Wednesday, 17 June 2015

What I Would Tell the Property Brothers

I stayed up way too late last night watching HGTV home reno shows. Having renovated two houses myself, I like the feeling of sitting back in my comfy chair and watching other people have to deal with mold, rot, termites, leaky pipes, asbestos, damaged joists, runaway budgets, and lead paint and knowing that I don't have to solve any of it.

At the beginning of each show, the wide-eyed, optimistic home buyers/owners always give a list of the things that they are looking for and what is absolutely essential. I am always struck by the wide range of people's preferences, and how some things are vitally important to some people and not at all important to others. Some demand separate bedrooms for each child. Some are content to convert a garage into a bedroom for all the kids together. Some want huge rooms big enough to rollerskate in, and others want to downsize to tiny houses. One woman with four children insisted on having two dishwashers, two clothes washers, and two dryers. Good heavens, has she thought about what her electric bill will look like?

Anyway, after binging on an evening of these kinds of shows, I find myself rehearsing in my head what I would tell the Property Brothers was important to me, if I were looking for a home. This is what's important to me:

  • The yard and location are more important than the house. A house can be changed, but the location really can't. I want privacy, quiet, and green space, with room for a garden and my dogs and some shade trees.
  • The town needs to be smallish but still have a good hospital and library. Having a lake or river nearby to walk the dogs beside would be a plus.
  • The kitchen is more important to my husband than to me, but I think he'd like lots of storage and counter space. He doesn't care much about the high-end finishings, and neither do I. I just want a counter I can roll out pasta and beat bread dough on, that can take a licking and is cheap to replace.
  • I need natural light -- lots of windows, or a sunroom, or even a greenhouse. Airy and spacious.
  • I like Mission-style furniture, and we both like the simplicity and clean lines of Japanese and Scandinavian furniture. We both like natural materials -- wood, stone -- and earth tones.
  • We need somewhere to use as an office, because between my writing and his family history research and all our books, we're paper people. And somewhere to store musical instruments and sewing supplies.
  • And as we get older, we value the convenience of having everything on one floor, easily-accessible showers, and low maintenance.
That's what is important to case Jonathan and Drew ever ask.

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