I want to thank everyone for all their support as we go through the roommate finding process once again. It will be a challenge - but we're up for it.
One reader, Manshu, asked if we have so much trouble with roommates (which it seems we do lately) - why don't we try moving, and renting some where cheaper. Well, there's a few reasons for that (I responded to his comment, but I thought I would post it here as well).
I've lived in this place for over three years now...it's not just a house to me anymore, it's where I'm making my home (up until the point where Jordan and I buy something of our own). There are also a few, less emotional, reasons why we choose not to move:
- Moving is expensive, and not a fun time in the winter
- We risk losing our down deposit
- ...and another should we move into another rental before buying a home
- We know this landlord well, and although she's sometimes a pain - things do get fixed when they break down
- We just recently got a rent decrease from $1,500/month to $1,350/month
- Jordan and I can handle $675/month each (although we would prefer not to - which is why we look for roommates).
- In all the years I've lived in this place - the last six months has been the only when we've had roommate trouble...
So, all that was to say - that we won't be moving. Here's what we will do:
We're lucking out a little bit because December Jordan get's three pays, but our deal was that we would make the 'extra' payment into our joint account - sticking to the bi-weekly schedule.
We have enough money in our joint account (including what's there now, and the next four payments before January) to cover Dec/January's Rent, paying Jeff his damange deposit back, and paying all utility bills owing for November's usage with about $200 left over.
Come January, if we haven't found a roommate - we will have in increase our bi-weekly joint house account contributions to $437.50 from $287.50 - that's a $150/bi-weekly increase. That works out to $875/month/each to cover rent, utilities (gas, water, electricity, recycling etc), TV, phone, & internet. Another way to see that is $1750/month total ($1350 rent and $400 bills).
The increase of $150/bi-weekly is effectively, our house fund.
I did round up when guessing what our utility bills will be - because it's only going to get colder - but after a month on our own we could re-asses to see if we need to be stashing $400/month for bills. It seems a little high, but I would rather error on the safe side which will just build us a buffer if it's not accurate.
I'm going to wait before changing the 2010 budget until closer to the end of the month - when we know if we have a new roommate or not.