Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A tale of 2 houses

It took 2 days of bouncing over roads and seeing some houses we knew we didn't one to see 2 we might be okay living with. Is that how it goes with houses? You take what you can get, even if you're not in love? Someone PLEASE tell me. Because I don't know.

We are going to go look at them again with our parents next weekend. When we were there it was pouring down rain so we couldn't investigate the properties at all. Both are 5 acres. They are the same price and in the same area. They are about equidistant to Matthew's work and to family.
The one Matthew really likes is a geothermal based tri-level that also has a basement area with laundry in it currently (we'd have to move it possibly because of the distance to get to baby). The lower level has a 4th bedroom/office conversion and a living room area with wet bar and a parlor stove. Will probably have to take parlor stove out or not use it until baby is older. There is also a bathroom down there with a shower stall.

The main level is kitchen and dining (which includes the front door and glass sliders out to back patio). Kitchen leads to 2+ car garage. There's also a door from the garage out to the back patio. That would possibly be where we could do a bump out and put in a small sized laundry/mud/pantry and potty just off of kitchen, close off kitchen to garage door and put a door into that room from the kitchen so that you'd have to walk THROUGH the laundry room to get into the house. A subtle reminder to take off muddy shoes and wash greasy hands before coming into the kitchen from outside/garage. :-) All appliances are included.

Upstairs level is 3 bedrooms and full bath. Big closets. All the floors are tile or wooden (or good imitation laminate wooden-not sure). No carpet, no vacuuming. The whole thing needs paint though as at least one bedroom is bright red. It's vacant so in theory we could move right in.

We couldnt' tell much about the property, it is on a more busy road than we would like but a fence across the front should pretty it up and provide safety as well. The side yard would be big enough for a morton type building for Matthew's toys. The back yard doesnt have much grass to speak of and it kind of dips down into a valley with plenty of trees, as far as we could tell, but not sure, we're hoping for no rain so we can kind of tell a bit more about it.
The other property has a basement with family room in it. Room for tv/sitting area and some toys behind along the wall as well, so it could be a combination of playroom too. Then there's a storage area which is unfinished. The main level enters on a small porch. The home is balanced fairly well, the 3 bedrooms and master bath and a sitting room (as well as the stairs to go down to the family room) are balanced on the left hand side. All that has carpet. The center of the house is vinyl tile or the laminate wood flooring and is foyer, to a hallway with main bath, large kitchen/dining combination with a slider out to back deck, and a laundry area all off of it. The right hand side is the 2+ car garage.

Matthew doesn't think there's really room to put a building there unless you cut down some trees. This is not as wooded, but is just as secluded as the other place, probably on a less frequented road. It also has a pond (you can see from dining room) and they have the remainder of the acres mowed fairly nice for walking.

This one really wouldnt need anything done to it as far as we could tell, it's a little newer and almost everything on the same level would mean less chance for accidents when rushing to baby. Probably would have to change the paint sooner or later but at least it's not bright red! It has gas and electric, so no doubt the utility bills would be higher. People are still living here so it might take a while before we could get into it.
We are asking for both places about whether or not animals are allowed and anything else that might get us in trouble or put us off of the area, like him wanting a 4-wheeler (we included trampoline and pool for good measure, although I dont want either-but figured that was more normal than asking specifically about 4 wheelers, dont ask me why). I wouldnt want to buy a 4 wheeler OR a pony and get it there and find out we're breaking the rules of the area or something. We want to know about the local wildlife of course, so we asked that, and for confirmation of utility bills and how the water works, etc. Both are on public water so no dealing with bad wells or anything like that. We're also asking about the ages of the septic and roof status. Apparently neither one has ever had basement leaks, but with having dealt with the flooding and such, we're a bit jaded about water issues right now.

Basically these last few questions will cinch it for us, or make us want to just rent an apartment or house for a while and look for our own land and build a house. We're leaving that option open.

What do you think?

1 comment:

Katie Swaner said...

split level houses are a pain. You ALWAYS have to go up or down stairs. Not that it's a bad thing - they are exercise after all, but it gets tiring really quick. I hated ours after a while, and Rob's mom has a tri-level that annoys her constantly.

Don't worry too much about running to the baby. Most of the time you'll be in the same room.

If you're not in love with either, I'd suggest waiting a while. Houses right now are selling for cheap and staying on the market a long time mostly. You will find something you like better. But then you have to move yourself, instead of taking advantage of the new job provided movers. I'd be anxious to find a house too, but we bought ours in a different market, and didn't ahve time to even search hard for the first one. We looked at tons the second time, and knew we wanted it the instant we walked in.