In 1976, my father decided to go on a blind date, where he met my mom, proposed shortly thereafter, got married, and bought a house for the two of them. A small, 2-bedroom box home built in 1952, just outside of Fort Knox, it was a house that served the two of them perfectly well until I came along, and we outgrew the place shortly thereafter, moving when I was seven to a larger home across the street.
It never crossed my mind until I was older, but I’m amazed now at how well we lived with so little income. Somehow, my parents managed to buy that second home in 1990, and keep the first, little two bedroom spot as a rental…. Thus began my dad’s obsession with real estate- and mine, for that matter.
Now, almost 30 years later, my parents’ first house on Meadow Lane is vacant. A long term tenant (she was there for 11 years) has moved out and moved on, and I’ve made the decision to let go. My first home is in dire need of repair; A leak that has gone on way too long has rotted the floor in the bathroom, dripped through to the basement where a large amount of mold has grown. Original hardwood floors were covered with linoleum. The roof was replaced once when I was a kid, I believe, but I’m sure it’s in need of replacing again, as are the original, 66-year-old windows. The garage doors are deteriorated and falling off of their rails, and the entire place needs to be painted, inside and out.
This is not the project I was planning on this year… I had dreams of finishing the basement, perhaps covering the rear patio and adding in some pale pink climbing roses, and fancy new patio seating. Those things may still happen, but for now, the priority is getting this sweet little place back to shining and restored, and ready to go on the market.
It is difficult to think of letting go of my childhood home, yet I know that living an hour away and working so many unpredictable hours will not allow me to be the landlord I’d want to be. I know that partnering again with Burgess Construction (the same contractor who handled my Bellaire house) will give me the best results I could hope for. I’m looking forward to the journey, friends, and to the hope of making this house as great of a home for someone else as it was for us.