What $990 In Rent Gets You In Seattle

cute shower curtain

I am in my new apartment, everybody. After something like six months of hemming and hawing, and then a month of actual work, The Apartmenting is real.

Let’s take a look at what it includes:


It has a kitchen! This is a huge upgrade from my previous apartment, which had no kitchen and no kitchen sink. (That’s what $675 in rent gets you in Seattle.) I will never wash dishes in a bus tub and then dump the bus tub water into the toilet again!

living room

It has a living room! There is no door separating the living room from the kitchen—you just turn around and it’s there—but it is still a dedicated living room space.

weird light fixture

It has a bedroom! With a really weird light fixture!

who did this to you lightbulb

No, wait, it is a really weird lightbulb. Seriously what? Did someone ruin a perfectly good lightbulb on purpose? Is this a Pinterest thing?

apartment bedroom light

I swapped the lightbulb for the one in the hall, because there was no way I was putting up with that even for one night. (I’ll buy some new lightbulbs later today.)

surprise ironing board

I also have a secret ironing board! No more pretend-ironing by getting my clothes wet and hanging them in the bathroom!

cute shower curtain

And yes, I have a bathroom. And here’s the catch:

mildew town

I can already tell that this is going to be the Problem in this apartment, just like the lack of kitchen was the Problem in my last apartment. That dark stuff you see is under a layer of caulk; it isn’t on the surface of the shower unit. However, when I went to do the key exchange yesterday morning, before they cleaned up the place, there was definitely mildew on the surface of the shower unit.

So yeah, I am going to have to practice constant vigilance to keep this bathroom from getting super gross. That’s why this unit is only $990.

(Why didn’t I notice this the first time around? Because I didn’t pull back the shower curtain. Also, because I didn’t think the five-minute visit with the current tenant would be my only opportunity to see the apartment before I signed the lease; I kept thinking I’d do a walkthrough with the landlord like I did at my last place, and that never happened.)

Bathroom suggestions welcomed. I am already debating the merits of bleach vs. white vinegar vs. a dehumidifier vs. Damprid vs. all of the housecleaning blogs I kept reading until 2 a.m. last night.

Because when you pay $990 in the 10th most expensive rental market in the country, you don’t get everything. That’s for the people who pay $1,500, or $2,200. Instead, you get another story to add to your string of rental gems: “Remember the place where I slept on the floor? Remember the place where I washed my dishes in a bucket? Remember the place where I had to dry my shower with a towel every single morning?”



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