June 26, 2011
Ok, so here it finally is. You’ve seen bits and pieces of it from our videos, and now you can get a full idea of what the whole thing looks like.
For those of you who don’t know, we’re no longer teaching in Korea. Simon stopped teaching last year, while Martina just finished her contract in June. We’re now working full-time on the site and video making. When Martina finished her contract with her school, we had to move out of our old apartment. It was under the school’s name, as they were the ones who put down the deposit and were paying the rent. Our new apartment is now our own, not paid for by anyone but ourselves, with whatever money we earn from the site (and from your support)
Anyhow, enough back story. If you can’t tell by now, we like this place A LOT more than our last place. It’s huge in comparison. It’s 34 Pyeong, while our last one was supposedly around 19 Pyeong…almost double! A pyeong, if you don’t know, is a Korean unit of measurement, how we use square feet or square meters. It’s around 35 sq feet or so per Pyeong. Factor that number in, along with a denial of r squared pi, and you get roughly 1200 sq feet. Pretty sweet!
We’re really happy about this place, because it’s not only still in Bucheon, but it’s actually right beside our old apartment. We still overlook the park, and can take Spudgy there for walks (though lately, in this summer heat, Spudgy’s become too lazy to go for long walks). We’re just on the other corner of the park now. No biggy! Our neighbourhood is a bit different as well, as there are totally different restaurants and shops in this part of town. It’s funny that we can say that, because it sounds like we’re far away from where we lived before, when we can actually SEE our old apartment from our place. That’s the cool thing about Korea: it’s so condensed that every few blocks or so provides a new world of shops and places to discover.
There’s a bit of a scary story behind this place. Well, not scary, but it provided us with a scare. When we first saw this place with our realtor (who speaks awesome English by the way) we fell in love with it instantly. We told them that we’re interested in taking it, and so we started getting the funds in order to do so. And so, the day that we were going to sign the contract and put down our deposit, we get a call from our realtor 20 minutes before we were about to go and he tells us that someone else just nabbed it from right underneath our noses. We were furious! Luckily, after he made some calls, an hour later our realtor found another apartment, in the exact same building, three stories down. What’s even better, is that the apartment he found was muuuch nicer than the one we had originally planned on purchasing, and it wasn’t any more expensive at all. Score! Even better, is that their moving date was closer to our moving date: the original one would have us moving in two weeks earlier, which wouldn’t be convenient for us at all. Double score! We really lucked out with this place.
Anyhow, we know people are going to ask, so we’ll answer: the rent is 900,000 won a month, and 20,000,000 won down as a deposit. Our last place, according to our school, cost 600,000 won a month, and 10,000,000 won down as a deposit. The deposit is quite huge, yes, and it’s quite forbidding for some. The Korean deposit system is quite odd: we get that deposit money back at the end of the year (we signed a contract for one year), while we don’t get back any of the rent money. Supposedly, the reason why the deposits are so big is for insurance purposes: if you don’t pay your rent, it’s very difficult for your landlord to evict you. The process takes at least six months for an eviction, from what we’ve been told. By giving a big deposit, your landlord is safe, kinda, from you skipping out on your rent.
Yeah! We’d like to thank our realtor and recommend him as well. If you’re looking for places in Bucheon (and you should, because it’s an awesome city) and want an English speaking realtor, contact Benesta Real Estate at 011-9217-7832. He was really quite helpful, and continues to be helpful after we got this place. Also, thanks go out to Trip Deuce Media for the background music for the video. Woot woot!