Christmas Tree Rooms and other Abominations

Gavin and I have learned a lot today. We spent the afternoon driving around North West Santa Rosa looking at Open Houses.

We started the day off driving past garishly colored cookie-cutter town homes. Next, we investigated an offer that included the koi in the pond (they’re easy to keep, all you do is “Change the filter once a month and feed them every few days”). We toured a poorly renovated home (it was purely a cosmetic renovation: it ignored over half the windows needed replacing and the sink enamel was waring off, and they put carpet in the bathrooms). We walked through a $999,000 home that boasted an attached granny unit, three garages, custom cabinetry, and solar panels on the roof (it had an odd floor plan). We finally ended our adventure looking at another renovated home with a poor floor plan.

Not one house we pulled up to screamed “BUY ME I’M AMAZING.” Some had rather unique layouts, “Christmas Tree Rooms” and weird snaking maze like hall ways. It is never a good sign when you ask a Realtor “What is this room for?” and he responds “I’m not sure, but I think it could make a nice Formal Living Room.”

“Formal Living Room” aka “The Christmas Tree Room.” The room with the nice furniture that is never sat upon (reserved for Visits from The Queen), and where the Christmas Tree is Prominently Positioned in front of the large (usually bay) window so everyone on the street can see how lovely it is. The room is used once a year, to open Christmas presents, and to store extra coats during holiday parties.

Everyone wanted to know our price range, and of course, they had something that could meet our needs “perfectly.” Right now “need” is a strong word. Even if we were to get a three-bedroom (+ bonus room) home, at least one of the bedrooms would remain blissfully empty, and the “bonus” room/3d bedroom/“Christmas Tree Room” would become an office.

Gavin looked around and saw poor lay out, and things that needed to be fixed. I looked around and saw cleaning nightmares, odd laundry room locations, and yard work. We both noticed kitchens.

After a hot day of driving around, we pulled into our garage, opened the door to the kitchen and were greeted by a cool blast of air – we don’t have an AC, the first floor stays naturally cool. It’s 82 outside and 72 inside, absolutely wonderful. All the homes we looked at either had their ACs running over time, or were stifling hot. We’re in no hurry to move.

2 thoughts on “Christmas Tree Rooms and other Abominations

  1. Heh Kindli Love your real estate perspective. you could come on down here and live just down the street at the end of the cul-de-sac on the smallest lot on the block, in a nice little house 4 bedroom 3 1/2 bath for a mere 2.5 million. Yes that is right– TWO point five million. I can’t believe it!

  2. Stephen, as lovely as the house sounds, I’m afraid the 2 hour one-way commute might be a bit much for Gavin. If he only had to drive up once a week, I’m sure we’d “consider” it. Is the back yard large enough for a hammock?

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