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Location, Location

Posted December 05, 2012 in Community Featured, Johnston

Manda and Dan Shine’s townhouse in Johnston has plenty of natural light.

Manda Shine bought the Johnston townhome where she lives with her husband, Dan, last year.

“Before that, I was renting a house on Euclid, and it wasn’t a great situation,” Shine says. “The house was really small, and renting just always felt kind of temporary. I knew I wanted to own.”

While Shine may have been certain she wanted to own a home, she didn’t go into the house-hunting process with a lot of biases for one neighborhood over another.

“I wasn’t settled on any particular area I wanted to live, so I looked at places all over Des Moines and Johnston,” she says.

After a lengthy process of whittling down options based on a combination of location, price and size, their decision ultimately came down to reputation.

“(We) eventually we settled on Johnston because we both have friends who live here, and they’d had nothing but good things to say about their neighborhoods,” she says.

Eventually, the Shines settled on their three-bedroom, two-bath Johnston townhome. The two-level home features an open living area and kitchen on the main floor, along with the master bedroom, full bathroom and a second bedroom that the Shines have converted into an office. The kitchen has an island and a wide expanse of counter space, and the main floor features both north and south-facing windows, making for a space that’s well illuminated by natural light during the day.

The bottom level houses the guest bedroom, second bath, washroom and a smaller living area. There’s also access to the two-car garage where Dan stores his tools. More south-facing windows provide light during the day, and a sliding door opens out on the backyard and easy access to a greenbelt.

The townhome is also situated close to the interstate, which was a big selling point for Manda, who works as a diamond buyer in West Des Moines.

“From where I am, I can get to work in under 20 minutes, and that was important to me. I love the neighborhood, but didn’t want to spend all day in the car to get home,” she says.

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