Monday, July 09, 2007

rockin' the suburbs

I went bicycling with my little brother last weekend in the 95 degree heat. He lives downtown in the buffer land between the artistic mecca of Uptown Minneapolis and downtown which is big enough to have a skyline but small enough to still have most retail close down at 6:00 PM and turn into a bar and music land.

In our hunt for houses we decided we missed the city and were looking mostly at lofts and condos in this area but have finally made an offer on a house about 10 minutes from downtown instead. You might recognize this background from seeing Nate leave his apartment and get in the car in Scrapped.I asked what's new and he mentioned seeing some gun play outside his living room window right on the corner. Between association fees, parking, crime and a grossly flooded market of condo's sitting empty in a soft real estate market... we decided to get a house instead.

Looking back I remember the years I spent in Minneapolis living in the apartment downtown by the dome where a guy lived next to the dumpster that smelled like pee and my car would get broken into ( I don't have a problem with wetting yourself, he seemed like a nice guy ) having visitors driving around the block looking for parking with the place by Lake Calhoun, and gun play - graffiti and screaming neighbors in our two houses in South Minneapolis. Ahh yes, it's all coming back. Why I traded in cool for a lawn and less colorful neighbors.

We've put in an offer on a house in an area called St. Louis Park which borders the cool area of Uptown and "the lakes" but is typically quiet with a disproportionately large number of houses built in the 50's and Jewish population. I look forward to checking out the temple a few blocks away, the deli's and kicking it with my hasidic homies. Connie and I went for a walk around the neighborhood on a particularly hot day and were suprised to not only see a gentleman out watering his yard with a hot and steamy black velvet yamika but also someone walking down the street in full black sports coat sporting the traditional long side curls. Not quite the slick 20 something scene of downtown condos. :0)

After compiling sweat equity for the last 13 years and 3 houses we're able to move on up. Here's the equation: average price of lofts and condos we were looking at: $400k with $20k for an extra parking space since I have a full size truck and motorcycle. Association fees: between $400 - $500/ month. Average size of units: 1300 Sq. Ft.

Price of the house we put a bid on: $389k with x-large two car garage, 2400 sq.ft. with no association fees and almost no yard to take care of. Both are about a 15 minute walk to lakes and the artsy world of Uptown where even a hippie can get killed despite surrendering their wallet. The worst thing bound to happen in the new neighborhood compared to downtown is not being able to shop on Sabbath.

I've officially resigned to the fact that I'm becoming old and sensible, sedated and boring... more concerned about resale value than night life. It's bound to happen to you too...


At 9:07 AM, Blogger Té la mà Maria - Reus said...

We have happened passed awhile entertained in your blog, congratulations
Regards from Reus Catalunya (SP)

At 11:20 AM, Blogger wes said...

I visited your blog and love the images! I don't understand a word of the text but rock on Reus!

Where do you live?

At 11:36 AM, Blogger Melissa O. said...

Think of all the money you can spend on cool stuff and activities by being a house dweller : )

At 7:00 PM, Blogger nancy_scraps said...

Yes, but have you purchased a car and put "safety, gas mileage, and low maintenance" on the top of the list?

That's when I knew I was "old".

At 8:28 PM, Blogger wes said...

Nancy, my story was me getting old the minute I put "car" on the list to supplement two wheeled transportation.



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