Home Buying

Updated on July 15, 2010
A.F. asks from Bellmore, NY
10 answers

My husband and I are in the process of buying a house in NY. I always knew we would buy a house that needed work due to our price range. I really like many aspects of the house such as the big yard (we have a baby and a big dog), pool, fireplace and screened in porch. The location is great, close to stores (I can walk to pick up milk!) and my husband can walk to the railroad. The schools are great too.

Sometimes when people ask if I love the house I have a hard time saying yes. I like the house and in time (time and money) I think we can do a lot with it. To own a house in NY is a big deal on one income (I'm a SAHM to one child) and this will be the first time living on Long Island (I grew up in Queens).

We own another house together in one state where the cost of living was much more affordable. On top of this, my husband and his brother own another house in a different state. Both homes are used as rentals and we cannot sell them yet.

My biggest hesitation is the limited closets in this house. I always thought you buy a house for more closets and sometimes you buy a house for other reasons like a good location and a yard. (The yard is the biggest we have seen in our price range)

The house is pending and assuming the deal goes through, I know I will have to deal with the closets until we can afford to dormer and add on. So how do I respond to people when they ask if I love the house when I like the house?

P.S. My husband and I have looked at so many houses in many different areas and I have to say I am glad we are choosing this location because it is accessible to the highway whereas other locations like Oceanside were further away.

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answers from Chicago on

How are the schools? You could say that it was a great school district and we were lucky to get an affordable house in the district. Tell them what you love about it - the yard, the closeness to public trans so you only have to have one car...

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answers from Chicago on

Just tell the people that it's in a good location, big yard, needs some work. I know how you feel. We moved from rural Indiana to the Chicago area recently and it was painful to realize that twice as much money buys you half as much house. Anyway, the limited closet space may be a good opportunity to get rid of some stuff.

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answers from Rochester on

We're in the same situation only we're in Wisconsin. We chose a house to rent because we didn't want the neighbors and the house we'll move to after this (will be inherited and we are renovating after inheriting) will need a LOT of work. This house had the closet situation that you're talking about. The only closets are in the kitchen which is being used as a pantry (its one heck of a walk in closet though!) and in our bedroom. My son's room has no closet and our linen closet is a joke. What we ended up doing is buying a wardrobe. Our wardrobe was bought from family so we didn't pay very much for it and its quite nice, but you might look into buying something used off of craigslist and refinishing it if you're up to some DIY crafts. It can really be quite fun and rewarding. You can also look into building your own if you REALLY want to get into projects. Google "Knock off Wood" its a blog by a wonderful lady who is very crafty with her carpentry skills, she and her husband built their house from the ground up and she makes furniture plans that go out on her site for free. The instructions are fairly simple, she offers advice, readers offer advice on it and if you ask a question on her facebook page she generally responds. Just some suggestions to help you fix your storage dilemma that might make your house more loveable to you a lot sooner.

As for what we tell people when they ask if we like our house. I tell them that I'm not crazy about it. Especially our rental. Seriously, someone decided to match the ugly blue shag carpeting with blue paint on the walls! We were told we could paint if we wanted to without penalty, but its not worth the work. Even with the house we will go into after this, it will need so much work that I know I won't like it for a while. So I'm honest and say no, I don't like it especially, but I DO love the plans we have for it and I'm excited to start on that. It sounds like you guys did the same thing we did. You noticed potential, not the immediate condition so you like the potential but aren't quite crazy about the current conditions.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Tampa on

just say that with a little work it will be perfect!! The home we just bought is great on closet space except for my daughter's room - it was supposed to be an office/bonus room so there is no closet - but we are making do until we either build her one or get her something. Don't worry about lack of closet space - you can always find ways around that and it could also help you with keeping "stuff" out of your house

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answers from Indianapolis on

Just tell them that it needs work and in time you will love it because it's yours...........or just say yes and let it go.............

Or say I'm really glad we are getting it, it's going to be great........

Or, if you want to be really interesting, fire back with do you love your house? If they say yes, then ask them why? Get's them off of you and onto them.

As for the closets, you can buy closets to put clothes in that sit up against the wall. I would suggest going to rummage, or garage sales and see what you can find.........You'll make room......

It sounds like the house has a lot of what you want and that it will be a great place to raise the baby, so look at the positive sides of owning it, not the down sides.........and it might be the house you always dreamed of.

Take care and good luck.

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answers from Washington DC on

Just say, "I really like it and I can't wait to get started on making it OURS!"

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answers from Dallas on

Why don't you say, "I love the yard and the location and I really like the house! Someday, after we have done a little work, I hope to love my house too."

Let me just say I think it is perfectly okay you don't love your house. Sometimes a smart decision is required and will be the best in the long run. I also know there is often pressure in Long Island to compete. Do your best to ignore that.

Two little suggestions. Go to craigslist and see if you can find wardrobes for your bedrooms to help enhance your closet space. You can also buy cheap shelving that you can put up yourself at Walmart. I'd put lots up in the garage to help with storage.

I hope all works out. CONGRATULATIONS on your new home! The great thing about a "fixer upper" is that you get to really fix it into your own!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

My daughter and son in law have a house that's in need of a lot of work. They are chipping away at it and it'll take a couple more years to get it done. When people ask just tell them it's a perfect house in need of some tlc. All houses have something that's not quite perfect but we love them anyways.

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answers from Salt Lake City on

You could say something like, "It's not my dream house, but it's OURS, and we couldn't be happier."

Congrats! We were homeowners a few years back and sold it to pay for tuition (moved into student housing). We can't wait to graduate next Spring and buy a home as soon as possible!

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answers from Denver on

They make new houses all the time, they're not making new land. Eventually you'll be able to transform the house into one you love, meanwhile you have a lot that is just perfect for you. It's better than a perfect house and a terrible lot.

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