If we’re going to make mistakes, the least they can do is make us smarter.
- Everyone makes financial mistakes. It’s how we learn.
- We rarely know what’s just around the corner — bad or good.
- While I couldn’t have predicted the housing bubble bursting, I wish I’d been more cautious with how I spent money on my home at that time.
2007 was a pretty horrid year for home buyers across the U.S. Many of us — particularly those of us who’d never lost money when selling a house — assumed that anything we put into a home would come back to us at some point.
Call it naïve or overly optimistic, but the idea of a housing bubble never entered my mind. I left reporting for a few years to write novels and honestly, I must have had my head in the sand. It never occurred to me that mortgage lenders were approving loans for anyone with a pulse. Frankly, I didn’t pay attention to anyone else’s financial situation during that time.
And this all leads to a home renovation project I have always regretted: investing too much, too soon.
A bit of background
After many years away, my husband and I were moving back to our hometown. We were excited, especially about having enough money to buy a house in a particular neighborhood, a place we dreamed of living when we were young, in college, and broke.
As mentioned, I was paying zero attention to what was going on in the housing market. Had I been even slightly plugged in, I might have felt some concern and made wiser decisions. Instead, when we were able to purchase a house in our dream neighborhood, I lost all good sense.
It wasn’t “perfect”
The house was big and had some great features, but it wasn’t perfect. And so, I began spending. I had flooring torn out and new floors laid, walls painted, lighting fixtures changed, and new countertops installed. You name it, and I probably spent money making it happen. I spent like money was no object and nothing bad was just around the corner.
The bottom fell out
The fact that …….