**Editor’s Note** This is the second installment of a two-part series. You can view the first article here.**
Lights, Camera, MY FEET HURT.
I take it back. You need a car. I’ve been trying to save money and didn’t want to get an Uber to every viewing, supermarket, or to the magical Taco Tuesday at Te’kila.
I need to side track just a little… TACO TUESDAY!! WHAAAAAT!! $1 Tacos and $5 dollar margaritas. I knew I moved to LA for a reason!!!!
GOOD NEWS!! Not all Leasing agents need good credit.
I am constantly walking from viewing to viewing. Wiping the sweat from my un-climatized brow, and well… everywhere before I introduce myself to each agent so I don’t look like a maniac. Every agent since Agent No Credit has been really sweet and they are falling in love with my accent, but sadly, even with my perfectly put together rental package they prefer an American professional.
The sub-lets don’t seem to be working as a lot of them are offering a roommate situation, and that really isn’t what I’m looking for. One agent stated that having a social security number would help, and if I had a contract or memo from my future employer they would happily take that into consideration.
Operation get the SSN. I was waiting for them in the post still, but was told you can go to your nearest Social Security Department and they will tell you the number if it has been issued. My husband and I walked.. 55 minutes, SERIOUSLY… I take it back, to our nearest department, and … well….
Within the first five minutes of us being there a lady had to be pulled out by security as she was swearing at everyone. She did have one of the best exit lines I had ever heard though.
“I’M AN AMERICAN CITIZEN… B*TCH”.
Thankfully, that was the only drama and we left with our numbers. Whilst waiting the 1hr and 25 minutes it took for us to be seen, (Go early) I also managed to get a contract drawn up by my friends production company that I will be working part-time for in the future.
We celebrated by treating ourselves to an Uber, and we arrived home to our sparkly new BoA debit and credit cards. It was all coming together.. AND THAT’S WHEN IT HIT ME.
Now that I had a new bank account and new cell phone number I could create a new Uber account. I could use the first time promo, (They change all the time so just Google them.) to receive $15 free ride credit. When I had used that, I would invite my husband. He would join with his new account and we would both get a free ride up to $5, BUT before he uses that he will add the other promo code and receive the $15 too.
You can imagine my excitement when I was telling my friend and she informed me of LYFT!!!! I had no idea!!! I could hear my feet rejoice.
The apartment hunt continued, and my blisters healed, but I wasn’t, lets say, winning any leasing contracts. Every time I liked an apartment I had to pay an application fee, and every time I lost it. But then I met Shirley. Oh how I loved Shirley. She had a wonderful apartment. Great location. Carpet, which I really wanted, Air-conditioner, a balcony, enough space to put a inflatable mattress when friends visit AND AMAZING HAIR. I could tell she liked me.
Over the next two days we had a lot of back and forth, she just needed more information, copies of bank statements, the employment contract. I was happy to send over anything that would ease her mind. I met her again to give her the application fee and we had a lovely chat. She explained that it was her husband that was a bit skeptical, due to the fact they had a gentlemen really screw them up before. I had no idea how else I could convince her I was a safe bet. But I need to have an answer Shirley.
3 hours later
I’m sorry but we just can’t risk it, my husband has talked me out of it and we have decided to go with someone else, actually the first guy that saw it. I am going to refund your application fee, and I wish you luck in the future!
WHAAAAAAAAT SHIRLEY !!! HOW COULD YOU?!!! I couldn’t believe it. Just over 72 hours of teasing me with your beautifully beige carpet and you go and break my heart. Shirley you’re dead to me….
Cue Freak out no.2
I honestly thought I was never going to be able to find a home.
I called my Husband and after trying to blame him for everything.. I Yelp’d ‘nearest Happy Hour’, and we met at The Counter on Sunset as that had worked out well for us last time.
We sat there chomping down the $5 parmesan fries (which were INCREDIBLE, but I wasn’t in the mood to compliment them at that moment) frantically using the apartment.com app in the hope of finding another option.
15 hours later
I am holding the keys to my brand new home!! AND IT HAS A POOL.
We really lucked out in a moment we thought our luck was up. We booked a viewing an hour after the fries, and we were the first people to view it. The agent liked us so much, and as we had all the documents with us so she went ahead and confirmed us on the spot. We would just have to meet her in the morning after it had been processed, to GET OUR KEYS.
This represents why you really should NEVER GIVE UP! .. and call upon Happy Hour.
How I got my groove back.
I have a home!! An unfurnished home but a home. So I am sat there on my Grandmas crochet blanket cushioning my butt as I begin to go through my checklist.
I had spent ages looking through craiglist.com, LetGo.com, and the Facebook Marketplace. Not only was it too much hard work but I was going to struggle to get any of it without a car. And then there was the fear of actually getting something that isn’t flat packed in through the door. I quickly moved over to IKEA. It’s just the easiest option and it’s all under one ginormous roof. But NO.. all the basics totaled over $1500. I couldn’t be spending that amount before I had officially started replenishing my savings.
