I mean, I think every homeowner knows what's wrong with their house -- areas that could use improvement or a little more love. But most of us also spend lots of time and/or money on making our houses our homes.
We carefully choose the color of paint that goes on its walls, what carpet or tile will cover its floors and what homey little touches we'll hang on its walls or fill its shelves.
But once you've lived in a home for more than a year or two, the battle between "homey touches" and clutter begins. New items come in and old items don't make it out at quite the same pace. We store things thinking, "Well, maybe I'll want that marcomèed plant hanger again some day..."
Then you decide you'd like a new house.
And the absolute panic begins.
If you've been following this blog for some time, you'll already know that the Hubby and I have been looking forward to this move and working toward it for years.
We've done a good deal of purging and organizing and as soon as he got his recent job offer, we started packing. No lie.
We met with a realtor on Friday and while most of what she told us wasn't a surprise, it really sorta sucked to hear negative comments about our home coming out of someone else's mouth.
Wait...I have a friend like that. She can bitch about her hubby all she wants but the rest of us better never say a word...
Oh, sorry...I digress.
Anyway, after chatting for awhile she did a little home tour with us of the downstairs portion where we live. She said things like, "...remove all personal objects..." and "...they'll open closets, you know..." and "...make sure you clean every nook and cranny..."
In fact she said those things several times.
She may as well have done the white glove test and looked down her nose at me disdainfully.
A domestic engineer I am not, but we had scrubbed that house top to bottom prepping not only for the realtor to come over, but for Will's birthday party the following day. All that had yet to be done was to fold a single load of laundry (a freakin' record by my standards) and sort through another laundry basket of miscellani.
You know the type - it contained kids' clothes that needed to be run down to storage, tool-like components that go to Godknowswhat, stray toys that made their way onto the living room floor three minutes before the realtor came over, receipts that were sitting on top of the piano that we just couldn't decide if we really really needed...
In my home, if a laundry basket can contain all of our random clutter, its practically a miracle.
I mean, she was right. I'm sure she says those things to everyone, and I'm sure she's seen many a seller who tried to get away with stuffing their dog's smelly pillow under the kitchen sink.
She also told us that due to market conditions, she wouldn't have us start to look for new houses (read: "the fun part") until our house were ready to be listed.
She left us with a list of "to dos" which made our entire list even longer.
Oh, and did I mention? We'll have to pay capital gains.
Cuz its a duplex, which is technically considered to be an income property and that really pisses me off. We certainly didn't become rich living here...we don't have a huge nest egg that's ready for our retirement...but we're looking at being taxed on approximately $14-15,000*.
(And that's a conservative estimate.)
Later, after she'd left, I wanted to have myself a nice little pout about it all. I wanted to sit in the corner on the couch, cross my arms and puff, "FINE."
And then eat chocolate ice cream. With caramel sauce.
But I didn't. Cuz I'm a grown up.
So I'm over it (sorta) and we're moving on (dragging my feet) and we packed quite a few boxes last night. My Dad and Jay will be working on the new kitchen floor this afternoon, which, when finished, will X project number 87 of 3,681 off our list.
Now - I'm off to go find that ice cream...
*Hello Barack Obama? Yes, I'd like to apply for a bail-out please. Thank you.