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Our Home Journey: The Long View Approach


We lived in a small cottage on a hill on a busy street, and schlepping groceries and a toddler (and a baby on the way) up and down the front stairs was challenging, but we had wonderful neighbors and loved our neighborhood 23 years ago, until Mike got home from work one day, and said, ”I found our next house…we need to save this house.” My idea of our next house was being on a quieter street nearby and perhaps a bit more room, but what he found was a small, somewhat unlivable Craftsman bungalow in need of restoration. What took place over the next few months was Mike and a series of good friends spending nights after work over there patching, painting, and bringing it back to life. We found our beloved contractor then as well, who had to take care of the bigger things like the kitchen and bathroom.


Some things were on our to do list back then, and are still on our list of items to take care of to this day! Life and costs simply get in the way when maintaining a home, but we keep a running list of what we need to repair, budget for it, and then chip away very slowly. Although our roof needed to be replaced from the beginning, we just replaced it last year. Our porch needs to be rebuilt within the next year since it is literally falling apart 113 years after it was built.


What we find when working with buyers is that they often rule out homes needing work, and we hope that sharing our story will perhaps shift the thinking slightly to what we have found to be true: a home does not need to be completely perfect from the moment you move in to be an absolutely wonderful place to live. Our home and neighbors have enriched and nurtured us in myriad ways through a bit of work and a lot of time together. Our projects, like many families, are marked in the handprints of our children in poured concrete over the years. Even the people who built our home in 1911 inscribed their initials in the concrete by the back door.    

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