Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Rescuing a House

As many of you know, Jason and I are thinking about buying a new house.  We actually had a realtor visit last weekend to give us a comparative market analysis so that we would know what we could list our house for.  We were happy with the number she gave us, but not quite ready to list until we find a home to buy. 

The original plan when we bought this house was to flip it.  It was in terrible condition as you can see from our "Fixer Upper" page.  We figured, we'd do the improvements it needed and sell it to make some quick cash to buy a house we REALLY wanted. 

What I didn't know is that some people become attached to houses, as if the house is one of their kids.  Jason and I both fall into that category.  I guess it would be easier if we could find a house we really, really love. 

We went to look at a house the other night and I could hardly contain my excitement.  The house was built in 1850 and was out in the country with a couple of acres of land.  I was envisioning a big porch where I could put a rocking chair, detailed trimwork, and a backyard that would house my dream of chickens.

We expected the house to need work.  As we drove out to look at it, I asked Jason if it ever occurred to him that we rescued a house. 

"Yeah, I think about that all the time," he said.  "So many people looked at our house and passed it up because it was so crazy.  We definitely saved it." 

Even though we are out looking at other houses, we continue to rescue this little Cape bit by bit, even though all of our friends tell us to stop spending money on it if we're considering selling it.

Jason is busy every night working on turning the closet into an office.

He also recently painted our front door black. After we decided to paint the entry black, we had to paint the front of the door to match the inside. I am really happy with how it turned out.

Here it is after it was stripped (I forgot to take a picture of it white!)

And here it is black.

We just need to get a nice antique knocker for the door.
We still need to address the landscaping and curb appeal for our home, although Jason and Kelby did install this awesome brick walkway last summer! 

What in the world are we going to do about those steps? Any ideas?  They are such an eyesore!

Anyway, I was excited at the possibility of rescuing another home, except this time staying in it for a long time and raising our children in it (yes, that's plural . . . we hope to add to our family in the near future . . . hence the need for a bigger home).

I won't get into the details of the house.  I will just say that it was wrong.  On so many levels it was




I am good at seeing past imperfections and imagining possibilities but this house was in total disrepair.   Although the yard had beautiful, mature trees, it also had a barn located on the property that wasn't part of the sale of the house.  To access the barn, the owners had to use the driveway for the house.  I know that would bother me.

Imani thought the house was haunted.  So did Jason. 
I thought the house had a very bizarre layout. 

I left the property and didn't speak for some time.  When we got home, even though it was only 6:30, I crawled into bed and snuggled up with my sadness and disappointment.    Jason came upstairs and tried to cheer me up.  He asked if I would cook dinner so he could work on the closet-office. 

I told him I didn't feel like it.

He asked what I wanted for dinner. 

I told him stuffed peppers.

While I was upstairs, I was thinking of the dilemma.  We definitely need more space if we are going to expand our family because this little Cape Cod will be cramped!  But I cannot see moving to a home that needs twice as much work as this one did.  We've considered calling an architect to see what the possibilities of an addition on our home could be.

But then that rules out the possibility of my ever having chickens.  The village won't allow it.

As I pondered this big decision, the aroma of stuffed peppers drifted upstairs and I heard the rhythm of the hammer nailing beadboard to the inside of the closet.

Seriously?  What did I have to be sad about? 

Life is good and I know no matter what decision we make, everything will be okay.

PS: Did you take my survey?  If not, please click here.  It's closing on Friday.


  1. i love the curb appeal of your little house. it looks awesome. good luck with your future house decisions.

  2. svinch@twcny.rr.comApril 14, 2010 at 2:36 AM

    Ask a realtor to find you that perfect house, describe it to them and give them a price you want to pay and tell them(make it quit clear NO FIXER UPPER) and let them go to work to find that house you want where you can have chickens. Trust me when I tell you they will work looking for one for you and in the mean time sit back relax it is not like you have to move by tomorrow.
    You will be surprised at what a gent can do if they really need the commission, I think a new agent will work harder for you then some of the older ones.

    Never be depressed over a dream you have will come along when you lest expect it!

  3. Oh Stephenie, don't be disheartened. The perfect house will come along for you and it will be perfect! Just for you and your family! I like your cute little house and I love the path that the boys put in. You could paint the steps and add some skinny pots either side of the door with topiarys or flowers. xx

  4. I'm always of the view that if something doesn't come off it's just because something much better is waiting for you. You'll get what you want. Have you written a list of everything you want for in a home and sent it out to the universe? That's what I did..and I got quite a bit that was on that list in the last place I expected to be able to find it. It works. BTW love your black door. It looks very classy. Lots of lovely pots for the front..that way you can take them with you when you find that perfect house :)

  5. I think it's great that you & your hubby are rescuing old houses. I would love to own & renovate one, but my hubby is not handy, so we stay put in suburbia. Love your front door! Thanks for coming by.

  6. Stephenie,

    Keep your chin up and your eyes open. Your house is out there or perhaps you will realize you are already living in it. I love the black door.


  7. I really like what you've done! About your front steps, if it was me I think I'd paint them with black porch paint to really make them pop with the front door! They'd look beautiful with 2 large pots on either side of the stairs full of bright or dramatic flowers.

  8. What a wonderful post!! It is so easy to get caught up in the day to day dilema's and forget how blessed we are! What a blessing for the possibility of buying another home and it sounds like you and your man make a great team! -shaunna :)

  9. wanted to answer your q...know what you mean; we have a lot of beautiful homes as sorority homes too, but these are all privately owned. :) shaunna


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