Agent Ally: My First Home
by Real Estate Sales Representative Ally VanderHarst
Looking back at when I was a first time homebuyer, I remember it being a very exciting time. Jeff & I were young but had been dating for about 7 years already. We were basically living together between our parents homes in Ancaster & Flamborough, but with my work in Kitchener and Jeff’s in Hamilton at the time we decided that Cambridge was a great mid-way point for us.
After looking at a few places, we eventually bought our first home in 2011 for $139,000. The home was a bank foreclosure and was in need of some serious TLC. It was a 2-storey with single detached garage offering 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom (although it was advertised as 2 baths, but the second was literally just a toilet next to a large window in an un-insulated, un-finished sunroom at the back of the home, yikes!). This was the place we would call our first home!
As you may already know, Jeff is quite handy, and with the help of his equally handy dad and some friends, we gutted and renovated the entire house. The list of renovations was extensive. We ripped down all the lath & plaster walls upstairs and re-arranged the entire layout to create a larger master bedroom and full bathroom. Downstairs we re-located the kitchen and added a main floor powder room, removed the lovely sunroom “bathroom” to actually finish the space properly, and gave the exterior a bit of a facelift with a new front door & some paint. It felt AMAZING to make this place our very own, and add our own special touches to every corner.
After all the renovations were complete and we got settled in, we got our fur baby, River, and a few months later Jeff proposed to me in our kitchen. So many amazing memories in that house! We enjoyed our new space for a short time before we made the decision to move to Grande Prairie, Alberta where some of our friends were currently living and working. So, we listed it for sale in September of 2012 and sold it in one day for $222,400 (yay!) and we were off on our next adventure!
Looking back, it all seems like it went by so fast! Sometimes that’s how it goes with your first home – you’re not necessarily there for a long time, but it can definitely be a good time! Despite the many challenges we faced, many happy and hilarious memories were made, and life milestones achieved. I wouldn’t have it any other way!