Buy Alexandria Real Estate: From a Pad to a Nest -- Guys, I'm Talking to You

Alexandria Virginia Real Estate Blog

From a Pad to a Nest -- Guys, I'm Talking to You

Getting MarriedCongratulations! You're getting married. From the day you popped the big question and changed your status from boyfriend to fiancé, you've no doubt been receiving lots of unsolicited advice from friends, family, and strangers about planning the wedding and about marriage.

 

So here comes your friendly Northern Virginia & D.C. REALTOR with some more advice for you as you begin the transition from YOUR BACHELOR PAD to YOUR MARRIED NEST.

 

 

 

First, a few fun quotes about marriage that every man needs to hear:

"A man in love is incomplete until he is married. Then he is finished." Zsa Zsa Gabor

"Courtship brings out the best. Marriage brings out the rest." Cullen Hightower

"Marriage is a great institution, but I'm not ready for an institution yet." Mae West

"Bachelors know more about women than married men. If they didn't, they'd be married too" H.L. Mencken

 

All that aside, many things will change once you get married, not the least of which is your living arrangements. Whether you stay where you are and your lovely bride moves in, or you decide to purchase a new place together (using the services of your favorite REALTOR), the days of dirty socks on the floor, movie posters as decoration, and nothing but beer, o.j., and salsa in the fridge are over. Say hello to new linens, candles, and yes, less closet space.

Bachelor Refrigerator Your Married Refrigerator

Your Refrigerator as a Bachelor Your Refrigerator after Marriage

 

After you've taken your vows, danced your first dance (of course, you took dance lessons with my wife's company, The Wedding Dance Specialists), and returned from your fabulous honeymoon, it's time to settle down.

Here's some advice:

  • You Need Two BathroomsSTUFF -- with two people now sharing their lives, you'll begin to notice that there's a lot more of it -- STUFF! You may need some more room to spread out. Closet space is important -- just ask her. Moving is also a great excuse to get rid of some of your excess stuff. My rule of thumb: If you haven't used or touched it in 3 years, ditch it!
  • BATHROOMS -- I've found that one of the keys to surviving marriage is having two bathrooms. Sure, you're married, you're intimate, but the sights, sounds, and... smells of the bathroom? Let her apply her makeup in peace while you enjoy some toilet reading time.
  • GET ON THE SAME PAGE -- before you start your home search, discuss with each other your needs and priorities. I love working with newly married couples, but it's extremely difficult to help them find the right home when he wants a 2 bedroom loft condo and she wants a Colonial with a fenced yard. Have a serious discussion and figure out what you want.
  • IT'S YOUR FIRST HOUSE -- NOT YOUR DREAM HOUSE -- it's time to stop renting and start building some equity. Build your first nest together. Remember, you'll need to compromise on some things in your first home. However, it's just that, your first home. Your second home will be your move-up home -- maybe you got a job promotion or your family is getting larger. Your third home will be your dream home! That's usually the life cycle.
  • MAKE IT YOUR OWN -- once you own a place, make it your own. Choose paint colors. Decorate. Add your personal touches. Have fun with it! Getting dirty and painting together can be a fun bonding activity.

 

Guys, you've taken the plunge for the lifelong journey of marriage. Get started on the path towards owning your first home.

 

 

 

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Comment balloon 48 commentsBrian Block • April 24 2008 08:05AM

