We Moved!

We Moved!

  • Brandi Mayo
  • 07/28/23

We Moved to Portola!

Well, we did it! We finally moved into our new home a few weeks ago. And, it didn’t take long to experience how homeownership is a totally different road than renting. 

I have so many insights to share, but I’ll leave you with my top five:

  1. I’m doing things differently! Wherever I have lived since my mid 20s, I’ve always put a good foot forward in making a rental feel like my space. I’ve put art and photos on the walls, had nice furnishings and taken care of those places I called home. But now as a homeowner, I find myself spending just a few extra minutes to put everything back in its home in a way that was admittedly missing when I was renting. That “pride of ownership” thing is totally real in a way that I could only comprehend as a homeowner. 
  2. Home improvement never ends. My mother-in-law mentioned this to me as we were moving in and I’ve been thinking about it a lot. We just did this lovely renovation, and I’m already planning out our phase 2 renovation. We’re still not fully unpacked and there are still a ton of little projects to do around the house. I can see how there is always going to be something we want to do to add value. And now I understand how these little improvement projects, when not taken care of, can pile up into deferred maintenance years out as I’ve seen so many times when selling property.
  3. There’s nothing like a renovation to show you the weaknesses in your marriage! Or rather, there’s nothing like a home renovation to point out the opportunities for growth in your marriage (or yourself for that matter)! We certainly knew we were buying a project when we purchased this little fixer, and we were both excited about a project like this considering our shared backgrounds - mine in architecture and design and Matt’s in real estate development. But with a renovation comes all sorts of challenges that often require slight changes in direction. And this is where the fun is… Maybe you haven’t heard yet, but renovations are also an adventure in communication!
  4. And that leads me to permanence. Nothing is permanent as we know. But with homeownership has come this innate sense of a stable foundation and security. I see it the most in Matt. As a multi-family developer, he resisted homeownership for a long time. He would have rather put his money into an income-producing investment. But he saw an opportunity he couldn’t resist as home values in San Francisco plummeted over the last year. A few weeks ago, the morning after our first night sleeping in our home, he actually commented to me out of the blue about how “our family needed this foundation.” You can imagine I was absolutely beaming after I heard this!
  5. Community is real in areas where homeownership is higher! There’s a great article in the New York Times about Portola that talks about new residents receiving casseroles from neighbors when “they saw a couple’s moving truck rolling in.” I kind of didn’t believe it until our new neighbor brought us a delicious apple pie right after we moved in. No joke! We’ve met so many more neighbors in Portola in the first few weeks we have been here than anywhere I have rented with Matt or on my own. 

I want to hear about your insights and I’d love to share them with my sphere! Send me an email, give me a ring, or send me a text. I’d love to hear from you!

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"She was wonderfully meticulous and clearly outlined (and executed) the whole process with us step by step - and perhaps most importantly, explaining everything in such a clear and concise way that even novices like ourselves felt like professionals." - Kristen and Stewart F.

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