Thursday, June 11, 2009

Show & Tell: Home Ownership Is A Challenge

My beloved and I bought our condo almost a year ago. I love our little home. Two bedrooms, one bath, in suite laundry, new-ish kitchen, on a older residential street.

I honestly didn't think it would be as hard as it is to maintain a home. I know my dad did a lot of work around the house when I was a kid, but most of it always seemed to be in the yard. And I am not a yard person. Thus we decided on a condo.

But in the last year I have learned things that I never would have known if I continued to live in the vicinity of my parents or in a rental.

Don't get me wrong, I know how to do a few things that would fall into the 'handy' department. I can paint, and I am a master at faux finishes (except for that spot on the living room wall... gah). I can hammer a nail, and use a screwdriver with a certain level of confidence. I have installed towel racks and have built more than my fair share of I.kea furniture. My beloved of course is best with computers and pencils... not tools. And don't get me started on his painting skills (he painted our spare bedroom, and ended up with more paint on himself and on the floor than he did on the walls).

Our honey-do list feels like it's a mile long now, and there are things that I just have no clue how to do, or am a little leary of trying and ultimately messing up.
  • Linen closet door is off it's track and I can't get it to stay on.
  • Balcony screen door was stuck (I managed to unstick it last night) but now I can't get it back on it's tracks.
  • Toilet tank leaks at the flusher handle from time to time.
  • New smoke detector needs to be installed.
  • Curtain rods are not put up because I'm scared that I will mess something up when I go to use the drill. (yes, we do have blinds, but I really don't like them)
  • 2 out of 3 bookcases are not attached to the wall be cause of aforementioned fear of the drill.
  • Weather stripping on one of our bedroom windows needs to be replaced.
On the upside, I was able to get the screen door on our entry door to stop squeaking. That has to count for something, right?

Oh, and the reason for the toolbox graphic rather than a photo? I don't have a toolbox. My tool collection, such as it is, is stored in random shoeboxes and drawers around the house.

I know that in most of the above scenarios, I need to push the fear aside and just do it. But if anyone has any great suggestions, please let me know...

And to check out what the rest of the class is showing, head over to Mel's!


  1. Your linen closet door hardware probably consists of a pin and spring. Is the spring no longer there? You can probably replace that part - I imagine they have those pieces at any hardware store.
    The toilet tank leaking - probably there is a little gasket that fits inside the tank around the handle that needs to be replaced. You could probably bring your list to Home Depot and get someone to explain how to do everything :).

    Good luck - and here's to conquering your fear of the drill!

  2. My husband can't do any home repairs, he's a computer person and that's all he knows, lol. I do the home repairs. I was scared at first too, it can be daunting. But sometimes you just have to do it. In the past year I've learned how to install light fixtures, ceiling fans, dimmer switches, electrical outlets, etc... It's a learning process.

    Best of luck with your journey :)

  3. I SOOOO relate to this. Keeping up with household repairs can be very daunting!

    We look nearly everything up on the Internet. DH actually fixed our leaky toilet earlier this year, after reading a "how-to" piece online.

    Sorry I don't have any other words of wisdom on this. Good luck!

    If you get the chance--I "tagged" you for the Crazy 8's meme on my blog.

  4. My suggestion is to get a pizza and something to drink for a guy friend who is handy and have him do it. Or bribe a bachelor friend with a home cooked meal. Works every time! Good luck!

  5. Came here via S&T. I'm with Beautiful Mess on how to get it all done :) These are the things they never tell you about owning a home, I suppose. Have you thought about replacing the linen closet door with a rod & a curtain?

  6. LOL...I feel for you. Try moving into a 30 yr old house that has been a rental home for the last 18 yrs. Talk about a LOT of little things that need doing. Its never ending.

  7. I am so with you on the homeowner thing. Today, I had to fix the disposal in the kitchen sink. What the hell do I know about disposals?

    I have to clue on those other things except to say that sometimes it pays to have someone come and take care of a bunch of things at once and pay the one time to have it all fixed.

  8. Maintaining a house is real hard work!

    Good Luck!

  9. Beautiful Mess is a wise woman.

    You DO sound very handy!

    As for me, I *think* I know which end of a screwdriver is the handle.


    Good luck with the never-ending list of home projects.

  10. Get yourself a real toolbox, Sister! It will inspire you to learn to fix things. :o)

    For my 38th birthday, Hubster bought me two things: champagne-colored pearls, and a stocked toolbox. I still don't know which I love more!

  11. I remember when you first bought the place and were deciding on paint chips!

    I second the Home Depot and internet suggestions. Great how-to sources.

    FYI- Weather stripping is easy.

  12. You can do it!!!

    Think of how much worse it would be if you had bought a house, and had to maintain the furnace, the roof, and the yard.


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