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So ya wanna be a homeowner?!?

There is a well-known adage that circulates among surgical residents:

Better is the enemy of good enough.

In other words, if something is satisfactory, leave it alone. Don’t try to improve it. Don’t try to make it better. Walk away.

Because what happens if you don’t? You end up with a big, bloody mess.

What can be said of eyeball surgery can also apply to home repairs. Leave it alone. Walk away. If you are trying to get your house ready to sell and the carpet is repaired but still slightly stained, don’t get out the Resolve – or worse yet, the bleach – and try to get out that last little bit. You will regret it.

Trust me.

Can I just say right here how much I HATE selling a house? I’m so anal. Nothing is ever good enough, which means – according to aforementioned adage – that I end up with a big, bloody mess. And a chronic headache.

(Last time we moved, I had a chronic eyelid twitch. No twitching this time, but my head is about to explode.)

It makes me very, very grumpy.

If you recall, we had a big carpet problem. Huge. And very blue. I tried everything to get it out, then reconciled myself to the fact that there is no product on God’s blue Earth (pun fully intended) to get out this killer stain. Thankfully we found some extra carpet, and I called a professional (and I use that term loosely) to repair it.

And if you recall, this particular blue stain is made worse with moisture. As in, its stainyness EXPLODES when exposed to moisture. So when the “professional” patched the carpet for an estimated (gulp) $150 and steamed the carpet tape to seal it, we ended up with a perfect square of unstained carpet surrounded by a lovely, faint blue outline. (Obviously, not all of the offending powder had been removed from the area. Oh so obviously.) When asked to repair the new damage, the “professional” suddenly did not feel comfortable doing so, although he graciously offered to do the repair…for $250.

At which point I said, “I think we’re done here.”

Just so you know – because I didn’t until my dear friend, Google, told me so – carpet is very easy to repair. You don’t need a “professional.” You need a sharp knife and a $3 roll of carpet tape.

Fast forward two days and some careful rearranging of the furniture, and we have an almost-perfectly repaired patch of carpet. We won’t talk about the other not-so-perfect patch that is now hidden under the couch.

(Ethically, I know we should repair it before we hand over our keys to the new owners of this lovely home. We will. Just not this week. I can’t deal with more carpet repair this week.)

This week, we are dealing with paint and centerpieces.

Oh, the drama.

Our home is well-loved. That’s a nice way of saying that my kids (and the other two big people who live here) have beaten the crap out of the walls. And what they haven’t beaten, they have touched with very sticky, dirty hands. I gave each of the kids a roll of blue painters tape last weekend and told them to put a small piece on every spot they see a scratch or a scuff or a mark.

My house looks like it has blue chickenpox.

It could use a little touch-up paint.

Which would be fine if we could actually match the flippin’ paint.

It’s been such a long ordeal, and I don’t want to bore you with all the crazy details of our little drama. The short version is that the paint left over from the builder has sat in our garage for 6 years and is growing all kinds of interesting and colorful molds – and is therefore not useful for anything but our garbage can. So we need new paint. And for cryin’ out freakin’ loud, we are having a very difficult time getting a paint that is not a shade darker or a shade lighter to cover up all the love. Last night, Michael took the drastic measure of cutting out some of the drywall and taking it to Home Depot to have them magically create a paint for us.

It was close. Very, very close.

But it still looks like we smeared Vaseline over the walls.

Which totally stresses me out.

And now we have holes in the wall. To go with all the love.

In the meantime, we’ve finally taken all most of our extra stuff to a storage unit, and we did a switcharoo on our dining tables. Our “dining room” has always been known as “The Front Room” because up until last weekend, it had no furniture – just toys. When Griffin was three, it was his baseball field. (translation: more “love” on the walls). But a dining room furnished with a Sit & Spin and race cars wouldn’t go over so well with a picky potential buyer. So we moved our new kitchen table into the dining room, and brought down the old table from my craft room.

I hate that table.

(I know, I know. I used to have great affection for that table. But that was before we had a Nice New Table.)

Hence, more grumpiness.

We covered it with a tablecloth, but we take off the tablecloth when we eat. And I hate that table.

I really, really hate that table.

I’m thankful to have a table and the food that goes on it. I am. But I hate that table.

I’m just sayin.

And because I am such a creative perfectionist, I decided we needed a centerpiece for the “dining room table.” And the only time I had to shop for such a centerpiece was yesterday. When Nathan was home. Which meant he came with me. To three stores. In three hours. To places containing all things breakable.

(And do I even need to mention all the talking?)


And a headache.

We have a realtor coming over tomorrow to look at the house and give us a market analysis – and probably a few staging suggestions. Truly, at this point, I’m ready to take all the blue tape off all the walls and hope that no one notices the love. I’m just done. I can’t do it all. It is good enough. “Better” is the enemy.

And we haven’t even gotten started yet.

Hello, Advil. I love you.


6 thoughts on “So ya wanna be a homeowner?!?

  1. sounds like perhaps we should move up our girls getaway weekend to much sooner than planned! If only priceline and the arboretum would cooperate. 🙂

  2. It is such a pain getting your house ready to sell…but by taking the steps you are, it should sell in a reasonable time even in this market…about the carpet patches…as a Realtor, I must say…disclose, disclose, disclose!!!:))

  3. We aren't selling, but have had the same problem with the paint. According to our friend who is a builder, unless the builder himself supplies the paint, the painters will often water it down so they don't have to buy as much. Hence the touch-up paint you buy always being a shade off. Yeah…so not looking forward to repainting the whole interior of the house. Thankfully, we're just entering the "love" stage…so there's no point in doing it now! LOL. Hang in there, friend. This too shall pass! 🙂

  4. Oh, I should not have read this. I'm gonna start this process soon and there are places in our house where drywall needs to be fixed because the tape seems to be coming off of the sheetrock and the paint is peeling in those places (of course). I'm scared to find someone to do the repair because when my husband stuck his foot through the roof the first week of having our new home (that's another crazy story), the people who came to fix it did, but did a crappy job. Here's a little prayer for your sanity. 🙂

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