Zelda and the Money Pit

Many of you are familiar with my good friend Zelda, we have had many adventures in the past and continue have them, even as we approach our broken down middle aged years. Last year she and another friend of hers decided they didn’t want to work for the rest of their lives and thought it would be a really smart idea to invest in some real estate. They wanted to do the old flipping thing. You know, you buy a place, fix it up and then sell it? Easy as flapjacks, right?

Well Zelda being Zelda, naturally chose the perfect moment to go into this business -about 6 weeks before the crash. Isn’t there a saying…timing is everything…. Before they even had the first wall knocked down the value of property had evaporated like 7-11 gasoline. Though the property they bought was a very cool place up in the canyons with a spectacular view and lots of potential – it had been owned and lived in by a couple of crack heads for years and the work to just make the place livable was overwhelming, much less make it a showcase.

Now before all of this, Zelda had a small, albeit, thriving consulting business which she was doing smashingly with and making very nice income from and was more than comfortable. In fact, she was the only really prosperous one in our group of friends and we often had barbecues, summer cookouts and parties over there and had a lot of fun. Zelda bought the food, we cooked it and everyone ate it – a nice arrangement we all thought. Then this new business idea came to her in a dream or something and within weeks she went from snazzy, savvy businesswoman to beat-up, down-trodden day worker. Each time I saw her she had some new nerve damage, gash, cut, abrasion or burn. I secretly wondered if she was training for an xTreme fighting club soon to debut in Madison Square Garden.

Over the last several months, she has continued to rennovate and do improvements on the place – and whenever asked how much longer to go, her response was, ‘just a couple more weeks’ and after a while none of us asked her because it was apparent that Zelda was going to continue doing improvements until the house was bought and sold and the family moved in and asked her to leave.

She has lost 20 pounds, of which she is quite proud, however, being unable to stand upright and walk without a limp does take away from the newfound svelte figure and really how sexy can you be in a pair of steel toed boots and your big brothers jeans and tees?

Oh yes, back to the money pit part. I cannot reveal how much they paid for the house nor how much they have spent, however I can say that of the 67 credit cards she has, she isn’t sure if any of them have enough left on them to buy dinner, her secret stash is gone, the line of credit they got with the house is gone, her personal lines of credit are gone – and well, they are pretty much going to have to sell the house for close to one million in order to make it worth their while. Yes, welcome to real estate investment in sunny California, folks. It just really isn’t like those cable tv shows where a coat of paint and some new curtains does the trick. To name just a few of the major projects for this house, they: built two decks, refurbished the fireplace, gutted and redid the kitchen, gutted and redid the master bath, built a laundry room, rewired, repiped, put on a new roof, painted inside and out, reguttered, rebuilt the corral and now are tending to the minor details, I wonder if it would have been cheaper to just knock down the old house and start from scratch. We’ll never know.

So anyway, please pray for Zelda, who now has the house listed and it really does look quite beautiful – but if she doesn’t sell it soon, she’ll be living in my backyard, existing on tomatoes, eggplant and mystery squash.

UPDATE:

Zelda just sent me a couple photos here:

Unfortuantely, they do don’t the place justice – the first of the living room and the second is the view from the master bedroom deck.

Also Zelda gave me the following message for you:
Please tell everyone I popped in, and thank them for their well wishes. The double vision is clearing up and I believe that the skull fracture is, in fact, healed. Brain damage was… OK I was going to say minimal, but that may not be entirely true, right?Β  Zelda

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12 thoughts on “Zelda and the Money Pit

  1. There’s going to be disasters in every area of the housing market for a long time to come. It always had to end this way.
    I feel for the casualties.

    Hey Tony!
    Yes, I suppose so. Though Zelda always manages to land on her feet, so I’m not too worried. She’s quite the character. πŸ˜‰
    Annie

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  2. Wow, all my fingers and toes are crossed for Zelda! I hope it all works out and fast!

    Oh dear, Alex, I don’t want you to hurt yourself. LOL. I know she appreciates your good wishes and please do keep them coming. πŸ˜‰
    Annie

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  3. Hi Annie.

    I like hering storys about your good self and your friend Zelda. I love friends storys. Prayers coming thick and fast for dear Zelda. I feel a bit like a Zelda but can’t be arsed to do my home up. I live in a Semi, Hehe! Semi ‘Deri’ derilict. Nothing near as glamorous as Zelda. Ha! I love living a bit derilict, dancing round nails on my half stripped floorboards.

