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Minor Makeover Miracles  

copyright ©1999-2000

the Incredibly TRUE Confessions of a First-time HOMEowner |  1 2
continued from page 2

After a mere week of looking at potential houses – ranging from the poorly laid-out to the down-right dilapidated – we noticed that the house across the street had just gone on the market. It was love at first sight. Okay, not quite first sight, since the first thing we saw was that it was painted vibrant flamingo pink – with teal trim no less – a color combination so loudly hideous it made me cringe in embarrassment. But when the front door opened, and we hesitantly peeked in, that was it: we were smitten. The living room was nearly twice as large as the one at our rental place, with charming Mexican tile floors, a large north-facing window, and a cute little fireplace. The main bedroom was small, but well-proportioned, and airy. And in the back yard, a wash (a little creek-like ditch through which water runs when the rains are heavy enough) provided enough moisture in the soil that plant life was beautifully dense, green and lush – a sight that’s rare when you’re living in a desert town like Tucson. But it was the kitchen that was the clincher – recently renovated, it boasted rows and rows of custom-crafted wood cabinets, a corner sink, French doors opening out to the side of the house, windows galore, and high, high ceilings. Two hours later, we called our agent and told him: we wanted this house.

The actual buying of the house was a month-long process that flew by at a dizzying pace. I barely had time to process the magnitude of this major rite of passage as papers and signatures were faxed back and forth between our real estate agent, the seller’s agent, the mortgage officer, and our home office, all on the road towards our ultimate goal: closing day, when the house would finally, officially, belong to us.

So last Wednesday, shiny new house keys clutched in my hand, we hopped into the car, cursed every traffic light that dared to turn red and cause us delay, and at last, pulled up in front of that adorable little two- (barely) bedroom house. With a clockwise twist of key in lock, the front door opened; we stepped over the threshold, eagerly but with hands shaking. The house echoed the sound of our shoes hitting the hard tile floor, welcoming us to our brand-spanking new lives as honest-to- goodness homeowners. Good-bye, rent checks, landlords, leases. Hello, mortgage payments, homeowners’ insurance, property taxes. We can now knock down walls, strip surfaces, bang holes in walls till our little hearts’ content. We could re-paint the house tangerine orange, electric blue, maybe even purple polka-dot. Which is not to say we will (although I can guarantee it won’t be remaining pink) … but it sure is nice to have the freedom to do whatever we damn well please.


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