Today we moved into our new apartment, built in 1643. It is located in the lower Marais in the 4th arrondissement. Our place is right in the center of fabulous shopping and dining. It is close to Hotel de Ville, and not too far from the Notre Dame. The walk back to the 3rd to go shopping at Bio Moi and Marche des Enfants Rouges is still close by, too. There is even a closer Naturalia nearby, so we don’t have to go to the one in the 3rd.
We love this new area; there’s so much more around, and we can’t complain about the space we’ve acquired. The space is definitely bigger than our last apartment; it’s basically double the size and we’re much more comfortable now. The place has a mezzanine, and with the high ceiling it feels more spacious. Also, I love that there’s plenty of room for storage, and how we now have more privacy from neighbors.
Now that we have discontinued our search for a place in the meantime, I’d like to share how different it’s been compared to the states. As I’ve mentioned before, searching for a place in Paris can be a challenge aside from all the paperwork required from the agency. First it’s finding selected neighborhoods you’d like to live in, then finding a place that will suit your needs, and the tricky part is getting approved from the owner. Things are done differently here in that owners can approve or reject you based on anything—despite having sufficient income. We’ve gotten rejected twice before this place because of ridiculous reasons. The first place didn’t want to rent to us because the owner wanted to rent to someone right away, even though we were willing to pay and sign the contract on the spot. And with the second place, we were rejected because the owner didn’t want to rent to a couple. Even though the place was abnormally huge for an apartment in Paris, he was stubborn in his way of wanting to rent to a single person only. But, third time the charm we had no problems with this one!
Also, we’ve found that you can’t win them all. Everything is great at this new place, but there are cons. The lighting in the apartment around our work spaces is dim because of low light sources when it gets dark; the heating in this place has only one radiator, which doesn’t get the place quite warm and comfortable; there is a washer but no dryer; our second lock at the bottom of the door gets the key stuck every time we open or lock it; and there is no key to our mailbox.
Good news is that the latter two issues are going to get resolved—we hope. Our leasing agency is working on getting a locksmith to fix the lock and switch out the lock to the mailbox. The major problem with not being able to receive mail is that we wouldn’t be able to get the slip which tells us we have a package dropped off at the post office in the first place.
Hopefully it will all get resolved soon. It’s already getting annoying going in and out of the place today as we’re fighting with the lock to get our key back. We just hope we don’t get the key stuck one day because that would not be fun! However, the agency seems to be good at resolving issues, but it’s getting in touch with the owner that can be difficult. The owner of this apartment is a French man working and living in the Ukraine so he’s not around much. To get results, things don’t happen too quickly. But aside from all of this, we are totally fine with these issues. We’re just happy to be in our new place!