I am going to be posting now and then about work around our house, but I wanted to write a bit of an introduction first...
We moved back to North America a few years ago after living overseas for an extended period. Initially we were renters as we were not sure where exactly we wanted to live, but within a year we purchased a house. We are very blessed in that we were able to buy a home, but it was also a stressful time. Our house is in one of the most expensive regions of North America. We looked. And looked. And looked. It seemed that it was almost impossible to find a detached house that would meet our future needs for under a million dollars. (Yes, you read that right.) We decided to shift (slightly) the area we were looking in. Our new goal: buy a house for under $500,000.00. (Yes, you read that right.) This was also a challenge. We literally spent every weekend for several months driving all over the Greater Toronto Area, scouring MLS, looking at houses. Eventually this paid off and we found a house significantly below our 500K limit. We ended up buying a 2 bedroom bungalow (with a finished basement). It is small. It is not our dreamhouse but we love it and we have not regretted, not even once, our decision to buy it. Buying a house that we can actually afford instead of stretching our credit to the absolute max is one of the best decisions we've made. The house is not without its challenges - like any house - we are always trying to improve things, create more space, get rid of stuff, or just be more efficient. I cannot deny that sometimes I drive around our area (where most detached homes are selling for over $1M) and wonder what we are doing wrong (ie. who are all these other people and how on earth can they afford these houses?), but this feeling never lasts. I love our house which we have made our own.
I wish I could come up with something splashy or unique to say about the home related things I might post - but at the end of the day we are just normal people, living in a normal house, with a normal amount of mess, trying to make it all work. Maybe you will get an idea from something I write - or maybe you will just think "hey, they should have spent the money and bought a bigger house." Ha.
We love our house. Buy less than you can afford.