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Selling The Family Vintage Home in Sonoma, Calif. and Surviving!

Real Estate Agent with FHAllen, Sonoma Country and Vintage

Selling the Family Vintage Home in Sonoma, Calif. and Surviving.

I have just spent three months with my husband, daughter, pet schnauzer (Neddie) preparing to sell the family home and downsize into a more simple home with less upkeep, less maintenance, less taxes ..in other words LESS of everything.  

Here is what I did to get the ball rolling after I pullled the covers over my head for about 2 days thinking of all I had to do and not being able to move because I was so overwhelmed. The physcololgy of this life change is a blog just by itself!

1. Get Organized. I am NOT the greatest at organizing and going through years of history.. momentos, sentimental gifts, notes from favorite granmothers or parents, child's photos and grammar school drawings, acievements, etc. SO, I solicited help from my neighbor who lives in a 400 sq.ft. studio next door and let me tell you ...SHE had no trouble at all! Do this for each and every room and remember the garden is another room.

2. GO through maintenace items that you had always planned to do but simply never got around to it. If you can't do it yourself...HIRE someone. Check them out with refernces and make sure they know what they are doing. We went back to a report we had done 5 years ago and looked at all the items. 

3.Upgrading the kitchen. This was a really big one because living in a house while renovation is going on is NOT fun. We worked with our contractor so that we could minimize the overall disruption. As a result the kitchen is now one of the most pleasant places in a lovely older home. Just wish we had done it sooner!

4.Hire a painter..a good painter which means someone who prepares the area properly. A cheap paint job is a cheap paint job.


6.Declutter..You get where I am going with this..I could wrtie this numerous times and it is still not enough.Hopefully it will become an aquired skill. It is worth the peace of mind

7. Talk with your local antique dealers regarding furniture you can no longer accomodate in a smaller house. There are so many ways to sell things today..ebay..craigs list.

8.Give to goodwill or charites in your area. These times are financially difficult for many people and what yoou may regard as trash others really NEED.

9.Store some of your furniture so that house can really feel roomy, uncluttered (that word again) Let the house speak for itself especially if it has eceptional architectural features.

10. Wash the windows...my daughter said to say, "I just loved washing the windows Mom." 

11.Clean, clean, clean....Someone else's dirt is always dirtier than your own!

12.Have CONFIDENCE in your house and what you have accomplished! This is not for the weak of heart. It takes tenacity,understanding, patience, exercise to keep you mentally strong, and lots and lots of love for those who go through this with you.

13. Take each day at a time to keep the overwheming feeling from lifting its ugly head. 

If you would like help in making choices about what you need to do with Selling the family vintage home in Sonoma and surviving.. call me  on my cell..707-326-0400.

I will write more about the next phase of selling the house so that you realize..the process isn't over yet.

I had to  remember that most of us are survivors..there were days when I didn't think so....but I know I am.

If you are thinking about starting this process, give me a call.I can share all the do's and don"t do's, short cuts to mantain your sanity and pointers to save money!

Below are pictures of my home, family and little Neddie(who seemed to take it all in stride) They keep me going and add to the real value of my life..their love.

913 springjerry and kateneddie

Posted by

Kathleen Bonham

Vintage Home Specialist

Healdsburg, Santa Rosa, Sebastopol

Comments (2)

Fred Hookham
Keller Williams - Milton, WI


I love the people who are brave enough to put it all out there. You encourage the rest of us, who are doubting our own judgement, or are only part way through the same process.....Thanks!

Jul 20, 2010 01:42 PM
kathleen bonham
FHAllen, Sonoma Country and Vintage - Santa Rosa, CA

Thanks so much Fred...I have a wonderful husband and daughter who helped me the whole way. I haven't been successful with the pictures yet but like most things...I just stay at it until I get it done.

Jul 20, 2010 01:48 PM