August 27, 2009
Not My House
Today, my house is neither my house nor my home. It is a bright, white, shiny thing that will make some new homeowner very happy. It shows off the bamboo floors and stainless steel kitchen put in less than two years ago. There are new floors in the bathroom, utility room and kitchen. Two of the three toilets are new. There is fresh paint all over the house – inside and out. All of my wall hangings and pictures are packed away. As are all my books and bookcases and 90% of those things that make a house yours.
It is the perfect blank canvas for a new family to move into.
As of today, this house is on the market. Jeff and I have a very good real estate professional who talked with us about everything from how to open the house up (put away our 1000+ books and corresponding bookcases), where to put the furniture, what needed to be fixed up, what kind of marketing plan would be used and all that jazz. We've enjoyed this house while we've had it. Jeff bought it 6 years ago from the original owner and I moved in after we were engaged. Now, our housing desires have changed and we're looking to make a go of what we really want out of life.
I watched the man who put the sign in the front yard from my second story office window. I didn't want to go down and say hello. Not sure why. But the sign in the front yard makes me feel both giddy with anticipation and crazy nervous. We're really doing this. We've spent weeks improving the house for the next owners and preparing ourselves for the move. The sign in the yard announces to the neighborhood that we're leaving. It's a big deal to them. It's a quiet suburban neighborhood with a lot of kids.
Now that all of the hard work of making sure the house is ready for sale, the even harder part of showing the house is next. We've worked out what to do with the cats when this happens but haven't figured out what to do with me (since I work at home). I suspect I will be hanging out at local coffee shops a lot.
Despite the fact that I loathe such transition times—I like having my privacy sanctuary—I am looking forward to what's next for Jeff and me. We'll be moving to Bellevue to within walking distance of his work and a whole lot of other things. It's a big deal. He and I got together because we could meet up at lunchtime and take a walk together. We both miss it. It will be near the library, the transit center and a whole lot of cool stuff. Not to mention a 10 minute walk to the beach. I'm looking forward to that.
We've hit the quiet before the storm. The real estate agents will come (by appointment only). Someone will fall in love with the house. The real estate agents will dicker with each other while inspections go on. Eventually, there will be an offer and then Jeff and I will be off on our own search, dickering, inspection and such. Then, there will be moving. LOTS of moving.
We know where we want to move to. However, Jeff mentioned last night that we should look around in neighboring places just to do some comparison shopping. I agree. But only because I know the standard by which I will compare all other high-rise condos and their amenities. We've set the bar very high. We know what we want. We know what we're willing to pay for it. We know where we are willing to live. We are one more step along that path.