Friday, September 10, 2010

I am the Chicken Little of Home Ownership

One of the most super-awesome things about home ownership is the unholy amount of paranoia that takes over.  On any given day I am convinced there is going to be a major home disaster.  Not like a major act of god that takes out an entire city block sort of disaster, (at least then I would know it was entirely been out of my hands) but a disaster that would be the home-buying equivalent of using a pay day loan to buy a Rolex off a street vendor.

For example, I am scared that our home might have secret infestations of any and all sorts insects.  Today my husband replaced the weather stripping on our exterior doors.  There were a couple spots that were big enough to let random insects into our downstairs foyer.  We had been finding all sorts of spiders that had wandered in ranging in size from barely visible to "holy crap if I squish that it will leave a sizable stain on the carpet" big.  And, as previously discussed, I am generally convinced that all these spiders are lethal, compounding the general sense of impending doom and the belief we will need to hire and exterminator.  Last week, we started seeing these mammoth centipedes find their way in, much to the delight of our kitten who spent some quality time batting at them and watching them coil up and slide across the tiles like gross little hockey pucks.  For me, it is a logical progression to think that all these insects have formed a union and are amassing forces within the walls of our home, waiting for the perfect moment to strike.

I am also scared of mold and water damage.  That stuff could be anywhere.  There could be one little spot in our shower that isn't sealed off well enough and then black mold will eat away at the structure and weaken the wall.  Then one day I will be showering, minding my own business and the walls will fall in on themselves exposing all sorts of mold and giving me life-long respiratory issues and a paralyzing fear of bathrooms.

Or,  there is my general fear that the entire unit will just fall in on us and kill us while we sleep.  As we have started painting some of the rooms we are noticing tiny cracks in the dry wall, which is natural.  This is a brand new unit, we are the first people to live here, it makes sense for the building to settle a little.  But I can't help but obsess a little.  I will call my husband into the room and look at him with a haggard face and ask if he sees that crack?  Does he think that it effects the structural integrity of the home?

And those are just a few of the home-related things.  There is always the silly fear looming in the back of my mind about, I don't know, someone robbing the Home Depot down the street or the sushi place turning into a strip club overnight and the property values in the neighborhood plummeting.  What happens then?  What do we do with our insect and mold infested condo that is 2 seconds from falling in on itself and now located in the combat zone?  Do we develop and elaborate insurance fraud scheme, route the claim money to the Caymans and hope for the best?  I don't know!

So, I do what any intelligent person would do.  I remind myself that I am over reacting (good idea), force myself to examine how unfounded my fears are to begin with (good idea), then I educate myself my turning on HGTV (bad idea).  Watching HGTV (I sort of love "Income Property" and "Holmes on Homes") is a lot like researching an ailment on WebMD.  You get just enough knowledge to make you dangerously stupid.  I have all the same concerns, plus a few extra.  Now I just get to sound a little smarter when freaking out about them.


  1. Watching HGTV definitely won't help with the paranoia. I recommend TLC's Property Ladder. There's a show designed to make you feel better about yourself. lol

  2. I really love "Holmes on Homes." I watch stupid amounts of HGTV when I visit my parents.

  3. I'm glad someone has these same fears about home ownership. Since we bought our house the furnace has gone, we've replaced the roof and we killed all the grass one summer & had to start from scratch. I keep wondering what the next thing to go will be. Granted we went in aware it was an older house and knew for sure about the roof, good idea about the furnace, but now we're into the unknown 20+ year old house ailments and it's SCARY!

  4. Ha ha, I totally relate!

    LOVE watching HGTV. Holmes on Homes is awesome! Property Virgins is kinda fun, too!

  5. You sound like me...when i'm researching an ailment on WebMD. HAHA

    Don't worry, you're over-reacting! Now go have a great weekend! :)

  6. First Congratulations on your home!! Thats awesome!! Very cool that you are taking care of things like filling holes where spiders go. I think the cracks are okay, I lived in an apt in Brooklyn that was about the crappiest place ever and when I painted the walls, there were like whole seperations of the wall and it never fell down! :)

    LOL I hate the idea of mold around. I always spray the bathroom where the tile meets the tub because sometimes it gets there and it freaks me out that it will eat away the wall and then the tub will fall through the floor or something!

  7. awwww, it'll be okay! you own a home, that's awesome!

    and think about it: even if it isn't, you can always star in an episode of one of those HGTV shows! they'll redo your house for like 500 dollars and then be like "see, now your property value has increased by $20,000." bam. awesome again.

  8. The trials and tribulations of home ownership is part of the deal. The good thing is that every thing you fix, you fix for yourself!
    I've owned a few of them and had to do a lot of work on them all. After a while the paranoia will fade away....hang in there!

  9. You must clone that kitten and create an army of centipede smashing felines.