Big ol’ Houses

Our new place - brick front with a two car garage, two storey home. Has steel roof and dormers on the front

Whenever we’re in the GTA, one of us will invariably ask, “WHO is moving into all of these new places”? The only new home I’ve lived in is the one my parents built in the late 1970s.

I was the first to occupy a new apartment built in Wingham, but that’s about it. I like to move into something a little worn and spiff it up.

Our Wallaceburg house was built in 1940, as I noted in an earlier post. It’s “the Patterson house”, named for the family that built it. We are its third owners and I’ve started to paint the main living area; I do the walls and a pro we hired does the ceilings and moulding. While purchasing paint supplies, a woman leaned over and asked, “Will you come and paint my place?” Sure, I replied, for $200 an hour.

When you don’t want to do a job, you price yourself out of it!

Back to houses.

Chatham-Kent has double the Ontario average of century homes – 13.4% – as reported by the Courier Press. New homes are built here, of course, but there are many reasons why there aren’t as many. Farmland preservation is a big deal, for obvious reasons. And frankly, fewer people want to live here. And that’s perfectly fine with those of us who do.

I love old homes that have been maintained. New homes can be beautiful, of course. It feels great to be the first to use…whatever. But I can’t imagine a crop of 60-or-so houses is as well-built as those put up one at a time. Sure, we deal with a squeaky dining room floor, and repairs here and there. But as much as I love the clean look of contemporary design, I’ll take character and charm anytime.

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