Author Topic: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh  (Read 2118 times)

jennifers

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I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« on: September 10, 2017, 09:46:42 PM »
Looking for advice or facepunches. Also just looking to complain.

I moved from a super tiny 500sq ft new condo to a 100 year old house. I was super excited about this move but now that I'm here I hate it. I think I got spoiled by living in the nice condo. I've lived in old rental houses before and I was fine with it. I've been in the new house for 2 weeks.  I'm normally pretty quick to adjust to new places.
Some things I don't like:
Too much space. Too many rooms. Some of the bedrooms are creepy. I don't like going up and down the stairs because they're steep and I'm a klutz. 
Everything feels old and dirty. I washed the hardwood floors but they still feel gross. Plaster walls are super bumpy and cracked in some areas. Not even sure who to contact to fix walls like this.
Contractors never follow up. I've contacted people about refinishing hardwood floors and getting a deck rebuilt. I got some initial responses but they've never sent over an actual quote and it's been over a week. I'm used to the IT/computer science world where things get done quickly. I think my deck job is too small so no one wants to do it.
Basement is so gross and scary. I tried cleaning the basement a little but I'm worried disturbing the cobwebs down there will cause spiders to migrate upstairs.
I don't like leaving the house at night or getting home at night because it's scary.

Financially it would be insane to sell before living here 5 years.
I could rent out a room or two to save money, but the chance of nightmare room-mates seems pretty risky. I'm in my 30's so it doesn't seem right to have a room-mate I don't know well.
I can rent out the whole house in 2 years according to my mortgage if I want.


Any ideas on making myself more comfortable here or other options I have?  I have like 70,000$ in cash right now for remodeling etc.





mustachepungoeshere

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2017, 09:50:44 PM »
Looking for advice or facepunches. Also just looking to complain.

I moved from a super tiny 500sq ft new condo to a 100 year old house. I was super excited about this move but now that I'm here I hate it. I think I got spoiled by living in the nice condo. I've lived in old rental houses before and I was fine with it. I've been in the new house for 2 weeks.  I'm normally pretty quick to adjust to new places.
Some things I don't like:
Too much space. Too many rooms. Some of the bedrooms are creepy. I don't like going up and down the stairs because they're steep and I'm a klutz. 
Everything feels old and dirty. I washed the hardwood floors but they still feel gross. Plaster walls are super bumpy and cracked in some areas. Not even sure who to contact to fix walls like this.
Contractors never follow up. I've contacted people about refinishing hardwood floors and getting a deck rebuilt. I got some initial responses but they've never sent over an actual quote and it's been over a week. I'm used to the IT/computer science world where things get done quickly. I think my deck job is too small so no one wants to do it.
Basement is so gross and scary. I tried cleaning the basement a little but I'm worried disturbing the cobwebs down there will cause spiders to migrate upstairs.
I don't like leaving the house at night or getting home at night because it's scary.

Financially it would be insane to sell before living here 5 years.
I could rent out a room or two to save money, but the chance of nightmare room-mates seems pretty risky. I'm in my 30's so it doesn't seem right to have a room-mate I don't know well.
I can rent out the whole house in 2 years according to my mortgage if I want.


Any ideas on making myself more comfortable here or other options I have?  I have like 70,000$ in cash right now for remodeling etc.

Why did you buy the house?

I'm not being facetious - what drew you to the house in the first place? There must have been something you liked about it in order to buy it.

jennifers

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2017, 10:00:15 PM »
I bought it because it's in a good location, has a yard for my dogs, allows me to have 3+ dogs (2 permanent dogs and a foster dog), and I thought the house was 'cute'. It has a remodeled fancy kitchen and an updated bathroom plus new air conditioning, furnace, water heater.

snacky

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2017, 11:22:16 PM »
I have lived in 100+ year old houses my whole adult life. Here's what I suggest:

Pick a room that you use a lot but don't like.Bedroom or living room are good options.

get some drywall mud/ spackle/ whatever the hardware store people recommend and fill in the cracks in one room. It won't be perfect, but that's fine! That's the beauty of bumpy plaster walls: they hide a multitude of sins.
Pick a colour that makes you happy. Bright blue or red or whatever it is that brings you joy. Paint the room.
Find a rug that covers most of the floor, and art that makes you smile. Also comfortable, practical furniture. Add plants! Change the light fixture!
Now you have a bright, happy room in which you can take pride and be comfortable. It didn't cost a lot and it's a retreat when the rest of the house is getting you down. Gradually do this to every room, until your house feels like home and you can't imagine calling it creepy.

Here's the secret: you don't have to love your whole house, you just have to love one part of it a whole lot. As you fix it up that feeling will spill into new spaces.

