During the last three years, I have rented 4 apartments in Paris, 2 apartments in Oaxaca and 3 casitas in Tucson. Locating the apartments and negotiating prices is definitely part of the adventure. There is not such a large rental inventory in Oaxaca because "snowbirds" return every year to the same "nests". A lady that I met from Victoria rents her Oaxaca "home" all year even though she returns to Canada for 6 months. For this reason, I am spending a month at the Casa Peyrera before I move to the Learning Center.
|There are brightly coloured ornaments in the patios at Casa Peyrera.|
I originally researched Oaxaca about six years ago when I was still working. All of my life, I have wanted to experience different cultures. I had trained as an English as a Second Language teacher in the 1980's as a means of achieving my long-term goal. Little did I know in the early 1980's that the Vancouver area would have such an enormous influx of immigrants. In 2010, I discovered the Oaxaca Learning Center apartment where I stayed for two summer vacations.
In order to rent an apartment in Paris, I have had to use rental agencies. I tried a private rental once but the deal "fell through". In 2012, I was planning to study in Paris for 5 months. Location was important to me and I knew that I would be having a few visitors. I located my "perfect" apartment on Rue St Jacques close to Reid Hall where I would be studying. This would be my most expensive apartment at 2100 euros a month. Fortunately, the Canadian dollar was worth more 3 years ago because today the cost would be $2850 Canadian a month!
Only one of the apartments that I rented in Paris included regular cleaning in the rental price. Romantique, located in Montmartre, was a beautifully decorated apartment, that I found through VRBO. The owner was easy to deal with and the apartment was cleaned and the bed linens were changed weekly.
I do feel that, with long-term rentals, cleaning and fresh bed linens and towels should be provided. A long-term tenant means fewer financial transactions, fewer communications and fewer cleanings. In Oaxaca, Sofia, spends 2 hours cleaning my apartment every week. When I move, next week, I will leave her a tip for all of her thoughtfulness. A bed was set up downstairs for my brother who also was given his own keys and clean towels.
|This was a lovely bright apartment with a place for me to study.|
|Last year, I did laundry in Paris.|
The rental market in Oaxaca is busy from November to March because of "snowbirds". The couple from Chicago who have been in The Learning Center apartment have already booked for two months next year. Here, in Casa Peyrera, I am paying $1200US but I will only be paying $800US at the Center. That rental fee has not gone up since I was here five years ago.
Locating long-term rental properties is always a bit stressful. I have had nightmares of entry codes that might fail and late-appearing property managers. There is nothing like sitting in front of an unknown building in a foreign country waiting for a stranger to let you in. But so far, I have enjoyed the adventure of each temporary "nest".