If you have been keeping up, last November I made my biggest adult purchase and bought my first house. I got a ranch style house with a good amount of space and tons of potential. I had ideas on ideas of the projects I could do, feeling excited. Finish the basement, including the bathroom and add a bedroom, build a fire pit in the back with string lights, build a front porch, replace the old windows, and update the current bathroom and kitchen. Ya know all the cheapest projects (HAHAHA)
Here we are, about 9 months down the road, and so far I have painted all but a few walls, spruced up the bathroom vanity (still some work needed to replace the sink), painted trim here and there (some still needs put back lol), removed some bushes in the front, trimmed some bushes lining the backyard, planted a garden, and honestly still trying to unpack.
With that said, here are my thoughts so far on buying a house.
I know in different seasons of life, the wants change. But when buying a house, really think about things like privacy, space, price range. I bought a house in town and now I wish I had a bigger yard, out in the country, and I never want to see another shrub bush again in my life. My neighbors are very close and though they are nice, I like my space. I also made the rookie mistake of buying a house in a college town where I could have gotten the same thing somewhere else for less. (I like to tell the joke that when I lived in Brooklyn I was always going to Grinnell but now that I live in Grinnell I'm always going to Brooklyn. It's okay if you roll your eyes, I do too)
Have money saved up for things that break down. My furnace, AC, and kitchen sink pipes all needed fixed within 6 months. I also had to replace my push mower weeks after buying my first one (when buying a mower look into ones that either have a dealership close by or a pretty solid return policy). Fixer Upper wasn't exaggerating on the random crap that breaks after purchasing homes.
Also, unless you have a super handy friend, or some money saved up, buy a house that doesn't need more than a fresh coat of paint; or if you're super handy and can do it yourself, in which case you can come help me with mine! I've seen many blogs that say do not buy a fixer upper or DIY house yourself if you're green in the house market, but I listened about as well as when my mom said being an adult isn't all that it's cracked up to be. But if you pay a little more for a house that's already got the work done, it'll save time worrying about trying to find people to help for a reasonable cost. If you're stubborn, you can do what I do and post on Facebook asking for help in return for beers. My success rate is about 30/70 so far. (lol)
I know this sounds like complaining, but honestly now I just know what to do next time. Make a list of the things that you absolutely HAVE to have, and things you want but can do without before looking and making that decision. With life changes, my house is now a stepping stone, and I want to make it a nice place for whoever buys it next. Also thinking of just selling it while the market is hot and living in a tent in my sister's backyard. If she reads this it'll be the first she hears about it. Oops.
Picture for creative use when I set up the tent.