A home on Bainbridge Island

We’ve done it now twice and however painful it might be living without a kitchen sink, it is still strangely addictive. I swear we will never do it again, that is what I tell my friends and family. But, because I always seem to love that special home with character and a view, odds are that this home we are currently working on might not be our last.

The problem I have, when I am out touring houses on Bainbridge Island, is that when I see a tired house, I start imagining how I would tear it up: remove walls, make the kitchen bigger, add wood flooring, paint, add clean white molding. It is easy for me to have the vision, which is great, many people struggle with that, but the thing I now know is that a seemingly simple task like adding molding can take an entire day. Why? Because the walls in any house new or old might not be square. The paint might have to be redone after trying to make it straight and the transition to the stairs might have to be trimmed and sanded. And then, well you have to make another trip to Ace or Home Depot. Even jobs that seem easy enough, can take double or triple the time you estimate.

So, why are we so crazy? Well, in this market we live in on Bainbridge Island, which has and holds more value than many of our neighbors, it is hard to lose money when you are building sweat equity. And well, it is nice to make extra money on probably your largest investment, your home. I call what we do our third job. And, it is also nice to have the kitchen you want, not the kitchen the previous owners wanted.

So, I’ll continue to imagine taking a Sawzall to walls I’d like to see disappear in houses with great potential. One I recently came upon is this sweet little house out off Sunrise on Sunrose Lane. It is on a great lot with a view of the Sound through the trees. The inside however, needs some opening up (i.e. a Sawzall) a revamp, in my opinion. See for yourself. It is priced well for those who like a challenge and instant equity.

On March 5, 2008, in Homes, Personal, by

One Response to My Husband and I Have a Bad Habit of Remodeling Houses

  1. Allison Krug says:

    Aloha Jen!

    I was reading a couple of your posts on education as we have just put in a contingent offer on a BI home for all the reasons you describe – the sense of community, rural areas, land, small schools which are also excellent. I couldn’t believe the difference in college advancement rates between BI and Poulsbo – wow – 78% vs 39%. I was looking for that statistic and that’s how I found you.

    We are moving back to WA from Hawaii (military) and have two boys (3 and 6). We are also looking for a church (another of your posts) and I think BI has one of the more vibrant Catholic churches around. All in all, despite not wanting to be the B-Islander that people hate, BI has EVERYTHING we value. I used to hike there with my oldest boy when he was a baby. Anyway…just wanted to commend you on your natural blog writing style and forthrightness. I guess there’s nothing to be ashamed of for wanting the best for your family and sacrificing a bit to get there. Wish us luck!

    Oh and by the way re the “place for everything” post – we have a built-in here that we designed exactly like that! It’s my nerve center so i don’t have piles! I work from home as a medical writer while the 3 yr old naps. Looking forward to meeting you when we arrive!


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