Uncertainty and Trust (in Accommodation)  

Posted by Dino Gane-Palmer né Ganesarajah in , , ,

I'm going to join the 10%'ers in Park Evanston. If you're considering doing the same, drop me an email and we'll split the referral fee. Blatant commerialisim. You've gotta love it. © DAK/Kellogg.

Uncertainty creates huge amounts of work. All parties involved spend time and energy to gain mutual trust and clarity. Yet it can be allusive, because none of the parties involved want to end up with a bad deal. I have found this particularly true for me in my accommodation hunt

I was not lucky in the McManus (Kellogg halls of residence) lottery. In fact, I don't know anyone who has been lucky. So consequently, I've spent some time weighing up options - trying to reach certainty in what I wanted to do. What's most important to me? Proximity to campus? Proximity to the bars? Amenities, such as an onsite gym? Style of apartment? Whether I'd share with a another person? In the end I've probably ended up with what could be considered the safest possible option: an apartment in Park Evanston - the block with the second highest concentration of Kellogg students. Can so many Kellogg students be wrong? Surely I can trust the heard? To keep costs down, I'm sharing a 2 bed 2 bath with a fellow Brit. Again, sharing with a Brit will reduce some of the cultural shock and increase my certainty as to what the other guy will be like.

With the stress and time of finding an apartment has eased, the uncertainty now is whether we can get the lease sorted out smoothly. As we're not in the country, there are questions as to whether legally we need a Notary Public. They are a rare breed in the UK and cost a fortune, whereas in the US I understand (from Wikipedia) that it is as easy to become a Notary Public as applying for a library card. When I get to the States, I might apply. If we can get the apartment management to just trust us that we're not going to disappear off the face of the Earth, then the time and effort of this process will squish to nothing. Hopefully we'll get there soon.

In the meanwhile, I'm buying a whole stack off furniture off an international student who is graduating from Kellogg and heading back home. I just could not bare the thought of trying to set up an apartment piece by piece. Trips to and fro from Ikea over the week before school starts might be a fine Kellogg tradition, but not one I'm keen to partake in. The uncertainty I have with the furniture I've bought is around figuring out how to get all the furniture to the new apartment. Perhaps I can just put it into storage until I get there? Will it survive in one piece? Can I trust these shipping people when they say they'll take good care of it?

Despite all this, there is one thing I can say with certainty - I got my first choice KWEST trip. I can't reveal much more than that, as a tradition of these trips is The Big Reveal - that the participants don't reveal personal details about themselves until the end of the trip. However, it is interesting that there is already a rumor floating around. Allegedly one of the participants in one of the South American trips worked in the "adult entertainment" industry, if you know what I mean. Is it true? Would Kellogg admit such a student? Why would such a student need an MBA? Oh, the uncertainty!

Follow any responses to this entry through the

20 comments

Park Evanston is a nice option. I was too thinking about it..close to grocery store, bars, McManus and Jacobs. But I had second thoughts as I had to share to keep the costs down...and I wanted a place to have my own moments of peace :)

18 June 2009 at 12:51

Park Evanston is a nice option. I was too thinking about it..close to grocery store, bars, McManus and Jacobs. But I had second thoughts as I had to share to keep the costs down...and I wanted a place to have my own moments of peace :)

18 June 2009 at 12:51

So you got a 1 bed or studio out of the McManus waitlist?

18 June 2009 at 13:03

So you got a 1 bed or studio out of the McManus waitlist?

18 June 2009 at 13:03

Christ, my plan of buying a condo, finding a roommate, furnishing the place and moving in within 30 days seems even more unreasonable now.

18 June 2009 at 15:09

Christ, my plan of buying a condo, finding a roommate, furnishing the place and moving in within 30 days seems even more unreasonable now.

18 June 2009 at 15:09

Glad to hear you are getting your housing situation straightened out.

I thought about buying a condo over there as well, but that plan was contingent on selling my current place. Figured it would be easy to keep a rental property occupied
in Evanston.

I'm all about moments of peace as well. I've got a 1BR waiting for me at 1575 Oak.

18 June 2009 at 17:45

Glad to hear you are getting your housing situation straightened out.

I thought about buying a condo over there as well, but that plan was contingent on selling my current place. Figured it would be easy to keep a rental property occupied
in Evanston.

I'm all about moments of peace as well. I've got a 1BR waiting for me at 1575 Oak.

18 June 2009 at 17:45

@Orlando: 1575 Oak? That is different lifestyle to McManus.

@BizCow: you crack me up. Yup, start now.

18 June 2009 at 23:46

@Orlando: 1575 Oak? That is different lifestyle to McManus.

@BizCow: you crack me up. Yup, start now.

18 June 2009 at 23:46

@D.G
It is an 1BR. Seems studios were on a very high demand this year (mostly by the 2nd year students). So I agreed for a 1BR when it was offered, as it still seemed a better price (including utilities) for having my very own place.
But you guys are welcome to party in my place any time :)
I might switch to a studio next year though, if I feel like it.

@bizcow
We would there in August, and can help you move if needed. Holler us.

