The Before

So just as quickly as we finished getting the last of Matt’s furniture out of his place and finalizing the sell of his house, we turn full attention to getting through the high hoops the bank set for us for the new house.  Matt’s seller’s used a FHA loan and that really slowed the process down.  We thought that since ours was a conventional loan it would be much easier.  We were only marginally correct.  The process was a full up and down two weeks of maybes and ifs.  From my vantage, it isn’t very confusing that our country is struggling to go through an economic recovery.  Are the mortgage companies/banks really doing the country just service?  It is no wonder to me that my tax dollars were used to bail out banks.  It took more effort than should be necessary to close our deal.  Even to the point that in the final hours before the scheduled closing, our closing agent was asking for a copy of the down payment cashier’s check and we were still waiting for an amount from the lender to make that very check out.  The process some how just isn’t working.  I am not sure why but surely someone smarter than me could think about the process for a while and find a simpler better way that wouldn’t cause sleepless nights and heart palpitations.

So after a few of those sleepless night we all met at an office and signed a lot of papers.  Thank goodness Martha our closing agent made it easy and simple.  Whew, finally.  The owner signed, we signed and all was done.  After it was ours, we were both so rung out we went for a quick dinner and headed home to Salem for a good night’s sleep.  I dreamed of an owl that night.  Not sure if I have told anyone that or not.  But it was much bigger than the one I saw the day this all got started.

We closed on a Thursday and I took the next day off.  Over the first weekend we talked to a few contractors and really got the plans into motion.  Matt, Zoe and I just sat on our folding chairs in the empty living room and bonded with our new space.  So for a little tour of our new house.  Here are some of the before pictures.

The view from the living room into the dining room.  Great original mantel and natural wood trim.  We have fallen in love with the radiators.  It has been a warm cozy house during a very cold winter in Virginia.  If we had bought the house at any other time of the year we might have acted on our first instinct to tear the radiators out.  But now I think we are leaving them and learning to live with the covers.

The kitchen that is slated for a total overhaul.  The cabinets were made by Perdue Cabinets.  A quality company that still does business today.  One of the pieces of advice that we have gleemed off the endless hours of HGTV we have been watching is that not all projects need to happen right away.  This one we are going to let unfold while we live there.  We want to get it right so we are going to go slow on this part.

The bathroom on the other hand is one of the first projects we are ready to tackle.  The layout is about right but the circa 50s plastic turquoise tile (typical for a home of that time) is ready to go.  We also think we want a double sink vanity.  Behind the wall to the right is an enormous hall closet. You can also see the smaller bathroom closet door.  This house has ample closet space.  (now there is a statement one doesn’t say or hear often)  We have a couple of ideas and this is one of the few rooms that may end up with a little wall demo.

Overall the house is in great working order.  That I guess is the difference between this and the last project I tackled.  Everything works, we can just move in.  However, we wanted to have a few projects complete before we did move just to make them easier for the contractors and on us.  So while we paint and clean, the floors and electrical project are underway.


2 thoughts on “The Before

  1. I don’t know if Matthew remembers at all – but when I saw the bathroom pictures, it took me back to my parent’s house in Niagara Falls – that was the exact color of the tiles in their bathroom. I can remember my Dad putting those tiles on the wall!! Wow, history.

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