There is a particular walk I take in a near-by neighborhood. I always enjoy the walk – the houses are gorgeous, perched along the cliffs with an amazing, unobstructed view of the Monterey Bay. I especially love the flowers blossoming and have, on more than one occasion, literally stopped to smell the roses.
Today it felt like spring. Cherry blossoms are in full bloom, their sweet scent floating by from time to time. The birds – so many new voices! – singing to each other and the sun and the blue sky. (Apologies to you living practically anywhere else in the US right now. It’s February and it’s probably 70 outside as I write.) Just gorgeous! Invigorating!
I love to look at the houses, too. Many different styles perched there on the cliffside – modern, traditional, french provincial, english garden estate…there’s even one that looks like a series of monastic cells – with incredible views. I love the smaller, Spanish-style ones with small gardens hidden by low walls, the sound of fountains teasing me as I walk by.
Today I was admiring the reflection of the clouds in the floor to ceiling windows of an older, but well-maintained, house. This house is on a corner lot and has about 5 immense windows looking out across the street to the sea and the mountains across the bay. As I turned the corner I saw the big white sign with basic black text stating the owners’ intent to redevelop the property. Not just remodel – in this case the plans are to demolish this perfectly fine house, probably 2500 SF, and build a two-story home, complete with basement and garage, coming in at over 3500 SF.
Now, I don’t know anything about these folks, maybe they have a really big family with 5 or 6 school-aged kids who will be running around, and they need 6 bedrooms and 6 or 7 bathrooms. A playroom. A big kitchen. A three car garage.
But, I bet they don’t. This is probably a vacation home – as many of the houses in this neighborhood have turned into over the years. Big shiny SUVs in the driveway on long weekends with license plate holders from the Central Valley.
I know I shouldn’t judge, and I am responding solely out of pre-concieved notion-ville, but really. Isn’t the 3000 SF older house with the killer views enough? You have to make it BIGGER? And TWO stories? and a BASEMENT? For what? all your STUFF?
Yeah, you’re right. Maybe if I had, or had grown up with, money like that I would have a different take on how people spend it.
But I like to believe I would buy the small house with the hidden garden and the big backyard. And take the extra millions burning a hole in my
brain pocket and work less, travel more and share the wealth.
But that’s just me.
Still working on my first million,