When my father passed away almost 10 years ago, my mother and I realized it was time to down size from a house to a condominium. We started off by selling a lot of furniture and household items that we didn't or couldn't take with us. I didn't realize how much we had until I was in charge of selling it. I made lists and took them to work and actually sold the majority of it there. A big thanks to my co-workers! I also listed in the local papers and sold the rest of it there. It was odd having people coming through the house and buying furniture and household items. It shocked me how much my mother still had from the early years of her marriage, which was close to 60 years, but we found new homes for all of it.
The next step was selling the house and buying a condo in Belleville. It was quite the process to buy, we thought it was going to be easy, however, it was a task that left us exhausted.
First off, I have to say that we had decided that we would NEVER live in downtown Belleville. My mother was near 80 and she didn't feel that it was safe downtown. So our search began! We looked at some close to the mall, I remember getting off the elevator and hearing this little voice saying "hellooo, I'm down here". Yikes, it was a LONG hallway! We got inside and found a tiny eat in kitchen that would barely seat 2 people, let alone a family dinner. The living room was so narrow that with a couch against the wall and a coffee table in front of it and the TV on the opposite wall there was not enough room to walk in front of the TV. The owner suggested we take down the wall behind the couch and extend the living room into the bedroom. That wasn't a can of worms that we were prepared to get ourselves into, not to mention I doubted the condo board would appreciate us wanting to take down a wall in the condo. On to the next one.
Our real estate agent set up a viewing for us in McNabb Towers. Keep in mind that McNabb is in the downtown core and we did NOT want to live downtown. We did go to view it and it was a disaster, the unit, not the building. We didn't like the layout, with one huge bedroom and one little tiny one and the overall decor of it would have been a huge job to redo. At this point however, we realized that this was a secure building and it was very well maintained. We went for a walk along the river front trail and back up the downtown core. It wasn't as bad as we had imagined. Perhaps, just perhaps we had been too hasty.
So the search continued, including smoke filled condos, more long halled condos and some very damaged condos. Yikes, there were some bad ones out there! But we persevered and the search continued.
We got a call from our realtor and a condo had come back onto the market in McNabb Towers due to a flooding situation (the toilet broke) and he thought we should see it. It was a different layout, nicer view, higher up and he thought it was perfect for Mom and I.
We went to see it......we fell in love. It was perfect, 2 equally sized bedrooms, huge living/dining area, 2 bathrooms, not to mention the fantastic view. Our living room window looks east and south so we have a beautiful view of Belleville and an amazing view of the river and the Bay of Quinte.
I am so glad we got past the stigma of living downtown. My Mom used to go for walks downtown almost everyday by herself and never had a problem with anyone approaching her. She felt very comfortable living downtown and we often laughed at how we used to say that we would never live downtown and yet we both thoroughly enjoyed it.
Quite honestly I can't think of a better lifestyle for a single person or retired coupld. Imagine...no roof to worry about, no grass to cut, no snow to shovel. It's a great place to live and an awesome lifestyle!