August 13th, 2002

Everything coming together

We have a house! It has a garden (well, patio), and everything! This comes courtesy of Black Katz, the most enthusiastic estate agent we've dealt with (they actually called us).

We saw it earlier, and put down a holding deposit. They were asking for 400/week, but we offered 370/week - the agent said that there was flexibility here (i.e. haggling). When we got back to the flat, the agent phoned up, and said that the landlord wouldn't accept that - he wanted 400. We said "OK then, thanks but no thanks, we'll keep looking". The agent then said "How high would you go? 380? I'll try again", and the landlord then accepted that. So, that's 1000/year saved - not bad for 5 mins talking!

The house itself is a four room place (over three floors) near Earls Court, so it's pretty close to Imperial. It has a garage, and Lorna's cunning plan is to turn that into a lounge - we can then put car/motorbike in the driveway. That should then reduce clutter in the other rooms, if we put TV, servers, etc into there.

So, things are looking pretty good. There are some more formalities to go through (references etc), but basically by the end of August I should have my MSc and the new house all sorted out, which is cool. The plan is to stay there a bit longer than 1 year - we don't want to go through all this again next summer! So, if all goes well then this should be pretty open ended - we'll all stay there indefinitely, until the group breaks up, or people want to buy somewhere, or whatever.

Security wise, got the new router working now, and that's got a great firewall - full cloaking, and no NETBIOS info exposed (very secure). Just need a crossover cable (arriving tomorrow), then I'll plug that into the switch, and our internet connection should be much better.

All I need to do now is catch up on work, after I spent the afternoon doing house-hunting. Any time now :)