WALMART entered my life. I downloaded the app and managed to find almost everything there at less than half the price. Bed frame, mattress, dining set, kitchenware, towels, and a TV all for $700. AND the biggest plus is that the have free delivery for orders over $35. IKEA’s delivery prices are ridiculous.
The only issue was that it mostly had different delivery dates so I thought I would have to spend the next week as a recluse whilst I waited for the stuff to arrive between 8am – 8pm. But the app gives you all the information you need, and if you sign up (FOR FREE) to the UPS or Fedex websites you can find out the 2 hour time slot.
All the extra little bits from toilet paper to chopping board I got from the 99c store. If you go when it isn’t busy it’s incredible. It kind of makes you want to buy everything, but we found the same set of food tongs for 99c that were in Target for $7.99. SHOCKER!!!!
I was told that I had to use Spectrum as it was already Spectrum ready. I called them, set up the account and picked up all of the equipment in minutes. It was the easiest thing I had ever had to do. I set it up myself which saved $50, this was because the majority of the work had been completed. If the apartment isn’t set up I heard it is wise to book a set-up as they staple the internet wire neatly around the room to the place you need it.
Gas and Electric
In the information we got from our leasing agent, which I’m sure is standard practice, or you should ask, it mentioned the company information for both the Gas and Electric. (socalgas.com and SCE.com.) I had to call and arrange for it to be transferred over to my name. It was also mentioned that the property company usually leave it on for a week to allow time to make the transfer. Soooooo who am I to not try and save a few dollars by waiting an extra couple of days before I called. It almost back fired, cause even though SCE transferred the account immediately, SoCalGas needed to verify my identity. It meant I had to go on an adventure (via Lyft thankfully) to Los Feliz to stand in line for 35 minutes ON THE HOTTEST DAY I’d ever experienced in the “Winter” month of January, just to show my passport. 5 seconds. But once it was done it was done. I would also suggest that when the account is live, both offer an auto-pay option. It has an added, ‘except over the amount of’ so you can never be caught out by a large bill.
An LA Body
Enough is Enough!! I have had too many, Grilled Cheese, Astro burger, parmesan fries, YogurtLand and IN ’N’ OUT to last the rest of the year. The fun is over. I had to do it. It was January and I was enjoying the land of no portion control and REALLY GOOD FAST FOOD. But living in WeHo and seeing all the the 6-packs on legs walking around, inspires you to PUT THE CARBS DOWN!!
I now live right round the corner from RetroFitWeho.com. I’d seen it on one of my many walks and looked it up online. They offer your first class free and then an introductory unlimited month deal of $99. So you can try it first, which I did. I ALMOST DIED. It’s one of those HIIT classes that are all the fashion right now. BUT I LOVED IT!! After I’d caught my breath and stopped feeling like I was going to throw up, I LOVED IT. Great teacher Cassidy, great atmosphere in class, and you leave feeling like you’ve really worked hard. It was exactly what I needed. I would really suggest it if your looking to have an excuse to visit IN ’N’ OUT just one more time.
I’ll Be A Star In No Time
Now that the dust was settling on the biggest move of my life, it was time to start looking towards my future. I was here because of my work in TV, and I really wanted that to continue. I knew it would be hard but as the saying goes, If it’s not easy, it’s not worth it. I took the advice and joined LAcasting.com straight away. The profile was easy to set up and I think it is well worth the $14.95 subscription fee. I would really suggest if you can afford it to do it for the year in advance. You save money and even if you get an agent you have to keep the profile anyway. The emails started pouring in my mailbox as soon as I’d confirmed payment. They can be annoying, as in you put your phone down, for let’s say Happy Hour, and you have 53 emails to go through. Most of them are probably not for you but it’s still completely worth it. Within the first week, I was sent two audition requests. I felt like I was on a roll. One was for an LA Galaxy / LAFC (MLS) where I had to really call upon my acting ability and talk as if I knew who they even were. The second was with my husband as a ‘REAL COUPLE’. There are a lot of those at the moment so I would get a fake Boyfriend and/or Girlfriend and just go for it. I received a callback from the MLS audition but sadly wasn’t booked. I think they saw throw my answer when spontaneously asked “what is the most memorable moment you’ve had thats includes a Soccer team”. Ooops!!
I’d also been submitting myself for representation. If you Google ‘Talent agents in Los Angeles’ your computer will explode, so I suggest you ask around. I got advice from friends, of friends, or even when I was working out. People are very open here about what they do and are more than happy to give advice.
I just received a meeting request for Aqua Talent so fingers crossed.
My One Month Final Thought
I can already feel that moving to LA is going to be the best decision I have ever made. Every time the Hollywood sign pops in to view, or your at the top of Runyon Canyon, you realize where you are. It isn’t always going to be easy.. but when it isn’t.. if it is close to 3/4pm look on Love Happy Hour and RUN to the closest Happy Hour.