Parks influence these homebuyers’ decisions as well. “That’s an important piece; I like that the downtown area has parks,” said Frigo, adding that parks are important due to the area’s homes generally small yards. Kinsworthy commented, “I’m a runner, and I run through parks. I would like a nice place to unwind or go for a walk or run.”
Although both homebuyers are satisfied by the Southside and downtown as areas, Frigo seemed less enthused by the area’s housing selection. While Kinsworthy expressed his happiness with the properties available, Frigo noted the challenge of finding a home on the Southside due to a lack of selections. She also expressed concerns about the common walls that separate townhouses from one another. “I try to keep an open mind about townhouses. Will I be comfortable sharing a wall with a townhouse?” she asked.
Frigo expressed other concerns, such as properties’ structural soundness. “Some of the homes that need structural help are definitely not for me,” she said. Kinsworthy’s worries concern maintenance. “Something that is older would be a scary thing. I’m looking for low upkeep,” he said. wHe added that a fixer-upper or a house with a pool or big yard is a property he would avoid. Other concerns listed by Frigo and Kinsworthy include poor school districts, low resale values, bad community and crime.
Still, both potential homebuyers are enjoying their searches for homes. “It’s been fun—a lot of fun,” said Frigo, acknowledging however “the home buying process is a lot of work.”
David Barlew, Jr. is a registered architect with the firm David R. Barlew Architects, Inc. He currently works with the local nonprofit Glass House Collective to revitalize Glass Street in East Chattanooga.