Post # 1
This issue is neverending and I’ve brought it up several times on the boards. Its been the main antagonist in the majority of our fights. Darling Husband has asked me if I’m going to regret living in it and *trying* to make it OUR home and at the time I said, “I really don’t know. I may, I may not.”
Many of our friends are either building new homes or purchasing a one together. I feel like we’re stuck in DH’s “world” by trying to make his parents home “ours”. It has all of his and SIL’s childhood memories in it. Maybe it’s just me, but I would feel more comfortable making new memories in a house that is ours and only ours.
On top of it, renovations came to a screeching halt a month and a half ago on our master bedroom. Partly my fault, since I agreed to let Darling Husband do it himself (besides the carpentry that we hired a contractor for). He knows I’m getting anxious, but its officially become the busy season and he is unable to work on it. I’m unsure if I should just hire an electrician, plumber and mudder/dry-waller. I’m also stuck about what to do with the rest of the house as its, what we call, a clusterfuck. My family is strongly suggesting hiring an interior decorator to help me (and possibly just gut the rest of the house), but I’m leary about what is available where I live and the fact that I live out in the boonies.
I’m not helping my own cause by finding beautiful house plans online and thinking, “We could have built this and have EXACTLY what we want”. I wish I would have pushed more to convince Darling Husband to move this house or demo it and start from scratch. Money would not have been an issue, since I sold my condo and we could have used it for close to half of the entire cost and mortaged the rest. But to Darling Husband at the time, it was an unnecessary cost. Now, I’ve been hearing renovations can cost more then just building, especially with an older house (that’s been molding for who knows how long).
Anyway, its just been really bothering me as of late. Darling Husband isn’t aware of how much, but I was sort of venting to my family this weekend. If anyone has any advice as how to go about getting over myself and sucking it up, bring it on… I’m just feeling stuck right now.
Post # 3
First of all make sure all of the old family belonging and pictures are gone, if they are still there.
Second, hire someone to do your remodeling projects. Darling Husband is in the trade as well and I know how projects can go unfinished. Maybe he even has some friends who could do it for less and no markup on materials.
I also like your family’s idea about an interior designer. My friend just hired one and her house looks amazing. They can see things you cannot. Most also offer a free consultation so you can see if you like their work. Get some home magazines and rip out pictures of things you like so they can try to understand your style.
You basically need to start with this house as a blank slate and once you remodel, paint, furnish, and decorate it’ll be a whole new house.
Stop looking at houses online or comparing yourself to your friends! You still have a lifetime to be able to build your dream home.
Post # 4
What year was the house built? How many interior changes can you make? Can you pinpoint exactly what it is about the house that you don’t like?
My fiance bought a split level 1970s house where we now live. It’s meh. I don’t love it but i don’t hate it. He wants to build something on some family land eventually, and I am meh about that as well. I suspect the reason for this is that I don’t really like the area. It’s super conservative, anti-teacher, anti-progressive…there are no good restaurants…nothing to do, really… It’s pretty, I guess, if you take away the factories. But I think that affects my ability to love the house or wherever we will live.
Post # 5
Anyways, I would hire an architect. I think they come up with very good plans that use the existing house’s structure (some walls can’t come down, some can). You can tell the architect what you like, don’t want, etc.
Personally, older homes have a lot more charm to me than a brand new home. But I like older homes with new bathrooms and kitchens! lol
Post # 6
Your first house doesn’t have to be your dream house. If so had ky way we woupd live in a 4 bedroom with a huge kitchen open to the livig took, a formal dining room, a craft specific room and at least 3 acres. But we live in a two bedroom apartment with a 5*5 balcony and galley kitchen. But I think you have to realize, this house is just for now, not forever. And stop looking at things you can’t have now. It won’t help anything to compare to your friends because you aren’t them. Hire someone to finish the work, fix the things you want, paint, get different furniture, and if you can, go ahead and hire that decorator. Add things thay are yours and your DH’s, not his parents or his family’s and that will help a lot. It is amazing what new curtians, a new rug or carpet, paint and some different stuff on the walls can do.
Please ignore my typos it is hard to fix on my phone!
Post # 7
I really don’t have a lot of advice to give. I just remember a few months back when ya’ll were discussing this… I guess my only advice is this: Home is not a house. Home is where you make it.
As someone who has lived all over, I’ve never felt more at home than wherever my husband is now. We are currently in the process of buying a house. Is it our dream house? No. Will I be happy there? Yes, because I’ll do what I can to make it ours, and the rest is just a decision I’ve made.
