I hate my apartment.
I moved in during the 4th of July holiday 10 years ago. The apartment was in a quiet, tree-lined community with all the things a single girl needs – trash and snow removal included in the rent and a 24 hour handy man on call.
Except, I was always handier than the handy man.
Phone calls about things wrong with the apartment were left unanswered. Over the years I just grew to accept that if I didn’t want the ceiling fan to be hanging by wires from the ceiling I would need to fix it myself. So when things went wrong; I fixed them.
Free carpet steam cleaning was offered over the years but every time I requested it to be scheduled it never was. I started steam cleaning it myself and lugged my parent’s steam cleaner back and forth from my place to theirs.
The past five years I could have cared less about the shit hole of an apartment I was in because I was never home. Time was spent at boyfriends and friends homes instead of my own. This past year has brought some large changes to my life resulting in fewer friends and the ending of an important romantic relationship.
I was unwilling to throw myself back into a social atmosphere so I began spending more and more time at home. Staring at my outdated and shabby looking apartment frustrated me.
My bathroom floor was an embarrassment. It had significant peeling and lifting of the vinyl flooring. Poor workmanship resulted in 3 layers of flooring applied on top of each other and extended past the floor up the sides of the tub and the wall. Over the years the adhesive has separated from the subfloor and caused significant lift and curling. I wrote letters and made phone calls but nothing resulted from it.
That was the worst of it but the outdated fixtures were distracting. Everywhere I looked I was surrounded by brass and gold. All the while I longed to be surrounded by nickel and pewter.
My cream vinyl flooring in the bath and kitchen were nauseating. How I longed to lay my own ceramic tile! But alas, I am a renter, not a homeowner and can’t do such things.
So the apartment hunt began because I certainly didn’t have the funds for a down payment. In fact, I barely had the money for a security payment and moving expenses!
I searched for two months. Lots of phone calls and lots of emails. I spent two weeks in early May visiting rental units and negotiating with landlords.
The end result was everything was smaller and father away for the same price I was paying now. My lease was almost up and I had to make a decision. In the end, it was cheaper for me to stay where I was!
I decided to make some small changes – paint the bathroom and re-arrange the living room. Try to fix the bathroom floor and buy a new door knob or two.
Then a couple of weeks ago my oven died. The gas stovetop worked fine but I couldn’t get the oven to light. I called the rental office on Monday morning and explained the problem. Monday at 12:30pm I had a brand new stove and range hood with fan and light.
WOW! I have noticed some changes around the property that I associated with a change in management and this was proof. Things had changed. The last time I called about a problem with an appliance I was argued with. They made me feel like I was imagining the water pouring inside my living room from the a/c unit!
This was different. Inspired by my positive experience I decided to write a letter with the issues I was experiencing with the broken ceiling fan and bathroom floor.
To my surprise I received a phone call offering to reset my entire apartment. New light fixtures, new ceiling fan, new hardware for cabinets and doors, new carpets, new ceramic tile in kitchen and bath, new granite bathroom vanity, new toilet, new countertops. WOW!
I said yes in a heartbeat. I have seen the remodeled apartments and they are gorgeous – exactly my taste aesthetic! Neutral browns and cool grey/blue tones with nickel hardware and dark woods.
Everything has been done except the carpets. The new items gave me inspiration to change out my old tired color pallet (which was born out of monetary necessity a decade ago) for my pet decor design – Hollywood Glamour.
I adore the retro opulence of the 1930’s and 40’s. Pale blue/grey walls, dark woods and light furniture with clean lines. Crystal and mirrored accents and sophisticated wall art. *sigh* I love seeing it done on the design shows on HGTV.
And now, I actually had the opportunity to create this look in my own home!
The past month has been an absolute frenzy of do-it-yourself projects. Trash to treasure. Sewing. Painting. Furniture refinishing. I can’t wait to start sharing some of them with you in the next few weeks. All the changes have changed me as well. I now LOVE my apartment!
Stay tuned…..Hera’s Design Challenge coming up next on HGTV! lol