19 June 2009 at 02:30

@D.G
It is an 1BR. Seems studios were on a very high demand this year (mostly by the 2nd year students). So I agreed for a 1BR when it was offered, as it still seemed a better price (including utilities) for having my very own place.
But you guys are welcome to party in my place any time :)
I might switch to a studio next year though, if I feel like it.

@bizcow
We would there in August, and can help you move if needed. Holler us.

19 June 2009 at 02:30

D.G.
The US loves and needs a paper trail. Hence the notary nonsense. You would be wise to ensure that you have reached a clear and documented agreement and lease with the apartment managers asap, as it is not uncommon for foreign students to arrive, only to be homeless because they assumed an agreement.

Remember, this is not the UK, this is an extremely litigious society where the population looks to the community "elders" & "leaders" to sort out every tiny dispute for them. Hence, one has to approach everything as if one will go to court eventually. There isn't much of the trust you seek, outside of older, closer knit communities. If you don't have a US credit history, you are a non-person. If you are a foreigner, especially with an Asian name, it is often a foregone conclusion that you must be a Jihadist, escaped from Gitmo.

As to your questions about the "Adult Entertainment" person. They are admitted because they have the money, test scores and possibly the connections. Besides, working on your own premise of connections and knowledge gained through an MBA, these factors, coupled with the incredible amount of money and potential in the pornographic industry here, means you could well be sitting next to tomorrows version of Hugh Hefner...

22 June 2009 at 11:50

D.G.
The US loves and needs a paper trail. Hence the notary nonsense. You would be wise to ensure that you have reached a clear and documented agreement and lease with the apartment managers asap, as it is not uncommon for foreign students to arrive, only to be homeless because they assumed an agreement.

Remember, this is not the UK, this is an extremely litigious society where the population looks to the community "elders" & "leaders" to sort out every tiny dispute for them. Hence, one has to approach everything as if one will go to court eventually. There isn't much of the trust you seek, outside of older, closer knit communities. If you don't have a US credit history, you are a non-person. If you are a foreigner, especially with an Asian name, it is often a foregone conclusion that you must be a Jihadist, escaped from Gitmo.

As to your questions about the "Adult Entertainment" person. They are admitted because they have the money, test scores and possibly the connections. Besides, working on your own premise of connections and knowledge gained through an MBA, these factors, coupled with the incredible amount of money and potential in the pornographic industry here, means you could well be sitting next to tomorrows version of Hugh Hefner...

22 June 2009 at 11:50

> this is an extremely litigious society

Damn, I thought that was only in the tv shows.

Thanks for the tip on the paper trail. My "roomie" is in the middle of some jungle and not near technology (or notary) so getting that signature is a problem. I need keep those apartment management people warm to me (as though I have not called them enough)...

24 June 2009 at 23:35

> this is an extremely litigious society

Damn, I thought that was only in the tv shows.

Thanks for the tip on the paper trail. My "roomie" is in the middle of some jungle and not near technology (or notary) so getting that signature is a problem. I need keep those apartment management people warm to me (as though I have not called them enough)...

24 June 2009 at 23:35

D.G.

The fastest way to resolve this would be if you had a relative or friend here willing to co-sign the agreement.

The other way is to offer to pay for the duration, up front. Not so desirable, for then you have to trust that the apartment people are kosher.

The other way is to have a Solicitor confirm by headed letter to the people concerned, that the documents you have provided are in good standing. This should be followed by/accompanied with the funds required for the deposit, first months rent etc. As soon as they accept this, you can rest assured.

The last piece of paper passed between parties governs the legal status here. In the US, if it has a president's head on it and it is essentially pocketed by the receiving party, a friendship ensues. Money talks, as the saying goes.

Be careful re the securing of this apartment. Do all you can to be certain. People are jittery here, credit card defaults are at 10% of all debt as of today. Mortgage and rent defaults are rising astronomically.

Good luck!

25 June 2009 at 15:51

D.G.

The fastest way to resolve this would be if you had a relative or friend here willing to co-sign the agreement.

The other way is to offer to pay for the duration, up front. Not so desirable, for then you have to trust that the apartment people are kosher.

The other way is to have a Solicitor confirm by headed letter to the people concerned, that the documents you have provided are in good standing. This should be followed by/accompanied with the funds required for the deposit, first months rent etc. As soon as they accept this, you can rest assured.

The last piece of paper passed between parties governs the legal status here. In the US, if it has a president's head on it and it is essentially pocketed by the receiving party, a friendship ensues. Money talks, as the saying goes.

Be careful re the securing of this apartment. Do all you can to be certain. People are jittery here, credit card defaults are at 10% of all debt as of today. Mortgage and rent defaults are rising astronomically.

Good luck!

25 June 2009 at 15:51

Interesting comments - especially on the defaulters. The apartment management now have the notarized documents. Let's see what they say.

28 June 2009 at 22:00

Interesting comments - especially on the defaulters. The apartment management now have the notarized documents. Let's see what they say.

28 June 2009 at 22:00

Post a Comment