    Hey !! How on earth did crackheads get a place in that area. It’s a cool area. I quess they wern’t crackheads when they got it eh ! Urgh ! I can imagine. Poor Zelda with all that mess and death.

    All house prices in England this past year have dropped Β£40.000. People are quiet worried over here. I loved your story and how you wrote it.

    Where does Zelda want to live when she eventually sells it. Oh ! I hope she sells it. Yes !! Loads of energy for Zelda.
    Love
    Di

    Hey Di,
    I know what you mean about going through all the trouble Zelda is going through. I doubt I could have done what she’s done. But she had a vision for the place and has really realized it. She’s done it up in a quaint sort of Art Deco way and it’s just gorgeous, really.

    As to the crackheads and how they got the house, apparently they inherited it and only sold it because they had borrowed against it so much that they were going to lose it if they didn’t. Which was probably for the best because now the house and the neighborhood can be happy. It’s a shame what they had done to the place – hideous, actually.

    I do think she’ll get her asking price because the area is very exclusive and it’s rare that a house ever goes up for sale there and we have so many prosperous and show business types out here, that whatever she is asking she will probably get. Which I think is damn lucky for her, you know?

    Love
    Annie

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  4. Oh my! Poor Zelda. Timing really IS everything. I do hope she gets a good price for all her hard work. I know how it can wear on a friendship when one is living in the other’s garden. 😯

    LOL Teens, well I’ll tell you, Zelda and I have had many ‘shopping cart’ days if you know what I mean. She’ll be okay – she always manages somehow. Thanks.
    Annie

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  5. Poor Zelda!
    All that work! But she may still sell. Though there is a crunch going on for some, there are still those with much cash to spend and if the house is beautiful after all that work, then someone will buy it.

    It can be hard living tightly when one is used to not having to, but she can do it! Still, of course i will pray for her. i will especially pray for her emotional health. i imagine her stress level must be off the charts.

    Yeah, I think maybe there has been some stress, but she always seems to handle it pretty good-naturedly. She does thrive on adventure and this has certainly been one for her and the rest of us. πŸ˜‰ Annie

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  6. Hi WC,

    Zelda will probably be OK. As I understand it, the market for homes in the million plus range is just fine. You should post some pictures of it.

    the Grit

    I think you’re right, Grit – the higher priced homes don’t seem to be suffering on the market the way the other homes do. And it really is a perfect writer’s or producer’s hideaway. If I had the dough I ‘d buy in a New York second.
    WC

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  7. am betting it looks stunning ~ sounds like she did a bang up job and am betting it sells just fine πŸ™‚ these things tend to work out, sending positive selling thoughts πŸ™‚

    It does look stunning, Dar – she has these beautiful tiles and fixtures – the view is incredible, it’s on an acre of property – she’ll sell it, I know she will.
    Annie

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  8. oh.oh.my.head. That’s a flipper’s worst nightmare. Zelda, you have my prayers for a very profitable sale.

    Since the brain damage, Zelda has asked me to respond. Oh yeah, that’s right – she’s always had brain damage. πŸ˜† Can’t blame the house for that. I do think she’ll sell it though. She told me she was putting together nice presentation and they are doing a website – so if she sends me the link, I’ll put it here. It’s gorgeous little place really – someone will come along, fall in love with it and have to have it.

    Annie

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  9. Oh dear poor Zelda. I hope that she manages to sell for what she needs. Sounds like its been bigger than Ben Hur and the photos are great, looks like she has put a lot of love into it.

    Yeah, you’re right, Gem. It has been monumental. And she has put lots of love into it. She will sell, I’m sure of it. Soon, though, I hope. Yikes.
    Annie

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  10. I admire your friend for her tenacity to see this through. The pictures are beautiful and I hope it all works out for her.

    Me too, Mrs. V. You would love t his place it is so sweet and such a little cabin in the sky. The view is incredible.
    Annie

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  11. I just had a look at the house, the view and Zeldas comment. Its absoutly stunning. The view is amazing.

    Love
    Di

    Oh you would love this house, Di – I wish I could buy it. Quite amazing really and the pics do not do it justice.
    Annie

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