Tuesday, October 02, 2007

July and August ... big news for the Rouses

So finally, I get around to our really really big news.

We bought a new duplex. It's not the dream home or anything, but it's ours. All ours.

I know what you're thinking. It's been three long years in Corvallis. And in that time we've lived in two rental apartments.

First there was the decently large two bedroom apartment that was right next to a major intersection, and adjacent to some stoopid loud "didn't quite make the cut into a frat house" college boys. Blech. Loud.

Then there was the slightly less loud, teeny tiny, really old (old carpet like you've never seen, old grandmom wallpaper, old everything) apartment. It was such a great neighborhood that we didn't really care too much about the oldness, smallness, or occasional loudness of the place.

And all the while our renter in Denver was paying as little or less, to live in a much nicer apartment. Damn. That hurts a little.

So the moment we had enough in savings to even consider getting a place of our own, we started looking. And by we, I mean me. Naturally. Gregg's pretty happy anywhere, but I have needs. Serious needs. Specifically, I need to live in "my own" home.

So, after several total misses, I saw an add in Craigslist. The add basically said ... "duplex in NW Corvallis". Yup. That was about it. No pictures. No address. I called the guy (very cool guy, name protected), and he gave me the address so that we could drive by. There was no sign in front of the apartment. Zillow.com estimated that it was worth a comfortable amount more than the asking price ... and since none of us were working with (and therefore paying) realtors ... it was a great deal. And the duplex also fits nicely with the goal of creating a retirement cash flow, so that we can actually, maybe, retire some day.

The seller was VERY COOL, and let us get in to start working on the apartment before closing. Quite a while before closing. So, we scraped off the 1976 popcorn texture and repainted the ceilings (a huge job that took a couple of weeks of evenings and weekends), removed the wood stove and patched up the holes in the exterior wall and eaves, primered and KILZ'd the Sharpie graffiti covering the bathroom, painted the entire apartment, replaced almost all of the light fixtures and all the window coverings, and ... other miscellaneous crap ... and moved! It was a loooong 6 weeks. Here are some before photos (after photos to be added soon-ish):

Check out all the graffiti in the bathroom. And the paint dropping off the ceiling in the livingroom.

I'll chat about the exterior of the place another day. Wow! That's a whole other, very big, project. 1/3 acre of trees, trees, trees. Which sounds like a better thing than it is. But again, another day.

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