We found our perfect home! We knew from the moment we saw it that this was the place. However, finding the perfect place doesn’t always come easy.
We knew buying a house would be a lot, but this is not what we expected. I wouldn’t say this is a horror story, but it definitely was not a fairy tale. I thought this would be a fun & exciting process, but it was anything but. Let me start from the beginning.
We started looking around October. Now let me preface this with, I am a teacher and if you are a teacher, you know how October is… So not only am I stressed at work, I am also stressed looking for a house. At least once a week we were looking at several house. Now, I was trying not to be picky, but every house we looked at we were not loving it. Granted, I know you can turn a house into something you will love, but let me be honest, these houses could not be transformed. Not only do you have to take in the design of the house, but also the foundation and the neighborhood and the roofing and the water heater and the backyard and the list goes on. The biggest thing of all, was trying not to look at houses that we could not afford. It was turning our that nothing in our price range was even close to what we wanted. Thats when we decided to bump our price up just a tad, yet we could still afford. Then, we finally were finding houses that we could actually start seeing ourselves in. Thus the house visiting began again and the bidding started.
Then, we found a house that checked almost all of the boxes and we could see all the great things we could do to make the house our home. So, we put an offer on it, they accept, we got someone to cover our lease at the duplex aaannnd then we get hit with a tax lien. The house has a tax lien!? I didn’t even know that was a thing! So, now we had to move in with my parents while we wait for the lien since, you know, we had our lease taken over. A month goes by and nothing happens. We slowly started to realize that we didn’t want this house anymore. We had no clue at all when this house would be ours and we decided that this was not a house worth waiting for.
So, the process started all over again and we were out $1,000. Honestly, even though that whole process was frustrating, annoying, stressful, and slow, I would do it again because it led us to our new home! He had close to perfect of what we were looking for. With the experience of putting offers on a house and continually being out bid (except for the house we almost got…) we knew that we had to put an offer on this house ASAP and to bid high – of course not too high out of our budget, but we certainly bid way over the asking price. I am so glad we did because the next day our offer was accepted!
After this process being SO slow, everything was now sped up. The house was only on the market for two days before we put in an offer. We were at the bank and signing a contract within days. This was all very overwhelming, but also exciting. We could not wait to move in and turn it into our dream home!
My husband is a man who, once he sets his mind to something, is going to get it done with no time to waste. So, when he wanted to paint the inside of our entire 1,400 square foot house in a day, I told him he was crazy! However, I love him so I told him we would give it a shot, but to be prepared for at least two days of painting. Well, it certainly took two days of painting and boy was I unbelievably sore. If we did not have amazing friends and family, we could not have accomplished what we did in two days.
No house is ever going to have exactly everything you want, but you should find a house that meets more than half your list of wants. (Side note: I didn’t think backyard size would matter, but it does. I am so glad we have a nice size yard. Even if you think you don’t want or need a big backyard, do yourself a favor and look for a good sized backyard. We don’t have any dogs or children, but you never know what the future holds and you don’t want a small backyard.) Do not make too many compromises! Keep searching for that close to perfect house. All the time, frustration, and waiting is so worth it. The less you have to fix, change, or remodel, the happier you and your bank account will be. Granted, I hate our master bathroom, so I better start saving!
Here are some expenses to keep in mind that we experienced in some way:
- A house inspection – this is a must!
- A termite inspection
- A foundation inspection
- Paint + painting supplies
- You may have to put in a sprinkler system
- You may need a new water heater or HVAC
- You may need to buy a lawn mower or hire someone to mow your lawn
- You may need a new dishwasher or a microwave or oven
- You may want to remodel some rooms
- You may want to buy new furniture, decor, or fixtures
With all that being said, this chapter in our life was very stressful, frustrating, and exciting. As well as, extremely expensive. However, it was all worth it because we are so happy with this place we call a home.
Stay tuned for some before and after photos soon!