Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A House Hunting We Will Go

The game is on! We have spent the last six months dipping our toes in the water of house hunting - meetings with mortage lenders, dinners with realtors, open houses and lots of MLS listings. While we have not found that perfect house just yet, I have been amazed at what I have discovered about myself and the house buying process. The good news is we are not in a position where we have to buy so we can take our time. As renters, the flexibility of when we move is ours and we don't have a condo of our own we have to turn over in the meantime.

Lessons Learned
- Uh, yeah - that monthly housing payment is going to increase. When people say "you can get a mortgage for less than you are paying for rent" they are not factoring in taxes, insurance or assessments. Glad I know that now.

- A 2 bedroom is what we need now, a 3 bedroom is what we'll need later. So why not invest a little more now as opposed to outgrowing a place in just a few years. Plus, the prospect of a craft room until the extra space is needed is all to tempting.

- New construction is great, but Vintage aint too bad either. I thought I hated Vintage. No matter what, the floors always looked dirty, the floorplans have small, closed off rooms, and don't even get me started on the metal spiral staircases that you will find in duplexes (I can't believe I didn't kill myself on that staircase at Bob's old house!). Lo and behold, one of the places we are enamored with is Vintage to the core, but with modern updates to the kitchen and beautifully kept up woodwork that blends new with old. Plus, if I saw one more cookie cutter new construction 2 bed, 2 bath I was about to lose all hope.

- I'm ready to DIY, but not in a major way. Both my budget and my available time screamed "no way" when we saw some real fixer-uppers. However, the appeal of not going new construction comes in when we see potential with a tiled backsplash or outdated bathroom overhaul. One place we are keeping an eye on had unfinished closets - dreams of elfa or California Closets dance in my head.

So here's to a few more months of searching and saving, hopefully ending with a signature on the dotted line!

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