Also, inform those dogs that they had better appreciate you, since you bought them a whole house.
(dogs are a big part of why I first bought a house. Dogs are worth it)
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Pigeon

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2017, 07:03:52 AM »
It's not that unusual for contractors to take some time to get back to you with a quote, especially if it's a small job.  They are going to try to fit you in when they can, they aren't going to prioritize you over a big job.  I just had a stamped concrete patio put in and it took almost four months between me contacting companies and getting the work done.  Call several places for each job and be prepared to wait.  This just doesn't work like IT.

I would try to relax and give it a little time.  It's a very different arrangement and it might take awhile to grow on you.  I think the idea of tackling one room at a time is good to make yourself a comfy spot in the house.  In about six months, if you aren't happy living alone there, you might think about advertising for roommates.

Dicey

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2017, 08:01:02 AM »
Buy in haste, repent at leisure?

Pigeon was more diplomatic than I might be. I think your whole post seems kind of off, particularly your attitude toward contractors. Their time is money. You expect them to drop everything and run to you, during the height of their season? That's a good way to attract a shyster, IMO.

Focus on the positive aspects of the house, then put on your big girl pants and deal with the rest bit by bit. You'll be fine.
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J Boogie

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2017, 08:11:22 AM »
If you have white trim, paint your walls matte/eggshell white and repaint your trim gloss white.

If you have dark stained oak trim, paint those walls a very light/warm gray.

If your floors feel dirty, but the finish isn't peeling/chipping, rent a hardwood floor washing machine.  Most rental places will have one and they will do wonders.  Again, this is just if your current finish isn't peeling or chipping off in places.  If the finish has deteriorated or it's become uneven, then refinishing is your best bet.

Get rid of any curtains and decor that has been left over from other residents.

Make sure your handrail on your steep stairs is good and solid, maybe add another.

I wish I had more rooms in my old house! Turn one into an office type room, one into a guest room, etc. 

Sounds like you might not be into DIY stuff.  If you can't get into DIY stuff, just sell it.  Seriously.  Houses over 100 years old will be a nightmare if you don't want to buy a bunch of tools and do things yourself.


GuitarStv

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2017, 08:27:01 AM »
Too much space. Too many rooms.

Shut the vents going into the rooms you don't like.  Shut the doors to the rooms that you don't like.  Don't open them again.


Some of the bedrooms are creepy.

Grow up?  :P


I don't like going up and down the stairs because they're steep and I'm a klutz.

Do the stairs have a solid railing?  Are the stairs slippery?  If you just answered yes and no .  .  . deal with it?  Worst case scenario, get a football helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, a backcatchers chest plate, and suit up every time you go up/down the stairs.


Everything feels old and dirty. I washed the hardwood floors but they still feel gross. Plaster walls are super bumpy and cracked in some areas. Not even sure who to contact to fix walls like this.

If the hardwood floors don't feel smooth, then it might be time to refinish them.  This involves sanding them down to the wood (best to rent a big drum sander for this) and then carefully applying a lacquer.  It's not hard to do, just time consuming . . . but everything will look like a million bucks afterwards.


Contractors never follow up. I've contacted people about refinishing hardwood floors and getting a deck rebuilt. I got some initial responses but they've never sent over an actual quote and it's been over a week. I'm used to the IT/computer science world where things get done quickly. I think my deck job is too small so no one wants to do it.

Do it yourself.  Particularly if your jobs are very small.  This is a great way to learn useful skills.  Owning a home means regular repairs and work on that home.


Basement is so gross and scary. I tried cleaning the basement a little but I'm worried disturbing the cobwebs down there will cause spiders to migrate upstairs.

Letting the spiders have an undisturbed place where they can breed will guarentee that armies of them eventually migrate upstairs.  Clean the damned basement!


I don't like leaving the house at night or getting home at night because it's scary.

Why is it scary?  A lot of the time this has to do with poor lighting.  Install some bright exterior lights on a timer or motion sensor so that you're surrounded with warm lights as you walk towards/away from your home at night.

v8rx7guy

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2017, 08:39:31 AM »
Temporary buyers remorse is extremely common with purchasing a house.  Give it some time!

AlanStache

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2017, 08:45:36 AM »
Chill.

Prioritize.  What you think has to be done NOW wont be done in 2 years but six other projects will be done.  Do what you can on your own.  Some stuff is hard to do yourself, most is not.

Are you unpacked?  Not being settled and not knowing where things are is not a good feeling.  Do you have furniture? 

Establish some routines.  Dont be afraid to move things that you unpacked if there location does not work.
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FIFoFum

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2017, 09:10:19 AM »
I have moved many times, and it always takes some time to figure out what works for you in a new place.

