I have other passions such as family, faith, friends and fun but most of those will come out naturally inside my 5 main topics as those passions engulf who I am and leak in to all I do.
So it is with my last main passion; Renovating. Our road to renovating, started with a mixed blessing. My mother passed away in 2007, leaving behind a financial legacy to be split between me and my sister, and also a great hole in my heart that shall never be completely healed.
I wanted to be a wise steward of the money. I knew how hard my mother had worked to leave it for me. I knew how somehow in some odd way, knowing she was blessing my future made her feel just a slight bit better of not seeing it with her own eyes.
So I prayed and ran it out with God. One day, a run ended with the urge to look up homes on Realtor.com, there I found a home listed for $9,900 in a decent neighborhood of our town.
My husband I immediately set out to look at it. We were not deterred by the ceiling high trash filled rooms. We could see the home as it could be, beautiful and bright, full of friends and afternoons of sipping sweet tea on the big front porch.
With that vision in our minds we bought the home, with the plan of renovating it with my inheritance, moving into it and then fixing our current mortgaged falling apart home, and selling off one of the homes leaving us debt free.
God however, had a different plan. He planned for us to buy the cluttered filled home, but that was just step one, we made up the step two (selling off one), while he kept the second step hidden from us till the timing was right.
Just as we were putting the finishing touches on house number one, my mom’s mom (my grandmother) passed away. My sister and I received what would have been my mother’s share of the inheritance. Once again, the blessing was tearfully accepted, as my grandmother was a strong vibrant woman who lived life to the fullest into her 90′s. She lived life like I want to, strong to the finish line.
With the second inheritance we were able to pay off our modest mortgage on our original home (remember I live in the town where housing is very low cost). We had just enough left to fix that original home, or so I thought.
God, had other plans. An acquaintance of my husband needed an inexpensive place to live ASAP. So my hubby let him move into our original home falling down plaster ceilings and all for just the price of it holding costs (He knew the homes issues before he even approached my husband about renting it). With a renter in our old home we were unable to start renovations. My husband and I were left pondering what to do next.
So I ran it out again with God. I fought Him on what He spoke, until one day I could stand it no longer and sat down to run the numbers to show Him it could not work; but it did.
Sure there was some faith for provision involved but for the most part, on paper the plan I thought was insane in my head looked some what doable.We were no longer selling any homes, we would become landlords of 2 paid for homes, and live in a 3rd paid for home.
So I took, what money I had left and went looking for a home with my husband. We were very particular about the location of the home, in order to attract good renters. Problem was homes in that area were double what money we had, and we did not feel like God wanted us in debt for a rental.
We found a home we felt wouldn’t cost much to get up to rental condition. The bank had it listed for double what we had; but we thought, well might as well make an offer and leave it in God’s hands. God, gave us the house. The bank took one week to respond, saying yes they would take our cash offer.
We spent the next 7 months renovating the home with cash that came in bits and dribbles just as we needed it. Renters moved in just as our original home became vacant, and so we spent the next year and a half renovating that home, and again the money for the renovations came in here and there as we needed it.
We now have both paid in full rental homes rented. The rent money allowed my husband to quit his second job, allowing him to be home more, and be more involved in our children’s schooling, and giving me more time to write. I am sure my mother would love knowing her financial legacy gave her grand children and children such a gift.
In this blog I want to share what my husband and I have learned about renovating. How to renovate inexpensively. When to do it yourself, and when to higher an expert. I will also share stories that have happened to us while renovating. Once again, we are not perfect renovators we simple have a passion for it, and we are inching forward with that passion one inch at a time.
(post update: Since this writing the renters in our originally home moved out and we decided, after much prayer that the home was just too big to be a great rental unit for renters and us as landlords so we sold it. My husband has had to take a second job again although he doesn’t work as many hours as he once did. We used the money from the sale of the home to pay our vehicles off in full and become completely debt free, we also made a comfortable emergency fund and bought a second hand camper trailer to take the children camping more. It just goes to show you, you can have think you know what God has planned but truth is only He knows the plan, and He reveals it in His timing)