Why I’m so spotty in showing up. In January, my favorite, oldest and only living sister in Kansas, mentioned I should think about selling my house in Denver. I could move to Kansas and pay 1/3 the amount my house is worth.
I sorta ignored her for a bit, because she’s said that before, and I ignored it more. Dying in Denver was what I was pretty sure I would do – my life is here, my sons are here. Why would I leave this expensive house with a ridiculous mortgage to move to a reasonably priced location?
Oh, wait, maybe I should look and see what I could get for 1/3 of the amount my house is worth and 1/2 what I paid for it 14 years ago. She’s right. You can get a great house for under 300k in Kansas – something old and fun, just the way I like my houses, or I could opt for something newer’ish.
I could be close to so many of my family, my mom, who is 83, can come and live with us if she ever wants to because I can get MORE house for that 1/3 of the money than I currently have.
My sons – I wasn’t sure what they would think. When I told them I was thinking of leaving Denver because I really sorta hate it now and want to go back home, they both confessed they really hate Denver. It’s a tough city for a young person to live in – rents are sky-high for something decent, you have little hope of buying here unless you are yoked up to the pay me more money and I’ll sell you my soul so I can afford to buy a crappy little house in a terrible neighborhood – which neither of them are made that way. so they’ve both decided to go too. They can rent for $500 a month and can buy for under 100k a great little small house they can gloss up a bit and resell for a small profit and do the thing all of us used to do. Kansas home prices don’t soar, but they will steadily climb with improvements and time – what housing should do instead of what it’s done here the last few years.
I lived through 2008 when my house overnight lost all its value and wasn’t even worth what I paid for it for a few years – couldn’t sell it, couldn’t refinance an 8% jumbo. I was chained to this house for about 8 years, and it took a while for me to realize the chain was no longer there, and I don’t want to be here – in this city I used to love, but has changed so much for the worse.
Sooo… my house goes on the market at the end of next week and I’ll be moving to Kansas probably in May. Houses disappear in less than a week here in my neighborhood, so I don’t expect to have much time to regret my decision
Getting READY for this big adventure has been grueling. If you’ve done it, you know what it’s like. I’ve lived here for 14 years, raised two kids, ran a business or three, and there’s a lot of stuff. First you have to get rid of like 2/3 of the stuff you have in your house – either store it or throw it away. I think I’ve been opting to throw away about 2/3 of the 2/3. The little portable storage bin that will eventually go to Kansas has been filled and is back in storage until we call for it.
There were some repairs that had to be done, not big things, a siding repair, minisplit replaced, bit of drywall repair in a bathroom basement nobody uses. I couldn’t do any of those things, but I decided that I could paint and would save some money if I painted the whole house the proscribed (prescribed?) Kiliam Beige. So I did. I’m a good house painter, but I hadn’t painted a house in 14 years. I’m 58. It’s HARD work when you’re 44. It’s brutal when you’re 58. I’m in better shape now than I was two months ago.
We are mostly done with painting. We just have the homestretch in the basement to do yet. The main floor and top floors look amazing! All fluffed and arranged and, well, empty of the flotsam and jetsam of my life that is normally strewn about. It’s going to be a beautiful house for someone else to make a home, and I am so sad about leaving it. When they get the professional pictures done for the listing, I’ll put them up here so you guys can see.
And I’m ready to start back in my home state. I’ve lived in Colorado longer than I lived in Kansas.
And! I think I’ve found the house of my dreams. It’s an old neighborhood in Topeka (where I used to live), they are doing it as a showhome fundraiser, and for sale later this month. It has been gutted and completely redone from top to bottom. The layout is perfect for me, plus has a guest suite on the main floor (no stairs!) my mom could use if she decides to move in one day. I’m going to see it in person after my house gets listed to make sure it’s perfect.
Kansas is my home, always has been, and my sojourn in Colorado is over, and it’s time to go back. People drive through Kansas and only see how flat it is, empty, and that’s okay because all of the best of Kansas will always be hidden and known only to those of us who have taken the time to know her, lived through her spectacular sunsets and sunrises, felt the “big wind” that rolls through her, walked her hills and passed the time of day with her people – who always have time for you.
Thanks for putting up with me during so many absences. It’s not exactly over yet, but it’s close!