I’ve mentioned this offline to a few people, but I haven’t discussed it here. About three weeks ago I got an official notice from my apartment complex that I and every other tenant was going to be evicted. This summer our complex was sold and the new owners began doing construction on the outside of the building.

We expected that the new owners might increase the rent, but they have renovation plans that can’t be done with the tenant in place. Their plans are to turn our apartments into luxury apartments and if rumors are accurate increase the monthly rent by $500 or more.


I’ve been living in this complex for 3 years. One lady has been here since 1968. There are many that have been here for a decade or more. This was one of the last remaining affordable places to live in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle.

The economy is booming in Seattle and people are moving here from all over the world. The result is there are rental shortages in the most desirable neighborhoods. Currently there are many new apartment buildings under construction, but those units are not available yet, so the housing shortage is driving up rents.

The earliest I believe I could be evicted is January. The more likely scenario is March and perhaps as late as June. Some tenants are organizing to fight the developer. They might be successful, but I can’t assume they will do much more than delay the project and therefore evictions.

I’m not upset about the eviction. I don’t mind moving. I own very little and could probably be packed in a few hours. For me the greater question is where to move next? I don’t think I’ll be able to stay in Ballard. A new neighborhood is a new adventure. Where should I go?


Add yours

  1. Your new neighbourhood should be Southeast Asia. That will prove monumental in getting your caffeine under control.

  2. Well, failing the UK….you could try California…..I’d love to read your take on the Santa Monica gym scene in a new “Tales from the Glitter Gym” series.

  3. Could be worse, long time ago when I started my law practice I got evicted from my rented office space after three months because the building got sold.

  4. @Stephan – My adrenals would certainly appreciate me leaving the Pacific NW.

    @StuartG – I did SoCal for 7 years in San Diego. Loved the area. Don’t know if I could handle the high volume of driving that I did when I lived down there.

  5. A decade and a half ago, I decided to stop renting apartments and rent proper houses instead. It involved a few changes but I have never looked back.

  6. Boulder – definitely

  7. This sucks. I know I’m a bit worried about my building – they’re doing A LOT of work to make the place look nicer (re-doing the greenery, power-washing, new carpets, etc), which makes me think they’re going to sell the place and I don’t want to move!

    I’m tempted to just get a Tiny Home. I do love living minimally… Pay it off quickly, and then no rent worries. Just finding a place to park it…

  8. If you’re going to leave Seattle, go somewhere exciting like Alaska or Hawaii. But I just assumed you wanted to stay in Seattle, which I can’t comment on, having never visited there.

  9. @Anemone – I most likely will stay in Seattle. I kept the phrasing vague both here and on Facebook to see what others would recommend. Mostly people recommended I move to where they reside. I don’t know if that means they like me or like they place they live. Maybe both?

  10. What about Vegas? Tony Hsieh (zappos.com) is building a tech city with the core concept being minimizing the need to drive and maximizing social interactions.

    Portland is also a nice (and much cheaper) option if you want to stay in the PNW.

    Have you thought about New York or the east coast in general?

  11. @shozub – I can’t see myself in Vegas, as I do not drink or gamble. PDX is nice.

    I lived in DC and hated it. Although I like NYC, I am no fan of the congestion along that corridor.

  12. The Good Mark

    Oct 26, 2013 — 7:11 am

    Portland is where young people go to retire…Not sure there would be enough action there for you to stay long term. 🙂 My suggestion would be to rent a house instead of an apartment, the rent is usually more stable and you are less likely to get “Condoized”.

  13. Sacramento, CA

    Your current rent will get you a luxury one bedroom downtown, its a got a good farm to table scene, great outdoor activities and due to it being a government center with nearby major universities demographics skew female.

    don’t know about the coffee scene.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.