Oh my god, I can’t believe we are doing this…AGAIN…and while pregnant with twins. Are we nuts? Or are we being smart? I think we’re somewhere in between.
So we bought a house! We weren’t really sure if we were going to for the longest time because we could technically make it work in our house now, but it would be CRAMPED. If we didn’t do it now, we most certainly would’ve moved later once the kids are bigger and harder to wrangle. So we started house hunting at Christmastime!
It all started with going to an open house for a house in our same neighborhood, but with more bedrooms and living space. We wanted to find a realtor that would both sell our house and help us buy a new one, and we liked the realtor that was at that open house. We had one condition however: We really didn’t want to have to list our own house for sale BEFORE finding the house of our dreams because we didn’t want to have to rush around at the last minute to find just any old thing that might work for us. That defeated the entire purpose of this hunt. Because like I said before, we could make it work in our current house. We really didn’t have anything to lose.
Our realtor kept emailing us listing after listing with homes fitting our requirements and the homes in our same neighborhood were just too expensive for the lack of space we were looking for. So we knew we’d have to venture out to the next nearby neighborhood to look. The homes were much bigger for the price. And we ended up finding a really nicely updated 5 bedroom house in a town only 15 minutes away from where we are now. Now, 15 minutes doesn’t sound like a lot at all, and I KNOW it’s not, but having all stores and supermarkets and restaurants within 5 minutes from our house for the last 3 years, this will take some getting used to! Such a first world problem, I know!
Anyway, we went to this new home’s open house and were the first there to look around. It was absolutely perfect. All 4 the bedrooms plus laundry were upstairs (laundry upstairs omg am I in heaven? lol), the main floor was completely updated with new flooring, a double door pantry, way more cabinets, and open floor plan, and the downstairs, perfect for a play area, had a finished in-law suite with a full bath…perfect for people coming to help us with the twins. OMG. The only thing that wasn’t so great was the backyard being a complete rocky bumpy hot mess, and being closer to neighbors. Our house now backs up to open space so no one is directly behind our house. But the inside of the new house made us overlook this. We know we can fix the outside with a landscaper. And I’m hoping people are considerate with their dogs barking. I really am sensitive to that as we’ve had many horror stories with nightmare neighbors leaving dogs out to bark all day. So fingers crossed on that!
As soon as we got home from the open house, we made a phone call to Quicken Loans to see what they could do for us. And we were approved for a loan that made it so we didn’t have any contingencies with buying a house…the main contingency being we’d be required to have to have a buyer signed in-contract ready to buy our house first. I really didn’t want that. It’s basically like kicking ourselves out of our own house before we were ready and confident in our new house being perfect. But now with that out of the way, we could now take our time and buy FIRST making sure this new house had everything we needed.
We told our realtor we were interested in the house we saw and put in an offer. And so did two other people. Boo. So at her recommendation we wrote the sellers a “love letter” which I guess is a thing. I only saw that happen on HGTV so I didn’t think it was something that happened in everyday real-estate around here. Anyway, we just told them the story…toddler with surprise twins on the way, we need a bigger space and their home was perfect for us. Then the bidding war began. However, the seller’s agent was SUPER transparent and kept telling everyone in the bidding war what exactly everyone’s bids were. I even think he told them that we wrote a letter so those other bidders wrote letters too. Grrr. So we were kind of annoyed at that because it seemed like a greedy move, but I guess that’s the name of the game. Also, because their agent didn’t keep anything secret, we knew one of the other bidders was using a VA loan so we assumed he was an injured veteran and would probably get the house over us. All we could do was keep raising our bid to match the others. We reached our cap, while the two other bidders kept raising their bids $500 to $599. Big whoop. Take it or leave it.
Well, they accepted our offer! I believe they choose us because they liked our letter! The sellers have kids as well and we had that connection. All this was happening while I was sick with some sort of stomach bug that made it’s way through everyone in the house, so I was throwing up in the toilet while Brian was talking to our agent on the phone lol!
Anyway, fast forward to the next week. We scheduled an inspection of the new house. I was actually really nervous for this because like many homes, as nice as the outisde looks, there’s usually issues on the inside that need fixing. And this house was no different. The inspector found the sump pump not working at all, there was a water leak stain in the garage that needed to be looked at further, the window seals on three windows were broken so the inside was all foggy and you can’t see outside, there was a crack in the basement bathroom tiles, the shower head in the master was loose and would pull out when turned on, and they left A TON OF DOG POOP IN THE BACKYARD.
Oh my gosh, I was sitting in the house for three hours during the inspection just really feeling sad, not knowing what we were going to do, if we were going to walk away from this. Most of the things I listed are minor and can be fixed, but I kept wondering if the sellers would be willing to work with us to fix these things at their expense. I really didn’t want to walk away, we would never find such a nice house with this layout for the price anywhere else.
So our agent wrote up our conditions on things we really wanted fixed and eventually things were settled in the contract. The sump pump was fixed, the roof was looked at, the shower head fixed, the dog poop picked up. But they didn’t want to fix the windows or cracked shower tile. I can’t blame them, I probably wouldn’t do that either.
So move in is February 16. I’ve been slowly packing during Lachlan’s nap time, things that we don’t need right now like wall frames, and knick knacks. But we hired movers to do the lifting, loading, and unloading. And now we have to deal with selling our own house!
Our agent is confident it will sell fairly quickly, especially since we have a mountain view from our master, and we back up to open space (no house directly behind us). Since we will be out of the house before we sell, we will easily be able to install brand new carpets and get the kitchen cabinets painted white to really attract buyers and hope to get a bidding war going. And you can be certain we will pick up 100% of all our dog’s shit in the backyard. I can’t believe they left that!! Sheesh. So for one week we’ll own two houses like playas. Just kidding, it’s actually really risky so we’ll see.
I’m going to be sad leaving this house. I really thought this was THE house for us, where we’d stay until Lachlan graduated high school. But wow, does life grab you by the reigns and whip you all over the damn place. So once again, we’re going with the flow, seeing where life takes us, accepting that we have no control over anything and just hoping luck and kindness are on our side!
But I’m excited that there are still paved trails to walk on by our new house, playgrounds to walk to, and Lachlan’s elementary school is walkable too. Brian is even closer to work now, all 7 minutes of his commute! We’re even closer to our good friends with a little guy close to Lachlan’s age. They’ll probably be in the same grade since Lach misses the cutoff in schools here. And a lot of the kids that go to that school will be kids of parents that work in Brian’s company.
So fingers crossed everything goes smoothly over the next few weeks.
And on a different note, our anatomy scan is next Friday so I’m hoping everyone’s hearts and brains and bodies are healthy.