As you may or may not know, I am on the hunt for a new apartment, since my current roommate/landlord decided to go to Africa/Malta, and rent the place out. This isn’t the first time I’ve been through the Spanish-apartment-hunting process, but it does have its adventures…
1. If you are advertising a room for rent, you should…actually have…a room…for rent. It sounds obvious, but MORE THAN ONCE, I’ve called the number in an ad just to have the person say, “Flat? What flat? I have no idea what you’re talking about!” And yes, it was the RIGHT NUMBER.
2. This is closely related to #1. If you are advertising a room for rent, you should notify your flatmates. Especially if you put their phone number in the ad.
3. “Hot water” does not count as an amenity. If this is all your flat has to offer, you might as well add “windows” and “doors,” or maybe “intact walls.”
4. If you are renting a room in your flat, you should know the address. Again, this seems ridiculous, but again, MORE THAN ONCE, I have been given the WRONG ADDRESS by a potential flatmate.
5. If you are renting a room in your flat, you should know the price. Many times I have called the phone number in an ad just to have the person say, “Uhh…well…you should probably talk to SoAndSo Flatmate about that…but he/she/it’s not here and I have no idea when he/she/it will be back…so….uhhh…”
6. If you provide a cell phone number as the contact information in your ad, it should be active and in service. I won’t go into detail about the number of “this number does not exist” messages I’ve gotten.
7. If you provide an email address as the contact information in your ad, it should a) exist, and b) you should actually, at some point, look at and/or respond to said email messages. Just a suggestion.
8. On the same note as #7, another suggestion: if your email address is something like email@example.com, maybe you should avoid using it as contact information.
9. In any ad, the words “buen rollo” (“good vibes,” more or less, meaning “we want a good social atmosphere in our apartment”), can be translated as “heavy drug-trafficking and illegal activity.”
10. And finally, if you speak to a potential flatmate on the phone and make an appointment to let the person come and see your flat, you should a) actually be there, and b) answer the doorbell. Once again, this has happened to me MORE THAN ONCE.
Ah, the joys! Spain is different!