Tag Archives: homes


What do you look for in choosing a new home? If you’re buying I’d have the best inspector in town check it out for mold, termites, and leakage whether roof or basement, electrical and plumbing before putting in an offer. Chances are the sellers put lipstick on a pig (granite countertops) to fool you into buying a disaster. Especially if it’s a flip.

When people come in to see a home (condo owners and most renters do actually consider it a home) they look for certain things. They may not be the right things, as the nursery is painted purple or there’s a really bad chandelier over the dining table. Those things can be changed.

Buyers in all ways see how the former owners lived and their choices, instead of the rooms and possibilities. Who cares if it’s purple? Check the size of the room and if it works for your family.

Think towards the future. How can my family live here. Is it the right neighborhood, school district for the kids. Is there a park nearby, can I bicycle to work. Will my wife be OK with the neighborhood because even though she works, she’ll have full care of the kids. I might mow the lawn on weekends.

Now let me tell you what I look for. A view. A good place with decent appliances and a kitchen that meets my extensive needs. We took over the “tech center” as my pantry. A good living space, two baths, ours en suite. Guest bedroom/office.

I’d love a basement or garage but that is not to be at present. I looked for a larger and more impressive space and found it wanting. ┬áIn my office with the belly of the beast, a printer my husband bought a while ago, I remain your faithful scribe, Dee



My favorite home as a child was a custom home the owners could not finish. So we did. I was eight years old. As I see these custom homes on the house tour sometimes it tells me a bit about a family. It would never be my design but at least it’s theirs. I’ve never had a chance to do that.

My in-laws designed and built their first home in their early twenties and have lived in it for over thirty years. Their sons grew up there and they built with such confidence because that was expected of a farm family. Now most of the property is going to be flooded to provide water to a large city and their house may stay, but they’ll build elsewhere and have already bought the land to do so.

I’m so afraid of designing a house we may retire in. There are so many mistakes to be made. I know what I like but not specific kitchen dimensions. It bugs me when people buying homes say the kitchen isn’t big enough, when all a kitchen has to be is efficient and as open as its owners want it to be. And now I find out a ranch home is not what my husband wants because he grew up with that and looked out on a sea of cows. I loved this one house with a barn-like structure (recreated in the horse barn, which Val would love) with light pine trusses and clerestory windows, 48 of them.

In my husband’s mind I was re-creating a farm, in mine I was looking at the custom home we once had with improvements. Like granite countertops and better appliances, a high ceiling with air flow. And they still had problems with how to do the bedroom wing! It’s something to think about for the next ten years and use new ideas to get what each of us wants in a home. That’s what marriage is about – compromise.

When I was 16 I met a man through his daughter, on vacation at the beach. She wanted to learn gymnastics and I helped her with a few basics. Dad asked me what I wanted to be and I didn’t know, being a sophomore in high school. He told me that for the most part doctors and lawyers deal with peoples’ problems, and architects deal with peoples’ dreams. That has resonated for many years.

No, I didn’t become an architect but if Jim and I go to a few more home tours over the years, know what we like and where we want to live, we may create our dream living space. It’s always good to have something to look forward to. Cheers, Dee