Revelations of a House Hunter

My husband and I had a bit of an epiphany since we went to see those houses this week. We’ve come to realize that we have lost focus of our initial goal.

We work in Guelph – we want a house that is in Cambridge but closer to Guelph. This will make it faster for us to get to work and make life easier for us as we’ll be in the city. In Cambridge, this means that we would prefer to live in Hespeler or Preston.
But where have we been looking lately? Galt – which is even further from where we want to be. And why have we been looking there? Houses are bigger; you can get a single family home for the price of a semi or town house in Hespeler or Preston; yards are bigger; houses are older and therefore have more charm. The area in Galt we are looking in is close to amenities and is a complete comfort to us in that it’s an area we know and have lived before. This area is between my parents and James’ parents – which makes it easily accessible.

Now what sounds wrong with that? Well basically it’s taking us from all that we wanted. When we first started looking and evaluating what we wanted, we had a certain list of things that needed in our first house.

1. Three bedrooms or more to a) allow us office space, b) allow us a room for one or more children that we may have in this house c) allow us a bedroom too!
2. Garage doesn’t matter but we need some sort of shed for outside things, ie. lawnmower and tools, shovels, etc.
3. House must be one or two streets off of at least a tertiary street. Meaning – just off a well enough and easily recognizable route for family and friends to find us fairly easily.
4. Be in Preston or Hespeler
5. Two bathrooms are preferred but not neccessary (although our mothers both think we need a bathroom on the main floor.
6. Be able to have parking enough for at least two cars
7. Outdoor space that we’d be able to have a barbecue and some entertaining space – but not too big where we’d have to maintain it constantly
8. Have a certain amount of charm
9. Be priced well enough that we can still live our lives – we do not want to be house poor

That was where we started and this is how it changed:
1. Bedroom amounts didn’t change, but the thought of having a big master with potential for en suite or walk in closet became a dream we thought might come true.
2. This did not change
3 and 4. We started looking in an area that we were more comfortable in – and our family felt more comfortable visiting
5. Nicer looking bathrooms became a huge priority – and we started looking into houses that had two bathrooms but could be renovated into nicer bathrooms.
6. We wanted to find parking for three or more in the off chance that someone would want to come and visit us
7. We looked for bigger property to have huge parties, such as the beer olympics – even though this means that we have more upkeep and more challenges. And realistically we could have the olympics, and just make the events tighter right? Besides, more property generally means that you lose out on things in the house.
8. Charm became the deciding factor – and we were only looking at houses that were close to 100 years old – where each house would be different and draw us in by the looks outside alone. Older houses mean a lot more work though!
9. Prices for the houses may be the same as something slightly newer, but the amount of money and time that would go into an older house with charm and in older established neighbourhoods means that we’d be putting all our extra money and energy into fixing problems. How would we end up ahead by doing that?

So what does this all mean? That we are going to see some newer houses, in Preston, that are row houses, but in great shape tomorrow. Somehow there are three on one street – and all around the same price and all with certain charms. They are newer and won’t involve a lot of work until we are ready to do it. They are all in the right neighbourhood for us to get to and from work and they are close to all amenities. Not maybe in walking distance, but really close nonetheless. There are good schools in the neighbourhoods and the sizes of the houses are great. The property size isn’t that huge, but it would be ours and will serve our main purpose. I think they might be good viable options for us.

And I must say that it feels really good to not feel so overwhelmed by the amount of work that needs to be done in a house in order to make it work!

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