I can’t believe I’m writing these words, but we closed on our first house and moved in last Saturday! The past two weeks have been a blur, and I’m just now getting time to sit down and write about it.
The house is actually in our current subdivision (which we love) just two streets over. We toured it the day it came on the market, loved it, and put in an offer. Since we knew there were already several other offers on the home, we offered a little over asking price and wrote a the sellers a cover letter saying how much we loved the home and how we could see ourselves making a life there together, etc. In the end, there were six (!!!) offers on the house, and the sellers picked us because they liked our letter! We had a few bumps along the way with the inspection, but it all worked out in the end.
Even though the home is newer, there is still some charm, and the exterior siding gives the house a cottage look. And, there are plenty of projects 🙂 (That was on my house wish list, haha). The kitchen and bathrooms need updated, and the entire living space has parquet floors, so there is a lot for us to improve! We already have so many ideas for how to update the space to fit our style.
For me, owning a home is pretty much my dream come true. I’ve had a home renovation board on Pinterest for at least five or six years, so that tells you just how long I’ve been mentally preparing for this. But the biggest reason we’re excited? We will finally be able to experience the newlywed excitement of moving into our first place together. Because Kendall moved into my apartment after we got married, we kind of missed out on the fun of starting our marriage in a new place together. Even though Kendall’s stuff got mixed in with mine, the place still felt like my apartment. We didn’t get to brainstorm where to put the couch or how to organize the kitchen cabinets–I’d done that already when I moved in three years ago. We’re really looking forward to starting from scratch.
Due to the variety of bright paint colors throughout the house that were not to our tastes, we decided to paint as much as we could before we moved in. After closing, we took a week to paint paint paint. We had so much help from friends and family, and (amazingly) we got every room painted except the bathrooms. We even got most of the trim painted. It was a lot of hard work, but the end results were so much better. I’m excited to share photos of what the house looks like painted, but I wanted to share the “before” photos first!
So, here we go…
Welcome to our home! It’s a 1,400 square feet single-level home built in 1990 with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a garage, and a screened-in porch. It’s a tan/beige color, but the siding needs replaced eventually, so we might go with navy or grey siding down the road. The front yard has some nice landscaping that just needs a little TLC and lots of trimming. Eventually, I’d like to move the little Japanese maple that’s blocking the front porch so you can see the front door.
We have already replaced the doorknob, lock, and door mat at the front door, and it looks much better! The porch needs pressure washed badly, and the space would greatly benefit from a potted plant and a porch light.
There is no defined entryway, so you walk straight into the living room when you come through the front door.
It’s definitely an impressive space with high ceilings and a fireplace. As you can see, there are a lot of colors going on in this space, haha. The yellow, red, and green walls really make the floor look orange, but it’s much more brown in person.
The built-ins and trim on the fireplace are surprisingly nice features for a builder-grade house from the 90s. Also, the hearth is marble, which was a pleasant surprise. The fireplace is gas, but it needs some repairs before it’s fully functioning.
The back corner of the living room is the entryway. It’s definitely nothing special, so I would really like to make some built-ins in the nook, or maybe just add a nice set of wall hooks.
We have already updated the door knobs, door mat, and the light fixture, and it’s so much nicer. Fun fact: the old light fixture barely cleared the door. There was about 1/8 in. between the tip of the light and the door when it opened. It definitely made us nervous, haha.
To the right of the living room is the dining room. It’s a surprisingly huge space, and the French doors in the alcove really bring some character to the room. We plan on replacing the light fixture soon and adding some shades to the windows and doors.
The French doors lead directly out to the screened-in porch, which might be one of my favorite spaces in the whole house.
I know it doesn’t look like much yet, but it’s a great space. The peaked roof is so cute, and there’s a ceiling fan already installed. We’re thinking about painting the walls black for some contrast, and I already have string lights to drape across the room. I’m going to take the curtains down since they don’t fit the windows. We don’t need them for privacy since there is a fence and plenty of trees to block the view.
When you come back inside, the kitchen is to the left.
I know. There is a lot going on in this space, haha. Lots of orange wood and dated paint colors. But, the space is huge and fits our needs perfectly. We definitely plan on painting the cabinets soon, and we’re hoping we can find a fridge to match the other stainless steel appliances on Facebook Marketplace or an outlet store. And, of course, we cannot wait to replace those pink (yes, PINK) laminate countertops.
One day, if the budget allows, we might tear down the silly pony wall between the living room and the kitchen, then use the space to make an island. Since the wall doesn’t go up to the ceiling, it feels very disjointed and dated. This will be quite a ways down the road if it ever happens, but it would greatly improve the flow of the house. I also really want to move the sink to be under the window instead of in a corner. There is so much wasted space back there!!
To the left of the kitchen is a small hallway that leads to the master bedroom, the pantry, and the garage.
The master bedroom is huge. We could easily fit a king-sized bed in here one day. There’s also a really convenient walk-in closet, which was near the top of our house-hunting wish list. The walls were even darker in person, and if you look closely, you can see that it’s splotchy, haha. It definitely needed another coat, but I’m glad they didn’t give it one because it took four coats of white paint to cover it all up.
There is a fairly spacious master bathroom off the bedroom.
The master bathroom has a double sink vanity and a separate tub and shower. The space feels large, but there is no linen closet, and overall, there is a lack of storage space. Also, the shower is really tight (in my opinion). We’ve discussed eventually combining the tub and shower so we can turn the shower stall into a linen closet. I think it would greatly improve the storage and functionality of the bathroom. (Side note: Please ignore the dirty shower. It has since been scrubbed clean.) We plan to paint the vanity and replace the counter top. Also, as you can see, someone hot glued rocks to the edge of the mirror, ruining it entirely. We plan to pry the whole thing off the wall and replace it with two smaller mirrors.
On the other side of the house is another hallway where the other bathroom and bedrooms are.
The second bedroom is what we will use as an office. This room will be mostly Kendall’s space, so I wash my hands of whatever decor gets put in here, haha. There is a huge closet though, which will be great for storing all his board games.
Next is the hall bath, which will be our guest bathroom.
It’s a pretty small bathroom, and it needs a lot of work, but I can see this becoming such a cute space. We’ll definitely paint the vanity and update the light fixture and the mirror (another hot glue DIY gone wrong). I already took the shutters off the window, so now I’m looking for another privacy solution for the space. Currently, there’s just a piece of Kraft paper taped in the window, haha.
The third bedroom is at the end of the hallway.
We plan to use this room as a guest room. As you can see, the dark chocolate brown walls make the room feel really gloomy, despite the beautiful, big window. It took three coats of white paint to cover it all up. On the bright (ha!) side, there’s a fairly spacious closet that will be great for storing my craft supplies.
The laundry room is located right outside the guest room.
There you have it! I hope you enjoyed this short “before” tour of our new house. I was so excited to share the photos with you, and I’m even more excited to start sharing our plans and progress. Thanks for reading!
What did you love most about buying your first house? Or, what are some things on your future home wish list? Let me know in the comments!