An adobe dream

And a French apartment

Welcome to my first-ever newsletter. The goal of A House A Week is pretty simple: To share interesting homes with my friends and loved ones every week.

When I got my first paid post-grad writing job back in 2017, I didn’t know that I’d also find a new way to relax. The job was as a real estate reporter, which partially entailed searching for new and interesting homes on the market every day in hopes that I would find one that was compelling enough to craft a story out of. But after I got laid off from that position, my daily habit of looking at homes did not cease along with my paychecks. In fact, the habit just expanded into cities I’d never considered or even knew existed by simply shifting the cursor further over on the map.

Suddenly, places like New Orleans and Grand Rapids didn’t really seem all that far away anymore. Looking at houses online became a relaxing form of escapism. Did I want to live in Dallas? My gut said no. But I’d never really thought about it. And, wow, did you know that you can just buy a house in a different country? You don’t need to be a legal citizen or resident — you can just buy a house in New Zealand if you really want to. So why not look there, too? Just in case someday you come across an extra half-million dollars?

This habit is certainly not unique. I know a lot of people who call this activity a pastime. Especially millennials, who are at an age where generations before us may have easily purchased a home without a second thought. I’m 26, and I have plenty of peers who are still living at home with their parents (I’ll be one of them until next month). The grim reality for my generation is that it just isn’t as easy to build a portfolio of assets anymore. For many, owning real estate is a far-off dream made foggy by student debt and stagnant salaries.

But it’s still fun to look.

A unique find

The only thing I really know about Santa Fe is that Lily Tomlin’s titular character in Grace & Frankie moves in with her long-distance boyfriend who lives there after she’s enticed by the artistic culture that just cannot be cultivated in San Diego. In recent research, I’ve also found that New Mexico has an extremely reasonable average property tax rate of about 0.79 percent. Santa Fe County’s prop tax rate is even lower at 0.53 percent. I know those are the kind of sexy numbers that people are going to want from this newsletter, so I am here to deliver.

This is what adobe dreams are made of. This house is nearly 5,000 square feet — much larger than I can fathom maintaining, but let’s be real, I am not the target audience here. Because this house is on the market for $1.45 million. Inside, there are three bedrooms, three full bathrooms, two half-baths, and a brand new custom kitchen. The master suite has not one — but two — sitting areas, plus a large soaking tub and a steam shower. A pool and hot tub can be found outside. [Sotheby’s International Realty]

An international rental

I recently purchased two berets (one black and one red), and I’ll tell you, it’s fun to look in the mirror and pretend to be French for just a moment as I get ready in the morning. My brief exploration of a European alter-ego inspired me to look at apartments available to rent in La République — and my search did not disappoint.

This adorable Parisian apartment is on the third floor of a 90-year-old building designed by architect Robert Mallet-Stevens. The updated one-bedroom, one-and-a-half-bath rental offers a simple design with hardwood floors and white walls but makes itself seen with un petit cherry red kitchen. J'aime cela! Spanning just over 400 square feet in size (or 38 square meters if you use the metric system, as the French are known to do), the unit can be yours for $1,930 per month (€1.650). [Sotheby’s International Realty]