Tuesday, February 03, 2009

On The Housing Front

Back in August we decided to put our house on the market. Little did we know that it actually wouldn't be put on the market until November. We emptied the Odyssey of all it's seats sans the two front ones and shuttled loads and loads and loads of extra crap from our 1250 square foot house to not 1 but 2 storage sheds. We painted two & a half rooms and many, many, yards of trim. We paid a lot of money to have our cedar shingles and our porch scraped, sealed and painted. We had a set of wood steps and two hand railings built and we (I) drove to Ikea, met a very large truck in Cincinnatti and then drove that big guy back with all of our kitchen cupboards and countertops. It was a fight to keep going in the whole (stupid) process. Then when we finally put our house on the market we were fortunate to only have to do 5 house showings and be on the market for 5 weeks before we went into contract. But then our realtor made a royal mistake and lost our contract thus causing us to lose the contract on the house that we had moved into already in our minds. This was so devastating to us. It's a challenge enough to find time and energy day to day to paint large portions of your house or to remodel your kitchen. But to do it with an infant, a toddler and a preschooler-nutso!

Where we stand today on the housing front is that we are no longer on the market. In the last month the dishwasher broke and our ice maker on our refrigerator broke. Our storm door was ripped from it's hinges during one of the windier days of the new year. The kitchen plumbing had a major leak which has probably resulted in a warped cabinet, I refuse to look. The hot water pipe that leads to our bathroom burst, sending water shooting behind our wall in the kitchen and in our basement. As a result of the bursting pipe, two kitchen cabinets were damaged and will need to be replaced. Also, we had to have part of the bathroom floor ripped up and part of the wall in the laundry room opened to reroute new pipes to the bathroom. And yesterday Super N and W found my bottle of black nail polish and dumped it all over the off white carpet in her bedroom, it's unsalvageable. We are a little bit overwhelmed by all these items and honestly the cost it has and will incur. We decided that it was too much on us emotionally, physically and financially to stay on the market right now.

Our plan for the next five years is to try to stay in our current home. We've decided to try to wait out the slump in the housing market, continue to pay down the balance on our current home and save as much money as we can. We've also decided to purge our house of many unnecessary items. We have a plan in mind to create more of a playroom for the kids and to create more hobby space for the huz and I-of course these things will be done on the cheap. Currently Baby J sleeps in a Pack and Play in the dining room at night. When he outgrows the pack and play we figured we would purchase a bunk bed and then he'd share that with W in his room. If we decided to have another child in the next 5 years they would probably sleep in our room for a while (like Baby J did) and then sleep in a pack and play in the dining room.

Although I am still grieving over the house I thought was ours (it is currently in contract by the way) I am becoming more and more okay with staying in our current home. Some things truly are not worth the chaos they bring. And in 5 years the kids will be older, a little less dependent and hopefully we won't have to worry so much about the financial aspect of selling.


Rachel said...

Well, Momma Bear, I'm sorry to hear that your house plans didn't work out the way you expected them to. But this may end up being the best thing that could have happened. I loved our house before we bought it and we desperately needed something bigger than we had (we were expecting #3 then) but everyday I think back to how much easier it was with the smaller house, as far as the housework. I really long for those days when I could get the whole house spic and span in one day! It sounds like you have a great attitude about it all.

Shady Lady said...

My life's motto is 'everything happens for a reason'. It's not always what I want to hear and I don't always know the reason, but it usually presents itself. I hope that you find that things work out well for you and that the reason is a good one. Sending positive energy your way...

Aliceson said...

Oh my! As a habitual remodeler, I feel your pain. Seems that a house is never complete, especially with little "helpers" around.

Hopefully baby J's pack and play doesn't get too cramped too soon.

Have you thought about refinancing? We just refied at an incredibly low rate of 4.875% for a 15 year mortgage. This will save us about 86 grand over the course of the note and is only about $60 more per month.

Jenni said...

Wow, that is overwhelming and disappointing, but at least you have a plan. Plans are good!

Amanda C. said...

Though it's all disappointing and frustrating, I'm glad that you're starting to see some positives from the experience. I'll continue to send good thoughts your way, and maybe, your wishes will come true sooner than you think!

The Three 22nds said...

We had our house on the market last spring/summer. It didn't sell. It was so hard to keep up wiht that and have it in the back of our minds all the time with the kids.

So I know.

We are adjusting our plans and kind of like you, have just decided to save up money and wait and see what happens for awhile. We finished a room in our basment etc.

It is disappointing because we did want the space. And as I told my husband, now is when I want it. When the kids are young. Not when they are ready to move out :)

Oh well. We are trusting God for his timing and working on being content with what we have and all the blessings we have been given.

Thinking of you, and hope it works out even better than you could have imagined!

reflection said...

Yes ... chaos and disappointment ... I know them well!!
I have to echo your other "commentors" though - I think that when these things happen, there is usually a better way (better house, better otions) in the future.

It seems like a waste to have the small house when the kids are little and running everywhere and then move to a bigger one when they are teens and "ready to leave". In my experience though, the teen years are when you need the bigggest house. Teens need spaces away from sibblings to have their friends over and to feel at home. If you can wait and get the best house later, those teen years can be greatly facilitated and your house can be the "go to" house for their friends (since you are a welcoming person as well as having room!)

Being the "go to" destination is chaotic but is the safest way to navegate teenhood since you know where they are and you can develop a relationship with their friends.

Hang in there Mommabear! Having to share a small space is one of the best ways for young children to learn about sharing and getting along ... yes, I'm trying to console you! I know the disappointment is great.