house hunting

April 25, 2009 at 9:41 pm | Posted in Michigan, Moving | 5 Comments

After a second round of house-hunting, Jason’s favorite house is still on the top of the list.

Friday, I went out with our Realtor to see a few more houses – none of which I found too appealing.  One was too far from civilization, another had power lines running through the front yard, a third was too close to a very busy highway, and another was just too big and too new (after rejecting that one, our Realtor pointed out that we are a “unique” couple, looking for a “unique” property.  Which I think was a nice way of saying, “are you kidding me?”).

Saturday morning, J and I both went with the Realtor.  The first house we checked out was so ridiculously awful that it deserves mention.  The house was trashed, and we arrived to find glass from a broken window on the porch and cat vomit in the entryway.  We should have stopped there and turned around.  BUT! we did not.  The rest of the house was a strange mess of overly-ornate crucifixes, religious cartoons on the television, and papers describing child custody proceedings.  The first two would not have been something that bothered me, had it not been so orthogonal from a disturbing and startling piece of equipment in the third bedroom.  A strange apparatus took up most of the third bedroom – at first I thought that it was some sort of exercise equipment… and then I saw the packaging and instruction manual and ran from the house screaming.  Horrified. And since this blog is PG, I totally cannot tell you what it was, but I will let your imagination fill in the blanks, and hope that mind erasing drugs are coming to a pharmacy near me sometime soon.  Awful, awful, horrible, yuck. *shudder*  We later found out that the broken glass from the house was due to an attempted break in shortly before we arrived.  Scary!

So, of course I thought that this charming home sitting on a hill in the middle of 9 acres of woods was fantastic.  It blows the competition out of the water.  By a lot.  Also?  There’s 9 more acres of land directly to the West of the house available for purchase.  But?  It needs some work (of course).  Check it out:

the front of the house

the view from the garage/driveway

the view of the other side of the house

to your left as you enter the house is the dining room – we’d exchange the carpet for wood floors, remove the wallpaper and paint the walls and get a new chandelier

the kitchen is right behind the dining room and could also use some wallpaper removal, new cabinet/drawer handles, and new lighting, but unlike our Minneapolis kitchen, this kitchen actually has a stove!

the living room is to the right as you enter the house, and runs the entire length of the house.  No wallpaper to remove in this room, but we’d eventually like hardwood floors, and maybe a bit of color on the walls.

there’s a small study just off of the living room, which would make a great home office – I’d paint the wood paneling to brighten up the room, remove the tiled ceiling and put in new lighting.

Upstairs, there are 3 decent-sized bedrooms.  Here’s Jason standing in the “master bedroom” which would get new paint and new lighting, and the border would be removed.

A second bedroom.  For some reason, I didn’t get pictures of the third bedroom, but it looks like this except with green paint on the walls.

The basement is fully finished, and features a large rec-room with a woodburning fireplace.  This room would get a much much brighter paint color (white?  very light blue?) to make it feel less dungeon-y.

There was another room in the basement that we could use to house our weight bench, or as a guest room if our upstairs bedrooms are ever filled.

There was also a small “potting shed” off the side of the house.  Jason thought he might be able to add a bar here, but he’s also got some viable bar options in the 3-car garage or huge pole barn.

The back door led out to a three-season porch with a wood-burning stove and a pond/fountain.  Also, check out the view of the back yard – trees forever (and 6 or so acres of those trees will be sold with the house)!

the front yard

the back view of the house, complete with out-of-date and ridiculously large satellite

the pole barn

the loft in the pole barn.  great storage space – or, could be converted into a small apartment for visitors

I also wanted to mention that Barley was along for the ride, and he loves the house, too.  He pranced around the yard like he was the king of the castle, and then settled in some ground cover.

Jason is going to go on additional house-hunting adventures in the upcoming weeks to see if there’s anything better than this little gem.  We’ve been scoping the area – driving around the blocks surrounding the house, investigating the school district, etc, etc.  It appears to be in a great area with high median income and home values compared to some of the other surrounding areas, so I think that is a great sign.  There’s a bit of development going on in the nearby – large, beautiful brand-new homes in well-laid out subdivisions (these houses remind me of my parent’s house, which is wonderful, but I’m just not quite there yet).  However, the blocks surrounding this home are zoned for agriculture, which would make it difficult for a builder to come in and create a new subdivision next door or across the street.

We’re not in a rush to do anything definite on this one – we’re just in investigation mode for now.  We need to pull comparable sales in the area and determine whether the home is appropriately-priced.  Other than that, is there anything we should be asking?  What have we missed?  What do you think of the house?



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  1. I LOVE it Jen!! If the price is right, go for it! I’m sure you’d do wonderful things with it & of course, I want to see what you do!! 🙂

  2. Looks great! Just the land alone makes it worth it in my opinion. I grew up on a house on 10 acres surrounded by farm land and it was great. As a young boy, those 10 acres were one huge playground.

  3. Great house! Don’t forget to ask about the removal of the satellite and check the title in case there are any easements with regards to it. Good luck with the house hunting! xoxo

  4. The house looks to be well maintained, and after last month’s decorating binge you are now King and Queen of Cosmetic Change. You should be able to make a place like that look like home in no time! I like Jason’s top-of-the-list house! Of course, that is coming from someone slightly partial to a center entry colonial on a couple of acres with trees. 🙂
    ps I’m sure Doug would love to have the barn out back.

  5. That house is precious. Looks like it has loads of possibilities.

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