Comments

Thanks for enlighting me, and making me laugh. That is great stuff!
Posted by Greg Hampton, North Georgia Mountain Property,Blue Rid (Re/Max Around The Mountains) about 10 years ago
Nice post, I especially enjoyed the before and after picture of the fridge!
Posted by Hope Goss, Ventura Real Estate (Ventura Property Shoppe) about 10 years ago
Brian, I've been married now for almost 2 years.  Some very good advice!     
Posted by Jeremy Blanton, Myrtle Beach REALTOR®- myrtlebeachhomesblog.com (Myrtle Beach Homes Blog) about 10 years ago
Brian this is very funny! I love the photos - especially the last one! Cool shot of your wedding too :)
Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) about 10 years ago
Brian, loved the quotes.  Think I've heard all of them at some point in my life.  And did I listen? :)  Also, about losing closet space...after 5 1/2 years in this townhouse and a child, we all have little space left!
Posted by Stephen Adams (Keller Williams Realty) about 10 years ago
Brian, funny and enlightening. Your wife is lovely. Do not want to know if that was you on the john. : )
Posted by Patty Carroll about 10 years ago
This post is a hoot!  Is that the Washington Post?
Posted by Jeff R. Geoghan, REALTOR, Marketing Manager (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) about 10 years ago
Is that you on the pot....with a newspaper?  We have one bathroom...the vanity is separate and outside the bathtub and toilet area.....so I guess it's okay. We don't ever seem to fight over the bathroom...except when he doesn't spray lol!
Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Century 21 Liberty Homes) about 10 years ago
Outstanding Brian- so true... the next big eye-opener?...the same house with kids... then house with kids and pets. :-)
Posted by Chuck & Lucy Willman UtahHomes.me, Utah Homes (Utah Homes) about 10 years ago
After nearly 40 years with the same lady I could not function with out her. My fridge would look like th first with out  her. It is worth it.
Posted by Terry & Bonnie Westbrook, Westbrook Realty - Grand Rapids Forest Hills MI Re (Westbrook Realty Broker-Owner) about 10 years ago
Brian- Cute the way you portrayed Lifes Realities :)  And it is so true that the first house isn't the dream home...
Posted by Kathy McGraw, Riverside County CA Real Estate (CELLing Realty) about 10 years ago
This will either be very reassuring or scare some poor guys away!  Great photos, Brian.
Posted by Margaret Woda, Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) about 10 years ago
this had me cracking up.... and thinking it is so true.... thanks for the reality check
Posted by Thesa Chambers, Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon (Fred Real Estate Group) about 10 years ago
Hi Brian,
I enjoyed this.  Lots of good advice and tips presented in an entertaining format and a plug for your wife's Dance Studio, way to go.
Posted by Cynthia Tilghman, Realtor® Onslow County NC Home Specialist (Kingsbridge Realty, Inc) about 10 years ago
Twinkle toes - This was a great read this morning. I wish I had more time to drop in and read your stuff. I suppose a slowdown will occur soon enough......your friend.
Posted by John MacArthur, Licensed Maryland/DC Realtor, Metro DC Homes (Century 21 Redwood) about 10 years ago

Hi Brian!  Your 3 year rule is pretty drastic...now when it comes to clothes if you haven't worn it in a year...it's time to say bye bye.  I once hid a bunch of stuff my husband stopped wearing for a year in another closet.  When it came time for garge sale, I removed all of his stuff from the closet when he insisted that some of those items he had worn just the other week...I said really, where did you find it?  Then he knew he was busted! :)

Posted by Shannon Lefevre, Shannon Lefevre, PA Your Naples Smart Girl (John R. Wood Properties) about 10 years ago

Brian, awesome post and right on the money! Give and take is the key to a happy marriage. Trying to be a dictator isn't going to work.

BTW, love the quotes and the bathroom photo, did your wife snap that one? LOL

U2 look fantastic on the dance floor!

Duane

Posted by * Rate A Home (Rate A Home) about 10 years ago

Brian - I think you've nailed marriage on the head...especially the bathroom part! Love your wedding photo! I heard someone say once that in the vows where they say "And the two shall be come one" that it's the becoming that's the pits!

I think every newlywed or engaged couple should read this post if they're thinking of buying a house. It's all so true...let's not even get started on the need for extra bedrooms because of the snoring. That comes later...

