January 14, 2010

Banking on the Future

The girls got me this bank for my birthday. They call it my Bella Bank. As it turns out, this year I won't be saving for Silver Bella. This year I'll be saving for a house in the Village. Our Realtor says we should get our house on the market and we are shooting for the beginning or middle of March.

We are officially on budget lockdown for the foreseeable future, which is fine with me. I'm a girl that is willing to make sacrifices. I've got some great tips for taming the budget and saving money. Let me know if you guys are interested and I'll do a post on it soon.

There is so much to do and since I received that phone call yesterday, my priorities have completely changed. I'd love to hear any real estate advice you have. I plan to post pictures of my rooms as I get them ready so you all can tell me if I need to make any changes.

I'm so excited. I'm not gonna lie, I'm also a little nervous. I'm a girl that plans, makes lists, maps out the future. I have no idea what the future holds for me right now. I've never sold a house and moved because I wanted to. I've only sold because I had to due to divorce or out of state jobs. But this? This feels entirely different and even though I'm a teeny bit scared, I'm going to jump in feet first and have faith that it will all work out. I look forward to taking you along for the ride.


  1. I can't wait to see your rooms ready for viewing. Just have faith, it will work out as it should. When we bought our older home everyone thought we were crazy for giving up a new build one. Once we moved in,we had masses of company because everyone loved it's character and charm! Good luck!

  2. I would love to hear your budget tips!
    It's scary not knowing what the future holds and not being able to plan life out ahead of time....I always hear it's good to get out of our comfort zone, although I try to avoid it as much as possible! Best wishes on the journey to your new village life.

  3. Wow, what an exciting time for you! It sounds like your life is going in a new direction and that is a good thing. But change can be stressful so make sure you look after yourself. I loved all the treasures you found in the previous post, including a new friend! Take care xo

  4. how exciting! I'd love to hear the budget tips as well....Jen, I do hope you can enjoy this wonderful journey. Breathe. :-)

  5. Well, I commented the other day that you have inspired us to find a new place. It is far in the future, but we turned off our cable today to help us out with the PLAN. Would love to see any other suggestions you have for trimming.


  6. I'd definitely love to hear the budget tips! We've been trimming ourselves, lately!

  7. Yes! You must do a budget post!!! I would love it:)

  8. I JUST had your bank (well, not YOURS) in my hands at Target today and put it down (as we are still on a budget crunch - hubs = no job yet)...anyway, we had to sell as well because of the job loss. I'd love to hear your tips - love all your info anyway...but here are mine that were successful for us - we sold our house in only 8 days in THIS market. Unbelievable. TRUST that everything happens for a reason.

    1) Stage your house. Depersonalize it as much as you can. Make it like a model home. There are more people out there that cannot visualize themselves in your space with all your 'stuff' in there. Know that it is only temporary.

    2) Take as many photos (during day in natural light) as possible. Most 'shopping' is done online today and you want to present more than not enough these days. We had potential buyers from Iraq who were deployed that wanted our house...but it had already sold!

    3) Declutter. Get those plastic totes and remove as much as you can so there appears to be more space. Keep only what you need to use on a day to day basis. Seriously. It removes a lot of the stress when that last minute phone call comes in for a showing.

    4) For the showings, we had some light jazz playing in the background softly, turned on all the lights and also purchased neutral seasonal (leaves, ginger vanilla...in fall) wallflowers from bath and body works...we got sooo many compliments on those three little steps we took.

    5) A given, but often overlooked. Clean. Dust. Vacuum. I know it can be cleaned and folks 'should' overlook it. But as a former realtor, people would comment about the dirt meaning they thought the owners didn't keep up with maintenance...a good surface cleaning.

    6) Minor fixes - touch up paint, burnt out light bulbs, missing screws, etc. - you know the drill.

    7) This one I followed my gut MUCH against what everyone else was saying. Price on your high end of the range. DO IT! Don't undercut your house. You can always drop it if you don't get any movement on it for a bit. Don't get greedy, but don't think that there isn't that someone that will fall in love with your house like you once did and buy it for what you think it is worth. We had five people who thought our price was just right. Woot! Sooo happy I stuck with my gut on that one.

    Email me if you have any other questions - I'm a former realtor and also do staging/organizing on the side now...so I have a ton of tips. And we recently went through this ourselves.

    My post on our house photos are here: http://every-day-inspirations.blogspot.com/2009/08/sold-sold-sold.html

    Sorry the post is so long...I wish you luck and keep us up to date!!!

    catherine s.

  9. oh jen,
    all the photos
    i've seen on
    your blog of
    your home are
    your home will
    sell in no time

  10. Budget tips! Budget tips! Budget tips! (that's me chanting like a 4 year-old at the dinner table with silverware in hand =)

  11. I'm sure your house will sell quickly and don't be scared of the adventure ahead! It was scary when we sold our last house 2 years ago so I understand. And although we went from 5 bedrooms and a ton of storage in a completely finished home, down to 3 bedrooms and NO attic in a house that has required a complete gut job, I wouldn't trade it for a minute!

