I was born in Columbus, Ohio while my dad was getting his Ph.D. in polymer chemistry. He borrowed money to buy a 1200 sq foot 2 bdrm/1 bath home for $5,000.
I remember – a sandbox in the backyard. Being a scientist, we moved for his job. At age 3 we moved to New Brunswick, NJ to a 3 bdrm/1 bath ranch for $15,000. I remember – strawberry patch in backyard, a peach tree and watching my dad build a rec room in basement. At age 7 we moved to Waltham, Mass. While we waited for our new 3 story split home to be built on Graymore Road ($30,000), we lived in a townhouse for a year. The new house was on one street built with new houses in between an apple orchard on one side, forest at end of street, and farm behind us. I remember – dads huge vegetable garden behind our rock wall, helping him build 3 bedrooms and bath on 3rd unfinished floor. At age 12 we moved to Highland Park, Illinois to a 1948 Cape Cod Colonial. I remember – helping dad build a rec room, office and bath in basement, lots of hardwood store visits. After graduating U. of Wisconsin, Madison, I l shared an apartment in gated community in Schaumberg, Ill for a year before moving to New York City into a rent stabilized $210/month 400 square foot apartment on the upper east side. The real estate agent showed it to me in the middle of the day when it was quiet. Well, night came and clump – clump-clump from the ceiling. It was a post war building with thin walls and I had an elderly lady with a walker above me! I remember that! And, the next 6 tenants above me for next 15 years! For last 6 years there I had purchased a vacation house in Catskills. 1800 sq foot ranch overlooking Windham with 2 acres of land in back for $90,000. I remember – buying it in fall – beautiful leaves. Spring comes and there was a wall of water in our backyard. Realtor didn’t tell us we were built over 3 intersecting streams! Sold it 9 years later for $85,000.
Decided to move out of the city..although that $390/month rent was good, we now had two cats that got up early! Since my business was near grand central, my parameters were no more than 35 minute commute into Westchester County and no more than 2 miles from station in case I had to walk! After looking at over 40 condos, townhouses, homes we bought a 1948 1800 sq foot center hall colonial in Hartsdale in 1995 for $240,000. Reason was, could put your bags down and live there. I remember – great sunroom, could walk to shopping, big enough for two. We needed more space and being I was working 60 hour weeks, didn’t want a fixer upper. We saw an ad for Hartsdale, new home! Unusual down here. But this was a 3200 square foot center hall colonial modular spec house a builder was building on ¾ acres in Hartsdale Acres. So, now I was customizing a house that’s frame goes up in one day! Back to hardware stores, kitchen cabinet places, carpeting, hardwood floors, appliances, tile stores and all that goes into building the inside of a home. That was 2001. Still here. Sold the 1948 colonial in 2001 for $369,000 with multiple bids! Good old days.
So..if you know anyone who is relocating to Westchester County, New York and needs to rent an apartment, buy a home, condo or townhouse, send them my way! I’ll know what they are talking about and hopefully build memories of their own.