Day 15: On Being Grown-Ups.

It’s funny how as a kid being a grown-up seems so awesome.  From a kid’s perspective, it kind of seems like adults just swim around in piles of money, eat candy for breakfast, and otherwise get to do whatever they want.  I think that’s how they get you.  The grown-ups that is.  They want you to grow up so you can start taking care of yourself and pay taxes and stop being a burden on anyone else.  So they lure you in with these grand ideas of fun and endless money and candy for breakfast.  And then they’re all “GOTCHA! Now you must have tons of bills and stress about money and plan for your future and raise your own bratty babies!”

I’m mostly kidding here, but let’s face it:  being a grown-up is not quite as awesome as it seems from the eyes of a child.   But I really can’t complain too much because I did in fact eat cookies for breakfast this morning.  But the truth is, even when you have money, being an adult and making “adult” decisions can be stressful.  And at the very least, not what you expected as a kid.

How did we spend our Valentine’s Day?  No, not swimming in a pool of champagne and flowers and gorging ourselves on chocolates.  We spent our Valentine’s Day discussing our married life budget, our financial goals for the next couple of years, and two very different but awesome rental houses (no need to buy a southern CA house when the Navy could ship us elsewhere in 1.5 years).

The house situation is TOTALLY like an episode of House Hunters.  We have narrowed it down to two:

Option 1:

  • Pros: Very affordable, super close to great hiking trails, 3 car garage (which means plenty of room for both cars, bikes, and DIY projects), completely updated kitchen, huge master suite, front loading brand new washer and dryer, smoker and fire pit included, central air
  • Cons: No view, wasted space (the house is 2200 sqft, and includes a formal livingroom/sitting room and an extra bedroom that we just wouldn’t use), cookie cutter neighborhood (every house looks pretty much the same), some parts are carpeted and hardwoods are fake (we love all hardwoods), 2-story (we like one story better), not much counter space in kitchen, and microwave is on kitchen counter (so even less space)

Option 2: 

  • Pros: AMAZING ocean and canyon views (you can hear the ocean from the back deck), amazing outdoor spaces (see last pro!)– huge back deck, sizeable front yard with grass for the dogs and two side yards, real hardwood throughout (no carpet), one story, no wasted space, TONS of counter space in the kitchen, not cookie cutter at all
  • Cons: 25% more expensive (and when you are talking california rental prices, 25% is a LOT!), Kitchen is not completely updated (pretty sure the stove is the same stove from the 60s), no A/C (although it is right by the ocean so super breezy)

Both houses are about the same distance from Dave’s work, both are in quiet, safe neighborhoods, neither house is really walkable to shops or restaurants but neither is too far of a drive, both have nice outdoor spaces (although the the outdoor space at #2 is considerably nicer given the size, ocean views, and sound of the ocean), both have plenty of storage (including walk-in closets), and both have laundry rooms and plenty of kitchen storage space.  Also, both have very open floor plans which we love (although House #1 is a little more open).  And while House #2 doesn’t have a 3-car garage, it does have a 2-car garage which is plenty for 2 people with only 2 cars. It would just be nice to have that little bit of extra garage space 😉

In the end it comes down to:

#1:  Really too much space, and no view, but a great house and a great price
#2:  Views to DIE for, and a great house, but can we justify the price?

This is what turned our plans of a quiet night cooking a Valentine’s dinner together to discussing finances for a few hours.  And those are the moments that make me think, “holy cow I am an ADULT now.” (Even though I’m 27 and should be fully aware that I’m an adult now, after nearly 10 years of legally being one).

Which house will they choose?  Stay tuned, y’all 😉

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