I guess it’s a good thing I’ve spent the past few years studying ways for people to find their way out of problem houses, exit strategies for investment properties, and ways to support people in transition.

Today, I find myself in transition. While my husband and I recently built ourselves a home out in the country, where we will eventually live full time in retirement, I still maintain a large home in the Austin, Texas area. I raised my children (and quite a few others who have passed through) in this house. But right now, it’s just me and a lot of great memories of Christmases, high school band competitions, neighborhood gatherings, and many remodelings. Since my little pug died in the summer, it’s been so empty. I have to move on. I’ve graduated from my suburban band mom house.

I need to make a few updates to the house so that it can go on the market. But twenty years of accumulated stuff is overwhelming to me. A lot went to the ranch house, but there’s still so many books, boxes of yarn, dishes…stuff from my kids. Ugh. It gives me SO much empathy for some of the people we’ve helped. One of the things we do is help people find a storage solution so they can just stick stuff in there and worry about it later, once their house is sold. Brilliant! I’ll put all the stuff I can’t use until my new house is ready in storage!

Another issue is that, thanks to numerous delays and issues, the house I want to move to is not ready to live in. We couldn’t start work on it until another project was finished. But ugh, I can’t stay in the huge house alone any longer. Funds from selling it will make the rehab of the other house possible!

That’s when I thought of another of the strategies we can use to help folks out—temporary housing! Sometimes going into a short-term rental frees up the burden of maintaining a problem house, so that it can be sold or repaired. Brilliant! We just happen to have a vacant rental property that just got rehabbed. I can stay there in the interim.

So, thanks to remembering all I have learned in our business, I have a plan. I’m taking a few basics (chairs, bedroom stuff, kitchen things and towels!) to the rental, sending a few items to the ranch (with someone ELSE packing it), and putting the rest in storage. Later I will move it to a nice little house, along with my dear friend from high school and her dog (no more coming home to an empty house!).

I’m just looking forward to getting past the stressful time. I know there’s a light at the end of the household merry-go-round. I hope the same for you, if you’re in a stressful housing situation.

Let our team know if we can help you.


PS: I’ll soon share the story of the friend who’s moving in with me—it also has some lessons to learn.