Michael Eriksson
A Swede in Germany
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Apartment search and idiots

Soon after I joined [E3], the company moved from its first-rate, mid-Frankfurt quarters to an outskirts location—giving me a 40-50 minute commute in each direction. I eventually started looking for a new apartment. Judging distances to work and city center, and “quality” of the neighborhood, I decided on Westend (West End). Having problems finding a reasonably priced apartment without odd disadvantages (such as a bath only accessible through the kitchen), I published a “wanted” ad—clearly stating my target neighborhood. I got all of two answers. The first went roughly:

Moron: I have exactly the thing for you. The apartment is in Ostend [East End]...
I: Westend.
M: No; Ostend
I: I am explicitly looking for a Westend apartment.
M: Yes; but the apartment is in Ostend.
I: Ostend is a worse location than my current one. If you do not have a Westend apartment, you should never have called.
M: Yes; but this apartment is perfect for you!
I: [click]

The other was with a very hesitant and insecure woman, who indicated that she had an apartment “a little outside the target area”. Well, obviously a location in e.g, the west-most part of Nordend (North End), or the city center would be worth considering, so I let her keep talking. It turns out that “a little outside” did not mean outside Westend—it meant outside Frankfurt! Is it so hard to understand that “Frankfurt, Westend” means “Frankfurt, Westend”, not ”Frankfurt or neighboring towns”?

I can only speculate that the price range I mentioned was too low to warrant Westend calls, but high enough to trigger the “greed nerve” in two idiots from lower priced areas.

(I eventually settled for an apartment in Gallus: A rotten neighborhood, but a five-minute walk from work and a 250-Euro save on my previous monthly rent.)