Adjusting to the creakiness and things that make the new place feel "creepy" also takes  time, but there is no reason that you can't use some lighting to help you. If your house is dark outside, put in motion sensor lights. It's cheap and easy (& can be nice when you're letting dogs out at night/in winter). There are lighting solutions ranging in "smartness" that can help you feel like your basement is less gross, your home is less "scary" at night, etc.

Give yourself time to figure out what your concerns and anxieties are really about. This is a big change in life. Is it responsibility and obligation from being a home owner? Learning how to do things for yourself in a home and being afraid of "breaking things"? Or just missing where you left?

Is it feeling like your home now has to look like pinterest or a magazine in order to not be "old and dirty"? Because that's an impossible standard to aspire to in general (hello photoshop & staged photoshoots).

If you dig a little bit into your feelings & acknowledge where they come from (instead of facepunching away), it can help you adjust to the new place you've chosen for home.
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jennifers

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2017, 09:31:39 PM »
Thanks for the replies everyone. I think I just needed some encouragement and suggestions. Feeling at least somewhat better now.

Car Jack

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2017, 12:16:02 PM »
You need to exercise the monsters from under the beds.  Any 8 year old boy will know how to do this.

GuitarStv

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #13 on: September 12, 2017, 12:40:57 PM »
You need to exercise the monsters from under the beds.  Any 8 year old boy will know how to do this.

Would one need to contact Richard Simmons as an exercist?  :P

snacky

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #14 on: September 12, 2017, 12:52:05 PM »
You need to exercise the monsters from under the beds.  Any 8 year old boy will know how to do this.

Would one need to contact Richard Simmons as an exercist?  :P

I would watch the hell out of that. Contact Hollywood right away.
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former player

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #15 on: September 12, 2017, 01:40:58 PM »
It sounds like a house with character, which I love.

Holding a party is a great way to feel more settled in a house - housewarmings have a purpose beyond what you know.

Fresh paint is the best for making somewhere seem clean and bright - maybe have a painting party?
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Lazy_Spartan

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #16 on: September 12, 2017, 02:17:10 PM »
You need to exercise the monsters from under the beds.  Any 8 year old boy will know how to do this.

Would one need to contact Richard Simmons as an exercist?  :P
That's who I'd fear was lurking under my bed ;-).

OP does your house feel creepy in that "OMG I bought the Amityville Horror house" kind of way or just the too big, dark areas, drafty, creaky kind of way? If is the latter I think that once you get to know the house, get it cleaned and maybe painted, light the dark areas and spend time in the creepier parts of the house you'll find most of your fears will go away. If not then maybe think about getting a roommate to help ease you into the transition. Once you are more comfortable there you can get rid of the roommate.
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srad

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #17 on: September 12, 2017, 03:58:11 PM »
Haha, did anybody else read this and think to themselves "Jen's not helping the stereotype for millennials"?   that was a classic Millennial rant! 

OP, give it time You made a big move from a 500sqft condo to a 100 year old home, lots will be different.  Old homes are great that's all i buy.  But they do come with work,  lots of it.  Suggestions already made below will make a big difference.  It is amazing what a can of paint can do.

Dee18

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #18 on: September 12, 2017, 07:16:16 PM »
I bought a house nine years ago that I loved in some ways ( perfect location, charming from the outside) but it was 85 years old and I began having serious allergy problems after I moved in.  I also realized I hated bumpy plaster, thin glass windows that let every sound in, a leaky attic that let animals in, etc.   I had the floors refinished and painted most rooms (see Maria Killam's blog before choosing paint colors), had ductwork replaced and many other things.  But there was always so much more it needed.  I kept thinking no one would want to buy it.  When I finally sold it this year I realized I should have sold it much earlier.  I would give your house a bit of time, and the idea of getting one room just right is excellent. But if you still don't like it next spring, sell it.  Don't pour money into a place you don't want to live in. 

intellectsucks

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2017, 12:13:20 PM »
I hate to recommend a reality show, but I’m going to anyway.  I recently watched “Home To Flip” on Amazon prime and the host bought an old, “English countryside” style home and completely renovated it.  A lot of the things he did might be out of your budget or just too much mental stress for you (he dug down a 30x30 basement so he could finish it and add some extra rooms), but there were a lot of really solid design and presentation choices that transformed the home from a very traditional, stuffy feeling home to something more light and modern.  Most of those were done with painting, lighting and new furnishings/accessories.  Those changes could be done very cheaply.

