Carrie Bradshaw moment 

Four weeks tracking and the rare snow leopard finally revealed itself in shape of an apartment within shooting range. To illustrate the insane feeling of winning a bidding war on Black Friday and buying my first apartment, here’s a retrospective: Since leaving home after graduating college twelve years ago I’ve lived in:

  • 3 countries
  • 5 cities
  • 13 flats

with

  • 50 flat mates in total from 12 different nationalities!

and I`ve never lived all by myself.

Turtle wins the race

After a six-hour slow and tormenting bidding war ticking in on SMS while I was A) attending the office Christmas lunch B) on the tube C) in a meeting with the general manager of a major bank D) in another meeting and E) walking home, the broker finally called. It was the most surreal conversation you can imagine “Congrats, you are now indebted for the rest of your life.” Pop the champagne!

Here is my balcony and view to be.

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When you wish upon a star…

I’ve been dreaming about decorating my own place since collecting paint colour charts as a kid. Envision ripping out the floors and laying down some hardwood dark oak. Painting walls in petroleum or “Oslo” blue. A gas grill for the balcony for all year round halloumi. Growing plants. Putting posters into frames. Keeping a dog.

My new neighbourhood is multicultural Grønland. Vital stats:

Metro – 2 minutes walking
Office –  15 minutes walking
Sørenga seawater pool – 20 minutes walking
Nearest gym in Bjørvika – 10 minutes walking
Central station – 10 minutes walking or one metro stop
Ski slopes – 38 minutes on the metro or less depending on direction
3 Michelin starred restaurant Maaemo – 5 minutes walking

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The Oslo housing market

It looks like a bubble. It talks like a bubble. Is it a bubble? Prices have gone up by 18,5 % in the last year alone. Loaning money is practically free at 2 % inflation-adjusted interest rate. The “bubble” is only partly driven by speculation, the overwhelming majority of the houses are bought for the purpose of living. Parents are bailing out first time buyers. The rental market is dominated by small owners and the Norwegian tax system strongly encourages owning with 25 % tax deduction on mortgage interest rate. 10 000 people move to Oslo each year but new builds are not keeping up. Owning your own home is culturally determined as the highest good in our social democratic society. Bubble or not, the prices are utterly bonkers for sure.

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