What makes a house “HOME”?

A while back the National Association of Realtors spent $40,000,000 on an ad campaign “It’s a great time to buy or sell a home!”  Well, I have some news for them.  It can’t be done.

A house can be bought.  A house is sticks. It has a roof. Usually a yard. But those things are not what make a home.

I googled “what makes a house a home?”  There were 1.2 billion results.  Seems like all the “experts” kept saying buy this, do that, and on and on about things you don’t have that you need to get to make a place your home.

Home, to me, is not a place. It’s a feeling. When you walk in the door and it feels like home. Home is where we feel comfortable. Home gives us sanctuary from the rest of the world.

A lot of people worry about how our houses look, to the neighbors, or even just people passing by.  The dandelions in the yard or the faded paint matter very little when it comes to actually making a house home.  And home changes as time goes by.

For me now, home is when I walk in the door and one of the kids is sleeping on the couch instead of doing homework.  It’s the dogs barking to be let out so they can run the back yard, and instantly turning around and wanting back in.

Home is the memories of all the sleep overs. The messes, the smells, the music, whether my generation calls it music or not.

Home is sitting on the porch waiting for Angie to get home while the scent of dinner cooking in the kitchen breezes through the open front door.

Home is all the relationships that happen there.  It has nothing to do with walls and floors.  It has everything to do with people, and the life that happens there.

I have owned a lot of houses over the years but when I think of home…  I am not thinking about a building.

Maybe that’s what makes buying a house so difficult.

People get confused.  They get conflicting advice.

I ask, when I am showing a house to someone, how does it feel?

After you find a place that feels good, then deal with the numbers.  You can fix just about anything physical with a house but if it doesn’t feel good, new carpet isn’t going to matter.

Every house has a story to tell; about it’s past and even more importantly about it’s future.

Most real estate ads say things like 3 bedrooms, two baths, 2175 sq ft. new roof, blah blah blah…

I try to dig a little deeper and to see what kind of life the house has to share. What kind of experiences can you create when you live within those walls or out in that yard? What would it feel like to actually LIVE in this place?

Can you get a better deal on some other building? More sq ft? bigger kitchen or whatever?

Most likely.  There is always a better deal.

The question to ask yourself, and I can’t answer it for you, is how would we live if we buy this place?

If it feels good, if you can imagine what it would feel like to actually LIVE there, then buy it!

If not. Don’t! even if it is a “deal”.

Personalize it as you live there.  As life evolves inside those walls you create your own home and you take that with you.

Home is not a house.