I know what your thinking… your about to get a little money back from Uncle Sam, mainly because you took a nice write off on the your home office. What do you really do in that home office anyway, shop online, watch a little youtube? Regardless, your getting some coin back and it’s burning a whole in your pocket. Why not spend a little jack remodeling your nest? After all, payments are low on that no –interest loan and your friend the mortgage broker says he can get you a killer rate on a home improvement loan. You’ve got your credit card totals down to a 4 digit number. Let’s jump deeper into debt! It is the American way. Everybody’s doing it, right?
I think every couple should go through a remodel together. In fact, this should be something you have to show proof of before you get a marriage license. There are certain things that really put a couple to the test. Some of my favorites are, launching a boat together, hanging a picture, pictionairy, and remodeling a home together. Here’s how the system should work. You want to get married, you go down to the courthouse, you wait your turn and they escort you into an empty room with one chair in the middle. A judge comes in, sits in the chair and tells you and your spouse to paint the room. Sounds easy enough… until they wheel in a rack of color swatches and tell you to pick one. You either start fighting because both of you care too much or your fighting because one of you doesn’t care at all. Good luck.
One of the greatest debacles in couples remodeling a home is figuring out where to start. Our male/female priorities are completely out of wack. Men want things that protect their cars, help them build things, or entertain them (garages, shops and home theaters). Women want things that are for the inside or outside of their bodies (Kitchen and bathrooms). With women it’s never a room or a wall, it’s always a “space”, “vibe” or feeling. With guys, it’s how much will it cost and and am I likely to get lucky in this room?
I’ve been through a few home remodels with my wife, the latest has been going on the past four years, I finally conceded on the kitchen. Here’s the funny thing, neither of us EVER cook. We got steel appliances, concrete counter tops and we learned the power of multiples and square footage. You’ll wonder where you are spending your money after awhile as you watch the budget go out the window. You’ll hear your wife say things like “Sweetie, I don’t know why, but I just HATE these knobs”. How could you hate knobs? That’s all they are, knobs, they serve a simple function and I love them for that. She sees it differently. Guess what, I have now just devoted an entire weekend to knob hunting. Sounds simple enough, right? No. Sure it’s easy to walk into any cool design store, or home depot and grab something, until we find out the price. “Honey bunny, this one’s 28 dollars”, she says. I reply, “Sweetie sugar bear, we only need 1,2,3,4…..53 of them!” That’s almost 1,500 dollars on knobs and they weren’t even part of the original plan. This is madness! The power of multiples just got us. Then we needed a simple backsplash for the new concrete counter tops. Oh and by the way, the new counter tops will require a new sink, new faucet and we might as well have all the plumbing redone under the sing “as long as we’re here”. I don’t know if you have followed the trend in sinks, but they now need to be long and deep enough to bathe an Llama. Sinks are very expensive and we don’t even have a faucet yet. Who would have thought that women are brand conscious on faucets. I spent an entire weekend looking at sinks, another weekend entirely dedicated to faucets. I’m living the dream. Apparently, faucets with an umlaut in the name are all the rage these days. We have now tripled our kitchen budget and we still have no backsplash. I’m buying time to recoup our finances, meanwhile she enjoys discussing our backsplash dreams every single evening. I start throwing out the least expensive alternatives I can think of. “Angel muffin, you know, I hear there are trends towards more grout, I say we jump ahead of the game and do this whole space…. all grout, whatya say?” I get to spend the next two weekends looking at tile. Do you know how many tile stores there are in
Since we moved in this house in 2001, it has new floors throughout, new roof, exterior paint, new decks, landscaping, ceiling fans, counter tops, appliances, new driveways, added exterior storage, and much, much more. It’s a constant battle and every project ended up quadruple the budget as mentioned above, that’s just the way it is. The beauty and agony of owning a home is that it’s constantly evolving, don’t forget to take the “before” pictures. We aren’t necessarily on the same page as what we want next. I’m bucking for a garage, she wants a new master bathroom.
Prediction, she gets the bathroom in ’07 because she’s a woman and women are always right. Second prediction, we put in a new elaborate shower with more of those expensive, tiny glass tiles, multiple shower heads and the everything. Third prediction, after about the third time I invite myself in during her shower, she calls a plumber and has all but one ripped out.
From our remodels, here are some things I know for certain to be true:
All painters are crazy, get ready to hear their life story.
It’s very uncomfortable sitting on your rear watching t.v. while a team of people work on your house, but you’ll get used to it.
If you put new carpet in any room, your dog with throw up on it inside of 24 hrs.
If you change one wall and they do sheetrock work, you will go to work looking like a cocaine addict for at least a month.
Good luck you’re your remodel, we’re all rooting for you.