Last year was a whirlwind of a year... We were living in a two bedroom apartment in a nice suburban area. In May, we renewed our lease for a second year. Andrew was driving about 30-60 minutes to and from work each day, and I worked from home most of the time. When I did go to the office, I had a frustrating 3 hour drive there and back. We would drive about two hours to see my parents for holidays or fun weekends, and about an hour and a half to visit with Andrew's family. We had one sweet, sassy cat, Miles, and one dog/furry sweetpea/love of my life, Sammy. Things were good, but there was something missing - the feeling of home.
For the first four years of our relationship, we were long-distance more than together. We were full-time students when we started dating, and I worked about 30 hours a week. Then after graduating, I moved away for graduate school, and Andrew worked full time. Andrew came to see me every other weekend and spent Saturdays and Sundays napping in my apartment with Miles while I wrote papers.
When we finally were able to settle, we chose our apartment. I didn't even see the place, just trusted Andrew's opinions of it and sent in the lease! I knew (hoped) it would be temporary. We loved the area, the county was well funded, schools well rated, and close to fun things without being overwhelming. But it was expensive... Cost of living was high, much higher than I was used to. I began to feel that my lifelong dream of homeownership, a much more easily attainable option back where I was from, was never going to happen.
Then one day we drove down to Andrew's hometown for a visit with his mom. On the way back to our apartment, I asked, "what if we moved here?" His hometown is a lot like mine and I really liked the idea of being closer to work, closer to someone's family, and settled down. I spent the rest of the hour and a half ride searching on the Zillow app. I found a fixer upper that I couldn't get out of my head... I did what any reasonable 24 year old with a new full-time job, newly signed lease renewal, mountains of student loans, and an uncertain future and
got over it contacted a lender. We were approved, we I fell in love with the fixer upper, and we made an offer! It was accepted, but the inspection uncovered much needed and expensive repairs that were way out of the budget.
When I finally agreed to move on from my stinky little brick fixer upper, Andrew found this beautiful home, almost identical to the fixer upper, but FIXED UP. I didn't love the price, or the lack of big projects, but loved the land and floor plan more, and it meant I could focus on fixing the fun stuff, not the furnace and windows. We closed on that house ten days after our wedding, and moved two weeks later.