What Happens When Renters Invade The Cul-de-Sac

09/05/2013 12:01 pm ET | Updated Nov 05, 2013
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About a week ago, I walked through a two-bedroom row house for rent in my neighborhood, a place where my husband and I thought we might upgrade from our second-floor apartment to a front porch and a little back yard. The size was good. The porch fan was an unexpected plus. The floors were hard wood. Then I walked into the kitchen, and and my shoulders sank.

There it was: the exact same kitchen I've had in every rental property where I've lived for a decade. Cheap particle-board cabinetry. Cracked white faux-counter tops. Peeling linoleum floor. This is the ubiquitous rental kitchen. Really, I'd pay more rent per month for a quality oven. Renters like sink disposals, too.

Do rentals always have to be soulless? Find out -- and discuss -- at The Atlantic Cities.

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