ruminations about architecture and design

Sunday, December 8, 2013

the glory and joy of home ownership

A client had a good rejoinder to a claim I made last week at a project meeting. When I was asked about a certain door layout decision, I said: "We've done it before." He replied: "Yes, but that doesn't mean it was a good idea." And, now back to the original programming:

The purchase of a dwelling creates a powerful, and often subtle change of mindset. Where a renter can feel isolated from decisions about the layout and character of a living space, a homeowner operates in an environment of long term responsibility. Even the regularity of monthly payments takes on a different meaning. A renter simply sends money somewhere and doesn't worry about things for another thirty days. A homeowner sends money somewhere and worries about things for another thirty years.

But, in general, the homeowner doesn't have to operate in an atmosphere of panic, or feel burdened by the countless decisions that could consume all the freedoms and privileges of a house. Rather, the homeowner gets to eliminate a layer of bureaucracy and communication in the context of repairs, improvements, and maintenance. All architectural problems associated with a house can be resolved with money and labor. There is no need to negotiate or consult with a landlord or the associated minions of property management companies. Also, with the exception of fire, no repair has to be conducted immediately.

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