Wednesday, March 11, 2015

House Hunters

We are in the process of looking for a new house nearer to my son and to MOVIE THEATERS and also to our friends who all live on the other side of Detroit.  We would consider renting but the area only has garden apartments and we're past the stage where that is appealing.

We live in a very large but vertical house now. In other words, three floors. Much more space than we need at 2400 square feet. 

We go back and forth in what we really require in a house. What things do you require?


Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Lots of space.

Charles Gramlich said...

Whatever extra space I have gets quickly filled with books

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

No house for us. Living in NYC, for us renting is definitely the way to go. We're fortunate in that we have a large apartment with lots of space, a relatively reasonable rent (certainly for New York) that includes utilities, we're rent stabilized so increases are controlled (this year was great - 1%).

My criteria include being in a safe neighborhood (check), reasonably close to shopping and with transportation in case weather makes driving impossible (check). Also, in an apartment you don't ever have to worry about a new roof or gutters or furnace or shovelling snow.

For us it fits the bill.

Jeff M.

Bill Crider said...

The more room for books, the better.

George said...

My advice would be to look at condos. Most are maintenance-free. There are tax advantages to condos that make them a better investment than an apartment. This is a good time to buy. Interest rates will be going up in June.

RTD said...

My ideal home is rural and well-buffered from neighbors but close enough to everything I want and need in the city. As for floorplan, include a place to sleep, a place to read, and a place to take care of hygiene (hmmm). As for the kitchen -- except for a refrigerator, microwave, sink, table, and a trashcan for takeout containers -- it is useless, so let's commit the leftover space to bookshelves and a comfortable nook-and-cranny for the dogs. And one more thing: Lots of windows and no guest room! Ah paradise.

Richard said...

Contrary to Jeff and Bill, I say a house. After 22 years in a condo both of us were done with common walls, tiny patio space, crammed parking areas, high density, and noise.

We traded 980 sq. ft. in SoCal for 3,000 in Portland and love the spacious surroundings here, plus the weather, views and the people are lovely.

Now there is plenty of room for people, and books, a large kitchen, a guest room, a quilt studio for Barbara, and office, a large garden with deck and patio spaces, two fireplaces, lots of storage. I just wish we'd had this house 30 years ago!

As for condos being maintenance free, not so. They just bill the owners when things need fixing, like roofs, fences, gutters, etc. result in an assessment. Plus there is no choice of what type of roof, gutter, fence, landscaping, etc. you'll get. No, a house is the way to go.
Honestly, I'm surprised you're going to stay in Detroit at all.

pattinase (abbott) said...

This is what we need: three bedrooms, two bathrooms, some sort of garden, a garage, near a town with activities, near our son, near our friends, safe, well-maintained streets with good lighting. The kitchen doesn't have to suit the people on house-hunters but it can't need to be immediately redone. Same with bathrooms. Wish list-some bookshelves built in, sunny, lots of trees.

pattinase (abbott) said...

We feel we need to be near one of our children as we move into the next stage. New York seems a lot harder for us than staying here. And I wouldn't have to make all new friends.

Gerard said...

Get the move done as soon as possible. Health problems could come up any time to cause trouble and clear out the things you don't use or need.

Don't buy anything with stairs - even a basement. Health problems will likely come and you'll use any space you have.

(I told my parents over and over that a three level condo was not a wise choice. Never mind all the STUFF they have and continue to accumulate.)

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

Rick, we have about 1200 square feet, with basically three very large rooms (12 x 20-22) and lots of closets and book room. Yes, we could use a second bathroom, but other than that this is the place I want to be. In fact, when we were living in the browmstone downtown we visited a friend who lived in this building and I told Jackie it was the only place I'd move. Two years later an apartment came available.

Patti has been there. She knows how nice the neighborhood is. Plus we are three long blocks from the Avenue with restaurants and shopping, close enough for a short walk but far enough from the noise. And in bad weather there is a bus on the corner, plus an express bus that takes us right into the city (runs to 57 Street and Madison).

We're on the top floor so there is no one above us to make noise and we rarely see or hear our neighbors unless we want to. We're across the street from parkland that leads down to The Narrows, we're half a mile from the Verrazano Bridge.

But basically, for me a rental is ideal.

Jeff M.

pattinase (abbott) said...

If there was a place like yours out here, I,would snatch it up!

Cap'n Bob said...

I like quiet and a lot of space. We have an open floor plan downstairs and it's not a good idea. Every time the fridge comes on I have to turn the TV up.

Deb said...

I second the comment about no stairs. A friend's mom bought a "tall and skinny"--three stories--and promptly broke her hip. Nothing to do with the stairs, but she was left stranded on the first floor for months--and it was the only floor that did not have a tub or shower, just a half bath.

I also second the comment about a house over a condo. I hate sharing walls with people. To me, condos have all the drawbacks of home ownership and all of the drawbacks of apartment renting with none of the benefits of either.

I'd also add: make sure the kitchen has a good flow. Don't worry about granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, but be sure drawers don't bang into the dishwasher and there's room to walk between the fridge and stove.

Yvette said...

Wall space so you can set up floor to ceiling bookcases. As we age too, a ranch house (not as romantic or as aesthetically pleasing I know) might be more comfortable than having stairs. Also, a fireplace would not be amiss. I used to live in house with bedrooms upstairs, but now I'm on the bottom half of an old rented Victorian which is much better for me.

Good luck finding something wonderful, Patti. :)

Margot Kinberg said...

Oh, I wish you well with your search, Patti! As for me? Peace and quiet.