I understand that your situation is a complicated one, but sometimes we have to take charge of our happiness and make the best out of what we have. My thoughts are with you, and I’m praying that everything turns out for the best!
Post # 8
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
Clean it up and pack it up. Then at the very least paint all of the walls and redecorate (new window treatments and furniture.) That way at least a big chunk is done while you’re waiting for him to get back around to renovations. Watch Sell This House with Tanya Memme; lots of great, cheap, and easy ideas to spruce up a house.
It sounds to me like he’s attached to the house and once you redecorate and make it more your house than his parents’ house, it should feel better.
Post # 9
Hi. I am your twin. I live in my husband’s house…which was his childhood house…which I would NEVER have chosen for myself, and now am tasked with finding ways to make it livable…it would be one thing if it was as simple a paint job and maybe update some hardware…but it is not. There are cracks in walls, there is MOLD in walls, the door and framed need replacing. The kitchen and bathroom probably just need to be gutted. We discussed planning to fix it up as much as possible and try to sell in five years, but I feel like we’ll never get our money back. It’s not in a desirable school district and the updates aren’t going to make it more valuable, outside of making it habitable. My hubby is NOT the handy type. He’s a computer geek and he spends all his free time doing computer stuff. He can fix anybody’s computer issues, but he can’t put up drywall or refinish walls. We have FAKE WOOD PANELLING in the living room. I would have torn it down by now if I didn’t also have to, then, refinish the walls behind it.
Okay…I know I’m not helping the issue, but I do feel kinship with you. I know how hard it is.
Post # 10
I forgot to even mention the basement…which has 30 years of a family’s collected crap. When his mom moved out and sold it to him, I swear she pretended she would give him a deal so she wouldn’t have to do all the work to make it marketable. I resent her for that.
Post # 11
Thanks everyone for all the advice! Really, much appreciated! I really needed to hear all of it.
The house still looks exactly the same as it did when Mother-In-Law lived in it, except for my belongings now in it and one section of the house being turned into our master. I haven’t painted anything because I wasn’t sure what walls would be knocked down, and didn’t want to waste time and money.
I think I’m going to definitely going to sit down with Darling Husband and bring up just hiring people to do the renos. It may cost us a bit more, but it will save us stress and heartache. I will also mention the architect/interior decorator and possibly start talking to people (my aunt has done LOADS of renos, so I’m thinking she can point me into the right direction) and researching.
@missrobots: As unfortunate as it is, glad to hear I’m not the only one. Thankfully, Mother-In-Law went through the house and emptied it, except for a few things she thought Darling Husband would want. Some of it, we need to go through ourselves again because its taking up more space then I’d like it too, lol. We also have mold, and at first, Darling Husband was so non-chalant about it, but I think I finally convinced him we need to check why the hell its there in the first place. Yuck. This is going to be our forever home as well. Darling Husband will never go anywhere else. Think he’s going to die in that house.
@peachacid: It was built in 1980, so it’s not super old, but the way it was built and the decorating was still 70’s style. Unfortunately, the whole house, as I said, is just a clusterfuck. Way too many hallways, space we don’t know what to do with and in awkward places. They kept adding on to the house throughout the years, with no rhyme or reason to it. Our bedroom we’re reno-ing was actually a long hallway, 2 small bedrooms and a storage room. We have some ideas about what we’d LIKE to do, but we’re not sure how much can be done.
Post # 12
OP, hire an interior designer (not a decorator–they decorate; you need someone who can redesign the layout itself) and get pros to do the work.
Post # 13
@vorpalette: Right, designer! Sorry, I knew in my head what I meant, just wrong word, lol.
Post # 14
@CherryWaves: Haha I wondered! I used to get those two mixed up all the time. I used to want to be an interior decorator, and always called it interior designer. I finally learned that that’s two different things! lol
Post # 15
Is there any way you can get him to sell it eventually? When you are don renoing, maybe you will build up some equity and then you could buy your own home they way you want it?
Post # 16
@Carolyn72: Unfortunately, its not possible to sell it on the property. Some have mentioned moving it from our property and selling it as a cottage or something, but I think it’s a little late to do that now since we’ve started renos. I’ve been stuck in the “woulda, shoulda, coulda” mentality and just have to get over it and move on with making this house ours as much as possible… hasn’t been quick enough for me.