Settling into a house in Georgia

For those that don’t know, I really like Georgia (the country; not the US state). I like it so much, I decided I should stick around for a while, and see what it’s like to live here. One of the people I met at my hostel found someone who was renting rooms in a house. At first glance, it seemed pretty awesome. Renting a room in a house is cheaper than staying a hostel, and I get my own room! But, as with anything like this, there were a few negatives that weren’t immediately obvious (at least to me).

Disclaimer: these are all specific to the house I moved into. Your experience (should you choose to duplicate it) will hopefully vary; especially after reading this post.

So a little more about the place…it’s a decent sized house. There are 5 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms (one of which contains a bath tub and shower), a kitchen/dining room, and even a yard (with trees)! When I came over to look at the place, it was clearly in the process of being renovated with workers constantly going in and out of the place. It was claimed that it would be ready to move into by the 1st of July which was 3-4 days away. The bedrooms came in different shapes and sizes with the larger ones being slightly more expensive than the smaller ones. They all ranged from $150-$200 (US Dollars) per month. I picked one that looked good, and [after a few hours of thinking about it] told the land lord’s proxy I’d take it.

First problem. When I showed up on the first, they were still in the process of renovating. It’s not uncommon even now to have a bunch of workers wandering around the place and improving it. That would normally be a minor annoyance except for problem 2.

When I was scoping the place out, I was told that only one of the rooms had an air conditioner. I thought an air conditioner would be nice, but wasn’t exactly a necessity. I was so wrong; especially when combined with problem 1. When they’re in the house, they open all the windows, and leave the doors open. I get it; they’re constantly moving things in and out, but it doesn’t make for a very pleasant temperature inside.

Also, the last few days have been record-setting in their heat. I’m told the average high for Tbilisi in July is 33C (91.4F), and the record is 40C. Yesterday it hit 43C (109.4F)! And there’s a river that runs through the city so it’s not exactly a dry heat. I do not deal with that kind of weather well.

Fortunately, no one’s moved into the room with air conditioning so my 1 roommate and myself have taken to sleeping in there. We’ve also closed all the windows and set up a system of fans to pull the cool air into the rest of the house. When there aren’t workers running around opening all the windows, it’s actually almost pleasant. I hope no one takes the air conditioned room before the end of summer.

Another problem that wasn’t readily apparent, has to do with the washing machine (for cloths). It’s brand new so that’s nice. However, it wasn’t hooked up properly, and the hose where water drains was sitting on the floor. I was pretty pleased with myself when I figured out how to turn the thing on, and get it started on my roommates cloths. When we got back to the house later, we discovered water all over the floor. We of course, had no idea how to fix the problem so we grabbed a pan out of one of the bathrooms, and placed it under the hose.

Then, we spent the next 4 hours monitoring it, and emptying the pan when it got full. Why was it taking so long to wash a load of laundry? Neither one of us speaks (let alone reads) Georgian so figuring out why was an impossible task. After said 4 hours, we finally hit the pause button and waited for the machine to unlock the door. The cloths were very clean by then so we just had to hang them, and wait for them to dry.

Except that there are no cloths lines installed, yet. I let my roommate borrow the travel cloths line I had the foresight to purchase before I started my traveling adventure. For once, being a little over prepared turned out to be a good thing.

The stove was hooked up, and there the landlord was kind enough to provide dishes and flatware. So I figured I could do some cooking to save money. I’ve been in Georgia for a month now so I don’t necessarily have to go out every meal to try the Georgian food. Except that there’s no cookware…. Now we’re in a bit of an awkward position. We don’t want to buy cookware since we’re unsure if the landlord will purchase some for us. So for now, we’re sticking to meals that don’t require cooking.

I suppose we could message the landlord and ask her about any of these things, but there’s a whole list of ‘problems’ (I’ve only mentioned what I consider to be the most pressing ones). Additionally, the place is still being fixed up so we’re not sure if these are known issues that will be resolved on their own eventually. We don’t want to be annoying tenants that are constantly pointing out problems either. So yeah…new house problems; they can add up.

Well, I hope this has been somewhat informative. Perhaps if any of you are looking for a place, you’ll have an idea of what to look for and some good questions to ask. Or maybe you’re all veterans of house hunting, and I seem like a complete moron. Frankly, I feel a little dumb right now anyway so….

Talk to you next story….

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