It’s be over 6 months since we’ve moved into our new home. After waiting 7 years to own a home, this experience has been full of life lessons, and a revelation: no one tells you enough about home ownership.
We’ve talked to friends who own homes, read about home ownership, listened intently to everything our realtor told us, but we still weren’t ready for it all. Some things that we’ve learned over the past 6 months have been eye-opening and money-saving, while other things have just been things we never would have thought to make important in our new lives. To keep this post from becoming a book, I’ll share a few of the best lessons we’ve learned about home ownership, so far.
You’ll Never Be Ready
Fun fact: we were still packing while we were putting items in the moving truck. Oh, and we were still purging while we were putting items in the moving truck. You won’t be ready to move. You still won’t be ready once you reach your new home, and start taking out of the truck. OH! You may also continue to purge once you take items off the truck. I spent months getting us ready to move, thought we were ready, until the actual moving day. Just keep this in mind.
When You Have More, You Need Less
We moved from our 2 bedroom apartment, to a 4 bedroom home with a basement and backyard. That’s a lot of room attained in a matter of 24 hours. Having all this room made me panic. We are a (somewhat) minimalist family, and I didn’t want us to use all of this new space as an excuse to fill it up with junk. But, I noticed something amazing: the more space we had, the less we wanted to bring into the house. The kids has a simple list of items they wanted for their rooms, and we were content with a comfy bed and bookcase in our master bedroom. We’ve tried shopping for fun things to add in every room, but 6 months in, we know they aren’t needed. If we haven’t purchased it by now, we can do without it for years.
We Don’t Need A Couch (or a table)
Before we moved, we knew we were going to get rid of our couch. We purchased the sectional secondhand from one of my dear friends when she moved to Nashville 7 years ago. 7 years, and 3 kids later, I was ready to let that sucker go. But, I did want a new couch, love seat and possibly a fun chair for reading by the window. We found just that at a furniture store before we left New Jersey, but didn’t want to spend the money to get it. We also went couch shopping once we moved to Ohio, but again, we didn’t feel like spending the money on it.
Truthfully, we realized we didn’t NEED a couch. Everyone was enjoying quiet time in their rooms, and when we wanted to spend time as a family, we all hopped into the king size bed in the master bedroom. We had a routine that didn’t involve a couch. That shocked me. Didn’t EVERYONE need a couch? Apparently not. We eventually found an amazing deal on a couch, love seat AND coordinating chair for $1000. The fun thing is that it was the same design and style of the set we found before we moved, but we saved 2 grand.
Oh, and about that dining room table? We still don’t have one. We’ve been using a large folding table we purchased from Walmart, once we arrived here. Again, we thought we NEEDED these things. Life went on without them.
There are these things called mortgages. You have to pay them. Because we saved up for so long to buy a home, and brought a large downpayment to our signing, ours isn’t too bad. Thank The Lord it’s actually drastically lower than the rent we paid in New Jersey. BUT, it is stressful. It’s still debt, and it’s a very important one. We are determined to get rid of it quickly, mostly for peace of mind. I get it now, homeowners. This bill is heavy, and it also means so much more. You are working to outright own a BIG THING. Own. That’s deep.
This development may be circumstantial, but we are so happy here. It may be because of the space we have to grow as a family, the amount of time we get to spend together daily, or the atmosphere of Ohio, but we are in a good place. Even with the debt of a mortgage, it’s been great to move into this home without any other debt. To move into this home after working towards owning it for years. To know what we own a thing. That we are “adulting” hard.
You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know
I feel like this phrase is one that should be told to every new homeowner before they start their new journey. There are so many things we only knew once we needed to. There’s this water and sewage bill that needs to be paid (knew that), but ours comes once a quarter (didn’t know that). There are systems that can make your water soft, and you should have one in your house, apparently. If your kids aren’t used to using stairs (we lived in an apartment, remember?), they might ruin your banister and make holes in your wall. If you’ve never had a front yard or backyard, you may forget to use them. Or even better, your KIDS won’t get the idea of an outside space that they can run in without worrying about cars, or mean kids, or sharing a toy. Yeah, that’s something they didn’t know until they knew. KWIM?
There’s so much more I want to share about this journey, but where to start? Comment below and let me know what you’d like to know about our homeownership journey, so far.