An old house in the Clarendon section of Arlington undergoing a sleek renovation is hitting the rental market, and its owner is hoping to find the right pack of bros to move in. Not only does it have a rooftop party deck, it also boasts a yard that, in the owner's mind, is perfect for "kegger[s], flip cup, corn hole" and whatever other fratty activity one can think of.
What does a summer intern in need of a place to crash get for $4,200? If she's renting a dorm room from the George Washington University, accommodations include crumbling ceilings, moldy bathrooms, rusty appliances, and fungal growth.
That's what Ayla Nejad encountered during her nine-week stay this summer at GW, where she lived while working at an internship. The university, with its collection of dormitories in Foggy Bottom, does a fair bit of business while school's out, providing housing for some 4,700 interns every summer.
Nejad, who did her undergraduate studies at the University of California, San Diego, says she paid GW $4,189 up front. When she arrived in early June, she was directed to a room at the Aston, which was renovated in 2008 and houses law students during the academic year. The room, Nejad says, "was a complete disaster." Among the dingy details: a soiled toilet seat, dislodged shower head, a rust-covered refrigerator, and a chair with a hole the size of a small frying pan burned through the seat.
Nejad, who is now living in Paris to pursue a master's degree, called GW's housing services and requested an immediate switch. She got one, but the second room was hardly an improvement.