I've always enjoyed that show, "Househunters", where they get to go look at cool houses, all with different pros and cons and then pick one, buy it and you get to see the follow-up of how it looks four months later after the new owners have put their mark on it. I can now see that it's a load of crap.
We looked at seven houses today, all of which were on my "list" because they looked nice online and had good descriptions, etc. Ahh, well, pictures might be worth a thousand words but sometimes the words those pictures are replacing are the kind you wouldn't say in front of grandma. For the builders of the Virginia peninsula: why would you build a 1900 sq. ft. house with only one garage? Why would you put funky texture on every surface of the interior? Why would you think that a one-inch thick layer of plaster in a swirl pattern on the ceiling of a dining room would be a selling feature? To the homeowners of the Virginia peninsula: Why do you think I want to pay 40% more than you did for the same house that's now six years older when you did nothing to improve it? Why do you think you can ask so much for a house when you didn't even bother to dust the ceiling fans before you left? And why would you decide to paint all the walls white in hopes of selling the house quicker, yet fail to mask anything or keep the overspray off the floors, windows and cabinets?
Suffice it to say this homebuying business is a little less like television than I'd hoped. Life's just one big lesson in compromise, I think.