A few months ago I left Australia, embarking on a big European adventure and, believe it or not, one of the hardest things to do was getting my apartment ready for rental.
The question was: how much do I leave in the apartment in order for it to be classified as a ‘furnished apartment’? Everyone that I spoke to said that this consisted of only the basics: a bed, a couch, a TV cabinet, table, sofa bed, washing machine and fridge. As much as I knew that only the basics were needed, I very much wanted to look after the future tenant and fit the place out with more that was necessary. I wanted them to love the place just as much as I did. I also wanted to attract people with a love for aesthetic as much as I had, those that really took pride in their home.
So I did a bit more research into furnished apartments for rent around the area and found that the higher quality the apartment, the more furnishings were offered. Kitchen utensils and dinner sets along with vacuum cleaners and other cleaning materials were offered all within the package price per week. All that was needed in addition was to find a local tradesman like those found on MyHammer to help with moving apartment and any small jobs like decorating and fixing up loose fittings.
In the end I decided to include pretty much everything except for bedding. I even left my TV and stereo there. I suppose it also worked because it meant I didn’t have to spend too much money on removal trucks or storage.
The lady who moved in was middle aged, an antique dealer and had a teenage son. Seeing as though my place was a stunning 1930’s art deco place, it was perfectly suited to her. By keeping it all there, it really forged a closer bond with her, knowing she would take care of it, and knowing her heart was in it.
By the time I had moved to Berlin, Germany, I found a place which was fitted out with merely the bare essentials that had been described to me. After six months of using mugs for wine and tablespoons to stir my tea, I was frustrated with how much my landlord didn’t care about her apartment and how the absolute minimal was enough. I moved out into another place which had me realise something. It was a smaller place for much less money, owned by a young man who was moving abroad too. Like me back in Australia, he had put so much love and care into making the place feel positive and energising. He left me everything. The kitchen is completely fit out, even with a stash of cleaning products and light globes.
Every day when I see his things, I think of him and the time he made to make this place right and this encourages a huge respect for his space. I think it taught me a vital lesson, not just about the housing market, but concerning standardised procedure and how it can remove ourselves from each other. I wanted to restore faith in someone to take over my place, I wanted to make them comfortable. I went against the standard protocol ‘give the absolute minimum’ and received a great result. Now I have found that at the other end and truly can understand the power of us helping each other out just by a little trust. No matter on what side of the world it is.