|COLDSTREAM HOMESTEAD MONTEBELLO
|Home Sweet Home
A CHuM Family Re-Imagines their
Environment and Prepares to
Shawn James and Kim Farley have been planning their home
renovations for almost two years, but in June, with the help of a
Healthy Neighborhoods refinance and renovation loan, they were
able to start making their dreams come true. The family moved to
CHM almost nine years ago. The house was in good shape and had
so much space, 3 well-lit floors, green space, a great view, a garage,
and even a finished basement—basically everything they wanted,
plus a great location— “on the edge of all new development and ten
minutes to everywhere.” Both arts lovers (Shawn is a painter and
photographer and founded his company, Mural Masters, Inc,
painting interior and exterior murals, and Kim, a teacher at the
Baltimore LAB Arts-Based Special Ed. School) they’ve been
envisioning and drafting their unique new space for some time.
Some of their plans include new windows from which to see Lake
Montebello, concrete work on their front steps, new electrical work
complete with recessed lighting, rebuilding their front porch,
updating their garage, and replacing their kitchen floors. The HNI
loan helped them afford the “heavy stuff,” and the saved money
from refinancing can “pay for the stuff they can see and appreciate”
—like getting a working fireplace, and new tiles and lighting for
their ‘mancave in the basement.’ “I see people working on their
houses all around us. We also want to set an example,” says Shawn.
As I interviewed them, their daughter and 2-yr old son were in the
backyard playing with their lifelong best friend that lives next door.
Kim says they “couldn’t ask for better neighbors,” as they have been
each others’ babysitters and friends for years.