Our Big Blue House

I mentioned a while ago that we moved over the Summer. We bought this big, old blue house that’s over 100 years old.

When we first bought it, there were two giant birch trees about a foot from the house. We had them cut down and had all the old, plastic covered windows and rotting sills replaced before we moved in.

We also had some of the rooms painted including this yellow…Steelers themed one. The picture below is from the listing. We removed the carpeting in that room and put down hardwood flooring too.

The old fan is still in there and we don’t have any furniture for this room yet but it’s starting to look better. In the corner (below pic), we had to run pipes up to the second floor bathroom because we put the laundry upstairs. (The basement was a somewhat horrifying dungeon with extremely narrow stairs so moving the laundry upstairs was a priority.) That corner will eventually be dry walled in. We’re also going to possibly move the half bath partly into this room.

That little stove in the room is a wood burning stove that will only fit very tiny logs.

At some point, someone took out the old glass above the front door, added glass slanted pieces and boarded off part of the opening. I’m talking to a stained glass maker to see how much it would cost to have a piece of stained glass made for this spot. If it’s too expensive, we’ll probably just put in a regular piece of glass.

Here is the upstairs bathroom pic from the listing. We removed that big, black cabinet on the right and put the stackable washer and dryer there. It’s a temporary fix until we can renovate this ridiculous bathroom. By the way, there’s no vent for heat in this bathroom. Just that light up fireplace.

We haven’t done much in the dining room yet but we did replace the light fixture (which had bungee cords holding it up) and the ceiling is no longer blue. Here’s the before:

And the in progress picture below. I’ve been shopping for curtains for this room for weeks. All of the windows in this house are extremely big and tall because the rooms have 12′ ceilings so curtains seem like a big commitment.

And that’s about where we are with this house. We had an architect come this past Friday and we are going to have plans drawn for the first floor. We want to move the half bath, open the kitchen up to the back den and open a doorway from the living room to the dining room. They’re also going to help us with adding a roof over the front door and hopefully a covered porch across the whole front of the house.

The exterior is scheduled to be repainted in October. No more varying shades of peeling blue!

This house is a huge project and we’re going to have to do the work slowly over time and live with the chaos for a while. But we get to walk/bike to school, Frick Park, our friend’s houses and to restaurants and bars so we think it’s worth it. 🙂

New Listing in Swissvale!

We’ve had a crazy few weeks here! We moved. And we have 3 kids and the house that we bought needs a lot of work, so it’s been a bit crazy. But we have a new listing that just went up earlier this week.

Check it out here: 7311 Whipple Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15218

This house is a great price for the location. It’s in Swissvale but walkable to Regent Square and Frick Park. It has 3 bedrooms and 1 and a half bathrooms. Two of the bedrooms have walk in closets! It actually has more storage and closet space than the house that we just bought and our house is almost twice as big (as I sit here typing this surrounded by boxes and no place to put them…)

We’re doing an open house this Saturday (8/17/19), 11AM to 1PM if you’d like to check it out. It’s a really great, move in ready house!

New Listing in Regent Square

New listing in Regent Square! 1311 Lancaster Ave. The location is amazing! You’re practically living within Frick Park and also very close to the Regent Square business district. It’s a very functional house. There aren’t any scary elements. You can basically just buy it, move in and not worry about it.

Wonderful community with very active and friendly neighbors. I love it for the walkability. It has 3 bedrooms on the second floor plus a large 3rd floor bedroom or bonus room. Solid surface kitchen countertops, double vanity in the full bath and 2 car detached garage.

We’re holding an open house this coming Saturday, June 15 from 1-3 so come and check it out!!

Our house is for sale!

We’ve been busy over here. For the last few months, we’ve been looking for a house that is closer to Sam’s (and soon to be Tucker’s) school and to our friends. That area of Pittsburgh is pretty expensive and in demand right now so we’ve mostly been looking at fixer uppers.

A few weeks ago, we looked at a house that is a five minute walk from Sam’s school. It was tenant occupied and a complete disaster. It’s a little over 2100 square feet but only 3 bedrooms and 1.5 bathrooms. The layout is terrible and there is a ton of wasted space. It needs SO MUCH work. But…we made a low offer, they countered, we countered, they countered, we said no, they said no. We thought it was over but then a couple of days later, they came back and accepted our offer! So we’re closing July 10th, hoping that the tenants are out of there by then and hoping to have our current house at least under contract by then.

