We've been in country now for more than six weeks. I couldn't even begin to guess how many places we have called trying to find a home. We called realtors, home owners, the housing office, current tenants...it took us five weeks to even get an appointment to see a place! I've heard a bunch of people say that they had to look at 20+ houses before they found the right one--man, I wish we had that problem. We have been inside of three houses since we arrived. That's it.
About two weeks ago we found a house on the housing site that we thought would be perfect. We e-mailed and called the landlord (he is American and lives in the states) and he said he would forward our information to the tenants. He claimed that we were the first on the list and that they were planning to let us see the house the following Monday. Great! We kept looking around but we both figured that we would be taking that house. It was very close to base, big house, lots of room--pretty much just what we were looking for.
Sunday rolls around and we still haven't heard from the tenants. We e-mail the landlord and ask if we should go ahead with the time he had told us for the next day or what? He tells us that the tenants are very busy right now and that we should just wait for them to have the time to let us see the house. It could be awhile.
Um...really? They don't move out of the house for another six weeks. They can't take 20 minutes out of their day to show us around the house and hand us a lease agreement? We've PCS'd from Germany before so we know how it is--and I'm telling you, they aren't that busy.
It was at about that point that we started to sour on this house. (Well, on the landlord anyway. It's not the house's fault it has a &%*$& owner.) We didn't cut things off with him but we did start to look a little harder for a house. The very next day he e-mails us again: Oh, hey. My bad. Someone else called before your initial call and left a message on the voicemail. It was only fair to show them first since they called first. The tenants showed them the house already and they took it. (I might point out that our initial call was also a voicemail. I guess he didn't listen to them all the first night? What-freakin'-ever.)
Question: Does that strike anyone else as a jerk move? Because I really think poorly of him over the way that he dealt with this situation--if that is indeed what happened, which I totally doubt. I'm pretty sure that what he's saying really translates to one of two things: either someone else just showed up and knocked on the door and the tenants decided to just get it over with OR someone called after us and offered the landlord extra money if he bumped them to the top. Is that jaded thinking? Sorry. It's been a little frustrating having none of our calls returned, realtors who are RUDE and just hang up on you, and just dealing with the overall lack of housing of the type that we're looking for. It's hard to maintain that eternally optimistic glow under the circumstances--especially since I'm not an optimist to begin with! Ha!
We did see a house last week (like, we saw the actual inside of it!) and it looks like we are going to get this one. We think. We hope. Family and friends think we're moving into a different house (Surprise! We're not!) but at the very last minute we decided that it wasn't a good fit for our family. We still have about six weeks before we have to move and we decided that we didn't want to settle for an 'okay' house when we still had more time to look. I didn't update my personal FB page about that because, quite frankly, I had been whining about the house-hunting situation for awhile and figured that they all needed a break!
So yeah. To recap: house hunting in Germany sucks. And now you know.