The Last Time We Rent

Our last rental before we buy a home.

In the five years that Justin and I have been married, we have lived in five places…all rented apartments (with the exception of my parent’s basement). Each move came with a reason, and none too lightly.

Our first apartment was a tiny, tiny married student apartment near BYU. It was perfect for us as college-aged newlyweds. When I got pregnant with Rhys and hired at a charter school 40 minutes away, we knew we had to leave our one-bedroom apartment.

Our second place was a very nice, cozy, large townhome in Sandy. True, it was a bit outside our budget, so when I quit teaching, we struggled to make ends meet on just Justin’s low salary. But, we loved it. And it is still my favorite place we have lived thus far.

Our third place was my parent’s basement. We lived there for 5 minutes, trying to build up our savings. It was comforting to live with my parents and have all the luxuries of a well-established household. Plus, no rent. But then Justin and his entire department was let go. Thus, began our search.

Our fourth place was in Texas. I spent hours on end looking at apartments online, pouring over reviews, and calling for availability. We finally found a place good enough for our needs and moved in within two weeks. It was great for never seeing it before we moved in. It was great quality and definitely one of the best apartments of the complex. It was close to everything, especially Justin’s work. However, it was only about 750 square feet. And, with Evelyn growing and becoming mobile…and the fact that both kids will continue to do so, made us realize we needed a bigger place.

So, here we are. Our fifth place in the five years of our marriage. It is almost as big as the townhome we had in Sandy. It is beautiful. It is at the very top end of our budget, but we have the means to continue to live in it for a long while. And, that is our plan. We plan on living here until we can own a home. Hopefully, that will be within the next five years (by then, the kids will definitely need their own rooms…).

Our last rental before we buy a home.

Since it is going to be our last place we live until we are homeowners. Therefore, over the next year or so, I have plans to make it more of a home, updating our living areas from a hodgepodge of hand-me-downs and college quality items.

Living Room

Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home.

Plans and Upgrades

The biggest plan is to get a new couch…hopefully for Christmas!! This current couch was actually our third couch (but our first new couch). We started out with an old hand-me-down set from Justin’s sister…then when they fell apart, my parents gave us a 10 year old set since they were upgrading. Then, it fell apart. And we bought this. But, with so much spit up and spilled drinks and jumping up and down, it’s been hard to keep it clean and in good condition.

I also want to get curtains for the windows. A floor rug, especially since Evelyn is going to be walking very soon will be ideal. Justin wants a larger, newer TV, and I’m ok with that. (Our TV is another old hand-me-down.)

Definitely another table cloth and perhaps a new table (another 10 + old K-Mart hand-me-down–we’ve already broken one chair).

Kitchen

Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home.

Plans and Upgrades

I want a Kitchen-Aide. Badly. And a good immersion blender. And this and that and a large wish-list. Haha.

But, we do need some more dishes–more plates, bowls, silverware. We also need new kitchen rugs.

Rhys and Evelyn’s Room

Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home.

Plans and Upgrades

I’m not going to show you bathrooms–there isn’t any reason to do so. The only complaint I have about this apartment is that their bathroom has a shower…no tub. Sigh. Oh well. They still take shared baths, so they just play in our tub.

The kids’ bedroom is faaaaaaaaaar larger than their old one. We were able to fit all their clothes, dresser, big Costco bear, and Lego box in their walk-in closet.

Within the month, we will be buying Rhys this bed. The crib will then become Evelyn’s and she won’t have to sleep in a pack-n-play anymore. Hooray! Once she transitions out of a crib, we will buy another mattress to put on the bottom of the loft bed.

So, I’ll also have to get new sheets for the loft bed and the crib. I also want to get a carpet-like car tracks for them to play with. And, I want to get a picture of Jesus with a boy and a girl. As of right now, we only have a picture of Jesus with a little boy that has been hanging in Rhys’s room since he was born. We also want to put curtains in.

Master Bedroom

Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home.

Plans and Upgrades

We have an en suite bathroom! And such a large walk-in closet! Seriously! Our clothes only take up about a 1/3 of the closets.

I can even fit a desk in here!!!

But, one of my favorite parts is this poster of a map of Salt Lake City.

Our last rental before we buy a home. Our last rental before we buy a home.

Although I have never actually lived in the boundaries of Salt Lake City, it is home to me. We lived in Utah for 8 years, always within 40 minutes of Salt Lake City. We often went to downtown Salt Lake, mainly to Temple Square. Oh, how I loved going to Temple Square, especially during Christmas. And, I am so happy to be going back in this December.

Even now, I miss Salt Lake City. When I went to Time Out for Women, and all the Utah Mormon celebrities came, it made me miss my home.

Thus, I was very happy to get my own map of Salt Lake City from Modern Map Art. Now, I can look above my bed every time I wake up and go to sleep and see my home. It’s such a good quality map and I love looking at it and finding all the roads I used to travel among.

Maybe, eventually, when we buy a house here, I’ll get a Dallas map.

As for other plans and updates:

I’d like to reupholster our headboard and maybe get a new set of sheets. Curtains are definitely going up. That blank wall I’d like to fill up with inspirational and motivational prints. We may also eventually replace that dresser–we aren’t sure yet.

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.
  • Your new place looks so cozy! I don’t have an affinity for decorating at all, but your home looks great! I can’t wait to see how it progresses!

    • Thank you! I don’t really feel that I have quite the knack as other SAHMs (including my mom), but I would like the house to look a little more uniform and mature rather than odds and ends thrown together.

  • I definitely know what you mean about having a home that is a bit more “college student” than actual “adult”. 🙂 We haven’t moved quite as often, we’ve lived in three homes, but in three different countries, which meant we couldn’t really take anything with us from home to home. A lot of what we have is hand-me-downs, too! Our bedroom dresser, my mom was literally like, “Either I’m going to take this out to the garbage or you can have it.” I took it! 😛 My goal is also a new couch by Christmas because having a cozy couch would be a good step on the way to settling in. We also don’t know how long we’ll be in this apartment so it’s hard to feel totally “safe” settling in, but we have to do it sometime. Although we are really good at the “just the basics” college lifestyle at this point! 🙂

    • Having a good couch when you are pregnant AND afterwards is ALWAYS a good idea! And, your situation is understandable…you moved literally across the world and couldn’t take stuff with you.