Lazy_Spartan

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2017, 12:35:42 PM »
I bought a house nine years ago that I loved in some ways ( perfect location, charming from the outside) but it was 85 years old and I began having serious allergy problems after I moved in.  I also realized I hated bumpy plaster, thin glass windows that let every sound in, a leaky attic that let animals in, etc.   I had the floors refinished and painted most rooms (see Maria Killam's blog before choosing paint colors), had ductwork replaced and many other things.  But there was always so much more it needed.  I kept thinking no one would want to buy it.  When I finally sold it this year I realized I should have sold it much earlier.  I would give your house a bit of time, and the idea of getting one room just right is excellent. But if you still don't like it next spring, sell it.  Don't pour money into a place you don't want to live in.
So agree with this. Give it some time and if it doesn't feel right sell. Sell it for enough to cover buying and selling expenses and you'll walk away in.the same position as you started. I also wouldn't put any big money Reno's into it until you know you want to stay there. Just clean, paint, lighting. While I was joking about you having bought the Amityville Horror House the truth is that some houses just feel creepy no matter what you do to them and if you find yourself still creeper out by the house after a few months or a year that feeling may never go away. Its illogical of course but it happens. As a single female who lives alone and looking for a new place (plan to rent for now though) I know a huge old creaky house would feel creepy to me too. Plus it would be way way way way way too much work for me.
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Lmoot

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2017, 01:30:56 PM »
1) paint bright colors/ white
2) leave window dressings open
3) leave a little lighting on in each area, even if you are not in it
4) work on curb appeal: trim back overgrowth, plenty of outdoor lighting, plants
5) get to know neighbors; it is comforting to know a friendly face is close by
6) do a smudge, bury quartz crystals in the yard, north south east west....or any other ritual that might be healing and meditative.
7) comforting scents in each room
8) modernize if the old factor equals creepy
9) take down walls to combine rooms; less rooms/ open concept might make the house feel less like a hidden chambers fearfest
10) turn one of the rooms (or combined big room) into something associated with positivity....maybe a craft room, gym, dance studio with mirrors lol whatever!
11) If upstairs is creepy, try installing some skylights for natural light.
12) Ask a friend to move in, at least until you are used to it. They can save money, and you'll make a little money, and hopefully some good memories. Have family stay a few nights and use
this as motivation to fix up one of the rooms as a guest room.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2017, 01:34:04 PM by Lmoot »

EricEng

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #22 on: September 14, 2017, 03:49:05 PM »
Replace the old lights with some bright leds that you can leave on without worrying about the cost until you get more comfortable.  Any new empty house can be creepy by yourself if dimly lit.  Replace your outdoor ones as well and hook them to a light sensor so they turn on auto at night.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/EcoSmart-60W-Equivalent-Soft-White-A19-Energy-Star-Dimmable-LED-Light-Bulb-4-Pack-A810SS-Q1D-01/206047134
http://www.bjs.com/sylvania-60w-equivalent-led-a19-lamp-light-bulb-8-pk---soft-white.product.3000000000000377049.item.3000000000000377050?rrec=true

jennifers

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #23 on: September 14, 2017, 07:45:14 PM »
I ordered some new lighting and am also working on painting. Excited to get rid of the bright yellow living room.

Blonde Lawyer

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2017, 08:14:43 AM »
Was the place staged when you toured it? If so, think about what decor made it look good in your mind and see if you can replicate it with your own stuff or thrifted stuff.  I recently looked at photos of our house when it was on the MLS.  Some of the rooms were staged and look so cool.  Totally different than what we did with the place.  Other rooms (the finished basement in particular) were not staged and look totally creepy.  The way we have it set up those rooms look awesome.  It takes a bit to make it "yours."  Even in my modern house, I was creeped out sleeping in the new bedroom the first few weeks.  You hear all kinds of new sounds.

Cranky

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #25 on: September 15, 2017, 12:56:21 PM »
Ask your friends and relatives who has done work for them - I find that that's a faster way to get someone reliable to do smaller jobs than anything else, and you can get a look at what sort of work they do.

But we're just coming off the summer remodeling season, so I lot of people have been busy, busy, busy.

Maybe hire an actual cleaning service to clean the basement?

But mostly, I agree that it's going to take some time. It's a big change.

AMandM

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #26 on: September 15, 2017, 10:09:25 PM »
If you want some company, but you worry about the long-term compatibility of a housemate/tenant, you could rent some of your extra rooms on Airbnb.

theoverlook

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Re: I don't like the house I bought ughhhhhhhhhhhh
« Reply #27 on: September 18, 2017, 11:53:55 AM »
Clean the heck out of your basement. Don't be afraid of migrating the spiders. They'll just clear out if you keep it clean. Get concrete floor paint and paint the floor - it's a million times easier to keep clean than bare concrete. Then paint the walls with a concrete paint or Drylock - it'll keep it dryer and less moist down there so the spiders are discouraged. Yeah it'll be a few days of painting but it'll make an enormous difference. I did all that getting my first house ready to sell and it made me wish I'd done it when I first moved in. The basement seemed so huge and clean and livable afterwards.