Posted by Linda Scanlan (A Fan of AR) about 10 years ago

Hi Brian:  What a great post.  I am sure as a Realtor, there have been many times that you have doubled as a marriage counselor... as have we all.  Perhaps you should go back to school and get an LPC... Licensed Professional Counselor to go with your law degree and Realtor license.  Take care... Thanks for sharing...

Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) about 10 years ago
Oh Brian, this was clever and funny. I agree with Margaret....it might scare guys thinking to commit. I love the refrigerator comparison.....so true. David had ice cream and yogurt in his fridge. He hates me to stock up....isn't that funny. It is also funny that as the years have passed I migrate more toward his thinking....especially trying to cook fresh produce and makes fresh food each night. Who has the time.....to shop each day however. Great post....very funny! Good work Brian....you are just getting better and better!
Posted by Jeanean Gendron, Specializing in Selling Unique Properties (The Address Realty) about 10 years ago
GREG:  Thanks for your comment and you are welcome for the laugh.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
HOPE:  Those before and after fridge shots are true, aren't they?
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
JEREMY:  Congratulations on your marriage!  I'm working on 7 years right now!
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
BILL:  Thanks for your comment.  Glad you like the pictures.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
STEPHEN:  Luckily, we've got two walk-in closets in our condo.  My Dad had a ton of funny quotes about marriage that he read at our wedding.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
PATTY & SCOTT:  Thanks for your very nice comments about the post and about my wife.  That picture on the john is not of me!
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
JEFF:  Thanks!  No, I only get The Washington Times.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
SALLY:  No, that's not me in the bathroom.  I don't allow cameras in there!
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
CHUCK:  We're not up to that next step yet.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
TERRY:  Very funny comment.  Thanks!
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
KATHY:  Thanks for your comment.  Life's Realities...
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
MARGARET:  You are probably right.  I hadn't thought about scaring guys away...
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
THESA:  Thanks for your comment.  Glad you liked it.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
CYNTHIA:  Thanks for your comment.  Had to get that plug in there.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
JOHN:  You are welcome to stop by anytime.  If you don't make it for every post, you can always catch up later.  They'll always be there.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
SHANNON:  Very funny!  Thanks for sharing your story.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
DUANE:  Thanks for your comments.  Not me in the bathroom!  Thanks for the compliments on our dance photo.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
LINDA:  Thanks for your kind comments.  My wife is going to include this article on her monthly newsletter that gets sent out to thousands of brides & grooms.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
KAREN ANNE:  Yes, we all act as counselors from time to time when dealing with married couples purchasing a home.  The best and worst sides of relationships can come out in this process.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
JEANEAN:  Thanks for your comments.  I'm glad you like the post and appreciate your compliments.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
Brian, LOL, that photo is to funny and pretty typical of us guys!
Posted by * Rate A Home (Rate A Home) about 10 years ago
DUANE:  Thanks for your comment.  I thought it was pretty funny too!
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
Brian, awesome post... how long does something like this article take you to write?  Enjoyed reading it.
Posted by Pavel about 10 years ago
PAVEL:  Thanks for your comment and compliments.  Maybe about 25 minutes or so.  I write pretty stream of consciousness style and it just flows.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago
Brian....an absolutely fabalous post.  By the way are you for hire?
Posted by Pam Winterbauer, "Providing Blue Ribbon Service" (Pam Winterbauer Real Estate) about 10 years ago
PAM:  Thanks for your comment and compliment.  And yes, I am for hire!  In what capacity, may I ask?
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago

Good morning Brian,

Been there, done that. Thanks for the trip down memory lane. I will be sure to show it to my wife, just as a reminder of what we faced oh those many years ago. They were fun, and yes my "PAD" became the "NEST" and it was a difficult adjustment at first but well worth the effort.

Hal

Posted by Harold "Hal" Place (A1 Connection Realty, Inc.) about 10 years ago
HAL:  Glad I could bring back some memories for you.
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) about 10 years ago

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