Six years ago, my husband and I moved to this Massachusetts city out of necessity. Rent for our two bedroom apartment outside of Boston went up to 1,400 bucks. Ouch. So we decided it was finally time to own a home, knowing that our mortgage payments would be less than rent and we had enough money for the 20 percent down payment. We started looking. And looking. And looking. There were no affordable homes for us near Boston. Or 30 minutes out. But 45 minutes? Bingo. And that's when we found our dream home.
This house is amazing: an antique colonial/farmhouse on a hill with five bedrooms, two full bathrooms, a huge kitchen, and a dining room. There is plenty of yard, all fenced in, and enough parking for six cars right in the driveway, on a street where most houses don't have a driveway. Double front doors open to a front hall equipped with the original carved railing from 1880. There is a second staircase from the back hall to the second floor. Sigh. This is the house I've always dreamed of having. Unfortunately it's in the wrong city and, six years later, we realize it's time to go.
We've had many discussions about what we need in a house. We know what we want, we know what we can afford, we know what is available and, now, we know how to be practical.
This past weekend, the two of us went up to what will be our new town and looked at houses. There are so many wonderful houses in this particular Maine town, but it seems that none of them are in our price range. What we saw was eye opening for sure and brought up the same discussion over and over again. What are we doing? We love this house we have now. Oh, right, we don't like living here. We've finally painted every room the right color and made the right furniture to fit everything. Oh, right, this was temporary. I have a walk-in closet and a huge pantry. What will I do without those? Oh, right, have less stuff. These children have their own rooms and room for everything. Oh, right, we'll be able to save more money each month for the things that are more important.
In the end it comes down to the fact that we have to downsize. This is a big move for us. It's the start of a great future, the next step on our goal ladder, but it could bring about some scary changes. And with the economy getting shakier -- a notion I've long avoided but now it's time to be real and grown up and stop ignoring what's going on around me -- taking on a bigger home and/or a bigger mortgage is out of the question.