Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tomorrow we find out...

...if we got our offer accepted on our first invesment property! We're currently remodeling our second house and we're only 24 and 25. My parent's have remodeled over 20 houses since they were married 30 years ago. Niehter of us have ever lost on a house and frankly, we've both done pretty good so far. So Todd has 3 months off every winter and my dad is wanting to retire but doesn't know what he's going to do in retirement, so we've always taked about "flipping" houses or buying rentals near our Air Force Base, Wright Patt. Well, we actually kind of fell into our first potential flip. My mom, who's a realtor, showed my brother in law, Ryan, a house about a mile from our current house. He liked it because it had 4.5 garages total (2 attached and 2.5 detached) and also had three bedrooms and 2 full baths. Well, she showed it to him but it's a little out of his price range, but my dad was like, this is a great deal. He ended up talking Todd into going in with him on it in the hopes they could get all the work done between Jan and March mainly and finis up in April and May and ready to put on the market come May/June time frame. It really doesnt need a ton though. We offered $110K cash and they were asking $124,900. We do know they have two other offers, but the realtor said it was not other cash offers which of course the bank likes. Anyway, we think we can finish it for $10K-$15K tops, carrying costs of about $5K-$10K tops, and sell it for $180K-$190K. The market in our area really hasn't slowed down much. The average days on market (DOM) has slumped from about 45 to 65, but still not too bad. Anyway, here's a few pictures:

Front of the house. It just needs a fresh coat of paint and the landscaping cut WAY back. The roof is only two years old. You also can't tell from the picture well, but the driveway and paver walkway are less than 2 years old!

Picture of family room. The french door could stand to be replaced and the deck needs restained. The fireplace needs cleaned up and some new doors, but other than than, just some paint and carpet/wood floors and it'll be good to go. The whole house was re-dry walled by the guy who lost the house. He did a really good job too, so everything just has two coats of primer paint. Oh yeah, we'll need new baseboards in just the family room. They were left in tact everyhwhere else.

And this is the kitchen. The cabinets are not in horrible shape (probably can sell on criagslist for at least $200!) but we think we better put new ones in just to look updated. We're also going with Corian countertops, tile flooring and of course we'll need to get a matching black fridge and over to match the 3 yr old dishwasher and microwave.
So overall, it's really not a bad house. The guy who lost it had a loan on it for $220K, so I'm surprised they are even asking $124,900. We're supposed to find out by noon tomorrow if our offer was accepted. We'll see...

Our budget vacation!

So finally, some actual real vacation pictures taken by me and not some I found on google images! Anyway, I'm so excited to share with you pictures of Blue Mountain Beach which is in Santa Rosa Beach, just 30 miles east of the ever popular Destin, FL and 30 miles west of the spring break hot-spot Panama City Beach, FL. So here they are:

View from our balcony...

And just 80 ft from our front door......HEAVEN! These pictures are not edited, frankly, because I don't know how. This water is truely beautiful here and the pictures don't even do it justice!

Lots of DIY ideas!

So, I mentioned on a past post that I found a ton of cool tings on vacation I would have loved to have bought, however, I just couldn't justify paying the price they were asking. SOOOO, I thought I'd share some of the ideas here in case I don't get to making (and hence following through) on all the great DIY ideas I found. Anyway, here are some of the great ideas I found:

To your right is a Halloween tree with Halloween ornaments. The tree was handcrafted (not sure from what though) and spray painted black. The ornaments were made out of dried, hallowed out mini gourds. The gourds were then painted black and hung on the tree with a little piece of srting. $240 didn't justfy my buying it when I'm sure it could be made for $30 or under!

Here are a few examples of their pumpkin decorations. They had some realy cool metal additions that you added to a pumpkin to make ti anything from a sprider, to a cat, to a witch to a devil. But at a price tag of $60-$80 per "kit" I'd rather just carve a pumpkin and deal with the mess. Regardless, I think this would be prety easy to make out of sheet metal if someone had the tools. Great idea though and something different than the norm.

Here was a really cool table I saw. Of course, they wanted $350 for it, but I thought.....perfect DIY! I'm sure you could find a similar table either new for about $50-$100 or used even for maybe $10 or less. Then if you look at the corner part of the river rock, you can tell it's just a piece of pre-fabricated river rock section from someplace like Lowes or Home Depot probably costing $10-$15 for a piece. Just glue that baby on there and you're good to go. It just gives it such a nice outdoorsy feeling in my opinion!

And this was the final piece I wanted from this nursery/garden store we stopped at. Yes, $775 for this!!!!! It would look so neat hanging on the wall outside during a 4th of July party, but not for that price. Pretty simple DIY though. All it is is a few old baseboards, painted red and white, and blue in the corner. And then take a few metal stars that have been weathered and hot glue them to the corner. Voila! Now that could be done for about $25 or less if you're tearing out old baseboards anyway!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Can't wait to share

We just got back from the coolest little nursery on vacation. We first pulled over because we saw these very cool pumpkin planters that were only $8! That was the only good deal in the place though. After getting out to look at the rest of the cool things they had, I noticed the prices! $495 for a American Flag made out of old molding?!?!?!?! But really, it gave me some very cool ideas for DIY crafts. Soooo.....I took a ton of pictures and I can't wait to share. Among them are a spooky tree with ghosts made out of gourds, pumpkin stands that look like a witch and cat, the American Flag I mentioned and a fish coat rach type thing. to come as soon as we return!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Darn it!

We currently our vacationing in Blue Mountain Beach, FL with our son, Todd's parents, and my parents. I brought along my camera so I could get a ton of pictures. I've taken almost 400 pictures in the two days we're been here. So I went to download my pictures onto my laptop and realized......darn it......I forgot the USB cord to connect the laptop to the camera! Errrrr.......

So, while I was eager to share pictures of the sunset I took, pictures of Luke going crazy on the beach, and pictures of our beautiful hotel, I'll just have to share some beautiful photos I got from the internet. Keep posted for my own version:

Recharging Stations?

I love the idea of recharging stations for desk areas. We have so many different items now a days that constantly need charged, but to keep them in one spot is just a nightmare. What an eyesore to see on your desk? But buying something like the Recharging Station from Pottery Barn just seems ridiculous to me. Talk about expensive organization!
So I racked my brain for an easier solution, but lining them up nicely across my office desk just wsn't working. Finally, I saw an episode on HGTV I believe, where a family of six (all of driving age) was having a major problem keeping everything organized. They made them a recharging station/place to keep all their keys out of a entry way cabinet. So, when we remodeled our entry way, I knew I wanted a cabinet with drawers instead of just a table. We then just easily drilled a whole in the back of the cabinet and the back of the drawer to slide the chargers through. It works great for us.