Our latest adventure: How we decided to build a home 500 miles away

building a home

As much as we love traveling the world, the Traveling Flâneurs have some big news. We’ve decided to settle down a bit and create a home base from which to launch many future travels. We’re building a house! In Vermont!

It was time.

DC has been our home for years, and wow has it been good to us. But to be honest, it never felt like a true Home (with a capital H!). Apartment living had recently gotten to us. Rising rents. No outdoor space of our own. A neighborhood that goes in and out of gentrification. And on and on and on… So we figured it was time to actually own something and create a sense of Home for ourselves.

Why Vermont

You may be wondering: why Vermont? Isn’t it a bit far (read: 500 miles) from where we are in DC? The truth is, Vermont had been calling for a while. You can see some of our adventures in past posts here! We found that when we weren’t jetting off to Rome or Florence, our travels often brought us to see family. Half that wonderful family is in the Green Mountains of Vermont, where Eliza grew up! It made sense for us to move closer to one of our families, and so Vermont became our destination of choice.


Additionally, Vermont has quite the entrepreneurial vibe going! It’s an emerging tech hub, with a nice side of liberal hippy-culture, great beer, and even better food! Basically, the perfect place for us to finally feel at Home!

And then there’s our new baby nephew that has stolen our hearts…we look forward to moving closer so we can see him grow up! :)

In the past 6 years, we have moved from DC to San Francisco and back again…so we are ready for this to be our last move for a while!

Goldilocks-ing our way through home-buying

So when we made the decision to make the move, we jumped into home-buying mode with both feet. We were looking for:

  • three or more bedrooms

  • space for a home office

  • a first floor with an open floor plan

  • a big kitchen from which to make many tasty feasts

We got to work finding a lovely real estate agent. In our first day, we saw about 10 properties in the greater Burlington area with her. We continued our search when we got back to DC, setting up every type of real estate alert possible. To say we felt like Goldilocks is a bit of an understatement! Some houses were beautiful inside, but didn’t have the right location; others were in great neighborhoods but would need lots of work. Still others were missing some of our basic needs. And those that fit our needs were (ahem) a bit out of our price range!

Eliza househunting
Paul upstairs househunting
Paul househunting
Eliza househunting kitchen
Paul outside of house hunting
Paul water househunting
Paul househunting is over

Finding our juuuuust right

Building a new home wasn’t initially on our radar. But after seeing our options, we found that it was the right choice for us. We found a lovely new neighborhood in South Burlington, Vermont. It’s a small, brand new community, with no homeowners' association, which was a rare find. While there are floor plans for us to choose from, we are free to make customizations to help make the Home we want. We couldn’t be more excited!

Site of our future Home

Here we are, at our new plot on the day we started the process!

building a new home in South Burlington, Vermont

We’re excited to have you come on this journey with us while we figure out how to build a home while being 500 miles away. (Because really, what’s the fun in doing something easy?!) It’s the latest in our series of adventures, and we’re glad you’re along for the ride!

Check out an early sneak peek below!