As I was leaving for work Friday afternoon, a letter fell out of my door. I knew exactly what it was before I opened it: a letter from my leasing office that would define the new terms of my apartment lease, if I decided to renew.
Having lived in my apartment for nearly four years now, it was something I expected. Usually though, the letter came in June or early July, and listed some sort of monetary incentive for renewing the lease early. Each year, I took the incentive and renewed for 12 months without question, because I do love living here and I never had any intentions of moving.
But, as you probably know by now, my situation changed drastically when I lost my job in November of last year. All of the sudden, I was locked into a life that was built around a certain kind of salary, and well, the salary part was taken away.
For these last 9 months, I’ve worked (endlessly, it seems) simply to pay for this life I built, but without being able to enjoy a drop of it. I don’t want to complain, because I know I’ve been very fortunate to even get work that pays enough to cover my bills.
But, for the first time in my life, there’s been months when I’ve had no clue how the rent will be paid. Will my next check cover my car payment? Will I be able to make due without using my credit card? I’ve never really had to go to the grocery with a calculator, or question whether or not I could purchase even a food item I craved.
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t starting to resent my apartment at times. It’s beautiful, but it comes at a cost… which usually amounts to 60-hour work weeks. Because of this, of course, I’d been anticipating that lease renewal to arrive at my door. And I knew I just couldn’t afford to lock myself into this life for another year.
But when the letter arrived, I was surprised to see two things: 1. no monetary incentive to renew, and 2. if I was planning to leave at the end of my lease, I was required to provide a 60-day notice, which was in 24 hours of the time I received the letter.
Yikes! Talk about pressure!
But I just went for it, and the next day, I turned in my intent to vacate. When I said it out loud, to my leasing agent, “I won’t be renewing my lease,” it sounded really strange coming out of my mouth, even though I’ve been thinking about it for months.
But now that it’s settled in, I feel really good. I have NO — absolutely none — idea about where I’ll be moving to next, but at least I know I’m moving by the end of September, and that’s one of many questions to be answered.
I have a lot of pieces of furniture and random items that I’ll be getting rid of in the coming weeks, and I will be accepting bottles of wine instead of money (no, seriously), so please stay tuned if you’re in need of any furniture. Please note, most of these items aren’t fantastic unless you’re good at fixing things up. Off the top of my head, I know I’ll be getting rid of my dining set, several lamps, a small TV, lots of clothes, and plates.
Tomorrow, I’m taking a road trip that could possibly answer even more of my questions. Follow me on SnapChat @OrangeJulius7 to find out the details and follow me on my very long drive!