house hunting

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

i've been known to have a temporary obsession in my life now and again.

where i'm so infatuated with a topic that i go online and read/watch/listen to every bit of information i can on the subject till my thirst for knowledge is quenched... OR i find something else to obsess over.

this is also my usual my approach with men.

but that's not the point of this post.

the point is to get help with my current obsession - home ownership.

i'm currently on the hunt, a hunt for a house/condo/large cardboard box for me to purchase and call my own.

i know for the most part where i want to buy (downtown or near west side) and i'm pretty confident that i'll end up with something fabulous.

but signing on the dotted line is just the beginning people.

the good stuff starts when i get to decorate!

paint colors, furniture, lighting, granite counter tops, art - ya know, "pieces" as poo poo calls them.

i can't stop coming home and looking at home decorating websites and my brain is about to explode. there are so many styles i like and i'm actually starting to get nervous that i'm never going to be able to make a decision on anything.

hell, currently i can't even find good flowers to plant in the whopping five pots on my deck without going to seven nurseries first.

it's official ladies and gentlemen, i'm turning into my mother. i may as well come to terms with it as it was bound to happen... i am about to be 30.

but again, that's not the point of this post.

how am i going to decorate a whole house/condo/large cardboard box?

so i'm looking for any tips you may have about buying and or decorating a new home, websites, resources, recommendations, etc.

thanks in advance, kids.

side note: i wonder if i could get cast on the HGTV show Property Virgins?!?


  1. I'm sure I'll be exactly the same if I ever get around to (and can afford to) buy my own place. At the moment, I get my fix buying too many scented candles and cushions!

  2. Sandra Riamotto (sp?) is a favorite in our house. You'd be perfect for that show!

    Did you know I was also 29 when I bought my first condo? Did you also know I blogged about home ownership today? Freaky!

    My best advice to you about buying a home? Know your budget. See what's out there based on your budget. Make a realistic Must-have and Wish list for things you need/want in a new home. And consider this all business (NO EMOTION!) until you've got the keys in your hands. I looked at 60 condos before buying my first one and don't regret the time I took one bit!

  3. I am also obsessed with decorating sites myself. I could spend hours on Decor8, madebygirl and apartment therapy.

  4. I am getting married next summer, and we are currently in the beginning stages of house hunting.. It is very exciting, but also overwhelming, I often feel like it's going on blind dates and trying to figure if the relationship will work or not! Please keep us posted on what you find and how you decorate!

  5. I agree with Nilsa; know your budget and don't get emotionally involved. Also, have a idea of your must-haves; it will save time. Finally, We looked at a couple of places that were a bit of a stretch; just to get an idea of what's out there.

    We've been moved in for a month and i still decorating; m favorites are apartment therapy and dwell. My favorite places for "pieces" are Marshalls, home goods, and all the Cleveland street fairs. I've found some really great stuff at all 3 places! Good luck with your house hunt; in my experience it's the most exciting and nerve racking experience, an all worth it in the end

  6. My advice on finding a place is just start going to look at them. Look at as many as you can and you will quickly pick up on what is important to you and what isn't. You will know the right place when you are in it.

    As for decorating, just buy anything you love and it will find the right place in your place.

  7. Hee, hee! I was waiting for you to say pieces! Just go slowly and get things you like. You are very good at this kind of stuff lexipoo.

  8. I wish I had better (or, any) advice for you, but my apartment is currently decorated in IKEA and Target. With a smattering of grandma's old furniture.

    Although, depending on how big your new place ends up being, these two sites (left for me by another blogger) may come in handy:

  9. So while I started to read this post I am thinking to myself "Boy she is starting to sound more like me". The next thing I read was just that...made me laugh! You used to be the'queen' of quick buying decisions. I was always dragging you around to compare. Boy things do change...ha.

  10. All the previous tips are good ones -- know your budget and don't let your emotions rule your home search. Also find a real estate agent that listens to you and you like. and have fun! It's so much fun to see the insides of so many different places and be nosy about how other people live. Make sure you look at a bunch of places.

