Destination: Beach House
I grew up going to my grandparents place in Long Beach, WA. When my husband and I got married in Minnesota (where I had moved when I was 14), I knew I wanted to bring him back to a place that had been so special to me. So we had adventures in Washington and Long Beach for our honeymoon. We even came back for a visit when I was pregnant with our son in 2009. It had always been a dream of mine to have a place on the coast that my family, and other families and friends, could come and enjoy. I didn’t know quite when the timing would be right, but if you know me, you know that if it’s a dream, I’m going to make it happen.
When we moved to the west coast 8 years ago, it was right during the recession and no houses were selling. Our moving time frame was so short that we didn’t even try to sell our current home in Minnesota. We were fortunate enough to find amazing renters on our first showing. These renters ended up staying in the home for 6 years. After a less than ideal renter afterwards, and while the housing market in the Midwest was heating up, we knew it was the right time to sell. There were so many moving parts with selling out of state and doing a 1031 exchange on a new property, but we were fortunate that everything worked out unbelievably well. I tell my husband now that it’s so amazing having the Beach House that I wish we had done it sooner, but the catch is that if it had been sooner, it wouldn’t have worked out as well as it did.
Why Long Beach?
Aside from the nostalgia that I have with Long Beach, I love it because it really is a fantastic spot to vacation. It isn’t ever crazy crowded like it can be on the Oregon Coast. You can drive on the beach, which makes it super easy to explore other ends of the beach, to explore the tide pools in Beard’s Hollow, and to save tired little legs from trecking too far. There are endless adventures to be had, from salmon fishing to horseback riding. The wildlife is so abundant we’ve seen whales, deer, hawks, and bald eagles-all from the windows of the Beach House! It’s truly a magical place.
Let’s get real
This was a project of a pretty large scale and I’m not going to act like an episode of House Hunters where these people have an occupation of professional hamster trainers and a budget of 1 million dollars. So let’s get real. The Beach House is about 1300 sq feet, 3 bedrooms 2.5 bathrooms. We originally had given ourselves 1 month and a budget of $5,000 to complete it. When we bought the house it had new carpet and had recently been painted. and that was it. No furnishings, nothing updated, and carpet in the dining room. One more time for the people in the back. It had CARPET in the DINING ROOM at the BEACH! So even the brand new carpet on the main level had to go. To be honest, I would have ripped it all out but please see above referenced budget. It’s not my style, and it photographs terribly (the previous owner thought it looked like sand). But that’s going to be a project for a different day! In reality we were able to finish the whole house in about 7 weeks and all projects and furnishings were done and purchased for around $10,000. Yes, over budget (double, but who’s counting?). But still, I’m pretty proud of the fact that we were able to remodel an entire house, and furnish it, for that amount. and we did it ourselves. It took lots of DIY projects, some re-purposing, some bargain shopping, and a whole lot of passion. I loved every second of this project and I’m so happy to share it with you in our upcoming blog series and with our guests.