Sunday, June 12, 2011

That's What Friends are For

I recently purchased a foreclosed home to expand my portfolio of rentals prior to leaving Colorado Springs.  One of the great things about buying a foreclosed home is that you tend to get a good deal on the price.  One of the bad things about it is that it tends to need some TLC to get back to its glory days.  Sort of like Tiger Woods - so much promise, but so much baggage to work through first.  Needless to say, it is rare to find a foreclosed home with any kitchen appliances, and they are often missing light fixtures and other hardware.  The missing light fixtures and appliances didn't surprise me.  I'm sure they fetched some much needed money on Craigslist.  Some other items did surprise me.  I have to wonder how much money you can really get for medicine cabinet shelves and toilet paper roll holders.  I'm assuming that was the previous homeowner's way of sticking it to the man, probably with the bank in mind, but now it's my job to fix it.

Buying new TP roll holders was easy - $4.50 at Walmart for three of them.  The shelves will require either a custom job from a glass company in town or installing new cabinets.  I hired out the plumbing and drywall repairs, the need for which I blame on the pathetic winterizing of the home, not the dislocated family that left it behind.  I also hired a couple of youngsters to clean the baseboards, doors and windows.  That has still left me with a plethora of work, from installing fixtures in the ceilings to touching up or repainting most of the rooms in the house.  I even cleared two clogged sinks (I won't soon forget the rancid smell eminating from the pipes or the peach colored gel like goo that came from within, in addition to copious amounts of hair and whatever other substances had decomposed into a black paste that had to be cleaned out.)

This project has reminded me once again how good it is to have friends.  First my friend Shawn, here on vacation from Illinois, helped me put in 3 ceiling fans, a light fixture in the basement and a chandelier in the dining room, as well as helping fix my gate which had fallen off and fallen apart.  My friend Eric graciously let me borrow his new saw to cut the boards, and another friend Jenny helped put the gate back together as well.  Then today Matt and Jenny came over and took me from my work and took me hiking with them and their two boys.  It was a great hike, and after dinner Matt came over and helped me paint.  He pretty much completed one of the bedrooms, in addition to doing touch up on the basement stairs where it is difficult for me to reach.  I still have a lot of work to do, with re-caulking the tubs right below steam cleaning the carpets on my list of how I want to spend my weekends and vacation days, but it's really nice to have friends lend a hand.  Not only because it lightens the load, but more importantly because it makes you feel loved.