As I mentioned in my last post, I've been extremely stressed about finding a place to live... I had set up a house-hunting trip and booked appointments to view properties, but was still worried. This is a small town, and there isn't a lot available... in fact, one of the realtors I was talking with about rental properties seemed a bit miffed over my space / amenity requirements. lol. I never thought of myself as being picky, but I guess I am. And I also apparently need a lot more space than most single people! But I've said many times that I'm well aware that I have too much stuff. But I love it too much to get rid of it, so space it is!
Anyway, Nicole got me hooked up with a flight out. Monday at midnight, I took a red-eye to JFK where I landed at 6am, worked my way out to the rental car place and picked up my car. I hooked up my GPS and headed out toward Connecticut, working through horrible 7am traffic and finally getting across the bridge and into Connecticut (note: if you're coming to see me, unless you get a totally amazing deal, just fly into Hartford. It might cost a little more but it's worth it!) I got to Branford at 9am, with two hours until my first appointment. I found my hotel, then went back to the center of town and parked near the green.
The green is surrounded on two sides by churches and the town hall (and I think a great library), and on the other two sides by lots of fun shops and restaurants. It's beautiful, and they do all kinds of fun stuff on the green - Jazz concerts, movies...
But then I was starving, so I went into the coffee shop and splurged on breakfast which included this: an enormous grilled corn muffin. It was delicious.
Then I went to my first appointment... one I'd happened to get Monday afternoon after a last-ditch search of the rental sites. I'd seen this one before on another site and emailed on it with no reply. But this time the realtor got back to me right away and scheduled an appointment. I finally found it (using the GPS for anything on Main Street has problems - because there are like 4 main streets or something. lol.) From the outside, not too inspiring... this is the back of the house (the front is much prettier, of course), which is multi-family. The one I was looking at was the 2nd and 3rd floors, with the front door entrance on the first floor.
But then I walked inside and I was instantly in love. I mean, it just felt like home. (Below is the view of the back door and informal dining area.)
They're still cleaning it up and replacing the downstairs windows, but I just loved the yellow walls and the dark exposed wood beams in the ceiling.
Brand new kitchen with stainless steel, tile backsplash and a gas range. sigh.
Formal dining room with a fun built-in... this may be a music room.
Main staircase... up to the master, down to the front door. You can see the gorgeous original wood flooring (the house was built in 1900) and the stunning stained glass... there's more in the front door too! There are also two bedrooms and the bathroom on the main floor... the bedrooms have lots of windows and hardwood floors and the bathroom was just remodeled.
And this... the entire 3rd floor is the master bedroom. Lots of sloped ceilings, a few closets... lots of light and space!
And the laundry room is just off the master bedroom. How convenient is that?
There's even a little vegetable garden out back that the downstairs tenants set up, but they're moving in September so "someone" could possibly take it over. hmm... lots of herbs and veggies. Yum!
So, what you don't see well are all the little architectural details that they've left in the house... rosette corner moldings and how pretty the wood is. But you can probably see how I fell in love with it. Apparently there was another application in on the house, but the guy didn't really like it. (What?!?!?) So I filled out all the paperwork and dropped it off at the office within the hour since I had time before my next appointment. No sense waiting, right?
I saw 4 more places on Tuesday, but 3 were absolutely unlivable without a lot of work and the 4th wasn't available until mid-October. But I got a good look and then went back to my hotel and checked in, where I got a call from the moving company asking if they could move up my move date. Um... sure? Two days earlier! Yikes... (I should really be packing right now. Really.) Then I checked out the grocery store across the street which was fun knowing how much I love grocery stores (did I mention the nearest Wegman's is only 2 hours away? Don't think that's too far for me to go now and then. Seriously. I totally will.) And then I crashed.
Wednesday I saw two more places - one that would be a good choice... possibly a little small, but quite nice with a really nice landlord. And then I went to one right on the water which became my second choice. A little smaller than I'd like, but this was the view from the windows:
Quiet and peaceful in a gorgeous neighborhood, with breezes from the sound coming through the windows. I put in an application, but as a second choice. Here's the view across the street:
Have I mentioned yet that I kind of love this town?
After that I went to the town green and sat on a bench in the shade and read while I went back and forth trying to finalize a place. I needed to leave a 3 to head back to JFK, and at about 2:50, I got the call. My application for the #1 choice was accepted. Now I'm just waiting to get links to the lease so I can sign it and overnight it with my deposit. Then I can move in next week. Whew!
So my mission: 2 days, 2200 miles away, 6 possible homes. And I did it... I walked away not only knowing where I wanted to live, but actually having gotten the application processed and approved. And today, I was able to give the moving company an address. Woohoo! It's a huge load off, and I'm super psyched to move to this fun little town and my awesome old house.
And now, I'm really going to start packing. After I eat lunch. lol.