We listed our house (<—link to the listing) on Tuesday but didn’t allow any showings until the open house on Sunday. We mainly did this because we have 3 kids and we could get the majority of the showings out of the way that day. The open house went great! We had about 20 groups come through in the 3 hours. We’ve also had 5 showings since then (it’s Wednesday). I’m hopeful we’ll get an offer soon.

We only bought this house a year ago and did a lot of work to it so I thought it would be fun to post the before and after pics. Here we go:

The living and dining area became the living room and kitchen. The hardwood was refinished and we laid porcelain tile in the kitchen/dining area.
The old kitchen area became the dining area so we could add a back door and build a deck.
Another picture of the kitchen.
The old bathroom lost its pink wallpaper and got new drywall, vanity, toilet, mirror and light fixtures.
The back of the house lost its window awnings and we built a deck with slide.
We tore out the old carpeting in the basement, put in carpet tiles, painted and put in recessed lighting.
We also added a new full bathroom off of the basement.

We really liked this house and will miss certain things about it. But we’re really looking forward to being able to walk to school and to Frick Park!

Just Listed in East Liberty!

I just listed this house today in East Liberty. It’s only a couple of blocks from Whole Foods, Bakery Square and Highland Park! It’s currently set up as a single family home but it’s zoned 2 family so it could easily be made into a two unit.

I really love the farmhouse style of this house and it would have great curb appeal after being painted.

Here’s the link to the listing: 522 N. Euclid. Check it out!

Farmhouse design ideas below. I love the very first one. Navy + wood.


New Listing & Sold Listing

We just closed on 4724 Wallingford yesterday! It was under contract in about a week.

We listed a new house about a week ago and I just added it to the Current Listings page. It’s an end unit townhouse in East Liberty. It’s really an amazing location. Walkable to everything in East Liberty. It’s been completely gutted so it’s ready for a renovation to begin immediately.

Here’s a map to show you the location. Just a few blocks from Highland Park.

I haven’t had a lot of time to write on here but I’m hoping to write more soon. I’m interested to learn more about renovation loans and post on here. I didn’t realize it was really a viable option until recently. Also, I told Aaron that I’d like to become a real estate attorney. lol. That’s a long term goal.

505-507 California Ave, Oakmont, PA

First off, this is not my listing, I just love this house. It’s AMAZING! I would like to buy it but Aaron said, “you don’t want to live in Oakmont.” Whatever AARON. I’m willing to run an Air BNB to make this happen.

It’s walkable to a trail, library, restaurants and more.

Plus, I really want a house that has a separate apartment included. This one has a full separate mother-in-law suite with its own address. The apartment is two stories and 3 bedrooms, 1 bath. I really want to go see it.

I’m just posting it here because I think it’s a really unique house in Pittsburgh. It’s 6,000+ square feet on half an acre in Oakmont. It would be a great Bed and Breakfast. Here’s a link to the listing.

Here’s the real estate tax calculation. It’s assessed for $399,600. The millage in Oakmont is 31.4673.

$399,600 x .0314673 = $12,574 eeeek

Alright, I’ll just be over here calculating mortgage payments and possible rental income on the in-law suite. 🙂

New Listing in Shadyside!

We just posted a new house for sale in Shadyside and it is amazing. It has over 4,500 square feet and 6 bedrooms. It’s on the North Oakland side of Shadyside and is walkable to so many places. It’s on a fairly quiet, one way street but still convenient to Pitt, CMU, Shadyside business districts and pretty much everything in the East End. Here’s a map for you:

It has 3 full stories of living space and a long driveway for lots of off street parking. There used to be a garage at the end of the driveway but had to be torn down because it was in bad shape. A new garage could definitely be built.

The back yard is large, flat and fenced. It needs a fair amount of work but it could be amazing. I would guess if it’s renovated nicely, it could be worth $800-900,000. It’s currently listed for $500,000 and probably needs $200,000 of work. (These are all my estimates).

We have 9 showings scheduled over the next few days so there is definitely interest. Honestly, I wanted to buy it for our family and then Aaron reminded me that that’s insane and we just moved 6 months ago. Ha. It’s a bit big for our family. And…you need quite a bit of cash to do the work.

If you are interested in seeing it, please let me know! There are more pictures in the listing. My contact info is here. It is absolutely amazing and I think someone is going to buy it and make it even more amazing very soon.