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A Ten-Year Plan

September 6th, 2011 by admin

Will and Winona find themselves in a renter’s catch-22. Their landlord is hemming and hawing and dragging feet about fixing a problem. Inadvertently, he let drop that he was planning on renovating the flat, and maybe selling it – when they moved out. Will has been in a fever ever since.

“So we could, maybe, possibly, buy the villa, rent out the front flat while we live in the back flat and fix it up. We’d gut the kitchen and the bathroom, and put in new carpet, and insulation, I suppose the windows need double glazing. Then, we switch and live in the front flat while renting out the back flat. The front flat needs all that too. Eventually we’d get planning permission to turn the two flats back into one house again. Hopefully sooner rather than later, because the whole building needs to be reroofed. What do you think, Win?”

“How long would this take?”

“About…ten years.”

Winona sits there for a moment, trying to find the best way to say it. “Just because our mums and dads spent their thirties and forties patching up houses while bringing us up, does that mean we have to do it, too?”

“There’s no other way we can afford a house where we’d like to be.”

“If we saved up more…or if my mum and dad wanted to downsize and rent us their place…or…” Winona sighs in frustration. “I do think it’s ridiculous, for two people who make what we do, that it’s like this.”

“I remember when I could be a flatmate for $35 a week. How do the people who work at the grocery store do it? Listen to me! Wellington real estate is making me a codger before my time.”

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