Friday, July 27, 2012

I'm Not Homeless!

The Baltimore rental market is ridiculous. My wonderful hosts during my housing search, Ben and Anna, can vouch for this. I would say most nice rentals in a good area (whether through a realtor, Craigslists, etc) are on the market somewhere between 12 and 36 hours. It is seriously stressful. I did a lot of research in the week prior to going to Baltimore and set up appointments to see properties. However, my appointments for anything that was clean, spacious, and reasonably priced were cancelled before I even got there. Thankfully though, there were also new properties popping up almost every day.

In the end, I did find an amazing home rental that I truly think was meant just for me. It popped up on Craigslist just before I arrived in Baltimore and the owner was looking for the right renter as opposed to simply wanting to fill it. It is a 2 floor row house (with a basement) in a quieter area. It about 3/4 mile to the bustling night life area, but also has a little restaurant on the corner where the neighbors hang out. The woman I am renting from is a realtor herself who is very attentive to her property and the neighbors are almost all young professionals like myself. It is everything I was looking for (2 bedroom, storage space, good closet size, washer/dryer) and was the right price for me too. Plus, I lucked out and am getting a tons of awesome extras that I didn't need as well (granite counters, exposed brick, hardwood, a free cleaning lady). Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here you go...

The kitchen:

The living room area:

My bedroom:

The bathroom:

The extra (bed)room:

The most important thing is there is plenty of room for visitors, so start planning your trip!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Pre Apartment Hunting

I am possibly insane. Over the last 2 weeks, I have spent about 6 to 8 hours a day looking for places to live in Baltimore. Thankfully, I had some good guidance from a couple different people about what areas I should be looking into. Unfortunately, not a lot of rentals are being listed through realtors currently. That means mostly I've been looking on Craigslist and other similar sites and contacting each owner/landlord individually. It's been incredibly frustrating in a number of different ways that I won't burden you with. Suffice it to say, I am very excited that it is finally time to go look at what I've found. No matter what, at least I don't have to scour the internet for hours looking anymore. Later today I'll be heading down to Arlington VA to spend a night with Ben and Anna and then off to start the search in Baltimore the next morning.  I have appointments to see 11 apartments on tuesday and another 6 on wednesday. I think I have some really good prospects (and also some long shots). Hopefully later this week I'll be posting about my excitement over a new place (and maybe some pictures too)!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Johns Hopkins!

TO START - I'm so excited! This has been a pretty long process for me, so I've been containing all this excitement inside for some time until everything was official.

THE PROCESS - I first applied to this job before I went to Europe in April (literally, the night before). I didn't hear anything from them for probably about a month. Then, since I was so far away I spent about 2-3 weeks doing a number of phone interviews. This was a nice consideration for me basically to make sure it would be worth my while to travel to Baltimore for an interview. At the end of May, they decided I was one of their top candidates and I went down to Baltimore for the day to interview with a number of physicians and physician assistants in the department and also meet with human resources.  About 2 weeks later I got the call that I was their top choice for the position (as a reference point, this happened June 8th). However, with a large hospital this means they start my background and reference checks. I've had background checks before and I was pretty confident in all my references, so it wasn't really nerve wracking, just more of being in a state of limbo. Finally after another month of waiting, I got the final decision and official offer this morning.

THE JOB - This job is pretty freakin' awesome. Officially I will work for the Johns Hopkins Bayview Hospital pediatric department. John Hopkins has about 4 different hospitals in the Baltimore area now and this one is a smaller hospital about 3 to 4 miles east of the main hospital, but is still right in Baltimore. As a PA for the pediatric department there, I will work in inpatient pediatrics as well as the pediatric emergency room. There are even times where I may work in the newborn nursery. It's pretty unique to find a position that offers such a variety of settings to work in. Plus, as an added bonus the hospital is currently working on building a brand new, state-of-the-art pediatric ward!

So as of September 1st (as long as everything goes as planned) I will be a Maryland state resident. The next step (and probably next update) will be finding a new home.