My wife and I began the search for our first home during the early months of 2009, with the hope of making our monumental purchase at some point in the summer. We had gotten married the previous June and were renting a house in the Highland Square neighborhood of Akron.We found our rented home to be very comfortable, affordable and beautiful, and we originally intended to continue renting for a few years after our wedding; but the supply of houses for sale seemed ripe for the picking, home prices were dropping, and news of the first-time home buyer tax credit convinced us that we need not wait any longer.
Besides, we were both eager to put our skills to good use . . .
My wife, Hannah, is a graduate of the Interior Design program at Kent State University. She works for FirstEnergy, a locally-headquartered energy provider. On most days, she enjoys her job and finds her duties as a designer of corporate workspace to be fulfilling. Ultimately, however, she yearns for opportunities to fully utilize her creativity, unrestrained by the limitations of corporate guidelines.
I graduated from Malone University with a degree in Bible & Theology. Being uncertain of the direction I wanted to go with that, and having always been interested in the trades, I decided to take a construction job at Nantucket Homes in Hudson. I originally thought this would be a temporary pause on my journey toward a "real career." But after three years, I know I want to do this work for many years to come.
And Hannah and I have learned that we share a passion for renovation.
Thus we began our search. It made sense to buy a house now--we both held reliable jobs in the Akron area, lived close to family, and enjoyed being part of a vibrant community of friends in the area.
But as the hunt drove us around West Akron on chilly, rainy Saturday mornings, it was our eagerness to renovate that would really get our blood flowing (that, and the tax credit that would drop an extra $8,000 into our renovation fund).
We would finally get the chance to pour our skills, our ideas, our hard work into a project that we wouldn't have to leave in the dust after it was complete. On the contrary, we would probably be living right in the middle of the dust for quite a while.