False advertising

I borrowed this from a gallery entitled "Detroit's Ghetto" but this gives you an idea of the gem we saw today.

Will and I had our first appointment to view a potential house this morning.  A safe area with quality schools is our primary objective as we know our first rental won’t be the glorious mansion we will eventually inhabit.  The property was districted for Snowden Elementary— a great school– so I went in with an open mind and cautiously optimistic expectations.  In Memphis you can literally cross certain streets and go from gorgeous homes with luxury vehicles in the driveways to poverty and blight within a matter of feet.  We knew the area and the price were a bit of a gamble but nothing could have prepared us for what we saw.

The entire place was boarded up and in shambles.  Trash and broken bottles littered the overgrown lawn.  Only two other residences in the cove actually had occupants.  It looked as if it was a ghost cul-de-sac, the entire street a victim of foreclosures from an unforgiving housing market.  I found it very disheartening as the thought of a family having to abruptly leave their life– pile up their treasured possessions in the street as they were forcibly evicted– and became upset when I saw a pink, plastic butterfly hair clip belonging to a little girl caught in the door frame of the front porch.  What happens to those people?  Where do they go?  How does it feel to be in such a helpless situation?  I am not so naive as to think that foreclosures and evictions only happen in ‘bad’ areas but being in a place where this seemed to be an all too common norm as opposed to an unfortunate exception was very upsetting.

Once inside the home, I loved it.  The previous owners obviously put attention into the interior maintenance as it was very clean and well-maintained.  I wasn’t crazy about the small living room but the kitchen was large and open and the four bedrooms were all spacious in relation to the overall size of the house.  Suffice it to say the adorable home we saw on the realtor’s website was not a fair and accurate representation of the place we toured today!

With two children, safety is not something we will compromise.  If I wouldn’t want my kids– or anyone else’s for that matter– playing outside [even with adult supervision] that is no area to raise a family.  And that’s just heartbreaking.  Far too many areas are like this.  Wake up, Memphis!  It’s time to take back our city.  We deserve so much better.

Today wasn’t a total failure, however, as it definitely got me thinking…..and we made a very important concession that we’re open to the idea of an apartment.  Originally we had limited our choices to rental houses and that was a selfish mistake derived from our desire of ‘our own space’ as opposed to the best interest of our growing family and general safety concerns.  Furthermore, we’ve set a budget that includes deposits and are aggressively pursuing apartments while keeping houses on the back burner.  Live and learn.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,



About Cocktails With Hemingway

I'm blunt and opinionated. Virtually everything I say or do is a contradiction but I'm not a hypocrite. I never hesitate to speak my mind and never fail to leave an impression wherever I go. You love me, you hate me, but you'll never forget me.
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2 Responses to False advertising

  1. Hrmmm, I know how it feels to go through a foreclosure. In about 20 days, I’ll be moving to an apartment & shortly thereafter my house will be re-possessed. Let’s just say this – I’ve had PLENTY of notice of what’s going on and how I could avert this. Anyone whose foreclosure gets to the point of being forcibly evicted is living in a dreamworld.

  2. James, from following your blog I’ve known you’ve been dealing with this– and I also know you are competent and intelligent. Bad things happen to good people, but like you said, you’ve had ample notice and knew ways it could be avoided. I realize I was overembellishing a bit with my scenario of a weeping family in the street surrounded by their discarded belongings but let me retreat back to my dream world so when I’m rich and famous I can buy all these foreclosed homes and fully refurbish them and return them to their rightful owners….if they are so deserving. 😉

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