Monday, March 28, 2011

House options

One of the first things I need to decide is what to do about my house. I purchased this house in May last year to take advantage of the First Time Home Buyers' Grant. Probably a little silly in hindsight, but I wasn't really thinking seriously about MBA programs at the time.

There are really only two options to take: sell it, or rent it out. So I called up my realtor friend, Danny, for his advice. He straight out said that renting is the best way to go. He could sell it, but it probably wouldn't be worth it as the market, even in San Antonio, a very protected place from the recession, is struggling a bit.

So it looks like renting it out is going to be the better option. As much as I am a do-it-yourselfer, I think in this case I will get the services of a property management company to look after it. Taking care of a house, screening renters, collecting rent, etc, isn't going to be easy from Pittsburgh.

Monday, March 21, 2011

I gotta live somewhere

Now the initial excitement has died down a little, I turn my mind to the first problem in getting myself ready: housing arrangements.

Obviously, renting an apartment is the logical answer. But it's an answer I'm not too happy with. My last residence before my house was in an apartment complex where the management changed hands three times over the two years I was there and all tended to treat their tenants like crap. In the case upcoming, I'll be in a school area where a lot of tenants will be students... and I don't know of any apartment management complex that looks too kindly on students, graduate or otherwise. Oh well.

But I drew up a list of criteria for places to live after surfing around on the internets to get an idea of the cost of living.:

- Under $1,000 a month
- Within walking distance to campus, or at least easily accessible via public transportation
- Washer/dryer hookups (this was a requirement from Chris to which I inclined to agree - coin-operated laundry options are too much of a hassle).
- Gas kitchen (another Chris requirement for his cooking)
- Allows pets (I have a cat)
- Good floorplan.

I believe we intend on moving up in July, as apparently there are some sort of pre-term activities going on in August.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Today, and this past weekend, had been agony. I was so nervous; I was almost physically sick. I tried to immerse myself in work today so that I wouldn’t have to worry about it. It didn’t work. I texted Chris to say that he needs to read my email at about 2pm so I don’t have to. I scheduled a meeting for that timeframe. Nope – I was, every 10-15 minutes, checking my email for a notification from GMATClub saying that someone posted in the Tepper thread.
Soon, about 1pm (I think), people started to post their results.
I freaked out about 1:15 when my phone showed that I received an email in my Gmail account. I refused to look at it… but then when I opened up my notifications list, the subject of the email was showing clearly. Thankfully, it was just a junk mail item for a spa service. I posted on Twitter my relief.. but as soon as I did, another email came in. Freaked out again.
I couldn’t take it much longer after reading all the responses on GMATClub… I had to see this email in my inbox, even as I promised myself I wouldn’t until after work (incase there was bad news).
So I opened up Gmail. Immediately my heart leaped from my chest as the subject line confirmed my greatest hope – “Exciting news from Tepper!” I opened it, read the first couple of sentences, and my eyes started welling up with tears. I don’t know why, but it was a crying occasion. I rushed to GMAT Club to post my acceptance, and then returned to the email to actually read the official acceptance letter.
I got selected as a Forte Fellow! With scholarship $! I started to cry a little more. But I held off until I had copy+pasted the contents of the letter in an email and sent it on to Chris and Mum. Immediately, I called Chris and told him to check his email; he was excited too.
I’m going to grad school!