Friday, October 28, 2011


Well, my house is still for sale.  No offers.  Not many showings.  The comments are that they love the location on the park, they love the setting, but the house needs too much work. 

I guess it shows that a single mother with no handyman-type skills and no family in the area has lived here for over 10 years, with a young son and dogs.  If my father lived  nearby, things would be different.  He probably would have helped me keep the place up.  As it is, he's never even set foot in my house.

Over the years I've doled out thousands of dollars to handymen - it's not as though I've neglected the house.  But apparently those thousands of dollars were not enough.

I have listened to the comments.  I have already made some changes, slowly and carefully due to my concern about money.  I had new oak floors installed in the living room and hallway, and the guest bedroom floors refinished. 
That was a good start, but not nearly enough to make the house sell.  A generous friend who just bought new furniture gave me her old living room furniture, so now my living room looks like this:

It's a vast improvement, but not enough.

I have touched up the paint on all the walls, and when I have time I'm going to paint the master bedroom.  I'm also going to have new carpet installed in the master (after the paint job is finished!).  I will also attempt to re-grout the shower myself, despite dire warnings from everyone who knows anything about it.

I'm in the process of deciding how much money I'm willing to spend to renovate the kitchen.  It is a tough decision, because I am unlikely to be able to justify expensive renovations with a high selling price.  My  house is still going to be extremely small, with no backyard (but a lot of landscaping maintenance) AND another house on the park (a house bigger and better than mine) just sold for a very low price ($30,000 lower than my asking price).  (That will affect the offers on my house, if I ever receive any.....)

It would make sense for me to wait until the market improves EXCEPT for one problem: the neighborhood I want to move to will never again be as affordable as it is now.  When home values begin to rise again, the values in that neighborhood will rise much more dramatically than in this neighborhood.




cinderella11p said...

Auggggggh - I am so sorry B.
My empathy. You are doing everything humaly possible.

Lynilu said...

I really like the improvements you've made. As far as the price and size comparison, don't despair. When I was hose hunting, I turned down several homes that were lovely and well priced SPECIFICALLY because they were too large. I still say there will be a buyer. Can't say when, and I honestly do understand your frustration about it. Hugs, dear girl. :)

B.S. said...

Thank you for the encouragement, Cinderella and Lynilu!! I met with my realtor yesterday to discuss the kitchen, and I'm very uneasy about spending so much money on the kitchen, especially because I am not totally convinced that his solution is the best one.


Cinderella said...

Betty, if you wanted to STAY it makes sense to renovate the kitchen.
But because it is so small and because it has no backyard and because the larger house nearby sold for 30k less than your current asking price THAT IS A REALLY HARD CALL...

Ugh. I will say prayers you win the lottery.

B.S. said...

Cinderella, yeah, I see that you get it. You get what an impossible decision this is. My realtor, who is very good at what he does, claims that my house will not sell unless the kitchen is renovated, and even then it may not sell in this tough market, which he said is going to last for a few more years. He asked if I can wait 5 years, and I can, except for one thing. There is a house I want in the new neighborhood which is a rare opportunity for me. It will not be available 5 years from now, and by then, the prices in that area will have skyrocketed again.

I'm thinking of posting some photos of the kitchen soon, along with a sketch of the proposed renovation, so stay tuned!!