Friday, 10 July 2009

Thoughts about moving


I still have an internet connection - Amazing! I couldn't sleep the night before last and ended up house-hunting. It was to be this year that we downsized, but the state of the economy dictated otherwise. Now we are doing various jobs which needed doing so that when we come to market the house next year it is all tickety-boo. All except the grass growing in the top guttering that is. 3 1/2 floors up - no ladder will reach - and my efforts (though gung-ho!) with a trowel lashed to the end of a long piece of wood only worked on the bit of guttering directly below the Velux window in the roof which I was hanging out of. Hmmm. Suggestions on a postcard please.

When househunting, I have a mental list of what I want (as opposed to DH, who has slightly different requirements) WWD (When We Downsize). We want 3 or 4 bedrooms (rather than the 8 we have here!), a nice light house (this is very gloomy, even on a bright summer day), easy to heat, with a nice roomy kitchen as we have here but with lots of storage space and an Aga. A wood burning stove in the sitting room and a big inglenook again. Lots of character and preferably a few beams. A good-size garden which wanders rather than one which is just a square in front of the house as it is here. DH (darling husband) would settle for a small sun-trap yard with NO GRASS (and no room). I would like fruit trees, an established soft fruit garden and well-dug veg plot, a small polytunnel would be nice - or the room for one - and definitely a greenhouse. A conservatory wouldn't' go amiss either, oh and a workshop for my beloved. Not on a busy road - set away on a no through road preferably because of the cats - but not too far from a town which would provide job possibilities for our younger son and daughter who will be moving with us. Possibly with an annexe for holiday letting or for one of our offspring to set up home in later (or us "olds" to move into in our dotage. Not too far from a shop, so OH can have his daily paper (he's such a newshound), and preferably on the edge of Dartmoor or on the Devon coast. I can see us going on Escape to the Country - or should that be, Escape From the Country to the Country?

Devon does offer a good selection of the sort of house/cottage we are seeking, but gosh, what an eye-opener some of them are. One place - I only looked at it because it had a lovely view - was NOT our sort of house, and inside it looked like something out of Footballer's Wives - everything pale and insipid and "dressy" with a pure white sitting room. Everything in it, from the carpet to the mirror and even the tv I think, was pure white. I couldn't help thinking, "no pets, no kids and I bet she doesn't make jam either . . ." It was so unwelcoming and unhomely. You'd be frightened to sit down, and your shoes would definitely be off at the front door . . . Not like my mish-mash of "collectibles", millions of books and lots of clutter and untidiness. I will have to tidy so much away before we have people to view next year, but I am NOT going to do the "everything beige and no personal belongings (pictures, photos, china, CLUTTER) etc. NO WAY. If people haven't the imagination to see beyond our colour scheme (largely soft yellow in the hallways etc to bring in as much light as possible) and can't imagine a wall without a picture on it, they're not the sort of people for our house.

So whilst we can't move just yet, I have sent for a few house details, and am carefully doing my research on potential areas, and if my darling husband thinks we are moving to Hadrian's Wall he can think on!!!

8 comments:

Pat aka Posh said...

When you mentioned grass in the guttering I had to laugh because the other day we drove past a house that had actually planted flowers in their gutters.. cute but not practical :)
This might or might not work but maybe you could find some way to spray vinegar onto the grass? or weed killer if you're not opposed to it. I know that vinegar will kill grass temporarily but not sure how much it would take to do that kind of job.
Good luck and hope you find the ideal house.

nancy said...

Jennie!! You have no idea how glad I was to hear from you! I finally gave up trying after I couldn't reach you for so long. And I was so worried! Whew!
I guess you know we moved, and I have a new email address, but I think you have it. And please, confirm you email address for me. Just to be on the safe side.
About your house requirements: You don't want much do you? :)
I was blessed to get a house with lots of lovely plantings already established and that was fun. But we need to have trees trimmed and do some major landscaping to get it the way we really want it.
So glad all is well with you! My regards to your family. God bless you all.
Nancy

Goosey said...

That's quite a list of things you would like there...hope you find it, or at least most of it! Happy hunting!

Bovey Belle said...

Pat - what a nutter! They obviously don't have much rain where they are . . . Vinegar would kill the grass, but the grass is growing in a nice "soil" of dead leaves . . .

Goosey - Fussy aren't we?! Have seen a couple of houses which more or less fit the bill. The garden is quite important to me, so that's high up the list, and being near "work" for G and D is important too . . . I dare say we may have to compromise on something.

Nancy - will e-mail you. I hopefully moved your addy across. We have had a very frustrating time with changing servers but at least BT actually OWN the line - they wouldn't have replaced it whilst we stayed with "the opposition" . . .

Morning's Minion said...

I suppose compromises will have to be made in the downsized house---but everything that you have listed would be dear to my own heart--a good kitchen, GARDENS!! away from a main road. The viewers part of having a house on the market is nightmarish---realtor caught husband on cell phone while we were away and wanted to trot someone through. I let out an impassioned NO! Returned home today to find a plant overturned and several deposits of hairballs hawked up by resident cats. Somehow I doubt hairballs would contribute to curb appeal.

Bovey Belle said...

I can just imagine the look on the face of that fussy real estate agent of yours Sharon! We've sent for a couple of lots of house details, but one was SO tiny - bedrooms 2 and 3 would just about take a cot . . .

mrsnesbitt said...

What is your budget? There is an awesome opportunity on the North York Moors!

Bovey Belle said...

Hmmm - not sure what this is worth now Mrs N, and we want some cash under the mattress. Probably £400K. Spill the beans then!