The House Of My Dreams

I’ve been looking for a house to buy for about 6 months now.  I’ve put bids in on eleven different properties, but I haven’t won any of them.  I started out imagining that I would find a great little home at a low price, but after failing on the first couple of offers I had to lower my expectations to finding an okay place at a price that I can afford.  Unfortunately that didn’t seem to help, and by now my dream of buying a home has pretty much been reduced to looking for a place that I don’t utterly despise at the very top of my affordability range.  The whole exercise is emotionally exhausting.

It might not be so bad if I didn’t already own a condo which has a market value just slightly more than half of the mortgage balance.  Unfortunately the condo eats up a big chunk of my paycheck, so my homebuying budget is pretty limited.

I started out looking for houses close to where I work in San José.  Around February, it became clear that the market had recovered to the point where any house in town which wasn’t in a neighborhood with regular shootings was out of my reach.  I tried making offers on a couple of nice places about 45 minutes to the South in Felton, but I didn’t prevail on those either.  I didn’t even get the one which needs the entire septic system replaced.  Okay, fine.  Now I’m looking at crappy houses in Felton.  At least the trees are nice.  I’d rather have a crappy house in Felton than one in San José where I’m going to get shot.

Now that I have set the stage with my frustration at trying to buy a home, here’s the scene from today:  I found the house of my dreams.  Seriously.  It’s a little stucco tudor cottage with a deck that sticks out over a creek.  It’s got great proportion, and there’s a fantastic interplay of spaces.  This is exactly what Christopher Alexander was talking about when he wrote The Timeless Way of Building.  My heart sings just looking at it.   I’m completely in love with this little house.  Even the garage is beautiful.

Sorry about the crummy composition and blown out highlights.  I guess I'm not winning any awards for this photo.

The Most Beautiful House I’ve Ever Seen


Sadly, it’s not going to be mine.  The foundation is a complete wreck.  Even if I could talk the bank into loaning me the money to buy it, it would probably cost another hundred grand in cash to fix.

I may cry.

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