In 2011, I decided to follow my heart and take a job as a faculty member at a university. I love higher education and had been working at a small private college for 11 years, but it was time for a change. It was with great fortune that I landed my dream job in a beautiful rural area in the same state. We are surrounded by hills and trees with tons of hiking trails, national parks and great resources the university provides. Our new home town is a quirky little place with an eclectic mix of people from all over the world, but the housing leaves a lot to be desired.
My daughter and I moved here first and rented the only thing available that wasn’t student housing and fit our budget. We lived in a tiny “cottage” rental with snakes in the ceiling, spiders in the bathroom, and mice scurrying through the living room on occasion. It also came with a lovely elderly landlady who we came to adore. Mr. Shallow Pockets stayed behind for a year while we drove back and forth on weekends.
Mr. S.P. eventually quit his job and moved to be with us. We lived in a rental while we looked at houses and for a job for him. I forgot to mention that I got pregnant in 2012 and gave birth to our beautiful little Hazelnut while making this transition. A poorly timed blessing. Mr. S.P. found a job here in February 2013 but our lease was running out by June 1st. Our landlord wasn’t willing to extend our lease because we were leaving at the best time for him to find new renters. We had to find a house STAT! We scoured the listings and looked at anything our realtor could show us. We looked at approximately 40 homes and had one heck of a time finding a house. Homes in this town are expensive, dated, and sell fast. Every house we liked and made an offer on were always sold to someone else the same day! This area did not go through a housing recession like most of the country. Then a house down the street from our rental (in an awesome neighborhood) became available at a slightly higher price than we wanted to pay. The house also needed a lot of updating, new windows and the basement needed some foundation work to the tune of $16,000! Knowing how much work the house needed, the family (it was an estate sale) accepted our offer with a 16k reduction. This time, we were the first of three offers made and the owners liked that we had kids so they stayed with our offer all within one month of our lease reaching its end. It was tight! But here we are two years later and very happy indeed. So let me introduce you to our “diamond in the rough”.
These don’t include photos of the downstairs bathroom or the three bedrooms down there. I will get there. Tell me, have you ever seen so much paneling?