You’ve probably heard the phrase “location, location, location” when it comes to Real Estate and it couldn’t be more true. Location plays a HUGE role in a home buyers choice and for my family it was our top priority. You can change a home through renovations, but you can’t change your location. . .unless you plan to pick up the house and move it. When we were searching for a new home a lot of our friends, family and acquaintances thought we were crazy for wanting to move. We had a beautiful home that we had just finished updating and it was located in a highly desirable area of Paradise. Our home had incredible curb appeal, beautiful views of the canyon and was quite picturesque. But for us, it just wasn’t home. I honestly didn’t realize it until we moved, but the entire time we lived there, we felt like we were living in someone else’s house. After we moved we came to the realization that it was the location that made it feel that way. Even though our previous home was in a highly desirable part of town, it didn’t end up being the location that worked best for us, for our families lifestyle.
(This is the home our friends and family still think we’re a bit crazy for selling)
(And this is our new home, the one we’ll be ripping apart and renovating over the next several months LOL)
Our old house was in a very nice part of Paradise. It was also a 30 minute drive for my husband to get to work everyday. Now for some of you who live in the City, that sounds like nothing I’m sure. But we don’t live in the City, and the 1 hour round trip commute for him was exhausting, for both of us. I don’t mind having to commute as my job is driving people around to look at properties all over the place, so the placement on the map in relation to my office wasn’t as important to me. We decided that it was a priority for us to find a home that was much closer to my husbands work so our home search took us to the next town over, Chico. We are also very involved in our church which is also located in Chico. For us, all arrows pointed to Chico as our desired location. Our new home is actually situated in between Paradise and Chico, close to my husbands work and only about 3 minutes further for me that our previous home to my office! The kids even get to finish this school year at their school in Paradise which has been an incredible Elementary school for them these past several years.
Another thing that was important for us when choosing a location was a flat usable lot. Our previous home was on a sloped lot, with a million oak trees. Okay, not a million, more like 30, but 30 oak trees equals a million leaves. This time around we wanted a flat lot with no oak trees; somewhere that we could have a large flat lawn for the kids to play on and where we could plant a garden. We could not have a garden at our last house because our overly friendly neighborhood deer thought that anything we planted was their own personal buffet. Our new home has almost an acre of flat land. We don’t really have “lawns” yet, but starting in the next week or two the project of installing a functioning sprinkler system and sprawling lawns will begin! The chore of raking leaves is gone and now the kids and my husband argue about who gets to mow the grass on the new riding lawn mower. They also like to see how can drive it the fastest LOL.
On the flip-side we also loved watching wildlife come through our yard at our previous location. We had all sorts of critters, from deer to wild turkeys and even a bear. The kids especially enjoyed watching the wildlife and I was worried after our move that we would really miss that part of our previous location. Lucky for us, we were greeted by 13 turkeys in our front yard during our first week at our new house, and about 50 quail live in a couple of the trees in our yard, as well as a trillion tiny lizards that are constantly running around the property. So all in all I think we’re good on the wildlife front.
We also have a bunch of fruit trees at our new property. We’ve discovered at least 10 different citrus trees, some of which we haven’t even figured out what they are yet. So far we know we have Meyers lemons, tangerines, oranges, kumquats, grapefruits and Key limes as well as an avocado tree, peach tree and pomegranate tree. The fruit trees were one of the things our kids were most excited about when we first looked at this house. They were fine with a smaller house and smaller bedrooms if we had fruit trees LOL. We also have a large area in our backyard that will be the future site of a garden.
(Our first grapefruit from our own trees!)
When it comes down to it, for us the phrase “location, location, location” means a whole lot more than just where a house is located. The priority of location meant finding a home and property where our family could be happy; with space to run and play, laugh and make memories. With land to garden and lawns to play football on. With a neighborhood we not only felt comfortable in, but felt at home in. We were fortunate enough to find an amazing location that we absolutely LOVE. Not only did we find a property close to both of our jobs so we spend less time commuting to and from our home and more time enjoying being home, we also found a large flat lot in a neighborhood that we love. Our neighbors are all amazing. One of them even came over the day we were moving in and greeted us with fresh homemade fig bars with figs from their tree and several of our neighbors have come over and welcomed us to the neighborhood. Our road is a large loop and our kids adore riding bikes all over the neighborhood. Even our dog loves our new location and gets to run freely around the large backyard. Our home and yard will be going through a huge transformation as we renovate, but the renovation of our personal lives has already begun. Sappy but true. We have found “home” for us (even if we will be tearing it apart it the near future!).
I’m a full time wife, mom and Real Estate Agent and I blog about the real dirty honest stuff about renovation; like what living through a house being torn apart is actually like, the real costs of upgrading, DIY vs hiring it out, etc. If you like what you’ve read, follow this blog to receive an email with each new post!