Blog: House Updates

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House Updates - Tuesday, May 7, 2024
After signing the listing contract to begin the process to sell our house, the work to do hasn't let up. Our agent Susanna has handled coordinating with the various contractors to fix up our place, but there has still been plenty for me and Priscilla to do.

The house has received a lot of updates including a new thermostat, a new toilet and refinished bathtub, ceiling fans replaced with LED light fixtures except in the family room where we got a modern fan (with its own LED fixture that's not very bright), two recessed lights in the living room and two in the hallway, all doors painted white, redwood mulch everywhere in the backyard, and flowers on drip irrigation in the front and back yards. I was not in favor of removing ceiling fans and painting doors white; we used our fans when the weather was hot and barely used the A/C, and I felt that the wood doors had more character and appeal than plain white doors. But Susanna felt that the changes would make the place look more modern and appeal more to younger buyers, so I deferred to her experience. When we buy our new house, I'm going to consider putting in ceiling fans if they aren't there already. ;)

Two Thursdays ago, we were extremely busy with fixing small things, packing for our trip to SoCal, and moving everything to the center of rooms so that the painters would be able to paint the baseboards. We didn't finish everything that night, and we were scrambling to get everything done the next morning while the guy doing the refinishing and the painters were in the house starting their work and covering everything. It was pretty hectic and though we packed a lot of stuff in the car, mostly the day before, we weren't able to load it as fully as we would've liked.

So Friday, we drove down to my parents' place and unloaded a few boxes into my old room, to be kept there until we have a new house to move into. We had a quick dinner with my parents before driving down to Camarillo to stay the night there. On the way, we hit up the gas station at the Oxnard Costco. Should we move to Camarillo as hoped, we'll be visiting this Costco a lot, at least until Camarillo opens its own Costco in several months.

We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express and it was a little noisy because of its location next to the 101. Apparently, almost all of the hotels in the city are located next to the freeway. The next day, we viewed 3 open houses, walked around a couple parks, and had beef pho at Love Pho N' Mor where they had pretty big portion sizes. The houses we saw were a bit small and needed work. $800k is probably too low to get something that we'll be happy with; I'm thinking we'll end up spending $1 to $1.2 million. We're thinking we want to buy a place either in Camarillo Heights or Mission Oaks. The former would have older but more one-story houses, while the latter would have nicer but probably more two-story houses. Our preference is for a one-story house since stairs might be hard to use in old age, and the home we buy could be our forever home. We also value being able to walk to places, and Camarillo Heights would be closer to lots of stores, whereas Mission Oaks just has a Vons, CVS and Chase. But Mission Oaks offers nicer homes and nicer neighborhoods. Decisions...

We returned to my parents' place that night to have dinner to celebrate my mom's birthday. Aaron and Lauren and the kids joined us, but Lauren's parents had cooked a lot of food for us (I think my mom had requested that they bring a dish but they made a few) and were too tired to make it as a result. It was a low-key but good time with family, as usual.

The next day, we went to church at CCAC and ate with Gina, Weber and Cindy at California Fish Grill. Gina wanted to pay for Priscilla (since it was our anniversary) and she made Weber pay for me - it felt a little awkward accepting since he was compelled to do it, but he was a good sport about it and what's $15 between friends?

We drove back up on Monday and there's been a ton of stuff to do since then. This week is our neighborhood's turn to participate in the Santa Clara annual city cleanup, so we've put a lot of stuff out on the street, including our old sofa that is sagging in the place where Priscilla sits. Whatever we're not throwing out, we need to pack up and put in the garage since we have a cleaner coming in a few days, followed next week by inspections, staging, and hopefully listing. Most of our furniture will be used for staging, so the only large things that need to go into the garage are the bookcase, my desk, and the old area rug. I'm concerned that we'll have a lot of boxes and that will make our garage look unsightly, but we'll see.

I've been taking these last two days off from work in order to be able to focus on the things we need to do for the house. And I still need to finish installing door knobs for half of the doors. Okay, that's enough blogging, time to get back to work!