Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Fixer Upper!

Well....this is a little bit crazy, but we're buying a house.  We love Blacksburg and we feel fairly confident that the hubby will be able to find a job here when he finishes school.  So, why not go ahead and buy a house here?!  

Of course, that idea came along after we stumbled upon this little fixer upper, mostly by mistake.  The hubby's bike blew a tire, which meant I had to go pick up his bike and happened to turn down a road I don't typically go down.  I saw a cute home for sale and felt compelled to call the number on the sign.  When I called, the agent told me more about the home and the conditions of the sale due to an affordable housing partnership between the town and Community Housing Partners.  We went to see the first house I saw, but it turned out to be too small for us for the long run.  However, the agent told us he had a larger home, also in the program, available nearby.  We went to see it, liked it, applied for the program, qualified for the program, qualified for the loan, and now here we are under contract on our very own little fixer upper in the heart of Blacksburg.  And as more time passes, the more we love this little place!

This is the house from the street.  It's narrow, but is deep.  It was built in the 1940s as two apartments - one upstairs and one downstairs.  CHP is doing all the renovations, but we get to be a part of the process.  Part of our deal is that we have to put in 110 hours of work in the home before closing.  We also get to help with some of the design/finish selections.  It is truly a dream come true!  We get an older fixer upper home, but we also have a company that is seasoned with construction overseeing that all the major systems of the house get a complete renovation!  I am so excited about getting in there and working!  Today I did a little demo and LOVED it.

Since it was built as two separate units, the house needs stairs!  No stairs yet, but there is a giant hole that will eventually have stairs!

The upstairs bath - not much there right now.  I love seeing everything gutted!  There are two bedrooms upstairs - one on each side of this bathroom.

Standing in the upstairs hall, looking towards the front of the house.   You can see the hole for the stairs.  The kitchen will be where the framing is on the left (which will eventually be opened up).  Between the kitchen and stairs will be the dining area.  The living area will be to the right.

The house has TWO fireplaces.  TWO.  This is the upstairs fireplace.  The living room area upstairs is small, but we'll figure out how to make furniture work here.  And it has a fireplace.  I'm so stinking happy about that.

Standing at the front door, looking at the kitchen - or lack there of.  The walls will eventually all be removed, but first a metal I-beam will be installed in the attic for support.  The kitchen will be expanded some, but will be L-shaped with a large island.  A kitchen island - seriously, my dreams are coming true.

This is the downstairs family room.  It is much larger than the upstairs living room space.

Do you see that?  The second fireplace.  Oh how happy this makes me!  

There's a room at the back of the house that seems added on.  It has a wall of windows, but not much usable space.  I think we will make it our art room for now.  The kids and I are so excited to have a designated space for creativity!

One of the downstairs bedrooms.  These are our kitchen cabinets.  They were in the downstairs kitchen.  They are custom made and in great condition.  We're excited to have such well made cabinets!

The other downstairs bedroom - it's just missing a wall or two and all of it's flooring!  Like I said, this house is a major fixer upper.  The second bathroom is on the right at the end of the hall.

Standing on the other side of the bedroom with missing walls (essentially where the stairs will come down).  You can almost see into the future laundry room (the bathroom is closer to where I am standing, also on the left) - another exciting change for us.  After over three years with no washer and dryer we are so ready to have our own again.  My mom and dad may be even more excited!

Today I did our first project at the house.  I removed a section of wood flooring from the storage area.  The contractor wasn't sure what was underneath - dirt or concrete?  Turns out it was concrete, but for some reason before building the framing and floor, someone decided to throw wood scraps into the space.  I found this beautifully shaped piece of wood.  I don't know what it was, but I saw it and knew I had to bring it home to clean it up.  Some of the scrolling was falling off, but I found the pieces.  This will definitely find it's place on a wall of our new home!

We have months of work ahead of us and probably won't move in until April, but we are so happy to have a new home.  We have really missed being homeowners.  Our little apartment has served us well and we will honestly miss it.  700 square feet has been a perfect space for us in many ways.  We love being close to one another.  It keeps our family close and we can't sweep issues under the rug. We've also been forced to stay exceptionally organized and careful about what we bring into our home.  But the lack of storage of any kind is really getting to us and we feel like it's time for the kids to have their own rooms.  It's going to be a big change to move into a home so much larger than our apartment.  Change is always a combination of exciting and scary.  I know that with time, our love and comfortable style will fill this larger home with the same coziness we've filled this small space with!