Robin Watts rent an apartment with Paris Attitude for her trip in Paris. Here is the complete interview about Robin's experience when choosing Paris Attitude.
Robin, can you introduce yourself?
I am a 26 year old Swedish-American woman who grew up in Stockholm, Sweden. I work in television with product development, but have a background in marketing and sales. I live with my boyfriend and my two little dogs, and in my free time I enjoy running and doing yoga, travelling, reading, cooking and hanging out with friends. I have a blog, which is full of Paris tips and information.
Can you speak about your last trip in Paris?
I came to Paris just over a month ago, though it's far from my first time here. I've wanted to live here for years, but never took the leap.
Now I just decided to do it, so I took study leave from my job and came here to learn French at the Sorbonne. I came with my boyfriend (also a Swede), who is studying as well. We will stay for at least six months, and during that time we need to decide if it's possible for us to stay for longer (perhaps a few years) to work and learn more about the French way of life.
Why did you choose to rent an apartment and not a hotel room ?
To rent a room in a hotel for six months would be expensive. We want it to feel like a real home, and it really does.
How did you know Paris Attitude?
I was googling apartments and found the site. The site had a good search engine, and there was a lot of info and pictures on each apartment, so I immediately felt comfortable using the site.
Why did you choose to rent with Paris Attitude and not another firm?
As we are from Sweden, we don't have French parents who could sign the guarantee-forms and we were missing some of the papers you usually need to rent an apartment in Paris. Some agencies couldn't help us because of this. Paris Attitude was very helpful and approved alternative proofs that we could pay for our apartment.
Was it easy for you to choose the apartment on the website?
There are many apartments, but as previously mentioned, a good search engine. Once you have the apartments that meet your basic requirements, there was a lot of info on each apartment, which made it easy to see which were interesting to us.
It took a few tries to find an apartment with a host that was willing to rent for our specific period, and unfortunately we had one host pull out at the last moment (we had signed everything but they never returned the papers) which was disappointing. But we are happy with the apartment we ended up in, so all ended well.
I have been a lot in Paris and rented apartments in several areas, but never the 11th where we are now. However I have stayed a lot in Marais and this is not very far from there, and I had heard good things about the area.
We were looking at several arrondissements, but a basic requirement was that it should be central enough to walk a lot, which is how we live in Stockholm and which is important to us.
The apartment we are renting is a one bedroom that is 52 sqm. Wooden floors, high, beautiful windows and view on a rather large courtyard. It is well equipped with washer/dryer, dishwasher and a real oven (which is quite the luxury here, as you probably know).
We are paying 1600 euros every month, but as we are students and we have no guarantees and since the apartment is fully furnished, we are ok with the rent.
Can you explain in detail all the steps from first click to the moment where you arrived in Paris?
We found an interesting apartment and emailed Paris Attitude about the apartment. This happened a few times before we got the positive response that an apartment was free for our renting period. We sent our information and received the contracts that we signed and returned.
After a week, I was starting to feel worried and asked Caroline if she could check with the owner. She returned my email to let me know that she had spoken to the owner, who had said they had a water leak and would get back to us when it was sorted out.
After two more weeks, Caroline told me that unfortunately they had returned the papers unsigned. Since we had already paid the agency fee, she said that we would not have to pay more. We found some other apartments that we liked, and finally got the answer we wanted for this apartment.
We updated our info and signed the contracts. This time we got them back after a few days, and paid the first half rent. About a week before arriving in Paris we paid the second half of the first rent, and the deposit. We used a wire transfer both times.
Did the team take care of you?
Since I didn't meet the team, I did not receive this from them, but there were maps and tips in the apartment. However, this is not really necessary as I know the city quite well, and the areas I don't know as well I am very happy exploring on my own.
Who gave you the keys?
The gardienne gave me the keys to the apartment as the owner of the apartment is living abroad.
Is the place comfortable and the same as what you could see on the pictures on the website?
I think it looked very much like the pictures, and am very satisfied.
When are you leaving Paris?
My stay doesn't end until the end of February next year.
Do you want to add something?
I think that Paris Attitude is the perfect alternative if you are coming to the city for a period of time that is too short to rent an unfurnished apartment, or if you do not have contacts in Paris that can be your guarantor (employer or family). You get a lot of help during the whole process.