Written February 5, 2003
Yep, you read it right. Those of you who know us (Charlie, Wendi and Joe Petitt) probably thought we would never get our own place. But we are finally doing it after 19-plus years of renting the same apartment.
Let me give you the rundown on the old place, the new place, what we’re looking forward to, our concerns and other considerations.
We live two flights of stairs above a business, in a 729-square-foot apartment. The rooms are all end-to-end. The front door opens into the living room; you have to walk through two bedrooms to get to the kitchen. The bath is cut out of Joe’s bedroom, and the door to it is in the master bedroom.
There are only two small closets in the place; we use metal shelving units and plastic tote boxes to accommodate storage.
The main gate outside is closed except during business hours. There is a narrow walk gate with a padlock on it, which we use at night and on weekends and holidays. The glass door downstairs is also locked when the business is closed. This means that we must open three locks, including that on our apartment door, to get in when the business is closed.
Location: less than a hundred yards from a main highway, near the center of town.
Condition: It’s not your Hilton Hotel, but it’s in remarkably good shape considering the years we’ve lived here.
It’s a story-and-a-half bungalow with 1,072 square feet of living space. Joe’s bedroom comprises the extra half story, upstairs. It has its own closet. The ceiling is only a little over six feet high and tapers with the roof.
The basement is only about 8 by 12 feet, providing enough room for the furnace, a small workbench and a little bit of storage. It has only flooded once in six years, during a torrential downpour, and then only for a few hours (there is a drain).
The rest of the rooms are on the main floor. There is a covered porch around a third of the house, which only requires one step to reach it. There is a full bath, a small kitchen (no place to eat), a dining room (with a small closet) attached to the living room, a bedroom (with a large closet), and a mud room which opens out to a 16 by 20 foot deck in the fenced-in back yard. A fairly new 8 by 12 foot shed sits in the far corner of the back yard. A gravel driveway leads up to the side of the house from the front.
As a bonus, the current owner is leaving most of his furniture and appliances behind, so we will have extra items to choose from. He is even leaving us the lawn mower in the shed!
Location: 3/4 mile (1.2 kilometers) from our apartment, near the same highway, still near the center of town.
Condition: It’s an old house (about 100 years old) but in pretty good shape. The current owner has made several repairs and improvements.