A Millennial Couple on a Budget Used eBay and Craigslist to Create Their Dream House

A Millennial Couple on a Budget Used eBay and Craigslist to Create Their Dream House


in case you enroll in the stereotype that millennials are too content material wasting cash on avocado toast and dwelling in three hundred-square-foot micro-units to emerge as house owners, you must get to understand Laura Metzler.

The 29-12 months-old photographer and her 30-yr-antique husband spent the primary part of their courting sharing a group residence with 4 roommates in Herndon. on the time, she worked for LivingSocial in DC—a 90-minute vehicle-bus-and-Metro experience away—while freelancing nights and weekends as a photographer.

“It became a absolutely weird residing enjoy,” says Metzler. “We didn’t exit to happy hour after work due to the fact we had a long travel. We sacrificed a number of social time. We knew what we desired.”

ultimately, they stored sufficient to get that: a contemporary, mild-stuffed house in Reston, in need of simply the proper quantity of updating to make it their personal. The couple has spent the ultimate two years renovating it in most cases themselves and filling it with elegant decor they’ve pieced together from eBay, Craigslist, clearance income, and Ikea. The result is a area that handiest looks as if one million greenbacks.

though the house turned into constructed in 2000, its interiors now nod to midcentury cutting-edge. Metzler credits her husband (who asked now not to be recognized) with locating loads of the funky, antique fixtures that gives the location so much of its personality. The brass-and-emerald-velvet dining chairs by Milo Baughman, for example, are the culmination of a years-lengthy hunt. “He installation an eBay alert, and we located them for a daft deal,” says Metzler. “They’re from 1984—in no way been reupholstered.” The couple paid $1,800 for all eight, inclusive of move-united states shipping.

The blue velvet chairs in the dwelling room—also by using Baughman—are any other eBay rating. the gray leather sofa throughout from those got here from Craigs­list. It’s the precise model Metzler and her husband had stalked for months at recuperation hardware, wherein the $6,000 charge turned into out of attain. A woman in Northeast DC bought them the almost new one for $1,500.

however the good buy that would make Metzler proudest is the oval Saarinen-style dining table. A actual 96-inch, marble-crowned Saarinen (about $eight,500) became out of the query, but Metzler become decided to find an opportunity that as a minimum seemed like the real article.

She turned into in recovery hardware while she got here across a tabletop of exactly the proper length and form. “It had a 95-percentage-off clearance decal. It’s actual marble. It’s wonderful,” she says. The hitch: It turned into cracked. however at $250, Metzler snapped it up anyway. (A marble keep later showed it’s not going ever to break, but if it does, there’s a distinctly clean repair.) The couple discovered a man on Craigslist selling Saarinen-style table bases. They paid $1,200 for one, bringing their very convincing knockoff to much less than $1,500 in all.

Of direction, the house’s makeover hasn’t simplest been approximately buying—it’s required bodily exertions, too. The couple tackled the kitchen redesign closing yr, building the space with assist from Metzler’s dad.

She assembled the Ikea shelves and drawers whilst her husband constructed and hooked up the island, which had to be modified to fit their kitchen. He additionally made custom trim pieces to provide the cabinets a higher-cease appearance. They DIY’d the banquette in the breakfast corner, a project that fee about $400, between the velvet fabric, plywood, and foam batting.

They have been strategic about in which they splurged on expert help, hiring professionals to install the Silestone counter tops and hardwood flooring, for example, and to hold the alligator-texture wallpaper within the powder room. “We figured that’s the rest room all of us makes use of,” says Metzler.

some other region in which they didn’t skimp? flowers and artwork. She credits each with energizing almost every room: “I think flowers make the whole thing higher. if you walk into our residence without vegetation, it appears so bizarre and bare.” Metzler grew to become to two friends, neighborhood artists Kristin Gaudio Endsley and Taylor Kampa Olson, for artwork hung throughout the home.

though they no longer have to skip glad hour to shop for a down charge, there aren’t many places the couple would instead be than inside the house they created together. “We’ve been very fortunate,” Metzler says, “however we’ve additionally worked extremely difficult.”

this text seemed inside the June 2018 trouble of Washingtonian.

more: finances CB2 Craigs­listing Ebay Eero Saarinen home preservation Ikea interior design Kristin Gaudio Endsley LivingSocial Millennial Milo Baughman Reston healing hardware Silestone Taylor Kampa Olson

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