“Only those who will risk going too far can possible find out how far one can go” T.S Eliot
For a while now, we have been working toward an idea we can’t stop thinking about - The Renovation Road Trip. In short - we are leaving our world in Auckland (including jobs), packing a car and trailer full of the essentials and relocating around New Zealand. The aim is to renovate 2-3 homes in different towns within 12-18 months, as well as taking constant road trips to explore our big backyard. This has been a plan that was conceived and developed over the past 2 years for us. But before we get started, we wanted to begin by sharing why we are doing this crazy, scary thing that is, The Renovation Road Trip.
When we first got married back in 2009, we planned to take a year off to travel. Caleb has the travelling bug, for him he has a constant craving to see new things and explore new places. When it comes to the travel bug - you have it or you don’t. And I just don’t have it… like at all. I’m not made for suitcase living, I need a home base. Don’t get me wrong, I like a good holiday of sunbathing and sipping cocktails… for about 2 weeks, and then I’m done.
Together we came up with the idea of The Renovation Road Trip, which was something that got both our wheels turning. It is the travel that Caleb has been waiting for but in a way that I can still enjoy. When kiwis talk about travelling, jumping on a plane and doing the big OE is the most common way of getting their travel fix. But we couldn’t go past exploring our own backyard first, exploring and seeing all it has to offer (or at least trying to). It isn’t suitcase living - more like large plastic boxes and a tool box, as we will find a home to renovate and explore from. Living in a town will allow us to get involved with the local culture and activities, as well as still be close enough for family and friends to visit us.
So why are we leaving Auckland? To be honest, we have a good thing going on. We know the property market, we love our jobs and we live close to so many family members. It would be so easy follow the saying of, if it isn’t broke, why fix it? But we are always up for learning through challenging ourselves outside of our own knowledge, security and comfort. So, for a season we are going to do just that!
We are ready for a change of pace because we have lived pretty full lives throughout our relationship and property story. We have done a renovation pretty much every year of our marriage and have lived in a total of 5 houses so far! Our weekends and weeknights have been consumed with property, searching for property, renovating, and working on Pearson + Projects. While that worked so far – it isn’t a pace we can maintain long term. Finally, our spare time can be spare time and we can stop the need to juggle so many balls! We can give our passion for renovating and sharing it through Pearson + Projects our best, not whatever we have left at the end of the day or working week.
The decision to leave our jobs in Auckland will mean that we will be self-employed for the first time! It’ll give us the freedom to work our own hours in our own home (where ever that will be). We made the decision to become property developers in 2014 when we started our first subdivision, now doing renovation projects along with the potential of developing Pearson + Projects, we can create a way for us to do what we are passionate about full time.
And the best part The Renovation Road Trip - we will get to spend more time with our two kids, Alek and Mika. They are little troopers and the most important thing in our lives. This new chapter means we get to spend far more with them, can be more present and create our renovation and business life to work around them.
As we started to share this idea with friends and family, one response seemed to be the most frequent “that seems a little crazy, you guys are so brave”. It’s true – it is crazy, it’s not normal, we don’t have any guarantees, and we aren’t even sure if it’ll work! I could write a whole blog of everything I’m worried about, but the risk involved doesn’t compare to what we can gain, an adventure doing what we love with the ones we love, so regardless of the fear, we are doing to do it anyway – because that’s what being brave is!