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Renovating a pile in the country

I recently had an opportunity to briefly dream about owning a historic house in the country... it’s a dream I have long held...


The house and land was something out of a fairytale with a large meadow and 15 acres of woods that wound down to a creek... the house itself was a complete disaster and I don’t mean the kind that just has a bad paint job... the windows were rotting out... termites and powder post Beatles had been having a field day with the support beams under the house. The chimneys were falling away from the house. The roof was shot... the septic system was crushed and the siding was playing host to a bee colony... and yet there I stood with love in my eyes.... for those of us that are in the industry it is easy for us to have no fear because we can quickly calculate the cost of renovating a property of this type. I knew that if it couldn’t be saved I could demo and salvage the interior materials.. it had all its original heart of pine floors and walls and 1858 fireplace surrounds...

So why am I now sitting on the couch eating chocolate, devastated... it’s very simple and a lesson learned...


A bank will not loan money on a house they consider sub par... no matter how good you are on paper even with the traditional 20% down and liquid cash for the repair...


I wonder to myself wether I should go down the rabbit hole of alternative lenders or wether I should step back and be a little more realistic... the reality is taking on a project of that magnitude is enormous even for someone like me who designs and manages massive commercial projects. I also know the hurdles that go along with residential renovation even on houses that are less than 20 years old let alone ones that were built in the 1850’s...and so tearfully I had to give the owner notice that I wasn’t moving forward with the house...


I do know from experience that when one door shuts another opens up so I’ll wait patiently until the next opportunity arises...


Who knows maybe something will change but for now it’s gone back on the market and more than likely and sadly a developer will snap it up...


Still dreaming


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