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  • Writer's pictureKim McLaughlin

Houses are like people: You have to find the GOOD in them

This post is HIGHLY personal and has been a looooong time coming. I have three children and four stepchildren and have been married to my husband for nearly 20 years. We’ve been together for 22 years.

Between us, Jack and I have owned 11 homes and have maneuvered through many challenging situations. Our life together for the past 20 years has been tied to our families, friends, and the home where we currently reside. When we married in 2002, we both came from previous marriages which afforded us very nice, possibly “over the top” homes. As the saying goes, “Home is where the HEART is.” We knew we had to adjust our wants to fit our needs, as we had more needs than money. Our hunt to find a home we could afford began as we rescued and pieced our lives back together. We were very fortunate to find a home that needed as much understanding at the time as we did.

When we tied the knot, we began our quest for our own special piece of stability; first, it needed to meet the needs of a blended family should all seven children be under the roof at the same time, and secondly, to house the two of us the rest of the time. Life goes on and the children found their own ways and moved on to become young adults, and Jack and I have stayed put in our 1921 bungalow. It’s not large or “over the top” but it is OUR home.

We’ve made this a place of peace and tranquility, and at times suffered through the perils of life’s challenges. Our home on Wing Point Drive on Bainbridge Island has taught us patience, frustration, and pride with every renovation challenge known to man.

While we were being tested with project after project, our relationship with ourselves grew. Coincidentally, the relationship with our home also grew like any relationship or friendship worth fighting for.

We have both brought expectations to the home and have taken our frustrations out on each other while maintaining our sense of place. I write this blog as a lesson to myself and to anyone who has been driven to the edge by a person(s) or an inanimate object. Home is what you make it and if you’re at all interested in finding out what you’re made of, choose the place which represents your challenges as well as your successes.

As I enter my 23rd year of selling real estate, I listen more and more to what my clients are actually saying, and not what they think I want to hear or what they think they—or their partner or children—want to hear.

Look at every relationship you hold truly dear: did it start out the way you thought it would? Has that quirky friend in college become your lifelong confidant? Is the person you once thought of as your dream now an ex? Memories are made not by imagining ourselves living on a tree-lined street, with the perfect covered porch; they’re made by the conversations and experiences we share, and the attention we pay to time spent enjoying what matters.

Houses are made into homes when we turn them into a place of respite and calm. It doesn’t take an 8-burner stove, 4-stall garage, or 5,000 square feet to get you there. Look for the potential and work within a comfortable budget, and the rest will come.

Home is where the adventure begins; make it worth the journey!

Bainbridge Island real estate over the past 30 Days

  • 18 active residential listings High $5,400,000 Median $1,074,000, Low $298,000 Average days on market 10

  • 41 pending residential listings High $3,400,000 Median $2,248,000, Low $475,000 Average days on market 12

  • 53 sold residential listings High $2,500,00 Median $1,049,000, Low $300,000 Average days on market 13

  • 5 sold unlisted properties High $3,300,000 Median $785,000 Low $185,107 Average days on market 0

  • 10 active vacant land listings High $1,475,000 Median $489,000, Low $350,000 Average days on market 58

  • 4 pending vacant land High $519,000 Median $437,000, Low $240,000 Average days on market 83

  • 1 sold vacant land High $650,000 Median $650,000, Low $650,000 Average days on market 83

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1 Comment

Jul 28, 2021

Well written, well said. "...spend time enjoying what matters." Love this!

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