Saturday, July 10, 2010

honest house


Win a copy of Real Home Ideas 5: Small Space Solutions from Manila's leading interior design blog,
House of Onika. Learn more about the contest here.
This widely-read blog blog did this feature on my little humble space last February. House of Onika has also appeared in numerous local magazines.

If you own a condominium unit and have no idea how to make the most of it, join the contest and you may just win the small space decorating handbook.

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I am having a love affair with my sofa. I love how its tall, wide arms hug me during lonely days when I lose myself reading a book.

My sofa is like an old lover whose nearness is familiar and comforting, except that it is mid-century Danish modern and I've never had a Danish lover.

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It's dizzying: Moneyed people who have chronic bad taste try to buy taste. This is not a good idea. The smarter few who employ interior decorators end up with impersonal "model units" that they don't look good in, and the dumber majority end up with ugly houses stuffed to the ceiling with ugly (but expensive) things.

I don't understand why they do this.

A home should be honest. If you use Italian tiles but you've never been to Italy, you are lying. You are also destroying the environment and the economy. Do you really have to fly flooring all the way from Italy when our own local tile industry is world-renowned? They use Philippine-made tiles in luxury French hotels and German airports!

I'm proud to say that in this white box I live in, nothing is contrived. Everything was from a place I've been to. Everything has a function and nothing is for display.

It's certainly not aspirational (a concept so parvenu it's embarrassing). Nothing here is expensive beyond replacement. Like I mentioned in an old post, i also an
honest house in fiscal terms. It's low-maintenance and conducive to building wealth.

You can lose a house just as easily as you can lose a pen. That's the truth. So keep your emotions in check. Don't buy or decorate a house to project a life you want people to think you have. Be honest, and you'll start to make more tasteful choices.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Paring life down to the essentials results to a certain freedom unavailable to a person who lives in a bigger house but is saddled with more stuff to maintain, more corners to clean, and a bigger mortgage to pay."

well said. how much house can a person really afford? do you believe in the 25% rule?

11:53 AM  
Blogger mussolini said...

i believe in the 10% rule, actually. the amount going to mortgage payments should only be about 10% of your income if you want to be financially free. the rest you can save or use for travel.

a residence is not an investment but an expense. the goal should be to build enough wealth so that the value of the residence becomes only 10% of the actual net worth. so if a condo is worth P3 million, then the goal should be to build a net worth of P30 million (savings, bonds, and other liquid investments). i realize this is not realistic for many people, but it's a goal that makes sense for those who want to be wealthy enough to truly make radical choices.

12:01 PM  

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