My sister and I were recently chatting about moving. She is thinking about making a change in her living arrangements, but she has some non-negotiable amenities that need to be in her next home, regardless of the city she ends up in. In going through her list of non-negotiables, I started to reflect on my own and how those have changed over time. My very first apartment after college graduation was in NYC and met all my needs at the time, but it wouldn’t meet all my needs now. Besides the obvious things that have changed in my life, like needing more space as I am now married and have three step-kids, I started to wonder how my needs have evolved, and why? I am currently living in my fifth place since graduating, and with each place the list of non-negotiable amenities has grown. Am I just getting more spoiled or more particular?!
(I should also note that currently we do not own, we are still renters for a variety of reasons I can explain in another post!)
- Laundry. Both my first and second apartments did not have laundry in the apartment, let alone in the building. It was the laundromat for me! Now, it is an absolute must that we have a washer/dryer wherever we live.
- A master bathroom. My husband and I absolutely need our own bathroom that we do not have to share with guests. I didn’t have that until my current place and now it is a must have.
- Dishwasher. I honestly am not sure how you manage feeding a family of five without it! But, in my first and second apartments, I really didn’t miss it.
- Parking. I love living in the city, but until my current place, I had to park on the street, which could add anywhere from 5-20 minutes to my daily commute and made running errands on the weekend so challenging. The fact that I don’t have to worry about where to park when I get home makes this a new must have!
- Air conditioning and heating. Only my last two places have had it, and while I don’t think I use it as often as some, I definitely am glad we have the option! The DC humidity makes opening up the windows and using fans sometimes just not doable.
- Within walking distance to restaurants and shops. This is one of the non-negotiables that has been in each of my five homes. I love being able to walk places and not have to rely on my car to get everywhere. I grew up in the suburbs and am not yet ready to go back there!
My sister mentioned his and her sinks in the master bathroom as being a must have for her. I think it would be for me too, but we don’t have it now and we seem to do OK, so who knows.
In looking over the above list, I think my non-negotiables have changed out of convenience and time. For example, I like having a washer/dryer because I don’t want to dedicate the time to going to the laundromat with all of our clothes! (I also think financially it makes more sense but I don’t have the data to back that up, it is just a hunch). As we grow up, we have different responsibilities that require more of our time so it would make sense that we want to take advantage of time saving short cuts. I mean, does anyone hand wash all their clothes and hang them out to dry anymore?!
What are your non-negotiable amenities? Why do you think your preferences have changed? Comment below!