Eleven HouseThe "Eleven" : The Fixer Upper 

Cash Crone: 2016 – The Year of the Fixer Upper

This blog has experienced a month of silence, but for good reason. In my last post, I mentioned how I diverted from my budget to whittle away at my credit card debt. And I also suggested that Cronies should be willing to make changes along their debt reduction journey.

I stated that I was setting aside my goal of finding another home until I had completely obliterated the debt and had a substantial savings built. Then, I said to the Universe that I would let things happen the way they should. And I stopped house hunting.

I had a week-long pet-sitting job (one of my many side hustles) late last year, at a home on a quiet street, in a good neighborhood. I was staring out the window, waiting for my kitty charges to finish eating their dinner so I could wash their bowls. Directly across from the house stood a dilapidated old house; a two-story home built in the 1890s, on approximately a quarter-acre of land. At first glance, it seemed as though it would melt into the ground – porches sagged, paint peeled in curls and clung to bare siding, and one wall of a collapsed shed leaned into a pile of debris.

I looked at the house the first day and wondered why it was empty. I knew the place had been sold earlier that year. But each day I returned to take care of the cats, I looked out the window and became more drawn to the old house. I realized it was really only the porches that were in bad shape. The house structure was solid. So I found out who owned the property and sent out an email, asking about the owner’s intentions – and would he consider selling it?

A reply came, along with an invitation to take a look at the house. We met a few days later, and the owner told me of his disappointment that he couldn’t work on the house due to many other projects on his schedule. It was a true fixer-upper – wallpaper and plaster hung from the walls, plumbing had been frozen and burst, and the wiring was old knob and tube. But by the end of the walk-through, I knew it was a good, solid structure.

I signed and closed on the property this past Monday.


So, my budget and my goals for 2016 have slightly changed. But here’s the thing – I couldn’t NOT buy this house.

First of all, when you get past the ugly – it is an awesome house.

Second, the price was right. I paid $20,000 for the house.


My truck cost more than this house.

I am also going to share the inside with you, so you can follow along in its progress:

IMG_1354 IMG_1351

So, the first thing on the list of tasks is deconstruction – walls, ceilings, wiring and plumbing all come out. You will be looking at bare studs before the new stuff starts to go in. The trash in the basement and the yard have to go.

It is going to be an adventure!

Want to follow along? The rehab will be done in stages, and I’ll post a plan in the near future. I’ll be as transparent as possible, even down to telling you what brand of wire goes back in those walls. I am not scrimping on safety, but I will be on the lookout for great deals and items I can repurpose. I have a teeny, tiny budget! But as always, it will all work out exactly the way it should!


I am looking forward to hearing your wise words, comments, and your own DIY stories!

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5 Thoughts to “Cash Crone: 2016 – The Year of the Fixer Upper”

  1. Nancee

    I have no wise comment bubbling up. I do have a feeling of wonderment. I love it when we just get are lovely plans in place and WHAM we’re jolted out of them with something as totally unexpected as what you’re doing. I look forward to the journey with you. May it also cross your the path with a number of wonderful income sources!

    1. Thank you! Trusting the Universe, here!It’s all good!

  2. Looks like this would be a good subject for PBS THIS OLD HOUSE!… Not that you would need their help, but anyway…

  3. Kim Ely

    Wow! I too am in a state of wonderment! What an adventure – and so exciting! $20,000???? Where the heck do you live? I am very eager to follow your progress – my husband is an architect and we love all sorts of buildings – but NOTHING beats a lovingly restored old home! As a child growing up, my father bought and renovated so many houses I lost track, and we lived in each of them until they were resold (always at a good profit) I’ve never done it myself, but remember him going to the library and getting books on whatever skill he needed, and then just doing it – he was a pioneer DIYer. Best wishes as you begin your undertaking!

    1. Kim, thanks so much for your kind words! I live in Vermont – not the cheapest state by any stretch, but it is home. Thoughts become things! I am excited about this house (which needs a name!) and the potential – while still upcycling, reusing and being creative with the budget. I look forward to sharing its progress with you and hearing your suggestions as we go along!

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