Welcome to our blog where we hope to document our house renovation projects! Full disclosure, we had this same hope with our last house and never did it... so, this may or may not actually take off!
We have already started sharing some glimpses of our house over on Instagram, so check that out!
The blog title comes from the fact that while we live squarely in DC's suburbia (just 5 minutes outside the beltway), we managed to stumble upon a rather isolated house with a big tree-filled lot. It's on a short street, with only a few houses, that dead ends into woods.
When we first decided to move to DC, we worried about not being able to afford all of our house desires on our budget. Cost of living calculators estimated that DC was 5 to 7 times more expensive than South Bend, where we were coming from, and most of the difference was in housing costs. Since John's salary was about the same as what we'd been making together in South Bend (and I didn't have a job lined up), we were in a pinch!
Here was our wish list:
- Bedrooms: 4, ideally 5
- Bathrooms: at least 2.5 with one of them being a dedicated master bath
- Attached garage
- Big yard with trees
- Less than 1 hour commute each way for John
- Some work still to be done (we like to do DIY projects and personalize our space)
- Move-in ready - no immediate renovation needs. This was important for our sanity, but also so we could use a VA loan with no money down.
- A house that could be our forever home: it needed to be big enough and just feel right.
In our price range, most of the homes were only 3 bedroom, or if they had more bedrooms, they were in the basement. That might be fine for a guest room or office, but not for having each of our children have their own room near us. Also, most of the homes had small yards. There were hardly any homes in DC proper or Virginia that even came close to our desires and price range, so we focused our search in Maryland.
We found the perfect place and after surviving some stressful, annoying negotiations, and thinking everything was going to fall through multiple times, we closed on the house. Funny thing, I never even saw the house in person until after we owned it! John took videos during his walk-throughs and that was enough!
We look forward to sharing our home and our renovation adventures with you! I'll leave you with a few outdoor pics. To see more, check us out on Instagram.