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Must Love Dogs

September 11, 2012 - Liz Skoczylas
Apartment hunting can be very trying.

The fiance, N, and I are looking for a place to call home as we begin our lives together. We've been back and forth in the renting versus buying category. And, we've come up with the idea to rent for now, with the hope that we'll both eventually have fabulously high-paying jobs, and we'll be able to purchase a really super-awesome house.

We are dreamers.

It is frustrating to know how high rent is, and knowing how much money you are sinking into a house that isn't really your home. I am perfectly aware of what my income is, and knowing that the majority of it is going toward rent is really difficult.

Looking at the cost of a mortgage is also interesting. It is a lot lower than the cost of renting, even with insurances and other fees added in.

Here's the thing. Because I have college loans racked up, I am still paying hundreds of dollars on my education each month. And, when the bank did our debt-to-income ratio, it turns out that because of this, we aren't really a great investment for the bank. Even though we are educated and employed, my school debt is really dragging us down in terms of getting an awesome mortgage.

It's an interesting time that I'm trying to grow up in. On one hand, renting really is not the most affordable option for a lot of people in my age group. On the other, getting a decent amount of money from the bank is almost out of the question for a lot of us with an education.

I know people that graduated at the top of their high school class, who have bachelor's and master's degrees, who are now working selling clothes at the mall, or serving at local restaurants. I am at least employed in my field. I can't imagine what their housing situation must look like.

Anyway, with N being a member of a volunteer fire department, we have to live in his fire district. This also cuts our renting options down drastically.

Our next issue is, we have a 10-pound dog. Nobody wants our dog.

Let me go off on another tangent here and tell you about our dog. I say he's "our" dog because N loves him just as much as I do, and probably buys the dog more toys than I do. However, if you asked the dog, I bet he'd tell you that he's MY dog. You see, N and I have been together for a year and a half, but the dog has been with me since he was about three months old. He is now three years old.

Here's the other thing. The dog was hit by a truck in May. Not just any truck, a ginormous utility truck. Somehow, this 10-pounder survived the hit, (and luckily for me, the company's insurance paid for all of the vet bills!) but the dog lost part of his paw. So, he's a limpy little dog that is now afraid of loud noises, trucks, cars and even bicycles. And, he doesn't leave my side.

He is also completely potty-trained. And he's a PetSmart obedience school graduate. Who could not want to give this dog shelter??

I understand why landlords don't want to take a risk with a dog. I've heard horror stories about people who leave their dogs alone all day, and then the dog eats drywall or tiles or completely destroys an apartment. I know dogs can be messy. I also know I have managed to live in three other apartments that have allowed my small, quiet little dog with no problems.

Eight months from today, N and I will be attached in wedded bliss. In the meantime, we will be searching for our first apartment. I have high hopes that eight months will be enough time to get us, and our dog, into a livable situation. Because trust me when I say, even though our parents love us very much, they do not want us living with them once we are married.


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Blog Photos

Yes, I'm using a sympathy picture. This is our dog, Ramsay, the night that he got hit by the truck. The purple paw is the one that was run over, the teal had an IV. The poor little guy got pretty banged up, though.