Annoying things about the Bay Area, Part 1

(Actually, this might not be just a Bay Area thing. I've only owned the one house, so maybe it's common. What do I know?)

Over the past summer Karin and had quite a bit of work done on the house. (Notice I say "Had work done", not necessarily "did a lot of work ourselves".) We've had new windows put in, repainted the exterior (necessary post the window install - the interiors need work as well but we'll do that ourselves), and whole bunch of landscaping. The back yard looks really nice now, we've lost the mint green accent color the house had when we moved it, and the new windows look better and actually insulate. In general I'm really happy with the stuff we've done.

The interesting part is that almost everyone assumes we're selling the house. Neighbors, dogwalkers, friends, random passers-by, they all ask the same thing. "So are you thinking about selling the house?" Well, no. We just thought, "Hey since we live here, let's make it nice." I'm looking forward to seeing the back yard next spring. We put the landscaping in for us to enjoy, not for some future owner.

Sure, I thought to myself "All of this stuff will increase the property value." and if we're totally honest we need to refinance the house next year sometime so I expect to leverage the improvements that way. But I think the whole way houses here are treated as investments first and living spaces second is just weird. Maybe people would be less concerned about a real esate "bubble" if more people viewed their house as part of their life, and not some sort of weird physical savings account.

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