I'm a hard house shopper. Both times I've bought a house, the realtor has given up on showing me houses and just made me copies of their book and sent me out alone..."Call me if you find anything you want to see inside..." Yeah, right. Translate that into "the commission I'm going to make on selling you a house is not worth the time I'm spending, trying to sell it to you."
This house had been a rental property, as was the house I owned before it. When I looked at the house, it still had the original kitchen from 1978. And, while the bathrooms had been redone, they were papered in the 90's. Let me reword that. They'd been very well papered in the 90's. It took us forever to get the paper off and plaster the master bath walls, so when it was time to do the guest bath, we just decorated around the paper. There's nothing wrong with it...and now the pink cabbage roses are practically vintage (a classic never dies).
Not all the doors in the house even had locks and knobs. One of the holes in the bedroom doors was just an empty hole to the outside. And, the french door from the living room to the deck had been kicked in at some point and badly repaired. Now, it's a nice door in the greenhouse and there's a new steel door in the living room.
The yard was empty. Mostly grass, but not watered. Huge overgrown trees with lots of dead undergrowth.
The previous owner had come in and painted off white. Flat off-white. Everywhere. Ceilings, walls, doors, molding. Flat off-white. And, what wasn't off white was dark, dark, dark wood. The carpet was new. But, it was the absolute cheapest carpet and pad that could be bought. I remember that when I got the keys and let myself in the house for the first time, I threw myself down and rolled on the new carpets because I hadn't replaced carpets in the previous house either and they were worse than our carpets are now.
The day after I moved in, I bought locks and screen doors for my wonderful bedroom.
Most of the locks have been replaced again over time, as has the paint. Formica counters have been replaced with tile; leaks found and patched; faucets and sinks replaced. The outside has been painted and the cracks in the stone repaired. I've been replacing window screens, and this weekend, I pulled all those old wooden screen doors and am repainting them. They were 11 years old and had never gotten actual paint. I was going to paint them to match the house, but loved the contrast between the white primer and the gold housepaint and just never did anything else with them. They're going to be white again instead of a very weathered gray.
The kitchen needs paint again and after the first of the year, we are getting new carpet. There is always something to do. Always a project that needs to be done, some maintenance to be taken care of.
But, how can you want to do less for a home? A home represents shelter from mayhem and storms. It's the lockbox where all my things are safe while I'm away. It is home for us and for our animals. And, how could I want to do less in return than just keep it up? I don't want to do an expensive remodel like I see on the home improvement channels. I like things pretty much like they are.
We are neither married to a housepayment nor to a remodel project. It feels good to be able to just maintian what we have...a place that is comfortable and pleasant and safe.
So, that's Way Back Wednesday. A review of the house we live in and the things we've done to it. Somehow, it lacks the passion of past WBW posts. But, that's a lot like the house itself. There. Safe. Plain. But good.
Take care and have a great Wednesday.