The past few months have been a whirlwind to say the least. We re-signed our lease for our little rental last January, I partnered with Fort Worth Texas Magazine for a weekly video series with The Blissful Bee, I just recently changed jobs (now working with that very same magazine as an Audience Development Manager… *ah hem* thank you blog for making super awesome connections), found out I was invited to the Better Homes and Gardens Blogger Event this Fall and booked my very first trip to NEW YORK CITY (still not believing its real), and over all of those months, I’ve been dying to get out of our rental and into our semi forever home.
I didn’t want to re-sign our lease back in January (not the slightest actually), but it’s something we just had to do. My hubby was transitioning back into Real Estate and we knew we needed to start saving for the lack of a consistent pay check. Don’t get me wrong, transitioning him into Real Estate has been the best decision we’ve ever made, but you just never know if you might run into a rainy day. Thankfully I still had my paycheck and things have been just great. After a few months of saving, we are now in the buying-a-house mode, but I have to be honest, it hasn’t been the most pleasant experience. In fact, it’s been the opposite. It’s been terrible. Let me explain…
I’ve been ready to move for the past 6 months (probably more), so I think it’s safe to say I haven’t been the most patient wife ever. I’ve been refreshing real estate websites multiple times a day in hopes of finding our future home. So yes, he word “patience” has not been in my vocabulary lately. I want a home more than I want a lot of things. While most girls dreamt about planning their weddings and having babies, I dreamt about my 100 year old home that I could paint and love and make my own. I happened to luck out when I married my best friend 4 years ago, but I’m still yearning for that 100 year old craftsman with its 100 year old wrap around porch.
The unfortunate reality? That wrap around porch will most likely not happen. I know what a lot of you are probably thinking. “Oh, you don’t want an old house! There are so many problems!” or “Old houses are money pits and you never know what you’re getting into”. Well, I’m aware an old house isn’t what a lot of people would want, and I know renovations can sometimes be scary, but I have this weird connection with old houses and the thought of owning one makes my heart so happy. Sitting on a front porch that provided past families with happiness and memories for decades makes me feel like home. I could go on, but I’ll spare you the soap box.
For a few months I had convinced myself it would never happen and I became ok with it. Historical homes tend to be VERY expensive in our area no matter how old and run-down they are. Buying a historical home simply wasn’t in the cards. I spent my days looking in areas I didn’t want to live in, but they were places we could afford. They were practical. Not what I wanted, but practical. I was ok with practical and forced myself to believe it. That was until Graham and I went to look at a historical home in my dream neighborhood last week. Built in 1925 WITH a wrap around porch. Need I say more? It was in our price range and pretty much everything I ever dreamed of. It was a fixer upper and I could pour love (and a LOT of paint) into it. It was imperfect and I loved it.
So what’s the problem? Historic? Check. Front Porch? Check. In your price range? Check. It’s perfect, right?? Well…not exactly. It was a big fixer upper and the hubby didn’t have “that feeling” about it. He didn’t see it as our home, and although it broke my heart into tiny little pieces, I can’t blame him if he doesn’t love it as much as I do. I worry he was a bit distracted by the old wallpaper, bad paint choices and outdated decor, but even still, I would never want to force something on him that he wasn’t 100% sure about. If he doesn’t feel at home, then neither do I, so we passed on the house and didn’t make an offer.
So here we are back again on square one. Passing up my dream fixer upper in my dream neighborhood and reverting back to practical. Who knows, maybe another wrap around porch will find it’s way to me, but I’m not holding my breath. This experience has already been weighing so heavy on my heart and I’m trying not to set too high of expectations. I think people forget about the emotional journey of house hunting and simply assume the experience is going to be so glamorous and exciting. I’ve bought a house before, but even I forgot what a beating it can be. I’m trying to remain hopeful that Graham and I will be able to find a combination of practical and character filled, but I’m just really not sure. I know whatever is meant to be will be, so I just need to keep reminding myself of that.
I guess the moral of the story is, buying a house isn’t easy. It’s not easy for most people. If you’re buying a house with a spouse or boyfriend, you need to think of their needs as well as your own, you need to think about school districts if you’re planning on having kids (or already have them), you need to think about re-sale value or even a potential profit if you can get a fixer upper in a good area (and the rehab budget involved), I could go on. And on top of all of that, you need to follow your heart. I know most people say to NOT get emotional when buying a house, but I don’t agree at all. We’ve lived in a rental that I had no emotional connection to and I am SO ready to get out. When you buy a home you love, some of those little things on your “must have” list don’t matter as much because you have a special connection with the house. If you buy a home that simply looks good on paper but you have no emotional connection to, you will never feel like you’re truly home. Really, it’s all a balancing act.
At this point I have no idea where Graham and I will end up, but I just hope it’s a place we both feel at home. Because no matter how much I love a home or he loves a home, it only matters what we both love. Sure, we won’t get everything we want out of a home, but who does?? Yeah, pretty much no one unless your a lottery winner. And…let’s face it. I’m no lottery winner;) I’m sure I will be giving you all updates over the next few months, so stay tuned! Hopefully they will start to become a bit more uplifting than today’s semi-stressful post, but hey, sometimes you just gotta keep it real! Right??