What I'm Doing

Friday, March 14, 2008

Buying a House, Parts III-VI

Okay, so I've been lazy and skipped parts III-VI. Here's a quick recap, though, so you don't feel too left out:

Part III
Eric called us a couple days after our first tour to let us know that an offer had been placed on the one house we had liked. Since things in our price range seemed to be moving quickly, we decided to move quickly. The next tour, covering an area between my office and our apartment, was covered by Kristen and Eric on a weekday while I was working. They called me and I met them to see the house they'd kept: a home in the neighborhood Kristen first grew up in. It was well within our price range, and though it had a couple issues that could be dealt with, we really liked it. It was the same floor plan as the other house we'd liked.

Part IV
The next weekend, I joined Kristen and Eric again to go looking at an area a bit further away from my office. We looked at a number of homes, and, again, ended up with only one house (again, the same floor plan) that we kept, although the price was still a bit steeper and it was further out. I didn't like the way they'd finished the basement, myself. We also came across a few more homes that were surprising to see on the market. From people I've talked to that are selling homes, "stagers" say you're supposed to remove all personal stuff from walls, etc., to make the house more attractive to potential buyers. I haven't really liked that, but, at the same time, there's a difference between "personal stuff" (like photos of children) and clutter. In some cases, you couldn't see the house through the stuff.

Part V
Now we had two similar houses that we could consider. Because the market seems to be moving quickly for the nicer houses in our price range, we felt that we needed to be coming close to making a decision. Between the two we'd kept after our last two tours, I decided the next Monday to make an offer on the cheaper house. Admittedly, I didn't have a great feeling even at the time about it, but I put that aside, figuring that it was just nervousness about making such a huge decision. I called Eric, and we decided to meet that Thursday to sign the paperwork required to make an offer.

Part VI
From the time I called Eric until that Thursday, the "not great feeling" I had about the house grew into more of a foreboding. I continued to tell myself it was just nerves, and pressed on. That Thursday, as Kristen (who had met me at my office) and I were heading out to the car to meet Eric, he called us and suggested that, as he was coming from somewhere else anyway, it might be easier to meet at the house and take another look at it before we do the paperwork. This time, we looked even more closely, and the longer we stayed there, the more all three of us felt that this wasn't the right decision. I'm not sure if it was any one issue for any of us, but the number of issues, smaller and larger, that would need to be dealt with made us all feel uncomfortable. In the end, we decided to table that house for now, and look for a bit more.

We decided to do a broader search, including houses that didn't have basements, and Eric and Kristen planned on going out the next day while I was working.

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