Friday, November 13, 2009

Your pain, our gain

We looked at the most beautiful house today. It was stunning. Could've been a model home.

It's a short sale, as many homes on the market are around here. The owners still live there, and the woman greeted us at the door. She asked us to take our shoes off.

Maybe that's how she kept those beautiful travertine floors clean. Turns out they have two kids, ages 5 and 2, and two small dogs. You'd never know it. The house was immaculate. There wasn't even a small smear of chocolate on the banister.

At some point they'd hired a professional designer, who, to the tune of about $300,000, added such gorgeous things an imported Italian glass chandelier to hang over the stairs. There were mahogany and beveled glass doors on a downstairs library, in which there was a small gas fireplace.

A custom-made glass sink was in the downstairs powder room, which had murano glass wallpaper. There was a butler's pantry off the kitchen. Apparently this is a small area where the "butler" can set the food before bringing it out to the dining room. It included a wine refrigerator and shelves to hold glassware.

Upstairs was an office with custom built-ins and four bedrooms - with a fabulous view of the mountains from the master. The closets all had storage shelves in them. It was easy to picture how much stuff we could cram in there.

The only negative was the teeny backyard that was completely hardscaped. We asked her where her dogs peed, and she said at the park - which is literally a house away. This park has a basketball court, big grassy field, playground equipment and an Olympic size pool.

There are tons of kids in the neighborhood, and friends of ours live a short walk away.

I asked if the backyard was an issue with small kids, and she said it wasn't because the park was so close - and the nanny just takes the kids there.

Say what?

They lived in the house for just three years. And put a ton of money into it. But now they can't pay their mortgage and have to move. Wonder if the nanny is still employed.

She said she's sad, in that it's the place they brought their daughter home from the hospital, but that they're ready to move on and hope to move out of state in a few years.

I wondered (to myself, even I'M not that nosy, if you can believe it) what the heck happened. Did one of them lose a job? Things can go wrong quickly, I guess.

While we were there, tons of people came traipsing through. I can't imagine what that must be like, watching as strangers open your closet doors and wander into your kids' rooms.

I was in fact absolutely mortified to see MY kids STANDING on the family room couches, banging on the piano in the library, and generally racing around like lunatics. It was like they'd been in a tiny cage all day and we'd just released them, but not before making them suck down a pack of pixie sticks.

The woman was totally cool with it, since she has kids, but judging by how pristine all the furniture was, I don't think she lets them dribble popsicle on the couch or use the walls as a canvas for their "artwork."

David finally took them to the park, and I chatted with the owner before she had to greet yet another family coming to look around. I felt a little like a voyeur. Even though we are interested in the house and might make an offer. There was just something depressing about the whole business, capitalizing on someone else's misfortune.

I'm sure I could get over it, though. The house is THAT awesome.

1 comment:

kirsten said...

Murano glass WALLPAPER? Wow. Just.... wow.

I can't imagine, selling after all that. I would be imagining all the same things as you, but not asking them either.

Did you OFFER?

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