Thursday, February 21, 2008

Home at last.

I am moving just so that I can play with paint chips. Oh, and the extra thousand-odd square feet won’t hurt either. In any case I, or rather, We (the quartet of Tyrrell, Tyrrell, Tyrrell and Cat) are moving on April 1st to a new home close to the Gorge.

We’d been looking seriously since Christmas and scoping out listings since September.
Hoping to stay in lovely Fernwood, we kept an eye on the listings. Unfortunately there wasn’t much in our price range that would be suitable in our area. Most homes were 4 bedroom: 2 beds up and a suite downstairs. We needed at least 3 bedrooms at our immediate disposal. There were some lovely turn-of-the-century homes, but they were not very structurally sound and STILL out of our price range. We decided to widen our nets.

We saw a few places before putting an offer on a 1960s home in Gordon Head, which was in serious need of some updating. Well, we TRIED to put in an offer on it, but the sellers were playing games to the tune of constantly backing up the date that they were taking offers and pulling it off and on the market not once, but twice. The whole thing was rendered more frustrating because we had already paid to get an inspection done in an effort to make our offer more competitive. “Money,” I sigh, “down the toilet.”

We decided to look elsewhere, which was a bit difficult for me, seeing as how I was already mentally pulling up the green shag carpet, buffing the hardwood floors and renovating the kitchen. Seriously. I get attached to places very quickly.
In the end it was for the best because the house sold for 10,000 more than we would have been willing to pay for it. Good for whoever bought it.

During the next few weeks, I did some reconnoitering. I went a bit above our price limit to see if there were any suite-able (and suitable) homes. A dangerous and risky move, I know. Some promising properties had been on the market for awhile, but as one discovers with houses that have been on the market for awhile, there is always a deal breaker: location, size or complications involved in adding a suite. Cue more disappointment.

Skip to the part where we get back on the horse and scope out some truly squalid Gordon Head digs. I am talking pot-fumigated, beer-stained, bedsheet-curtained student slums.

“Take your shoes off?” I asked the hand-scrawled sign incredulously, “my SOCKS are worth more than all the flooring in this WHOLE rat’s nest!” In fact, rats are meticulously tidy creatures compared to students. Yes, and generally more industrious and useful to society too. Remember this post? Case in point.

Anyhow, we left those places to the predominantly Asian "Landlord Faction", which arrived in droves both before and after us. Hmmmm... Rental market a bit too hot around here. Maybe Gordon Head is not the place for us after all!

Thank goodness we stumbled on the little corner house on Parkview. A block from the Gorge Waterway, walking distance to the movies, library and Rec centre, located near plenty of parks – the neighbourhood is just what we’re looking for. The home itself, a late ‘30’s character piece. Yay for coved ceilings! It is in need of some upgrades and maintenance, but has a suite downstairs which is tenanted, so we won’t be up to our eyes in mortgage payments and can afford to do a few repairs. I think this place has some real potential to be a gem! I can’t wait to have friends and family over for dinner and games, now that we have more space!

Now our own beloved home is on the market. I’m hoping for a quick sale (you know me, not one for patience) but I also recognize that we need to get a fair price for our home, because it has been our investment and it is a kickin’ little house. Besides, we can use every extra cent to put towards getting our new place fixed up... which brings me to the paint chips.

Could picking out paint colours be any more fun? I am like a kid in a candy shop, here!

O.K. For the living and dining rooms: Benjamin Moore York Harbour Yellow – similar to what we’ve got for most of our home right now.
Northern Fire Red in the kitchen, (a dark, ruddy terra-cotta) with Bavarian Cream cabinets.
Georgian Green (an olivey sage) for the hallways and den.
Evvy’s room will be Buttermilk and Indian summer (a dusty peach) with fresh Lemon Grass accents.
The outside? Georgian green for the main part, Tate olive for the foundation and stairs and Albescent white for the windows with Hot Apple Spice Red for the accents and door. Yummy!

If only painting were as quick and easy as picking out the colours!
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