An article in today's Times-Picayune addresses roadblocks to the Musicians' Village for many of its intended inhabitants (musicians). Back in October I wrote a piece for nolafugees.com about learning that I was ineligible for the Village (for different reasons) and bemoaning the out-of-town bongo-drum-chick's ability to cruise right on in to her 20 year, no-interest mortgage.
Oh, and those damn mortgages!
Simon and I met with staff at the Preservation Resource Center today. It appears our meagre budget might, in fact, not be enough for the house at 717 Deslonde. The architect was in attendance, and she was very amenable to our suggestions for improvements to the plans, but we are learning just how expensive these things can be. The house will have 1300 square feet of living space, and we have no sense of just how much a total renovation of house with said square-footage should be, but we both get the impression that if we went it alone, we could make it happen, for sure, within our budget... sigh. If only we knew what we were doing.
We feel so in the dark about all of this house-buying stuff, and with Simon returning to teaching tomorrow, and my return to teaching soon, we will not be able to devote ourselves to the kind of research and legwork that feels necessary in such a huge undertaking. Because Simon is a Brit, he's wary of realtors and wants us to act as much as possible on our own behalf. I'm all for it, but right now I'm feeling pretty adrift and confused. Should we buy the PRC house--with its solid restoration (down the the nails), even though it appears it will be more expensive than doing the work ourselves? How the heck does one teach full-time (and live a life, maintain a new marriage, etc., etc.,) and renovate a flooded home? And even if we did have the time, how could we pay rent in our current house AND pay for the renovation? What is it that makes us feel we should be buying, anyhow? We've got a great rental in a fine location. Or is it that we are looking for something more? (Something more like Home.)
I guess I should just console myself with the dream of finally being in that new home. Of having a bedroom with a door we can close (in our single, L-shaped shotgun, our doorless bedroom is stuck between the living room and kitchen, and therefore gets more traffic than any of the four other rooms). Of having neighbors who stay. Of being away, away, from the darn train. Of walking a couple of blocks to the levee, where we'd watch another of those sunsets... Ah, that's more like it. (See: I am trying to end my typically-bleak posts on a lighter note!)