Hello Cruel World
Monday, March 16, 2009
Real Estate Ruminations
Real Estate Report: Sydney's cheapest inner city flat? On the 6th floor of an attractive, if slightly seedy, Art Deco building with rather wonky lifts, in a central, if also slightly seedy (sketchy?) precinct where I live (close to shops, transport, my hospital, nightclub strip, courts, homeless shelters, drug, alcohol & mental treatment centres). A single room maybe 10 foot by eight. Not too much to keep clean, I guess. Rolled futon on the floor. Door & swing-space takes most of inner wall. Two nice light windows on the outer wall. Small wardrobe & a desk/dining table with shelves above cover left wall – agent suggests one of those fold-up 'murphy' beds.
Right wall taken up by world's smallest bathroom & kitchen ditto. I could sit on the toilet & turn the taps on the tiny handbasin opposite; a hand-held shower perched between them, with the shower curtain across the door.
In the kitchen, an eensy sink with room for a mini bar-fridge (say 18" square) beneath faced a bench with an electric hotplate/griller for the stove. For a space I could just stand & turn in, it had quite a few shelves & cupboards.
All this for roughly 3x mean male annual earnings — $155,000. Le sigh.
Hearing that it's now rented for $200/week shook me a bit. Makes me appreciate room @ $250/week even more, maybe 2.5–3 times the size. ($AU1.00 = $US0.64 approx.)
I did grab mine fast at the time (being evicted midway through chemotherapy), seeing many smaller, grottier places going at higher rents in my search area — not too hilly, walking distance to hospital, close to public transport.
Looking with mingled feeling at returning home. Friday night on the roof here facing the Southern Cross, with Orion behind my shoulder, I watched the full autumn moon rising while lightning-laced thunderclouds rolled up from the south. Aeroplanes from Kingsford-Smith criss-crossed flight-lines with flying foxes while the next-door pub's beer garden rumbled with Friday night crowd noise. Won't be quite the same there.
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