Wednesday, January 12, 2011

House Hunting and No Shopping Update

(Don't you love this fireplace and, look, pocket doors! All doors and hardware are original. Windows have been replaced.)

First, I made an appointment with a realtor today. We have talked and talked about housing in KY since I moved down here. I've looked through freebie real estate 'zines and made 100's of mental notes on houses I see for sale around here. My mind keeps going back to one we looked at back in October. When a house feels right, it feels right.

The above picture is one of the five fireplaces in the home. There is also a wood burning stove in the dining room/kitchen. It's a big house, an old house and is need of demolition some major TLC. I have the L in that particular equation!

The house comes with 2 acres of land. Certainly, a step back from the 10+ acres we manage now. I really don't think I would be horribly unhappy (I can still have my chickens and garden); however, I would like to negotiate for an extra acre or more as the property is surrounded by rolling pasture. The owner has not portioned off the homestead from the rest of the farm, yet, so there may be a chance I could get the extra land. Sadly, there are no outbuildings, not even a shed! This could be an issue. I like my storage and this house also lacks a basement. It does have storage under the stairs. (like Harry Potter's bedroom!)

(Don't you just love that stairwell color? I would completely do the entire bottom of the house again in that gorgeous color! The banister, stairs and railing are in perfect condition except for the need for serious refinishing. None are loose!)
From what I saw in October (when I found the key under a pot by the front porch, LOL!), the house has fairly good bones. The back stairs (yes, from a master bedroom upstairs!!!) has a painted mural, however, time has not been too good to it (I'll take pictures on Sunday). It has a new roof and new gas furnace (although, with a wood stove heating cost should be assisted, I would think; wood is everywhere cheap in KY).

The best part about this house (not counting cost of repairs needed), our mortgage payment would be half (with insurance/taxes) what we are paying for the current property! Oh, and did I mention I am in love with this house? I have never been in love with a house. It may be the "one"!

Keep your fingers crossed for me...especially for the hope that my kids don't squeal about our October trespassing!

OK, next up: Shopping. Well, that would be "no shopping". Overall, I did fairly well. I did end up in four retail shops this week and two of those were Goodwills. I went to Target to price something I was thinking of ordering online (future purchase) and bought three bags of frozen vegetables (on sale for 89c), gallon of water and a bulk package of sugarfree gum. I use the gum to curb sweets cravings since I am back on the SB (and doing rather well for now!!) I spent $6 (total rounded to next dollar). I also stopped at KMart on my way home to price same item (like the Target one much better) and found Xmas stuff on 75% off. I bought two hot chocolate tins (2/2.98), a large Frosty tin with popcorn (2.00), two bags of M & Ms ($1.64), a gingerbread kit ($2.00/I skimped out on the boys this year, so we'll do it here this weekend) and a package of 12 coffees in a holiday sampler ($6). I spent $21 at the K. I actually may go back and grab a couple more of the gingerbread kits for later projects and possibly buy a couple of items for future gifts (maybe). The kids never eat the houses, but they have so much fun putting them together and $2 is worth the time to me (I used to make the dough, cut the pieces and put it all together). Everything I bought from new retail was food or food-ish.

I did much, much worse at the thrift stores. I am too embarrassed to put my totals (baaad), but I did end up with a lot of clothes, books and a gorgeous picture frame for a print I have (ended up being too small, but I have another one that will fit instead. I am back to the drawing board of spray painting the boring black plastic poster frame it is currently housed inside). I'll just put a few items up each week for Thrift Share Monday.

As hard as it is going to be, I need to either sell some things (yes, stop being chicken about it all) or stay out of the thrifts for right now (or both would even be better). I really, really want the house above referenced and this means getting projects done at the current 'stead and the start of saving towards down payment, repairs and closing costs on the new one (provided it is not falling into the ground or the septic/well are bad. Big NO if anything is beyond reasonable cost or considerable repair. Cosmetic I can handle or hire out; mechanical or structural issues are another story).

So, I need to print out a photo of the house and tape it to the debit card. I have a "No Spending" goal. I want to be in this house by summer! I also need to carry cash when I go into ANY store (including grocery...Oh, yeah, I also spent $20 at the grocery tonight for chicken breast on sale-stocked up. I did give blood though in the bus parked in the parking lot-so be nice to me! Or at least that is what the sticker says...!)


Monica said...

Ooooh. You had me at the picture of the fireplace. I hope you get that house. More pictures and details, please. :)
I came out of my first week of not buying new with a few bumps. You got some great deals.
I like your idea of taping a picture to your debit card. My picture would be braces and windows. LOL!

Van said...

If everything clicks and it's true love with the house, it might be worth the daunting repairs. From what I can see of the home in these pictures, it looks enchanting.

Darn us thrifter's and our love of rescuing old things. It's so much more work!

I went to target and didn't buy a calender, which I could argue is a necessity, but I'm sticking to my guns this year. I'm using a calender I print from word instead. :)

tansy said...

very nice! i'm a sucker for old houses and lots of wood and the fireplaces!!! sending 'get it!' vibes your way!

Gina said...

Yes, gorgeous house and the details are amazing. Of course, the photos here are the realtors photos and don't show the 'ugliness" of holes in the wall and ceiling damage in one of the upstairs rooms (roof leaked and has been replaced). It looked as though seller was starting to repair damage, but said "F it" and put it up for sale instead. It was a rental for many, many years and has been on the market for at least a year (prob longer because I originally found an old ad with a diff realtor). I am trying not to get my hopes up (but I really, really want her!)

On the topic of calendars, if you live near a larger metro area check at your local Asian food marts. They give calendars away this time of year for the Lunar New Year (trad Gregorian type calendars) and they are really high quality and unique. I received one with an embossed Chinese fortune symbol and it is beautiful! Funny, you mentioned it, Van, because I was thinking about doing a Lunar New Year post next month and was going to mention the freebie calendars!

The stores are really fun, BTW, and offer unique (to Americans) food items if you are adventurous.

(And try really hard to resist buying the pretty little rice bowls and cool chopsticks!)

CatHerder said...

love the fireplace..and i LOVE homes with front and back stairs..good luck