One of the most challenging decisions a person makes when he leaves home is finding an accommodation. This is more challenging when the decision centres on finding a good accommodation. Most times, people that find themselves in this situation are torn between choosing affordability, comfort, and suitability. Ordinarily, every apartment should meet these three qualities but in most cases, they don’t. Hence, people usually go for houses they can afford without considering their comfort and suitability.
Even though no one wants to be thrown into the street for his inability to pay rent, it is unwise to opt for uncomfortable cheap accommodations. Psychologists have shown that uncomfortable houses breed anxiety, distress, unhappiness, anger, depression, and so on. These will in turn negatively affect the person’s activities and relationship with others. This is not to say that a person should not cut his coat according to his cloth, but that he should strive to move up the economic ladder so he can afford a more comfortable apartment or house.
Coming to the suitability of an apartment, there are several factors to be put into consideration when renting, leasing, or buying a house. These include size and age of the house, architectural design, quality, availability of parking lot, and location. Of all these, location is the interest of this essay.
Many people believe considering neighbourhood as a key factor in house hunt is vain. Some think it does not matter where you live, so long as you are comfortable and satisfied with the house. Of course, there are individual differences, so everyone’s ideology won’t be the same. However, if a person that is finding his feet ends up in the wrong neighbourhood, he will find it more difficult to get his bearing. Hence, a person that stays in a poor neighbourhood may encounter the following challenges:
- Insecurity: Not every poor neighbourhood is unsecured but most are. These places breed miscreants, who see nothing wrong with waging wars against opposition gangs and violently attacking innocent harmless people. This is why cult wars, robberies, and pilfering are much there. In other words, a person that lives there will be on his guard at all times because his life and wealth, if he succeeds in making any, are at risk.
- Low Paying Jobs: The possibility of finding companies that will pay highly in such an area is low. Of course, since the neighbourhood is poor, businesses located there will be poorly patronised. Big firms that are established in such areas may not be ready to pay the same rate as the ones in cities. Hence, unless a person decides to find jobs outside the neighbourhood, he will have to make do with the low paying ones. But then, going to work in cities from such a place comes with its challenges such as leaving early and returning late to beat traffic, spending most of the earnings on commuters, and encountering miscreants.
- Congestion and Its Resultant Effects: One of the problems of most poor neighbourhoods is their congestion. As a result of this, social facilities and amenities dilapidated easily. This type of locality usually doesn’t have good roads, schools, drinking water, hospitals, and electricity supply. The absence of these facilities and amenities makes life uneasy for the inhabitants and also frustrates their businesses.
- Mentality of Inhabitants: Dealing with the mindset of inhabitants is one challenging thing about staying in a low-income neighbourhood. Majority of the people living there are uninformed, poorly informed, or misinformed about social, religious, political and economic matters. The informed persons found in such communities stick out like sore thumbs, making them seem abnormal and so are unacceptable to the rest. This type of neighbourhood is most unsuitable for young people that need to be around their progressive peers and superiors, who will motivate and coach them through their pursuit of success. Finding a good mentor is also difficult while living in such a place. Hence, the best thing to do is to find a way out of such a neighbourhood as soon as possible.
As stated earlier, finding accommodation is not easy considering that a person has to find what he can afford. However, comfort and suitability should also be considered because they both influence people’s psychological, social, economic, and emotional wellbeing. This is not to say that people have to break the bank to live in rich neighbourhoods, but he should not settle for less. This is to say that if a person finds himself in a low-income neighbourhood, he should understand that unless he leaves there, his success is threatened.
NB: Kindly note that poor neighbourhood is not used synonymously with rural areas. By low-income neighbourhood, the writer refers to slums and run-down neighbourhoods found in urban areas. Rural areas might have their challenges but they do not share all the characteristics of low-income neighbourhoods.