move from my current apartment, I spent Thursday & Friday house hunting. There was no way I was going to be able to do it on my own since I don't speak that much Chinese, so Anna, my Director of Studies (basically my boss), graciously spent her day off pounding the pavements of Shanghai with me, helping to translate & negotiating for the best price.
Apartment hunting in Shanghai is so different from in the US, where you can just pick an apartment building & go to the office to be shown the available units. Here in Shanghai all apartments are essentially condos. Each unit has a different owner, so the only way to find out about the available units for rent is to go to a real estate agent who will then show you his listings. He may have one apartment in one building & the next apartment will be down the street a kilometer or two, so you wind up doing a lot of walking!
After seeing about ten apartments in two days, I finally decided on an apartment that's even closer to the school than my current one - a three-minute walk to work! The rent is more expensive than my current place at 2900 RMB per month (about US $415). It's a one-bedroom place on the 22nd floor, which is the top floor, so I guess I can say I have the penthouse :)
I'll be moving in on Thursday.