The landlord of my current apartment is in the process of selling the place, and there are regular visitors everyday to view the apartment. This means in the mornings when I am usually doing little of no value, I end up welcoming the real estate agent and prospective buyers to wander at will around the rooms. However, I prefer not to be around when they show up, as it feels odd to be something of the human dummy showcasing what it looks like to live here.
The real estate market of this city is something to behold. Old and new apartments are priced beyond what one would expect of a second rate city, but that has a little to do with the general assumptions for the national housing market according to what my students have told me. The value of owning an apartment is rather high among newlyweds, absolutely imperative for a new couple to have one before the wedding, and parents cough up their savings to buy their children a home. Financial crisis or not, apartments are a good commodity over here, resale value of this place made me do a double take. I look at it with a critical eye, consider how much the new owner will have to spend to update the facilities, particularly the bathroom, and wonder if they notice all the cracks and concerns I see. That large-ish line running down the first third of the master bedroom, I would definitely want to know how that's going to work out. The flooring needs to be ripped out, redone, hopefully with real wood or tile, not the cheap pseudo-linoleum crap placed there in the first place.
I was also curious to hear that the current landlord had no interest in selling off his furniture. "I don't have space in my current home, so I'm throwing away everything here." I'd suggest he do a garage sale, but remembered that this is China, most people don't seem to go for second hand things. Maybe he figures reselling all of it would be more difficult, not to mention hauling it down the flights of stairs.
As for my next abode, I will wait till after I return in October. Why fork over three months rent and deposit now when I don't know the exact date of my return? I'm viewing neighborhoods on my free days to see what areas I would prefer to live in, and how long it would take to walk to work. Am certain that neighborhoods east and south of the office are out, as the issue of safety is paramount. North and West are familiar, and now that I found out I am a mere stone's throw from the cult status moon bar, I might not want to leave the district.