I cheated on our house.
We went to look at another one this afternoon. Not a curiosity visit to an Open House down the street, but an actual appointment with a realtor for a private showing of a recently listed home.
And now I’m home and feeling really guilty about it. Guilty about entertaining the thought of leaving this house behind. Guilty for walking the girls through another space, through bedrooms that can’t hold a candle to their own.
But here’s the thing. I’m really frustrated right now. We’re in a holding pattern on the house project which feels really crappy, and we don’t have a good idea of what the next few months hold on it. With delays come doubt, and with doubt comes anxiety. Are we even doing the right thing? I’m not sure anymore. I’ve had too much time to think.
So when an offhand comment was made about scrapping the expensive and invasive renovation plans and finding another house that already has the things that we are looking to add to our current house, I initially balked at the idea. No way, not a chance.
But the kernel was there, and the thought didn’t leave. The following day I altered my drive home by a couple of blocks and passed a house that we’d always admired with a newly planted For Sale sign in the front yard. Interesting. I forgot about it for a few days, but then remembered it and looked it up. I sent it to M. I called the realtor. We set a time. We saw it today. I feel so guilty.
We’ve always loved houses, and frequently drive and walk through neighborhoods admiring them, wondering about them, talking about how we’d live in them. We love stumbling upon open houses, we used to frequent them when E was little – kind of our Sunday afternoon “thing”. But it’s been a long time since we’ve done that. We’ve been committed to this place and this street and this neighborhood and this city for seventeen years and counting. We have another fourteen or so years before the youngest is through school and college, and I picture us here for at least that amount of time.
This house we saw is large. It has many of the things we love about our current house as well as many of the things our current house lacks. The rooms are gracious and light filled. There is so much potential. There is no kitchen, which sounds strange, but is really perfect. I don’t like most kitchens, and want to do my own, so I don’t want to pay for a kitchen that I have to rip out. That was the main selling point, and the reason we both agreed to set up the appointment.
We aren’t buying the house.
We saw a hundred red flags that signal a significant amount of money in the near future. The house is priced as if these flags don’t exist, but we both see them. We’re difficult buyers, and I freely admitted that in my initial phone call to the realtor. She agreed, and came to our meeting today with a much lower number as a suggestion. After seeing the house in person, she followed up via text with an even lower suggestion. It’s still overpriced. We’ve looked at too many beautiful homes that have been hacked at by owners and flippers doing shoddy work with no plans. It makes me sad. I want to roll back the clock and start with a blank slate like we did here. It’s why we picked our house. It had good bones, but we had free reign to make it as good as we wanted to, and I think we’ve done that. We’re trying to continue doing that, but it’s taking so long.
I should be patient, but I strayed. My mind moved on, briefly, to a new project. That feeling is intoxicating, and can spiral quickly if not controlled. I just want to work on all the houses, I love them so.
Feeling guilty, feeling stuck. Kind of tricky to navigate on a Saturday night, and thought maybe it would help to write it out.