• Kim McLaughlin

Going back for our future


Who said you can’t go back? I grew up in the Midwest and have moved over 15 times. I realized when searching for a home to purchase, I seem to try and replicate a bit from where I came. Well then, why did I leave in the first place? I left for a better job, the love of my life, a chance for nicer weather…you know all the reasons we move, right? Once my personal life was settled, I sought the perfect home in which to raise a family, that compelling job offer, and of course my quest for better weather… each factor became part of the puzzle.


“You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.”

We upsize, downsize, side-size, buy new, renovate, add bedrooms, remove bedrooms for home offices, move near our children, move away from our kids, and move near our grandchildren. We make decisions based upon our last great idea. If you look at the long string of decisions you’ve made over the years, how many were based upon Real Estate? The roof over your head may be a huge driver for making relocation decisions: cost of living, locating near a cool city, living in a cool city, escaping the city, proximity to water, snow or mountains…name it, we move to enrich our lives around personal interests and how we see our future playing out.


I recently spent time in the Midwest to see family; mom is now 88. While in East Grand Rapids, Michigan—my home prior to moving to Bainbridge Island—I had a few ah-ha moments. EGR as we call it, has a certain look: its tree-lined streets and manicured lawns speak to a kind of Midwest genre, of which I feel comfortable. I’m “at home“ with the brick homes, tidy tree-lined streets, and the amazing friendly competition among neighbors for best holiday decorations. Though I don’t live there anymore, I brought my baggage with me here. I have a few maple trees in my yard, lots of brick (added during our on-going home renovation) a large, boxwood-bordered five-mile-an-hour lawn which we attentively groom; there’s a certain tidiness with my surroundings. I’m irked when my neighbors don’t rake their leaves or let their yard—or homes—go to pot.




We all seek a warm, inviting home; it makes sense to want to make it your own, however that may be. James Sherman said, “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.” So, can we go back? I would say yes—albeit just a little—and we can bring forward a bit of our past to tweak our home with a small stamp of our own comfort upon our new residence, to make it feel like the home we may wish to remember.


When searching for the perfect place to live, remember we carry our baggage with us, so if the home you’re looking for doesn’t exist, ask yourself, “Is it the house, or is it me?” Hmmm…


Stay safe, be well, stay kind.










Bainbridge Island real estate in the last 30 days

  • 16 Active Residential Listings — high $6,988,000 — median $1,179,450 — low $233,633 — average days on market: 14

  • 38 Pending Residential Listings — high $2,990,000 — median $918,500 — low $410,000 — average days on market: 26

  • 56 Sold Residential Listings — high $6,300,000 — median $951,000 — low $278,000 — average days on market: 26

  • 2 Active Vacant Land Listings — high $379,000 — median $364,000 — low $350,000 — average days on market: 81

  • 1 Pending Vacant Land — high $599,000 — median $599,000 — low $599,000 average days on market: 12

  • 3 Pending Feasibility Vacant Land Listings — high $829,000 — median $250,000 — low $175,000 — average days on market: 185

  • 4 Sold Vacant Land Listings — high $655,000 — median $377,500 — low $150,000— average days on market: 42



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