According to Zillow.com, the most rockin' real estate site I've seen yet, my house has increased in value by over $7K in the last THIRTY days. (The "zestimated" value is almost a full third more than I paid.) Is that even possible? All I've done, for the most part, is demolition. (Which my contractor realizes is my favorite part of the renovation process. Yesterday, as I was sledging the kitchen cabinets from the wall, he said, "You sure like that sledgehammer, don'tcha, Kate?" Brings out my destructive side...) Are the property values skyrocketing THAT quickly?!? I guess this means the yuppies are moving in - fast. (Proof: on the next block over, there was a kid's stroller parked on the porch, and a hybrid in the driveway. If that's not evidence, I don't know what's more damning.) How soon will it be before the yuppies outnumber the crackheads?! Not that I'm crying about the yuppies. I am one...kinda, sorta...though I'd rather not be. But I'm continually broke, don't have a trust fund, and don't get more than five dollars from my grandma in my birthday card (and those stopped coming years ago).
I'm growing more antsy about seeing at least one room FINISHED. It hasn't happened yet, and although I feel REALLY fortunate to have found an extremely cool contractor/roommate, I'm itching with impatience, especially now that I need to get a loan to finance the rest of the reno. Throughout, he's encouraged me to get the shiniest of bling -- top of the line, go all out, crazy expensive stuff. But the fact remains: this neighborhood is still uber-ghetto, regardless of the yuppie influx. I'm not going to make more than $40K profit if I sell soon and keep spending so much on building materials. And that's a rosy estimate. So, I think I need to be more realistic about my expectations for this house...maybe not get so ambitious; get a plan (stop wavering!) and stick to it. And stop listening to my contractor. Although his help has been invaluable, I'm the one with the history of financial responsibility and savvy. He, on the other hand, is totally broke. That said, I should listen to my gut -- not his supposedly sage recommendations.
Update: I've been aggressive with the sledgehammer, demolishing the kitchen cabinets (found the nastiest roach nests I've EVER seen...they actually SMELLED bad. YUCK.); chipping away the remaining linoleum on the kitchen floor (readying it for saltillo!); tearing the wood panels from the dining room wall, including the stick-on square mirrors (1970's disco fabulous), tearing out the lowered ceiling in the dining room, and patching the stucco in the lv. and dining rooms. My windows are ready for pick-up (don't have the money to pay the other half, BUT windows man, my favorite, says that I don't have to pay for ninety days after pick-up...debating as to whether or not I should pay to have them installed, or do it myself, w/ the contractor). CAN'T WAIT until the kitchen looks decent, and to start GARDENING! It was SEVENTY degrees today, and wickedly beautiful.
Meanwhile, the bills are kicking my butt. The last heating/electric bill was nearly $250, and the latest water bill is over fifty bucks. All of my credit cards are in deep freeze...literally.