12 January 2012

The six year housing study

Unbeknown to us, the past six and a half years we have embarked on a housing study. We have lived in an apartment, a town home, a condo and now a house. Each place has had its ups and downs, but in the end it is a with a hint of sadness (except once) that we pack up our stuff and move onto our next adventure. We have had the luxury of deciding to move only once. Aside from the one time we have not been given a choice. Now judging from the previous statement you would think we are bad tenants, but fact of the matter is we have preponderance for selecting owners who end up selling. Upon reflection maybe we make our place look too inviting or we keep too clean a house, but either way nothing is changing on our end any time soon.

In our first apartment we battled sweaty windows and black mold, but enjoyed a loft which could only be accessed via a ladder and amazing views of Lake Washington from our large covered deck. We delighted in the cheap rent and proximity to restaurants and stores.

In a desperate attempt to find a place to live, we made the jump across the water and found a town home with dueling master suites and three bathrooms. Although this place was brand new; its sage walls and matching carpet made it feel more like a cave than a home. We had a tiny deck, no view and usually opted to not be home. For some reason this place never quite felt like home and within thirteen months, we were off to better things.

We struck gold when we found a top floor, light filled condo with an amazing rooftop deck and views of Mt. Rainier, downtown and the Puget Sound. We enjoyed our unit, our floor and although living in a place with an elevator required an extra dose of patience, we appreciated our kind neighbors and the safety and security which comes from living in a lock out building.

In our most recent search for housing, I stumbled upon a 100 year old craftsman home with a large covered porch, big back deck and views of the Puget Sound and Cascade mountains from the master suite. I have always wanted to live in an old home with a covered porch and am currently saving my pennies to buy large rugs and drapes.

In all these moves the past few years, I have learned that if you give us a week or two we can make any place feel like a home. We can find kind people, new friends and fun at every turn. Moving from a condo to a home has been interesting to hear people's reactions. Phrases such as "you are moving up in the world", "you have made it", and "you must be so happy to finally be in a house" are common occurrences. In an effort to avoid sounding ungrateful I just smile. In actuality, I firmly believe that where I live or how much I spend to live there will never determine my happiness, my perceptions or how successful an individual I am.  As much as society and others try to convince me that buying a house is the American dream, I am uncertain if it is really my dream. I may just be as content to live in a condo, an apartment or a town home.  Give me a year or two here and I will let you know.

1 comment:

The Brown Family said...

I completely agree. I would rather buy a smaller home and go on adventures with the kids, than work like dogs to own our "dream home" because that is a marke rof how successful or happy you are. I think our priorities are a little off in this country. People spend so much money on cars and homes. What about experiences and education, good food? That being said, having a home you love is improtant. A 100 year old craftsman sounds a little bit more homey than a conda if you ask me ;) Can't wait to see more, I love your style.