November 6th, 2012


Roommate wanted: Shoreline, WA

My tenant/housekeeper is moving out at the start of December, so I need someone to rent the enormous, beautiful master bedroom in my house. It'd be great if I could keep this within the community, so in addition to posting it on Craigslist, I'm posting it here where friends and friends-of-friends may see it. Signal boosting is encouraged.

The room is gigantic. 14 feet by 22, and that's just the main bedroom area -- there is also a dressing area with vanity sink, a private bathroom with large stall shower, and a walk-in closet bigger than some rooms I've lived in. It's got a wall full of south-facing windows (not to be confused with south-going Zaxes) that keep it reasonably well-lit even in Seattle winters, and it comes with all utilities, including cable TV and wireless internet.

The house you'd be sharing with us is a one-story single-family home on a quiet residential street just north of the official Seattle border. We're two blocks from the park, two from the commuter bus stop, and six from the entrance to the highway, so we're very much in the middle of everything, but positioned so we don't get traffic noise. We have a living room (with sofabed for your friends to visit, and treadmill if you want to get your exercise without leaving home), an open kitchen/dining area (with a dishwasher), a small backyard (with garden plot if you're into growing stuff), a laundry room with full-sized washer and dryer, and a three-car garage that's fairly full but still has some room if you need to store some things (and also has a second fridge and a chest freezer, so we will not run out of food storage space!).

Who are we? A single mom, 42: queer, progressive, semi-disabled, filker, semi-fannish. I'm in an intensive massage therapy vocational school program this year, and I'm also severely fibromyalgic, which means I am pretty much up to my eyeballs in Stuff That Needs Done. This will become relevant in a paragraph or so, when we get to the rent. Also two kids, ages eight and six: sweet, smart, and remarkably well-behaved for their age (and no, I'm not the only one who says that).

Rent: this is where things get interesting. Because we can do this in any number of ways. If you want to rent the room outright, for money, I'm asking $750/month including all utilities. But up till now, I have been accepting all or part of the rent in the form of household help: babysitting during the afternoons and evenings, doing dishes and laundry, grocery shopping, and keeping the kids' room, my room, and the public areas of the house clean. Also cooking for the kids, when you're on duty watching them, and occasional other errands (if you're going to want to do the work-for-rent version of this, you will need a car of your own to pick the kids up from school in, and go shopping and the like). To work off the full cost of the room, I'd ask about 20-25 hours a week; if you want to pay part of it in money and go less than that, that's also possible, depending on the specifics. I need to make sure that the combination of the money I take in and the help I get directly will allow me to cover the jobs I need done, but I'm not picky about whether my tenant wants to do the work on their own or pay me what I need to hire someone else to do it.

[Note, because I've been asked: yes, it is possible to put a couple, or a parent and child, in the room. If you want to do that, I'd ask a little more than if you're putting one person in it, because of the crowding it leads to in the household in general, but I'm open to the possibility.]

If anyone knows of someone who's looking for a terrific place to live in the Seattle area, especially if they can't afford much in cash but want to work it off, please pass the information on!

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