A Blessing In Disguise

-by Bia Plake-

“Sometimes we need to believe that things happen for a reason. It is difficult to see a bright side when we are in the middle of a potentially dark, life altering change. But if we focus on what we want (something we have some control over), instead of focusing on what happened to us (something we have no control over), we can move forward and be in a better place.” Bia Plake

It’s been a while since my last post (Coming to Terms with the Light and the Gloom). I might have left a not very good impression of what was going on with me. While bad days happen, by far the good outweigh the bad ones. I am usually in a good mood and sprit.

Fine…I got a little sidetracked.. but I am back in making this blog happens. The fact is that, the end of last year was kinda crazy.

Let me fill you in…

After moving to a house only just 1 and 1/2 years ago, our landlord announced that we had to move again, because she wanted to move back to her house.

Okay, have you moved before? So feel my PAIN. I had just finally opened all the boxes and put the things away.

Really!? Bill and I were in disbelief.

Not only did we have to move again, but we also had to find a house in a very competitive real state city. South Pasadena has one of the best school districts in the nation. (BTW, that is why we decide to stay here!)

To make matters worse, we have a dog which makes it even harder to find a place to rent.

When I told my mom our troubling news, she said “You are going to get a better house!” Bill and I looked at each other and said, “It is very unlikely”. 

So our journey began… Bill and I searched every single day online. We went to see places and started to feel more and more hopeless.

Every place that came up for rent was either too expensive, or it did not fit our needs.

We seriously started thinking about moving out of LA. One option was to go to New York neighborhood like Queens, Brooklyn and around. (I used to live in Brooklyn, and not only does Bill love NY, he also has a grown son living there.)

Almost two months went by and I received a notification from the website Trulia saying that there was a new house in the market that seemed to fit into what we had been looking for. 

Oh boy…it was a very cute single house all recently renovated! It was for the same price that we were paying for our current one, so we could afford it. And we could bring Coco (our dog) with us! It was a rare opportunity, and we knew then and there, that it was our last chance to stay in the neighborhood. 

The ad for the house stated the day and time that the house would be available for viewing. It was an “open house” showing, instead of by appointment, and was about a week away.

Some friends of ours, who had gone through a similar house hunting adventure in South Pasadena, advised us to go on the first day of the open house. They strongly suggested we be the first to get there, and introduce our family to the real state person that manages the property. (That person is the one who ultimately chooses the family.)

We did just that. The three of us were the first to arrive, getting there just a few minutes early. As we parked our car, lots of other cars started parking as well. By the time we were introducing ourselves there were about 10 other families coming to see the house.

We really liked the house a lot, but we were bummed that there was so much competition for it. It was priced “below market”, for sure!

As soon as we left, my “cup-half-empty” husband said he was sure we would not get the house. Nonetheless, I told him that it didn’t matter about our odds. I would do my best the get that place.

To be honest I wasn’t very confident either. But one thing the property manager said when we introduced ourselves to her stuck with me. She wanted to move fast.

So, I sat on the computer and started working. Thank goodness I am computer savvy, because the manager said she preferred the application and all other transactions to be done through email.

I typed up all the forms that she had given to us, and responded to every single question. Nothing was left unanswered. 

Downloaded the credit report, proof of income, account balances, etc. I went as far as renaming the files in the same order she had on the form. (That way se could easily find them).  

Of course, I also wrote a very compelling letter to let her know who we were, and how much we would like to rent that property.  

Sure enough, she texted asking some more questions, and finally sent the email saying we were given the first preference to sign the contract!

As painful as was to move again, we are glad that we did it. The new house is in fact much better than the house we were in. We hope to stay here for a long time.

Say tuned for the other posts.



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