    I had a friend once ask me if I ever missed my old house, and I like to say that my worst day in our new home is better than my best day in our last house!

    Good luck!

    Kat :)

  12. Sounds like this time you are moving for all the right reasons. How exciting! Yes, I would love to hear your budget tips.
    Good luck!

  13. SO excited!! I see you so clearly in the Village. It all makes perfect sense. And I believe you'll be there in no time flat.

  14. THAT is exciting...I forsee everything going smoothly and beautifully. A house in the village. Perfect!

  15. I'm so glad that you got the good news from your realtor! I'm excited to see how you "stage" your place. We are in the savin', wishin', fixin' up stage of our dream home journey, so I love to get inspiration!

  16. I would love love love to hear your tips on budgeting! My husband and I seem to always have one of us in school and we have been living pretty much paycheck to paycheck since we got married three years ago. boo. However, 3 months to go until we are both working full time and we can't wait to make a dent in our student dept!


  17. Three years ago, we sold our house and bought one that I fell in love with...only about a half a mile from my house! It was the best thing we ever did...we are so much more at home in this house. You won't regret it!!

  18. First of all good luck!

    Second, I would make sure that your realtor is very familiar with your neighborhood and surrounding area so that you can make sure your price is right on target from the get go.

    Having recently (within the last year) sold a house in your neck of the woods I would definitely not price too high. There are simply too many houses for sale in the price range y'all will be in for people to chose from...Hopefully, the market has stabilized a bit since this time last year!

  19. How exciting! Best wishes in finding your dream home!!

  20. Hi Jen! I am SO excited for you and I know that "nervousness" you feel!! Our waterline is FINALLY started this week after 5 1/2 years of waiting!!!
    I would LOVE to see a post on budget!!! As we will be on one as well! Also, if you get a chance, take a look over at Beauty and Bedlam, LOTS of great tips there! She has a $25 a week grocery challenge!!!
    I know this may sound strange, but I would only post pictures of the OUTSIDE Of your home and yard. Nice alluring ones. This way if people are REALLY interested, they will come and look in person and FALL IN LOVE with your house :)

  21. ps- I also TOTALLY AGREE with starting out on the HIGH end for pricing!!! You can ALWAYS go down, can't go back up again, KWIM? So think HIGH :)

  22. I find that everything has a way of working out in the end. Even when you are unsure! What's meant to be will be! But in the meantime I would love to hear some tips on budgeting!

  23. Cool! Go for it & good luck!
    And any budget tips, ideas etc are always gratefully received. I presume cutting out broadband is NOT one of them?

  24. I just saw this bank in the girls department at Target! You should be proud of your girls it was on sale! I love it but I think I've got too many owls already!! How exciting you are taking this leap and following your heart! I'm a big believer you can't go wrong when you follow your dreams! Looking forward to some budget posts!!

  25. Jen, you already have embraced the biggest budget tip of all: have a reward in sight. For you, living in The Village is more important than so many things you might spend money on. Thus, saving up is going to be effortless and fun for you.

  26. I am sooo excited for you!
    Its such a blessing to be where you love, with those you love.

    You deserve it...I hope you'll take us house hunting with you! How fun


  27. Hello, Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving such a nice comment...I read yours alot i love it... Good luck on your move we were in the village around Xmas time it's a great place...

  28. (((Hello)))
    I'm not sure how I found your blog but I sure am glad that I did.....I love it!
    Times are so tough for everyone, me and my hubby too. We have tightened our purse strings for quite some time now, but like you, he and I have no problem with making sacrafices. But it's much harder when you have children...I feel for you. We don't have children and hubby's boys are all grown up. We have two beautiful grand daughters, 5 and 1.
    I really look forward to seeing the pictures as I LOVE to paint, decorate (stencil, rag paint and all that stuff) and just make changes to the home. I bet you will do an amazing job!
    And I for one would really love a post on your budget tips. :)
    Sound like this is an exciting time for you so whenever you get around to it.
    Take good care and I'm so glad I stopped by :)

  29. Dear Jen,

    i am new to reading blogs since 2 month and I just found yours a days ago.

    I am in a very, very rough time of my life and I want to thank you for helping me.
    Without knowing me, you and some other bloggers are helping more than you ever can imagine to finally come back to having positive thoughts about life!!!

    Thank you for sharing so much - it just feels so good to see that there are people out there who have the same passion about craft, interior, and all these beautiful things around us

    I have to reorganize my life completly new and am thinking of moving to the US. I lived in the Seattle area for one year, but I think from pictures I saw from yours and other blogs I really seem to like Indiana too.

    Katharina from Germany

  30. Yes, I would love to hear your budget tips!!


Thank you for taking the time to say hello today! I always love to hear what you have to say.