melaniesuzanne: (Homeowner mouse is home)
The beau and I have discussed moving in together for a few months and have both been scouting out properties via online resources to see what the inventory is like and figure out what each of us is looking for in our home. Happily, we're on the same page with what we're looking for with respect to rooms and amenities and neighborhoods. Our only difference, really, is that I prefer a Colonial or Victorian facade while he's a fan of mid-century modern and contemporary. Despite that gulf, he admits that what the outside looks like is pretty low on his list of demands and if we found two houses with identical insides but different facades, we'll get the traditional house to make me happy.

Last autumn, I found a house about two miles away from my current house in the Forest Ridge neighborhood and it looked fantastic online except for being above our price range. I've been watching the price drop every month and it fell into our range last week. Sean's stepmom is a realtor and she arranged a viewing for us on Saturday afternoon. We got excited sitting out front while we waited for her to arrive, critiquing and praising different aspects of the property. As we approached the porch, I realized that the front door was red. I want a house with a red door! (Sean thought I wanted a TARDIS blue door, but no.) And then I spotted a claddagh door knocker. Were those signs?

Erm, no. The online pictures were MUCH better than the reality. It's not a BAD house, but there have been some poorly chosen "upgrades" made to the property including a tiny bedroom with a porcelain tile floor while the bathroom across the hall sported peel-n-stick tiles. There's no door between the master bath and bedroom. Sure, there are lots of houses like that, but the toilet wasn't closed off in a water closet. It was just ~there~ without any barrier to the rest of the bedroom. Ew. The basement had a finished game room, but the rest of the basement was... not good. The back yard was TRASHED thanks to the current owner's dogs. Also? It's a short sale. One the plus side, the neighborhood is quiet and well-maintained and not that far from the bike trail so I could still bike to work.

The reality of that house has cooled my ardor for it, but Sean's not discounting it. I spent a lot of time yesterday reminding myself that this was only the first house we've looked at. As the temperature warms and spring blooms, more for sale signs will pop up and we'll find the house we love.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Firstly, many, many thanks to ichseke AND moshah (as of the end of the day) for their donations to my fundraising efforts for ADA. Their generosity has put me at 46% of my $1,000 goal. THANK YOU!

Secondly, not that we're in the market, of course, but our current townhouse is a starter home and we're always grabbing for-sale flyers to compare interiors and prices in this area. My last townhouse was in Herndon and I loved living there because it felt like an actual town and not just a suburb. While riding around Herndon last night, Hubbyfink snagged a flier for this house.

Front porch, bay window, original wood floors in amazing condition, claw foot tub(!) and gorgeous tile in the bathroom, built in bookshelves. Built in 1900 with remodeled kitchen and baths. Mere steps away from Old Town Herndon and the W&OD. It's almost perfect -- there's no garage -- and it is, of course, way out of our price range and, more importantly, we're not in the market.

Hubbyfink is picking up a couple of lottery tickets tonight just in case.

Aaaand there's an open house on Saturday. We should be back from the DC ride in time... I am such a masochist.

Oops.

Jan. 7th, 2011 12:27 pm
melaniesuzanne: (Homeowner mouse is home)
I didn't mean to do it. I was bored. Since I'm cutting back on frivolous spending and not hanging out on my favorite shopping sites, I browsed local real estate listings -- wait... that might count as a favorite shopping site, mightn't it? -- and found THE house.

It's adorable. I showed it to Mom who said, "OMG, Mel. That's YOUR house! You have to get that house!" I showed it to Hubbyfink who agreed with my assessment. It's in Sterling. It's three bed, two bath, eat-in kitchen, formal living, formal dining, den, humongous deck, outbuilding, and two car garage. Beautiful staircase. Vaulted ceilings. Ceiling fans. GAS heat & water (*happy moan*). ADORABLE curb appeal. It's in a beautiful neighborhood. It's less than our current house. It's been on the market for three days as a short sale and already has a ratified contract.

Part of my charm is my propensity to quietly (okay, sometimes quietly) obsess about houses I can't have. I still gaze longingly at the house I love in Herndon which went on the market less than a week after Kerry and I closed on our townhouse. I gaze longingly at the adorable house on Sterling Blvd and the one on Church which were WAY outside Hubbyfink's and my budget when we house-hunted four years ago.

If I'm completely honest with myself, I will admit that our finances are not where they would need to be to house hunt. I will further admit that we need to finish projects in the current house. If I'm not completely honest, I think that buying a short sale would be PERFECT for us since we don't have a set time frame for closing or moving. But if I go back to being honest for a moment, my heart would be completely broken if we actually went through the process of trying to buy this house and then losing it because of some short sale bollocks-ness. Hubbyfink asked if we were going house hunting this weekend and I admitted that first honest statement above. He thanked me for saying it so that he didn't have to. He doesn't like to break my heart.

In an effort to give up the infatuation, I drove by the house this morning to assure myself that it wasn't as good as the pictures. Unfortunately, it was. Oh dear, I have another unrequited love.
melaniesuzanne: (Homeowner mouse is home)
Hubbyfink and I woke up sick on Sunday and have been slogging through the past four days in a cold-medicine haze. We both stayed home Monday. He was sent home Tuesday. I very nearly called out sick yesterday and today, but managed to drag my sorry self into the office. I would have stayed home with the laptop, but there's no one to infect in this cube farm and I'm happy for the respite from the cats. I'm ever so grateful that I have tomorrow off as a holiday. Unless I'm feeling 1000% better, all weekend plans are canceled.

In other news, I've been torturing myself with local real estate listings. There are SO MANY beautiful single-family, stand-alone homes in Sterling for equal or less than what we paid for the townhouse. I've had all sorts of daydreams about fixing our current place up enough for renters and buying an actual house for us to live in. Of course, this elaborate scheme requires that we secure renters into the townhouse; there's no way we could afford mortgages on two places. I'm torn between thinking that this is merely a pipe dream and coming up with ways to make it a reality. What I need to do is cool my jets and continue repairing our current home with an eye towards saving for a down payment on our next home. We've been in the townhouse only four years and I'm quite sure the market won't rebound in the next year. There's time.

And because I've been so sick, I've been comfort eating a LOT. Oh, so much ice cream for the sore throat and soda for staying awake during the day. Lots and lots of other comforting and oh-so-fattening food. Got a less-than-delightful wake up at this morning's weigh in. I'm giving myself today and tomorrow to wallow and then I'm back on the righteous path on Saturday. And that includes exercising! We're getting a warm snap and I am going to take advantage of it.

Good gravy, I hope Bossman decides to make today a short one. The last email I received was at 6pm yesterday. Talk about a slow news day.
melaniesuzanne: (Homeowner mouse is home)
It's done! I started the sewing room re-org and redo with the new closet in March. This past weekend I painted the sewing room a cheerful shade of green. Last night I unpacked and set up the last of the room's belongings. Take a look at the before and after photos. )

Closet fu!

Mar. 16th, 2009 08:22 pm
melaniesuzanne: (Homeowner mouse is home)
The closet portion of the re-org is done and I'm very happy with the result. )

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