Monday, September 28, 2009


Before I say anything let me say this...I know money is tight these days. I know there are people that just do not have the money to spend on their home right now. These people are disqualified from my rant. Be adviced; if you are a procrastinator you may not want to read this!
Here's the deal...I am so sick of hearing one certain line from home owners. Every time I hear this line I have to use every ounce of self control to not get into an argument. The line is one that I am sure you have heard, or maybe said. "yeah, we hate so many things about our house. We just figured we'd wait to fix any of it until we can afford to do the whole thing." Let me rephrase..."Yup, there's a lot we have to get done, but we love this excuse so we're gonna keep rolling with it." I want to scream!!
I just don't get it. I had a couple that moved into a new home and did not paint for TWO YEARS because they wanted to wait until they could afford a nice, new rugs. This meant they lived in construction white walls for two years, even though they hated it. It gets better. They refused to hang pictures because they did not want to have to re-do it after painting!! What!! Does this sound stupid to anyone else? I mean lets get real here. "Hey honey...lets live in a house we paid $250,000 dollars for and hate, because its easier to make excuses than to spend $50 for paint." Get real. These people were miserable. They refused to do anything. I should confess...I got them to do it by "accidentally" getting test paint colors on their walls, when they asked to keep it on paper. oops.
Ok, here's another ridiculous example. I have a very dear friend that lives in a gorgeous home in Historic Franklin. He refuses to do any work on his bathroom until he can afford to do the whole room. Therefore, he is forced to keep all his clothes folded in the bath tub because he does not have his nice, renovated closet yet. So, he would rather fish for clothes than do the closet re-do. He says he wants to wait until he gets his new vanity and sinks so he can do it all at once. In his case, money is not the issue. Trust me.
I just don't get it. It seems that doing a little bit at a time would be the logical thing to do. I have told him that he should take one small project at a time. Do the closet. Then do the vanity in three months. After that is finished, do the new shower granite and door. This way the money is spent gradually, rather than all at once.
I respect that it is very overwhelming to do renovations. It is also very time consuming. If you are waiting until you have the $15,000 cash that you need to do a room re-do, you probably will never do it. I suggest save smaller amounts of cash $1500-$2000 and do what you can with that. Then do more after you save up that smaller amount again. This way you are making progress and paying cash. It is very unlikely you will save up for the whole thing because life happens. Cars need work, Kids need clothes, holidays roll around. Suddenly you find you are living in a house you hate because you have been saving for three years. I just don't understand living in a house that drives you crazy when you could do smaller things one at a time that would make your home feel so much better. If money is an issue, I suggest yard sales. You would be amazed what you can find at these budget friendly heavens. I, myself, bought an antique mirror for to hang over my credenza. This mirror was perfect and I know they are priced for several hundred dollars at local stores. (I've looked) I paid $15!! Many times I will get take a set amount of cash and go to several yard sales and just hunt until my cash is gone. One time I bought so much I had to borrow my friends truck to get it all home. All for $200. I transformed an entire room!! Yes, I wanted to do the entire house. But, it just wasn't in the cards then. So, I did none room at a time. After three months the whole house was done.

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time!!

Stephen Strickhausen



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