My New Home

After a few false starts, couple find house in Arlington with room to grow

by Lesley Young
  • By Lesley Young
  • Memphis Commercial Appeal
  • Posted May 13, 2012

Once Audra and Will Bass expanded their family, they couldn't wait to expand their home.

Audra, 27, bought a home in Bartlett after graduating from college, but it was only 1,000 square feet -- too small for a growing family.

"We were jumping over (our daughter, Emma, 1) and all of her toys," said Will, 26. "We needed more space."

The couple found a bigger house -- a 2,200-plus-square-foot house with three bedrooms, a bonus room and two bathrooms -- in a smaller town, Arlington.

"It feels like a small town," Will said. "We just participated in the Easter egg hunt they had in the town square, and it was so nice. Plus we're so close to Memphis."

The new parents began their home search last summer by contacting close friend Amanda Lott, a Realtor with Crye-Leike.

Will said, "Amanda was great. She was pregnant, showing us these houses with no AC in the middle of the summer."

"I worked with them for (eight) months. It wasn't a funds issue. It was a house issue," Lott said.

"We made multiple offers on houses, and they wouldn't work out for some of the weirdest reasons. One lady just decided to stay. One house was on the market forever and the same day we wanted to make an offer, so did several other people."

All through the process, Will and Audra remained patient.

"We all knew it was for a reason," Lott said. "We just hadn't found the right house yet."

After making several offers on different homes, they found their dream home in February in the form of a new house built by Grant & Co.

The couple paid $192,900 for the home.

Audra loves the fact it is new construction and points to the large bathrooms as a plus.

"I really wanted a brand new house. The last house was built in 1989. I never want to do wallpaper again," Audra said.

"This is a Grant & Co. house, so a lot of stuff comes standard, like hardwood floors and granite countertops," Will said.

The dining room, living room and kitchen share the same open space, a characteristic ideal for entertaining.

"We love to cook, and we grill a lot out back," Will said.

To fill all of this new space, the couple went shopping.

They bought a new leather sofa, armchair (now adopted by their cat, Lucy), dining room table and chairs, china cabinet, stools for the breakfast bar, and a credenza.

The master bath was the main selling point for Audra, as it is for all of her friends who stop by to take the tour.

"Everybody loves our bathroom. It's crazy," Audra said of the glass-enclosed, dual-head shower, separate bathtub, and his-and-her sinks and closets.

In addition to the tray-ceilinged master bedroom, Emma has her own room decorated with ladybugs next to the guest bedroom and an upstairs playroom for all of her toys.

"We will probably expand the playroom into the attic. Why not? Why not have another bedroom," Will said.

The playroom also acts as a room for the couple to store their own memorabilia.

"Audra is a Disney freak," Will said.

The couple, who met at age 16 in high school, went to Disney World for their honeymoon.

The house also came with an energy package, including a tankless water heater, another perk for their already ideal bathroom.

"The shower never runs out of hot water," Audra said.

Besides expanding the bonus room and landscaping their large backyard, the couple have no other immediate plans for their new home.

"That was one of the main things we liked about the house. There were a lot of features, so we don't have to do a lot," Will said.

© 2012 Memphis Commercial Appeal.