Finally, all those years of online dating are paying off (they technically paid off when I met Bogart, of course, but now I can put those skills to some sort of practical use)!
I am apartment hunting. Technically we are apartment hunting, but I’m the one with the quasi-normal schedule, and I’m a bit
controlling of a planner, so most of the searching, communicating with prospective landlords, and viewings fall to me. But don’t feel bad, I was born to do this! Or, at the very least, I was trained through years of searching, communicating with prospective dates, and viewing them in person. When you think about it, searching for a place and searching for a partner aren’t really all that different, except it’s acceptable to get sauced on dates.
Since we all know I’m rarely at a loss for words, I’m going to break this up over a series of posts. Plus it’ll stop all the complaining about the lack of blogs, you ingrates (just kidding I love you please keep reading kthxbai).
Seek and ye shall find
Craigslist can be used for both finding a place to sleep and a person to sleep with, though I wouldn’t recommend the personals section save for a few depraved friends (you know who you are). Craigslist is the Plenty of Fish of apartment hunting: the interface looks like it hasn’t been updated since 1995, and you have to go through a lot of absolute garbage to find anything decent. Oh, and there are scammers on both. If it seems too good to be true, it is. (I’m talking about you, two bedroom furnished condo with brand new appliances, a view of the tower, and amenities for less than a grand, all I have to do is send a deposit so I can view the place. Likewise the doctor who volunteers at an animal shelter when not modelling part time, who just wants to find a woman who’ll listen to him talk about his feelings.) In other words, fuck Craigslist.
Kijiji may be a slightly newer player, but it yields the same clunky search results as Craigslist. You can’t tell a place is really in Brampton until you open the ad, much like you can’t tell a dudebro wants someone ‘DTF, no fatties yo’ until you view his profile. In the age of filters and smart search and supposedly advanced algorithms, I expect more. Sure, for every Bumble and Hinge, there is a corresponding PadMapper or ViewIt (or my personal favourite, Walk Score), but what I really want is Tinder for apartments—it worked for my relationship, and I kind of miss swiping.
There are also the outliers: Facebook groups (which I used for dating), recommendations/tips from friends (which I used for dating), and just taking pictures of signs with phone numbers and calling to enquire (which I … didn’t use for dating). It is at once all too much and not enough. I got my hopes up for so many apartments/men, just to have my dreams crushed when they suddenly went off the market. Timing is everything; a great place with a March 1st move in did as much for me as meeting a great guy who just wasn’t looking for a commitment (or the wrong guy who was). When expressing my growing exasperation after MY PERFECT APARTMENT was snatched out from under me because of a jerkstore property manager not responding after setting up a viewing (no, no bitterness here), a friend told me I ‘just needed to have faith.’ I believe I told her to get fucked, which may have been an overreaction, but I’m pretty sure I heard similar advice when I was equally exasperated by dating.
Basically, as tough as the Toronto dating scene is, the Toronto rental scene is equally daunting. Whether you’re looking for open hearts or open houses, I recommend a few drinks to steel your nerves. I’ll be right there, drinking and searching with you.