I haven’t always exercised the best wisdom when I buy things. In fact the bigger the purchase the more wonky I get.
Several years ago I bought a Mazda RX7 simply because I was utterly amazed by the headlights that winked open as you turned them on. This cool feature distracted me from a far more important fact. I couldn’t sit upright in the car unless the sunroof was open. My torso is apparently freakishly long and no matter how I angled the seat my head poked out of the roof. Snow and rain were particularly bad days for me.
With this looming knowledge, buying a home is sketchy territory for me. I can be impulsive, and a 30 year mortgage gives you a lot of time to reevaluate your decision making skills.
To ensure that emotions wouldn’t take over the buying process and to avoid another “shame buy” I sat down and crafted my house hunting wish list.
· A guest friendly home with 2-3 bedrooms.
· A small yard, since I don’t own a lawn mower.
· A pool, water is like Prozac for me.
· A big tub (same reason as above)
· An open floor plan with lots of light.
· A renovated space – so I can just move in and do all the fun stuff.
After my plane landed in Sarasota I met my realtor Rachelle. We had only communicated by email and phone so I was completely unprepared for what she looked like …which was a Ralph Lauren equestrian model. Holy Hell. Her blond hair was pulled back into a low, smooth ponytail. She had black riding boots over her camel colored covered leggings and a fitted jacket that emphasized her near nothing waist. I started feeling old and large. “Maybe she’s shallow.” I thought hopefully. Not a chance. She was kind, calm and a Sarasota native.
She handed me a thick blue folder of my house picks and we hopped into her immaculate Lexus. For the next several days we zipped in and out of countless homes until I narrowed the search to 2 possible nests.
One house was huge. It was in foreclosure and needed no renovations. In fact it still had that new house smell. There was brand new carpet, fresh paint, stainless steel appliances and a beautiful pool.
Plus, since I am acting like a non impulsive grown up now… the price per square foot confirmed that it was a total bargain.
Now, the other house desperately needed a new kitchen and both bathrooms needed a total makeover. Stenciled green ivy was spilling down the sponged tan walls. The flooring was an awkward combination of tile and wood. Oh, and it was more money and much smaller than the other house.
It also was the brightest most beautiful space.
The double front doors swung open to reveal a large open room with a wall of windows that looked out to the aqua pool. A majestic banyan(esque) tree greeted me, I secretly named him Rooty.
I made a mental list comparing the two properties.
There really was no contest. The foreclosure home was the way to go. I made an offer. That night I laid awake paralyzed in worry that they might accept it.
Fortunately they didn’t. I phoned the owner of the other house and made an offer, it was accepted!
You may wonder if I learned anything about not being impulsive and buying with my head and not my heart. Truthfully I am not sure if I know the answer.
The challenge is that I find myself actually trying to make more “heart decisions”.
I want to be with friends who make me laugh and are open minded, I want to buy food that is locally grown and live in a sun filled home because it has an awe inspiring tree that will hold my
Tibetan bells and reminds me to stay rooted.
OK, that and it has a kick ass pool and a wall of glass.
Screw impulse control. Maybe it’s just your higher self saying … this feels right.
The barefooted designer,