But I, an optimist, persevere "We're already here, maybe it's awesome inside..."
It was not.
The front screen door handle was broken and jagged. We walk in.
The livingroom/diningroom are open to each other. It's honestly nice. "See..." I say.
I walk into the small bedroom. It's roughly the length of a bed, squared. The storm window is smashed. It's more of a cell than a bedroom.
The bathroom is cramped and smells like nobody's even been trying to aim for the toilet for months.
The kitchen has literally only the counter space pictured. "Better than what we have now..." (technically true, as we only have a foot and a half of counter, and no drawers) The fridge and stove look to be circa 1985.
I notice what looks like a closet and open it. It is not a closet. It's a goddamned stairway to nowhere. It used to lead upstairs, but it's been blocked off at the top when the house was converted. It's made of thick, rough boards, and one of them is broken. They're the kind of dirty that you can't just scrub clean. Through the broken step and the open risers I can see right down into what is clearly not a basement, but a dank cellar.
The last stop on my tour of "nope" is the master bedroom. The big room. "Oh this room is ok..." my husband says as he peeks his head around a corner. I walk in. The. Floor. Fucking. Bounces. With every step. The joists are clearly rotten or something.
We bolt out of there to our car.
"Well, you were right, dear...." I say, "But at least it's a funny story, right..."
"No." He replies, "It wasn't funny at all."
And once again, he was right.