My Next Biggest Endeavor

Well, you know I have big ideas. So far, they had ended up panning out, to whatever degree that may be. I got my books written, and they’re doing reasonably okay, for the lackluster advertising – which is 100% My Own Fault. I became a pretty decent photographer, now with magazine credits to my name. I said I’d see the world and I would.

But right now, in light of the fact that my mother is about to retire in a couple of years (which will fly, if the past few are any indication), and because I have to really think about how I will survive in a city that’s pricing out anyone who’s under a certain income range, I have decided to take a couple of Very Deep Breaths and plunge myself into a new endeavor. I may have touched on it before, more or less speculatively, but right now I’m getting ready to make it A Real Thing either before Mom retires or shortly after..

I’m going to buy a house.

Yeah. It’s a huge thing. It’s a very huge thing, considering that 1. student loans are in the picture, and 2. for all my realtoring earlier, I know next to nothing about homebuying. This I will partly blame my brokerage on; I know the laws concerning the homebuying side, but I have never gone through the process – obviously – and the bulk of my real estate experience had focused on renting, not purchasing. And of course…I do not know how equipped I am to deal with the financial rigmarole of it all, especially considering that, for obvious reasons, I will not be living in NYC itself. Within the area, yes; I know very well that because my job is currently pretty damn awesome, then I should keep it. But I cannot live in NYC and that is a sad thing.

You know what this city means to me. I mean, can I really, honestly have any home but NYC? Truly, I’m kidding myself if I think to contrary. However, I think that living somewhere in New Jersey or in the Putnam Country/Westchester area of NY would be far friendlier to my finances, and far quieter in regards to everyday life. I have all the excitement at my fingertips in the realm of music and traveling, but I want to come home and know that no one can take it away from me. That this is something my own, that I can work on it and make it better, and maybe, eventually, bring someone else in who will take as much pride in having this thing as my very own as myself. Whether Mom will live at the house with me, I’m not yet sure. She talked about retiring to somewhere cheap and warm, so who knows if she’ll even stay in the Northeast… I’d like to have her with me, but a huge part of me feels that this is going to be my journey first. If she joins me, also great.

So, in part because I’m of the newer generation, and because I think that it is something that people need to know how to do, I have decided to blog my journey to homeownership.

So far, what have I determined?

I determined that I will likely not be able to afford much. That’s just how it is, and I’m aware of it. But I also determined that I would like something that needs some updating and/or work. I like to build. I love to build, actually, and all the furniture I have right now, including the bedframe I’m sleeping on for the third year, is all put together by my own hands. Instructions for IKEA never bothered me; I figured out how to build stuff up on my own when I was about twelve. So I wonder: just what and how much can I do if I had my own house to fix it in?

So that is for sure: I want something that’s Not New. Something that’s been around. Outdated appliances? OK. Bathroom needs a new faucet? OK. Floors need to get a spruce-up? Bring it. Basement needs to get cleaned up and finished up? Sure. Transform a laundry station into a Laundry Station? Make a walk-in closet? Build the book drawer stairs I keep seeing on Facebook? Sure. If the foundation is sound, the wiring is up to code, gas is working, boiler is sound, and the roof doesn’t leak – I can do the rest.

The rest becomes a matter of working with people who can get me the house that I want, for the least possible amount of money, with the least possible hassle. This will take a while, I know. This will be painful, likely financially too. But… It will pay off. I know it will. I will make it so.

That and…I know that when my  friends come through town, I would like to offer them a homecooked meal and a crashpad. :)

K.G.

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