There’s nothing like first love. It’s just as they say, you never really recover from it, no matter how good or how torturous the ending … the dream lingers somewhere inside. Mine, at first glance, might seem an unexpected choice, especially around here.
You see, my first love is common, modest, and small — specifically, less than 2,000 square feet. Yep, your everyday cape; so, let’s just say it, pedigree is not what captured my heart. What’s remarkable is that the one house that makes my heart swell, and for which I would pay unreasonable amounts of loot to own, is “flawed.” It has been painted the same noncommittal shade of grey since it was built in 1920 (a fatiguing matter — to this day, I simply cannot “attach” to grey houses), though still not a deal breaker. The yard is so narrow it nurtures only two trees, the neighbors are overly close, and the house cannot even offer a finished basement (only an old-fashioned cellar, which, against my better judgment, I like). And, yet, this house has been my dream for years.
So where’s the love come from? Most of the allure has to do with its perfect waterfront location and quaint neighborhood — cute shops in town, small parks, beaches, stone walls. And this little guy’s a proud holdout among his McMansion neighbors.
But there’s more to it. We cannot help but connect with our homes. It’s just how people are built. Don’t believe me? Ask a Realtor. How many agents have presented the perfect house, a great deal, new appliances, fully landscaped level yard, perfect location, great schools … only to be met with, “Yes, but there’s just something about that other one”?
Logic has its place in real estate transactions: exactly one step behind raw emotion. We want what we want.
And why not? So much life happens in our homes. It’s where we plop down our briefcases at the end of the day, where we rock our babies to sleep, where we entertain friends and celebrate life moments with family. Our houses should speak to us. They should nurture us. But that doesn’t mean a palatial amount of space. We discovered while putting together this issue, our annual “State of Real Estate” stories, a trend in our community — not everyone is buying into the “bigger is better” pitch. Some people realize they are happier with the right fit, which may mean a smaller new construction with top-notch details or it may be a renovation that maintains the original footprint but a smarter layout. And some people enjoy living near their neighbors.
We real estate romantics think it’s about finding the perfect partner and holding on tight.