This past weekend was probably top five emotional experiences of my life. On Friday morning, my husband and I closed on our first house.
And boy does it need love.
We’ve been actively house hunting for at least six months – but it’s safe to say my husband has been searching for years.
When we first put an offer in on the house, it seemed literally like the stars had aligned. There were no other offers on the house. It was in my husband’s hometown, near a handful of friends and some family. Our offer – for asking price – was accepted, and that’s essentially unheard of in the current market in Boston. And, my husband’s family has a special connection to dragonflies – and the house had gorgeous stained glass lamps with dragonflies.
And then everything went to shit.
We signed the P and S, sent over our deposit, and then found out the house was in foreclosure court. As luck would have it, we found that out the Friday before Fourth of July week, and we had to patiently wait for a lot of people to enjoy vacations before we got any answers.
Somehow we closed on our house just over three weeks after signing the P and S.
My husband is a super hero for navigating all that.
The signing itself was stressful as there were a few last minute issues from the final walk through the night before. We ended up getting most of them resolved – although the sellers dumpster full of junk is still in our driveway.
Going in to the house for the first time was laughably anticlimactic. We had my family with us, and all of us were starving. We had just gotten lunch delivered – delivery guy waited patiently as I overestimated our arrival time – so we stuffed our faces before giving a tour.
The house isn’t falling down, and it’s not infested with anything – at least not that we know of. It was definitely a family home that has it’s DIY quirks. The stairs to the basement came with Astro turf as the middle layer of three layers of rug. A bit of a different style than I’d like.
The other struggle we’re facing is that the previous owners seem to have been smokers. We’re not. And the house has residue from tobacco and overall still smells. The days when we have the windows open, things seem okay. After a night of closed windows, the smell is back again. This was one of the reasons I insisted we rip out the rug on the stairs. Getting rid of all of the fabric in the House was step number one. I’ll be sharing some tips that we are taking to get rid of that smells in upcoming posts.
It has a lot of charm – built in 1901. We need to make some decisions on what’s staying (the chimney) and what’s going (lots of wallpaper). It’s a three bedroom, which is more than we need now, but definitely has room to grow. I’m most excited for the tiny room I’ll be making into a library.
We’ll definitely be going above and beyond updating. The kitchen is getting redone, and the puke green is being removed. We have to update all of the wiring and appliances. We’re going to take down a few walls and adjust the layout. Overall, we’re going to make it our own.
We started with the outside this weekend since we need to wait for our electrician and plumber to get in to the house. It was a lot of cleaning out and unkept property, although the lot is in a suburb and isn’t huge. We had to clean out a lot of things – a weird amount of trash mixed in very moldy old mulch. We’ve made a lot of progress though and I have high hopes we’ll have grass instead of weeds by next summer.
It still hasn’t set in despite the three days of sweat equity we pumped into the house.
I’ll be sharing our renovations on the blog here as well as on my instagram (pauseforprosecco). Follow along if you’re interested!