  11. HA, I love your moms comment.

  12. All the above comments/recommendations are great. I would also suggest waiting until you find the house/condo/cardboard box before getting too caught up in the decorating part. Once you see the space, deciding the style and direction you want to go in should be much easier.
    Good luck!

  13. It's nerve-wracking, that's for sure. Once you sign on the dotted line, then the fun begins. Except, if you put all your money into BUYING your house, you won't have any left over to decorate! I can't wait to get more than just painting done!

  14. Worry about finding the right place before you worry about the decorating. Typically once you see a place, make a decision, do the paperwork to make an offer, get approval of the offer, go into escrow, do the final walk through, and close on the house, quite a bit of time will have passed (on my condo it took about two months), so you will have plenty of time to dream up the decorating...and you'll know the space you're going to decorate - which should help you with what direction you're going. My other get a good real estate agent who knows what they are doing and will take the time to explain things to you since you are a first time buyer. Seriously my agent was wonderful...and I would have been lost without him.

  15. 1. Create a list of "must haves" and "nice to haves".
    2. Find a kick-ass realtor.
    3. Take a few weekends to immerse yourself in all forms of properties to narrow your search to a single family home or condo.
    4. Take an additional few weekends to view as many properties as possible. But do not see more than 6 homes in a day. They all start to blend together.
    5. Narrow your search to 3 properties.
    6. Invite me to these 3 homes to get my opinion. I can assist in functionality, design, location, etc.
    7. Choose a dwelling and buy it.
    8. Hire movers.
    9. Paint before you move (again, ask for paint color assistance)
    10. Move.
    11. Realize on the first night there that you have your own place. You may cry a bit.
    12. Have a kick-ass house warming party.

  16. I too had decided to put my big girl pants on and look at buying a house.
    oooh the paint colors to choose.
    Good luck house hunting.

  17. sadly we all become our mothers. I suggest now, that you just create a tag for it, and get use to the idea. Itll keep happening. no matter how much you fight it.

    home ownership is the best thing ever. When i bought my house i took down wallpaper, painted, put up a border, took that down, and wallpapered, took that down and painted. All in the bedroom. Within two years, just cus i could!

  18. 6 Words my friend

    Queer Eye For The Straight Guy

  19. I LOVE PROPERTY VIRGINS. Make it happen!!!!!!!!

  20. Sean's comment is great! You just have to take Muffin shopping with ya, silly girl.

  21. Very exciting! I would start by tearing out colors or putting together images and styles you really like to start getting decorating ideas.

  22. lex- do you watch 9 by Design? Plus they have 7 kids which is probably why I heart them.
    They do the coolest mixture of vintage and modern.

    They also have a a website fir their company- Sixx Design.

    Check it out:

  23. Sean's list is great! I'd add that when you do look at places, pay attention to the bones of the house/condo/box and not the current paint colors/carpet/light fixtures. You can change all of that easily. Make sure it has the type of space you need and a location you love. I completely underestimated how much I'd miss walking places from my home (thank God I work downtown and can be mobile at lunchtime). And, leave a couple weeks overlap between when you get the keys and when you have to move out of your apartment so you can paint, etc. before you have to move your stuff in.

  24. I love for design ideas. You should check them out. Happy house-hunting!

  25. I looked at 80+ houses. And on Monday closed on my new house!! I heart it, except I can't figure out where to put everything right now. Plus the list of things I have to buy for the house is ridiculous. Things like a hose, rake, shovel, etc. . .

    It's definitely worth it though (especially as my Mom and Dad keep reminding me) but you have to think of resale value and everything too when you buy.

    Things that you have to do though when you buy a house: Budgeting and making time to fix things yourself. You have to start saving more in case anything in your house breaks down and whatnot.

    Good luck!!

  26. I have no tips & lots of jealousy. But GOOD LUCK! Can't wait to hear more.

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