Thursday, October 10, 2013

House Hunting: A Tale of Two Houses

After losing the bidding war on our "dream house", we became kind of obsessed with finding a house and making it ours. We became experts at attending open houses, cross referencing statistics from multiple sites, and checking our phones for new listings.  We treated house hunting like it was our jobs

A few weeks into searching houses without any luck, we found not one but two houses we liked.  Of course, Brian preferred one and I preferred the other.  Neither house was perfect, but there were pros and cons to each.

Brian's pick:

 Brian went to this open house without me on a Saturday because I was working, but was so smitten with it that we went back the next day with our Realtor so I could check it out.

(sorry for the text on the photos, they were on the screen shots and I couldn't get rid of them)

Pros:  great neighborhood, finished basement, updated kitchen, huge lot and nice relatively flat backyard, original hardwoods throughout the house

Cons:  The kitchen was not my taste, the bedrooms were small, the bathrooms were tiny and in need of updating, the rooms in general are small and laid out awkwardly, outside of our preferred neighborhood, no garage

Bland, boring bathroom

While I liked Brian's pick, we still had other open houses to check out that day and I wanted to keep an open mind.

My pick:

This was the last house we looked at that day, so we spent a long time talking to the Realtor selling the house and got some great information about the house and the previous owners.

What the hell is that light fixture thing?!

Pros:  in our preferred neighborhood, huge home with large rooms (especially the kitchen), lots of original charm (I'm a sucker for arched entryways), well below the top of our budget, flat backyard

Cons:  on a busy-ish street, major updating needed for the basement, attic, and kitchen, appeared to have some water damage in the basement, the landscaping needed some work, awkward lot layout (it was on a weird corner), no garage or driveway

The original bathroom was still in great shape, but that lighting fixture, ugh

We knew we needed to act fast if we wanted a shot at owning either of these homes, but first we had to decide which one we wanted to pursue. . .

I deliberately showed just a few pictures of the same key areas in these houses, but can you guess which one we went for?  Which one would you go for?


  1. Tough choice (they both look very nice!), but I want to say that you went with your choice because of the size of the rooms and it was in your preferred neighborhood.

  2. hmmm...I would say house 2 because while you can change a lot of things about a house, you can never change its location.

  3. If I were to pick based on this specific post, I'd say you picked yours. You describe it more flatteringly, and it seems to be closer to your original dream house. However, I'm positive you chose Brian's pick, since you posted a picture with Charlie outside of that front door when you got locked out of the house.

  4. Both houses are beautiful in their own way; choosing one over the other will be tough. Did you end up picking any of the two? I think I’ll go with your choice as well, because despite the major repairs that awaits you in this house, it’s conveniently located in a neighborhood you both agreed to prefer. Besides, Molly is right, you can change a lot about the house, but definitely not its location.

    Naomi Walters @ Chicora


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