I feel somewhat prepared- with the exception of lack of a proper work space. However- I am use to this since I haven't had a proper workspace in quite sometime. Which brings me to my second task of the weekend- House Hunting.
For those of you who are home owners, you understand. House hunting is a ridiculous process, and I am a little pickier than I had anticipated. I have been looking at houses and dreaming of a place to call my own for YEARS. This is not to say that I have been ready to buy for years, I've just been looking. I am not one of those people who can't see past the cosmetics of a house. I don't mind if I have to put in a little work to make it a home, but the process is a little frustrating and harder than I anticipated. Willing to redo a kitchen because its original to a house- sure. Willing to rewire the entire house- not so much. Taking down wallpaper form the entire house- I can handle it. Needs a new septic system and all new plumbing- I'll pass.
|Photo Credit: Shop Vol25 via Etsy|
I gave this print to D for Valentine's Day last year. We have been day dreaming about a new house for a while and finally are in the position of purchasing. This will be the first thing we hang when we finally have a place.
What I have learned thus far from my house hunt is this:
- Don't start looking at houses before you're ready to buy: A few years ago I went to an open house. I was just driving by, saw the sign, had always liked the house and so we decided to go in. A few years ago, the market was at a completely different place so the house was in a different price bracket. I loved it. Since we weren't ready to buy yet, it was a love from afar. Now... every house I go into- I compare to that house. Making the house hunting just that much harder.
- It's good to see everything, even if the listing looks like crap: We have been looking at houses not only with our fantastic Realtor, but also going to open houses on the weekends. A lot of the time, houses in person look completely different than their listings. This can happen for 2 reasons: The listing agent has an amazing photographer or the listing agent has a horrible photographer. I have learned not to judge a house by its listing (unless of course it says something like, house needs to be completely gutted... thats not in my plans.)
- Keep an eye on houses that are slightly out of your budget: If you have a budget of say $300,000. Expand your search slightly higher. There could be a seller willing to negotiate OR if they don't get offers the price could be reduced and you will be ahead of the ball by already knowing about it.
- Make a list of the must haves and the wants: You may already have a list of everything you want in a house. Come to find out, if your budget is tight- chances of you getting everything on your wish list will be slim. Make a 2 (or 3) column list with your "must haves", your "wants" and your "deal breakers". This helps not only you, but also your Realtor help you find the right home for you.
- Search multiple websites: If you have a Realtor, they most likely have set you up on the MLS website to view listings. I have found other sites to be slightly more easy to read. Try Zillow or Redfin (my personal favorite- but only available in some areas). You may need an account to view all information on a listing, but it's free and well worth it.
Now- take my advice with a grain of salt because I have yet to find the home I want to purchase. However, this is completely a learning process for me. Since D has owned a condo prior to this search, he is a little ahead of the game... but this is new to me. My first home. I seriously can not wait to find "the one". I can sadly report... we didn't find anything this weekend that was a contender.