Sunday, October 28, 2007

The House Hunt

Well, here it is a day early, but nevertheless the time for an Update is upon us.

Yesterday, Clare and I made our bi-weekly trip to Richmond to visit with her Uncle Mike for the purpose of exchanging post cards and checking out a house or two.

Uncle Mike sends us a list every day of what's coming on and going off the market. So it is that I found a foreclosure that looked promising from the outside to check out for under a 100k.

What we found was a pleasant shock. A craftsman style bungalow replete with newly finished hardwood floors, French doors that lead into a finished tile kitchen, and thick, early twentieth century trim. Yes, the home is rough around the edges, but most of those issues are cosemetic. Clearly, it looked as if someone had done a fair deal of updating, but fell on hard times.

So Clare and I are in the process of purchasing this home, not as a keeper, but as an investment. With a thorough bit of cleaning, some paint and a lot of elbow grease, the optimist in me believes it will significantly increase in value.

In a way, it's very much a tragedy in our day that home prices are so out of control. Real estate is a wonderful investment all in all, but I would rather be purchasing a nice house to live in for a long time and make a home then to purchase a house, enhance it's attractiveness and then flip it so I can simply do the former.

Planting roots is a huge part of taking our place in the world, at least for some of us. I like Richmond, though it is not my first choice for a home. It is a good choice for a market to invest in I think, since there are areas in which house prices are fairly reasonable.

Again, I'd rather hang out and live the crunchy-con way, but in this day and age, it seems you must first possess the entreprunurial spirit to be a crunchy-con.

The irony, eh?

Over and out.


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