Estate Envy: The House Next Door

Exterior Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree

One time I was hanging with Sarah at her house in Southern Pines when a moving truck pulled up to the next door neighbor’s. It wasn’t long before she was on the phone with the realtor and we were snooping around wondering if they would leave the rattan peacock chairs on the porch for the next buyer.

When you love houses and want to collect them like Sarah and I do… it’s hard not to sit around and ponder the floorplan of every house on the block. Are you guilty of looking of your neighbor’s worth on Trulia? Or if you are crazy (like I know we are) you’re pulling up the GIS data and wrapping your head around property lines.

When I hang out in my backyard, I often look over to the neighbor’s house that peaks out over top of our ivy wrapped fence. I see a crumbling paint job on the gutters and I see the dusty musty towels hanging in the back windows. I make assumptions about what is going on in there, and in my mind it is a danker slightly larger version of our 1950 Ranchalow – with its linear white rooms and ranchy boxxed out floorplan.

A little under a year ago, a renter lived next door. When his moving truck pulled up, Heffe and I started poking around to look for a rental listing where we could get a better idea of the rent price and the interior layout. But the new tenants moved in quickly and without a sign ever going up… but the weirdest thing was that the towels never came down in those back windows. I kid you not when I say that I would sit in my hammock in the backyard and stare at those towels and wonder what in the world must be going on in those back rooms. I envisioned an array of silliness all the way up to the absurd notion that perhaps the house was a clandestine destination for some cultish group, a cover up where secret treatments or some kind of gathering would happen… behind windows covered up with dank dusty towels.

So, this past week the moving truck was there again. But this time – not long after the garden door was left unlocked and after I had nervously tiptoed in to find the most incredible Fiddle Leaf Fig tree I’ve ever seen outside of a pot — a for sale sign went up and we found the listing on the Coldwell Banker site.

Imagine our¬†surprise when this is the interior we found…

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  • Oh my, what a sweet little place. I could get quite cozy inside and out. Thanks for sharing. You will have to find something new to ponder while relaxing in your hammock. :)

  • Betsy, the picture with the grand piano on the left side. Are those functional windows looking into a sun-room??? We have a huge finished basement area. Thinking about ways to separate so Steve can heat just the man-cave area in the winter yet feel connection and/or open at other times. Toying with repurposed windows and a barnstyle door on track. Just an aunt asking for your opinion.

  • Love the idea of a barnstyle door on a track, very much.

    The picture with the grand piano is sitting in front of a huge mirror backed bohemoth of a piece of furniture — that is what is covering the two windows that look out over my backyard (there are some towels back there too.)

    The mirror is just reflecting the other side of the room back to us.

    I’d love to see some pictures of your space. I’ll definitely take a moment to consider the space and what you are after. I could probably track down some inspiration images for you to look at to help you think!


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