Category: Housing


Norrebro-bound

Today, as I finally arrived at m new flat, I unpacked my bags, packed them again and then unpacked them once again. I love unpacking, even more so because this is the first time I’ve been able to do this in Copenhagen.

I spent the weekend at some friends’ place, turning to my luggage only in case of dire need and neglecting them for the bigger part (the toothbrush and the odd pair of clean socks being the only things to see daylight). But today I finally feel like home. I’ve lost the seaview of the Amager apartment, but the brightly lit side streets of Norrebrogade are a fine substitute.

This is also the first time in a long while when I’ve been able to sit (read: casually slouch) on an armchair. Also, I have a proper desk only a cigar case short of a perfect dictator’s office, as well as a decent sound system. And I have a bunch of fun flatmates to boot. Still I suspect a trade-off for all these amenities. Like, say, a band of mutant rats turning up in the dark of the night demanding a tribute under the threat of total war.

Unreasonable fears aside, all in all I find myself living in yet another peaceful region of the city. For a pathological riot hunter, this is only good news.

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In Da House

I guess Lady Luck has finally decided to just go “fuck it” and cut me some slack, because yesterday, after persistently refreshing the DBA housing page, I got through to a guy who said “fuck it” and gave me a room. And I went like “fuck, yes.”

The call came somewhat unexpectedly when I was waiting for the train at the Oresund station. I had just finished packing my stuff at my old place and celebrating our departure with beer and biscuits. It must’ve been half past nine when the phone finally rang, as I recall I was at that point quite confident that I’d be left hanging once again.

I had been to the viewing a few hours before and while we seemed to have hit it off rather well he did inform me that others had expressed their interest in the place as well. And why wouldn’t they? The apartment itself is only ten minutes from the city center by bike (if you ride like a baby) and the room itself quite spacious and fully furnished. On top of it all it only costs 3200 DKK per month.

I’ll be meeting the guy again today to discuss the rental details. I won’t actually believe I’ve got a new home until I physically have the keys in my grasp, but it suffices to say I’m cautiously optimistic.

Persistence, it would seem, does lead to victory.

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Fallen City, Living Death

If you’ve got a steady place to stay, Copenhagen is actually not that expensive, provided that you at least possess elementary cooking skills and aren’t afraid to explore the city for some hidden sites. But if you can’t find a place to settle down in, Copenhagen will bring the hammer down.

Because this is my last day with a roof over my head, I’ve completely abandoned my school projects and my research in favor of frantically refreshing housing portals to get in on a deal, any deal. Yesterday it seemed for a moment that I had struck gold when I managed to reach a guy selling a dorm room for just 3000 DKK a month. We set up a meeting and thirty minutes later I was on my way to the future city of West Amager.

And what a strange city it was.

Until yesterday I had only heard rumors of the new ultra-modern district, a metropolis in the making. Because I was feeling sick, I left my bike behind and opted to travel by metro. As soon as the train exited the tunnel and dashed into the new city, the adjective “modern” got a whole new and a twisted meaning.

West Amager as a whole is truly an alien landscape. Its buildings, monumental in scale, relatively few in numbers and scattered what seems like miles apart, ooze modernity and their angular design, combined with the lack of visible human activity result in a vista of Lovecraftian desolation. “Look, but don’t touch” is the impression you get when walking amidst these cyclopean megaliths, treading your path carefully as if trying not to awaken something old and sinister sleeping beneath the massive monuments.

I finally made it to the dorm and I could hardly believe I could get a room here for such a cheap price. In silent awe I stood before the towering monolith and took out my phone. To my surprise, the guy who was supposed to show me the room didn’t pick up my call and instead I heard the all too familiar voicemail notification. I kept trying to reach him but when you’re looking for housing, voicemail can only mean one thing – you’ve been cut off.

This would’ve been rather allright if I’d been in a more familiar part of the city, but the alien megapolis is not a good place for receiving bad news. There were no doorhandles to be found, or people around to help me find my way around. Or rather, there were people, but they all seemed very ghost-like, in a sense that you could not believe seeing them as they just didn’t belong there. Because I was feeling increasingly ill I finally stopped calling the guy after several attempts and made my way to the metro station, all the while battling eerily howling surges of cool wind.

I wasn’t happy when I boarded the train to take me back to human civilization. I was feeling feverish and cold and I think, while living in an alien city would’ve been something I would have gotten used to, a fruitless endeavor to the same place leaves a whole different impression. An impression of hostility of the barren cityscape, and a sense of a dystopian parallelity, so close to the safety of the populated center.

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I Don’t Need Your Civil War

There is no sugarcoating this, so I’ll be straightforward – finding housing in Copenhagen is a bitch.

Thus far I’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy a room in a large apartment for just 1750 DKK per month. This is dirt cheap. Unfortunately the apartment was finally sold just before my arrival and as the situation stands, we have to clear the place by October 1st. The new owners were originally supposed move in on September 15th. According to the most recent gossip, they will move in some time this week.

It’s Wednesday now.

Because the place is quite large, they will be living in a closed off section of the appartment and while that may not sound like a horrible thing, there is only one working stove in here. And of course, the stove is on their side. We do have a bargaining chip though, as the only shower cabin is on this side of the front of the imminent civil war. I reckon that unless the newlyweds want to turn into complete savages while we’re still in the house, they will have to let us sit around their campfire – provided they won’t find us cooking an omelette in our underwear every morning, of course.

As for the new place, the housing situation should improve by the end of the month but still it will be hard to find a good compromise between price and location. Fortunately there is no shortage of potential flatmates and thus teaming up for a larger place will not be a problem.

As a last resort, we can always join the Hells Angels. Their place is a-rockin’.

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