Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Why I Love Our California Home (And How We Made It Happen)

When Lauren and I originally created this blog, a lot of readers wanted to hear about home buying. I haven't said much about the subject because, quite frankly, I feel like it's a miracle my husband and I were able to buy in the beautiful (aka PRICEY) Bay Area at all.

We started the house hunting process by creating a budget (you know I love budgets). Looking around at what was available for sale on our own, we thought we'd only be able to afford a small, two-bedroom condo at best. Luckily, we found a great REALTOR® who helped us figure out how we could get what we really wanted (a single family home) within our budget! He found a great neighborhood with no HOA fees, which increased the monthly amount we could put towards a mortgage. Our house is definitely a fixer-upper, but we've had fun putting in our own sweat-equity. (Details of our renovations here: bedroom, bathroom, and living room).
One of my favorite DIY upgrades to our home: our painted fireplace and mantel. (See the "before" picture here)
We still have a few more renovations to do, but we're enjoying the journey! And even though I'm not a native Californian, I'm loving it here.

My Favorite San Jose Spots

If you're ever in the San Jose area, check out some of my favorite spots:

Willow Glen Creamery. Every flavor of frozen yogurt, custard, and ice cream is amazing, so you really can't go wrong. Order the strawberry cheesecake ice cream with a waffle cone and you'll thank me later.
My son hijacked my ice cream cone, but he's so cute, how could I complain?

San Jose Rose Garden. Voted as "America's Best Rose Garden" by the All-America Rose Selections, there is officially no better place to stop and smell the roses.

Happy Hollow is a cute neighborhood zoo and amusement park, perfect for the little ones. 

Children's Discovery Museum is great for hands-on fun. 

For a scenic place to picnic, paddle boat, ride the carousel or mini-train, climb the playground, or just run wild on the acres of lawn, check out Vasona Park/Oak Meadow Park (in Los Gatos).
My son and husband watching the train chug away at Vasona Park.

So that's a little about why I'm loving where we live and why I'm so grateful we had a REALTOR® to help us get here. 

Some facts from the National Association of REALTORS®:
  • One job is generated for every two home sales
  • One home purchase stimulates the economy by $60K
  • A homeowner’s net worth is 34 times that of a renter
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


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