Bring out your Dead!

Blogging my way back from the dead but still trapped in house-hunting purgatory.

It’s been basically forever, but so is the internet, so all my stuff’s just where I left it!

I’d rather talk about present-day things than dig up my reasons for my gradual drift into the decay of a sadly abandoned blog.  It’s fine, it’ll scrub up clean, it just needs a bit of tlc to get rid of the weird stains and dusty smell.

Not unlike most of the houses I’ve looked at in my (also forever) house hunt.  I’ve seen all sorts.

Horror house – There’s a weird feeling of everyone from the house having vanished abruptly while in the middle of doing things.  Half-dug garden, shovel still balanced precariously in the dirt, the end basically corroded away from having been in the dirt for so long.  Fire pit prepped for a fun evening of toasting marshmallows… in late October (in Canada)… and full of multiple rain-falls of water.  Beds all slept in, but everything else looking like it couldn’t possibly be lived in.  Fridge… ugh, well.  Clearly not a recent grocery run, though thankfully mostly things that won’t go too horribly badly.  Boxed in and completely inaccessible parts of the house… that you can turn a light on in.  No, it’s really not a cupboard, why the light?  Is that where the previous owners went?!  It has potential, in a bleach-everything and reno when you have money kind of way, but seriously, what happened to the person who started painting the living room?  In spite of the dilapidated state of all items in the house, there are no less than 3 Werner ladders in the yard.  Those things are $200+ a piece, but, hey, why waste water by washing your sheets more than once every two years?

Raccoon House – The listing agent has made a funny, and requested that you kindly remove your shoes upon entry.  Unwilling to see what the fuss is about the bubonic plague, you decline.  Don’t touch the walls… or the counters… or the weird orange-chunky stains.  Make a note to wear construction boots to all future house viewings, because you can feel FAR too much through the thin flats you wore today.  How much dog pee and water damage does it take to cause hardwood floors to be spongy?  The only thing you can hope is that the last time it was inhabited by humans was over 10 years ago, or that previous resident’s life will make you sad to think of.  It is ridiculously overpriced considering the $200,000 minimum gut-and-reno you’d need to do before moving in.  And this is assuming you can get your friends to come out for sledge-hammer time more than once.  You could see low-balling it and doing some real HGTV highlight reel style stuff, though.  It goes for well over asking, with a bidding war.

Seller thinks you’re stupid House – this house was last purchased 3-6 months ago and is on the market again… for $250,000 more.  They put in an ikea kitchen, and apart from the jet-engine noise of the stove fan, that’s actually quite nice.  No-slam cupboards, oooooh.  And some new faux-hardwood in dark tones throughout the newly open concept kitchen-livingroom.  Having done this, the seller has proceeded to paint everything in neutral tones.  Except the seriously dinged up baseboards.  And the doors.  They didn’t wash the doors either, so the yellowed grime of 50,000 grubby hands opening and closing the doors is still present and accounted for.  It leads one to question whether the walls got washed before the paint job.  Everything else, down to the grimy shower head, and newly beige faux-wood-panelling in the basement, is the same.  But FANCY KITCHEN OOOOH.

Monster House – I’ll be straight with you, this particular house makes me drool.  It’s in original condition.  Really unique features, beautiful moulding, a ton of Potential.  It’s the old victorian, the charming fixer-upper.  And you know that the pipes, electrical, roof, basement, etc will need to be fixed.  I KNOW people who’ve had this house – have it – and have been slowly renovating it over the course of… 20 years.  They aren’t done yet, and golly, the surprise expenses just keep on coming!  But it’s just so freaking charming.  I don’t care if gabled roofs are the devil (paraphrased from my parents, the proud owners of one), I want one.  Gingerbreading?  Sign me UP!

Kitch-House – the person who owns this is extraordinarily artistic.  And has bold visions.  It is hard to see the house past the jungle-scene (with fake vines and stuffed monkeys glued on for a 3D feeling) bedroom.  Or the bathroom reminiscent of a bordello.  No room that small should be that deep a red.  And where does one acquire a black toilet?  Black-and-white tile on the floor does not require you to put up black-and-white striped wall-paper or paint everything in your kitchen black and white.  No one needs to experience vertigo just to get a glass of water.

WTF House – You want to meet the owner.  No.  You want to see them from a distance.  Maybe on a TV interview?  My favourite place was like the jetsons made a porno.  Lots of chrome, lots of mirrors, very Jetsons-expensive furniture.  Who doesn’t want to see themselves pooping from 365 degrees in the bathroom?  And, well, no need to explain the ceiling mirrors in the bedroom.  Clamshell hottub (think Venus on the half-shell with a lid shell and everything) was imported from Italy.  The elderly couple selling the place was a surprise though.

What do I want?  A fixer-upper with neat architectural details a non-open-concept layout and minimal/no previous DIY-er interference.  With a private drive.  I don’t even care how many mirrors there are in the place.