That may be the case in most instances, but if you ask Bill, a home is whatever I see and decide I want to live in. Actually, I'm pretty sure his exact words were: you live and die with each house we see. Whatever that means.
Back in June, I convinced Bill we should start looking at houses. You know...we had lots of time, but it would be good to start looking so we could see what was out there and determine what things we like and what things we don't. We knew the area (approximately 3-5 miles from our apartment), either inside the belt line or just outside, and under a certain amount. Only one problem with that search criteria: in that area, if it's affordable, it hasn't been updated since it was built. And did I mention we wanted minimal work?
We thought about building a house in basically the only place new homes in our area were being built. We could get a brand new house for the right price. So we talked to the builder. We picked out a lot. We picked out the upgrades we would want. We got the pre-qual from the bank. And then I made the mistake of redlining their contract (hello, day job) and all of a sudden, the builder got grumpy. In reality, we could live with everything as is except for the $12,000 non refundable deposit. I won't get into the logistics, but once they realized we weren't stupid, and weren't going to just fork over that amount of money to never see again, they got grumpy and we walked away. And I was depressed.
So then we (ok let's call it for what it is. When I say we, in the case of the house search, I mean I) fell for the Lindsay house. 5 bedrooms, including 2 on the first floor so my whole family could come from out of town to stay! Formal living room and dining room. Finished basement. Exposed beams. IVY ON THE BRICK. Huge windows. Charming. Sure, nothing had been updated since it was built in 1970 something. But look, these cherry cabinets are custom! All we need are new appliances and flooring. And the two toned toilet could be replaced. Oh and we could change out the puke green tile in the master because that closet is worth it. And I could still get a farm sink in the kitchen. It was a win win. Except Bill didn't love it. So I cried. And called off our house search.
Until the Dixie house (because you know I was still secretly looking at houses online). If you know anything about Raleigh, you know that Dixie Trail is such a cute little street. And who wouldn't want to say they live on Dixie! Except the house was literally the size of our apartment. And needed work. And just because I wanted to put rocking chairs on the front porch and Barbara could run around in the perfectly fenced in back yard did not mean it made sense to move into a house that size just so we could live on Dixie Trail. So I cried. (by the way, it still hasn't sold and even though it keeps dropping in price, Bill still isn't interested. Rude) And of course I said I would never try to look at another house again, and that we would just stay in our apartment FOREVER.
Then there was the house on Oberlin. Nothing what we had in our search criteria, but a great home and worth a look. It was awesome. Granted, it's only real flaw was the fact that it was really only 2 bedrooms, but on Oberlin, it would just increase on value. So we put in an offer and got promptly outbid. By 3 other bidders. So we walked away. We both may have cried that day. And had to eat our feelings for dinner. And called off the house search once again.
But because I have continued to secretly search, there have been several houses in between, including a beautiful bungalow with a guest house that needed to be demolished and a basement that needed finishing. Of course, my argument there was that if we just don't try to use the basement - I mean, with no access to the main house, it's not like it would be hard to ignore it - and we didn't look at the guest house, then it was perfect! Oh and we can't forget the tiki hut that has little tiny shingles glued to the walls and is basically ugly inside.
So we will see what happens. Like I said, we aren't in a rush! We have plenty of time! We love our apartment! I just don't know how many feelings I have left to get involved. Which is probably good since we decided to put an offer in on a house today and I Have declared I will not get emotionally involved OR mad at Bill if it doesn't work out.
But I guess we will have to see about that. Because I secretly already have decorated it and made a list of things we will need. But don't tell Bill because we've already had a talk about how I will need to practice patience with this home and how I can't go out and just buy a bunch of furniture to fill it up.