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In the News: A Debtless DIY

The New York Times' "Don’t Hate Me Because I’m Solvent" is a heartwarming story of an Akron, Ohio couple, David and Gina Giffels, who exquisitely renovated a condemned 1913 Tudor house with six fireplaces, a solarium and a billiards room, which they'd purchased for $65,000, bit by bit over 12 years (and counting) without the use of credit cards. Upon closure, the house was in awful condition; it had been inhabited by a slew of neighborhood creatures, and "the roof over the master bedroom leaked so badly that the previous owner had placed 55 aluminum baking pans on the floor to catch the rain." Living on columnist and teacher's salaries, the Giffels never had much to contribute to renovation costs, or construction experience. But, with a lot of devotion, and the ability to endure the stress of it all (and two miscarriages), they have gradually resurrected a piece of history and built a home for their two children, Evan and Lia (12 and 9) — with little help from contractors and a mortgage under $100,000.
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CityGrrl77 CityGrrl77 9 years
This house is literally right down the street from me (in the Highland Square area in Akron) and this was the first time I had heard of this story. Pretty cool!
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
tweet hotpants: Did you ever think that maybe they did the work together? They could have used that to get over the pain of the miscarriages and to spend time with their kids and teach them the value of hard work. I don't think I could spend that much time working on my house. It would just make me so impatient and I'd feel like it was never going to be done. We'd considered doing that for our home but it's too much time to live in something that you don't really love.
CJaneTyp CJaneTyp 9 years
I don't think it's our place to judge what was and was not a good use of his time. He made a HOME for his family after all.
tweet-hotpants tweet-hotpants 9 years
that is absolutely an amazing feat! but i don't know if it would be worth the sacrifice- he worked on the house instead of spending time with his children, and his wife after she had 2 miscarriages. that, to me, is really sad.
Kimpossible Kimpossible 9 years
Good for them!!!
ALSW ALSW 9 years
That's amazing. I'm not sure that I could find a SHED around here that's only 65,000...
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