Sunday, March 20, 2011



House hunting wore me out yesterday. I'm fighting a bug of some sort that is playing havoc with my asthma. I'm wheezing and coughing myself into oblivion. It might not have been wise to venture outside at all, but I was anxious to see the houses.
We first visited the house closest to us - the brick ranch in a country setting. It has a newly updated kitchen, new windows, a huge finished basement with a fireplace, a big fenced backyard, a shed, and an unattached garage which could double as a cat barn if we added windows and a heat source. To top it off, there were horses grazing just across the fenceline. What more could we want, right? At first glance, the house seemed wonderful, but the laundry area was in the basement and I need the laundry room to be on the main level. The house needs a new roof and some electrical and plumbing work. The fireplace takes up one whole wall and is great, except it's in the basement of the house and the only access to the basement is through the garage. We thought that was a bit odd. There's an enclosed sunroom which was a good size and looked nice, but smelled very musty and set off my allergies and a coughing jag. So...on to the next house.
We nearly didn't get in to see the newer house with the cottage/workshop. We didn't know it was located in a gated lakefront community to which we had no access. No information regarding that was given on the website listing. We drove around looking for points of access but found more locked gates. Spouse said that was not a good omen to him. I wasn't too thrilled about it either. That was strike one. We sat at one gate for quite awhile wondering how to get in to see the house. I decided to flag down a resident as she came out through the gate. The first two people whose attention I tried to gain just looked at me and drove on past. Neither slowed down to see if I needed help. Strike two.
The nice lady who did stop, pointed us in the direction of the "front entrance" which was about three miles from where we had been waiting. There had been no sign directing us there, but once we found it, we had to stop at a guard house and declare our intentions. That seemed like a less-than-friendly situation, but after passing muster, we were able to ramble around the community looking for the right street. We ended up a block from the entrance where we'd begun, but inside the locked gate. That wasn't setting well with Spouse.
We found the house and it was just as charming as in the photo. The cottage was actually a woodcrafter's shop filled with tools. I thought Spouse would love it and declare he needed it for himself. What he actually said was, "it didn't knock my socks off". He noticed a lot of things I hadn't. The outside needed some work and the inside was wired strangely. It was supposed to be heated but we could find neither a heat source nor a thermastat. Still, I could imagine the cats having a ball in there. There were three windows and a lovely front porch which I thought could be enclosed so they could go out and sun themselves.
The interior of the house was very clean and pretty, with an updated kitchen I really liked. In fact, I liked the whole package until the realtor opened the hallway door to the furnace room and the smell of LP gas fumes was almost overwhelming. Our realtor had brought along her hubby, who happens to be a licensed home inspector. He immediately asked his wife to call the realtor who was representing the owners and tell her the house had a major gas leak. Strike three. The gas leak was troublesome for humans for obvious reasons, but also caused worry since there were pets in the home, one being a huge green African parrot. We had noticed three large empty bird cages in the garage and wondered if inhaling gas fumes had caused the demise of other birds. We'll never know, but I pray the beautiful parrot is safe.
So, the house hunting did not go as well as we'd hoped. The first house just wasn't what we were looking for. The second house was, but we were not keen on the gated community, the high fees charged for being in a gated area, the gas leak, or the fact it's further from Spouse's workplace, which is already an hour and 15 minutes away. We didn't know those things before we started out yesterday. We'll just have to keep looking, but at least we tried.
P.S. To be doubly sure the realtor had the message about the gas leak and it's potential danger to humans AND their pets, I called him myself today. I know my realtor called him from the house, but she said nothing about the danger to that beautiful parrot. I had to say something so I could sleep at night.


Merilyn said...

What a day!!! The unfriendly residents in the gated community would have put me off straight away!!! LOL! never mind the gas......

Cat Nap Inn Primitives said...

sorry the house hunting was a downer..I know you are both so ready to move..and then to not see anything worth getting..i know you will find something Kady..;) probably when you aren't looking.:)