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The Marriage Wars: Swayed by a head-turning home
Aug 27, 2014 | 5108 views | 0 0 comments | 894 894 recommendations | email to a friend | print


In the past nine years, many of our neighbors have moved.  It has nothing to do with me; it was generally a matter of age.  The young families (with an expanded number of children and sometimes an increase in salary) simply “moved up” into a larger home or relocated due to a job change.  The older folks either moved in with their children or bought into a retirement community.

I stayed put.  I have no desire to look at houses.  In nearly 40 years of marriage, I have lived in exactly two homes.  Depending on which survey you read, the average person moves five to eight times in their adult life. That’s a lot of packing, a lot of bustle and worry, and a whole lot of U-Haul miles.

My wife often brings up the concept of a future move: maybe Portland, maybe New York City, maybe downtown Salt Lake City. While I understand this “romance” of new cities and communities, I am happy with our current digs.  The last thing I want to do is attend a Parade of Homes.

My wife and I recently attended a party at an older residence in Salt Lake.  She fell in love with the patio.  “Can’t you just see us reading books on this secluded patio?” she said. Sure, but is a nice patio worth the $120,000 extra it would cost to secure the home? For now, my tiny patio will do nicely.

I hate moving.  I also hate seeing people stretch their income to buy a home, then be unable to purchase needed drapery/window dressings or sufficient furniture.  I don’t want to be “house poor”.  That won’t make mortgage lenders happy, but unless I can live on Cape Cod or watch the ships slide by from my patio on San Francisco Bay, I have no current plans to look at new homes.


I love to watch HGTV.  I enjoy “House Hunters” and the myriad of other real estate-centric programs.  It is fun to fantasize what the “Property Brothers” could do with a fixer-upper in the neighborhood of my dreams.  However, this does not mean that I’m ready to put our house on the market.

My husband isn’t much of a window-shopper in any sense of the word. He goes to the mall to buy a shirt, and within 15 minutes it’s mission accomplished. He doesn’t understand that Watching “House Hunters” is just another form of window shopping.

He hears me rhapsodize on a lovely backyard and he starts digging in his heals and contemplates handcuffing himself to our porch. He should realize that my infatuation with a house is much like my infatuation with George Clooney...a nice dream, but entirely unrealistic.  

Most women I know enjoy the Parade of Homes with no intention of putting up the For Sale sign, but as a harmless form of voyeurism seeing how other people live, or getting decorating ideas for their own homes. Looking and moving are miles apart and nothing to start packing for.

Do I plan to move someday? You bet.  As soon as I retire, we are going to start fresh somewhere else for a couple of reasons. First of all, there is nothing tying us to Davis County. Living closer to restaurants, theaters, and public transportation would make our golden years infinitely more enjoyable.

The second reason is entirely altruistic.  I figure if we move we will be forced to de-junk and de-clutter.  I’m sure our children will appreciate our more minimalist style when it comes time for us to make a more permanent move through the pearly gates.  



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