Dream home. It’s the vision and fantasy you’ve created in your head. You picture the house, the yard, the porch – but what it truly is – is a vision you’ve created for your life. It’s less about the home you’re envisioning, it’s more about where you see yourself and what you’re surrounding yourself with.
I recently had the opportunity to purchase my dream home – or what I considered that to be. Deciding not to move forward after many months of plotting, planning, saving, and thinking it through was a tough call for me. Ultimately, I did what was right for me and my husband – it just wasn’t easy.
My dream home had all the aesthetics that I love
It had the 1950’s bathrooms, terrazzo floors, vintage wallpaper – just an overall mid-century modern feel. (Mid-century modern homes are my absolute favorite and I think about them quite often.) There was also a sprawling yard with a pool and a cabana. This home also has playground equipment suited for a daycare, but I didn’t care. I dreamt about the house and I made plans. I made an imaginary life there.
What went wrong
Something we tell our clients all the time is “it will all work out like it’s supposed to.” We also do not encourage trying to force a deal when it just doesn’t seem to be the right fit.
While this home is everything I dream of – it had many, many big-ticket items holding me back. The roof was over 20 years old, as was the water heater and HVAC system. The house still had a fuse box, which means it is due for a total electrical upgrade. I had all this information before even completing home inspections or looking at the plumbing. Just these items alone will add up to approximately $30k.
My husband Paul’s concerns varied – but mainly he wondered if the house was too large for us. (We currently live in 900 square feet comfortably and this home was 2800 square feet.) The size of the home, plus it has old windows, means we can bank on a much larger electric bill.
The yard was over a half an acre – which had me thrilled! But, my poor husband asked who was going to maintain all of it. (My plan was that he would…)
To top it all off…
The homeowner’s insurance on this house was going to be a small fortune. Due to the pool, the insurance company would have required a 6-foot fence. Installing a 6-foot fence around a half-acre of land was not going to be cheap!
Why I didn’t buy my dream home
In the end, I didn’t buy my dream house for a variety of reasons.
- It was too much money. I would have been working extra hard and stressing about how to afford all the items that needed to be updated.
- To be able to get that house, we would have to sell our current home. We definitely weren’t ready to take that on right now!
- My husband *may* have been correct – it might actually be too big for us. Space does not equal status and we are only two people with two dogs.
- Vintage bathrooms and terrazzo floors exist elsewhere. It’s not like I can’t find them in another house. (Remember that when you’re fixated on a house that you can’t afford, or feel like you missed out on!)
Love where you live
We very much love our house that we currently live in. I have a very large yard, we have a pool, we have nice neighbors – so what’s the deal? Why did I feel so compelled to move for that house? It really felt like my “forever home.”
I was reminded by a good friend though that, most of the time, “forever homes” don’t exist. Whether people are up-sizing or down-sizing, it’s unlikely you’re going to select your last living space in your 30s. (or 40s or 50s or 60s!)
Paul and I actually really enjoy feeding the birds and squirrels in our yard, listening to the football games at the nearby high school stadium, and having Tastee Donuts a block from our house.
We aren’t ready for a forever home. Heck, we haven’t even been in our home for two years yet! We are still making memories here.
Purple cabinets, a deck for our pool, paint, light fixtures, and new countertops. (We’re getting those NOLA Boards butcher block counters!) I wasn’t looking to move when I came across my dream home and I’m not looking to move now. So, I am going to get started on some home projects and fall in love with my space all over again! Stay tuned for the before and after photos!