I have always wished I had the skill set (and the bank account) to buy and rehabilitate old houses. So today, in lieu of screwing up my retirement with a money pit, I’m bringing you my latest Instagram obsession, Cheap Old Houses. When you check them out, please be sure to click through the photos (there’s a little arrow in a white circle that appears at the right of Instagram posts with multiple photos). I just can’t get over how magnificent some of these houses are. I want to rehabilitate them all!
“Fear no fixer.”– Elizabeth and Ethan Finkelstein
The pandemic of course sent many people home to work. While it was a bit weird at first, now, at least for me, it feels completely normal. And if you’re not commuting, you don’t need to be proximate to a big city. In other words, 2020 just might have a silver lining for small towns. People are looking to move out of big cities, and these bargain houses can make that move even more attractive.
“We’re Elizabeth + Ethan. We’re dreamers. We love old things. And we believe that you’re being sold the wrong American dream. Contrary to what everyone else says, you don’t actually need to buy a million dollar house and go into extreme debt to live a satisfying and beautiful life. But don’t just take our word for it—we’ve brought together over 1 million people who feel the same way, and who are masters at celebrating the beauty of cheap old houses.”– About Cheap Old Houses
The more skeptical among us refer to the site as ruin porn, but I think it’s fantastic. In case you’re not ready to buy a desperate fixer-upper, the Finkelsteins also run a vintage real estate website called Circa, with fewer fixer uppers and more turnkey listings. Only the bargain-basement offerings from that site make it to the Cheap Old Houses Instagram.
Don’t worry. Every time I get the urge, I promise to rewatch this: