Tag Archives: custom code

Chicago Apartment Hunting Bingo

For those of you looking for apartments this year, I figured a little bit of humor could help to lighten the task.

This is your apartment hunting Bingo card. Get five squares in a row, and you win! (I don't know what you win. A more enjoyable apartment search than people who aren't playing Bingo, I guess?)

If you don't like your card, hit refresh to get another one.

If you have an apartment-hunting cliche you'd like me to add, leave it in the comments.

Oh, and I should mention: many of these are bad things that occur during showings. Please don't deliberately cause them to happen just to complete your Bingo card. Thanks.

Broken lock box Beeping smoke detector Agent says unit is haunted Ikea "POANG" chair Someone mentions crown molding
Too messy to walk Apartment listed by Realtor Dirty dishes in sink Empty except for cleaning supplies Inaccurate kitchen clock
Must remove shoes to view Passive-aggressive lobby notes Water Included!

Ant traps Unit under construction
5+ page application "Non-refundable deposit" Apartment listed by current tenant Dark stairwell "Are you familiar with the area?"
Nicer nickname for bad area "Sorry, that just rented!" Plastic insulation on windows Agent can't unlock a door Misspelled circuit breaker labels

Reload for a fresh card!

If you enjoy this, please share it. Let me know if you get Bingo!

The StrawStickStone Mortgage Scenario Analysis Calculator

This is my new favorite entry EVER.

Let's Play!

I've spent the past week explaining why it's so important to do serious comparison shopping and saving up before you apply for a loan. On Monday we investigated how you could save up to 35% over the life of your loan by working with discount points and down payments. On Wednesday I used a salad dressing analogy to explain APR and how it affects your bottom line. For today I've gone back to my nerdy coding roots and have made a pretty hefty calculator so you can play with the numbers yourself.


The StrawStickStone Late Fee Calculator for Chicago Apartments

This is not difficult, people.

...It just isn't well publicized. This comes up over and over again when working with new landlords and with agents who don't do a lot of rentals. Chicago puts a limit on the late fees that can be charged to tenants who don't pay rent when its due. (Oh, and for the record there is no state mandated grace period in Illinois. If rent's due on the first, it's late on the 2nd unless your lease says otherwise. End of story.)

So if your apartment is covered by the CRLTO the maximum you can charge is:

No rental agreement may provide that the landlord or tenant ... agrees that a tenant shall pay a charge, fee or penalty in excess of $10.00 per month for the first $500.00 in monthly rent plus five percent per month for any amount in excess of $500.00 in monthly rent for the late payment of rent;

Which is the most opaque word-based math problem this side of the SAT. So sit back kiddies, I'm gonna do math for you. Again. And since you've been so good this week and I'm able to write javascript, I've even made a calculator so that you can rely on me to calculate the late fees for you over and over again.