Hello blog readers! Today I have three milestones to share with you. Each of them gives me “the feels” as the young folks say.
Honoring Our Managing Partner
Today is the birthday of our managing partner (and my spouse), the hard-working Lee Bruns. Any of you who have worked with us on the money end of our business has met with or talked to Lee. He’s the backbone of our business, the one who creates all the statistics to tell us how we are doing toward reaching our goals, the one who talks to bankers and private money lenders all the time, and the one who pays all the bills. All this from someone who retired as a writer. But, he has been in real estate his whole life (literally: his mother was an agent, and his parents flipped houses through his whole childhood, even though they didn’t call it that). Lee has done project management for all our personal flips, and is currently the task master on the Bobcat project. Lee serves as mentor for many in our local Big Dog group, and has some really great projects coming along in that area. We can’t wait to share those! I think it’s time to honor a great guy. Anyone who thanked him in the comments would earn my devotion!
Farewell to the Braesgate House
Those of you who have known us for a long time have been looking at photos of our series of renovations on the Braesgate house for years now. It’s the house I raised my children in, and a wonderful family home with three large living areas, a paradise of a back yard with a huge porch and gazebo, a wonderful master bedroom and bathroom retreat, and a kitchen with so many upgrades that it has been a total pleasure to cook with since it was renovated. But, it’s way too big for one person living in it part time, so as of yesterday, it belongs to a nice Hawaiian family with two kids just the right age to play with the other neighbor kids. They’re going to use the upgrade allowance we gave them to replace the upstairs carpet and repaint all our “interesting” colors, and the house will be ready for another 20 years as a family paradise. We got full asking price for the house, minus that allowance. And since not doing the upgrades ourselves saved us time and money, I think we ended up with the same profit we would have anyway.
As an aside, I think my partners find it amusing that I was attached to this property, but honestly, your family home is different from a rental house or house you buy to renovate and resell. My kids’ heights are on a kitchen door, one bedroom was painted by me and a friend to resemble a stormy day while its occupant was in a stormy time in his life…etc. So yeah, it’s a property that allows us to finish Bobcat, make some investments, and buy more houses, but it was first of all the place my kids grew up. But, onward and upward to the next phase of life, right?
Bobcat Has Color, but No Furniture
Lee says I should cut posts like this into three separate ones, but since there will be a LOT of Bobcat updates in the next few weeks, I’m just sticking this in here. It’s one of those bad news/good news posts.
The bad news is that yesterday, movers were supposed to bring all the stuff that was in the Braesgate house and put it in the garage and finished rooms. Let me tell you, it’s hard to get moving trucks into the Cat Mountain Villas or whatever the neighborhood is called. The traffic circle at the entrance is not for the faint-hearted truck driver. So, they brought two small moving trucks. Unfortunately, when we arrived, the garage was not cleaned out, the “finished” rooms had construction equipment in them, and there was stuff all over the place. The moving guys looked at me and said, “We can’t do this.” I was not pleased. But, off went the stuff to storage. I guess it’s not so bad. We’d originally thought the stuff would have to be in storage to sell the Braesgate house, which would have been WAY more expensive. This way, it will just have to be there a few weeks. And, to be honest, it will be a lot easier to unpack my 20 years of accumulated “stuff” if it all goes in the correct rooms.
But there is good news! Almost all the hardwood floors are in, and some of the rooms have been painted! Trim and doors were being installed yesterday, too. Doors and trim really make it look finished. The master bedroom is almost done. I realize the bedroom color is not for everyone, but it sure looks cheerful with all the light shining in, and it matches the bedding I’m going to use. I have never had a yellow room before, but you know what? It’s just paint! If I don’t like it, I can change it. Crown molding with accent lighting in it will go up around the tray ceiling, which will be cool.
Yesterday we showed our business partner (and agent on the Braesgate sale) around the house. She wanted me to take her picture, because it was so exciting to her to see our progress. That made us feel good! We all had a nice Chinese lunch afterward–all the Hermit Haus folks other than poor Russell (who had surgery on his Achilles tendon) and Ruben the GC. After lunch, Anita and I got to select the railing for upstairs and downstairs. It looks like tree branches. It should be a great point of interest, as it will be visible when you first walk in the door. And the rails for the downstairs steps in the new rooms will echo it, which made Anita happy. Yummy.