Monday, November 9, 2009

One Year Frenzy-versary Part 2: November 9, 2008

Last year, November 9th fell on a Sunday. Little Dude was still pretty under the weather from a recent sicky bug, so Sam and I decided to switch off for church. By that I mean that I went to Sunday school, then he came and went to the morning service with the three girls. In the meantime, I needed to figure out what to do with Little Dude for over an hour (we lived 30 minutes from our church at that point).

Before I go on, I should probably give you a little background information about our market history. Between Spring 2006 and Winter 06-07, we had our house on the market twice. We took it off the first time because I was pretty sick with the first trimester of Little Dude's pregnancy. We went back on the market when I was up for it again, but then went off two weeks before I was due to deliver him. We wanted to move to the town where Sam worked, our church was, and also a large number of our friends and family lived. But, it just didn't seem like the time. Our house wasn't getting much traffic and we weren't finding a house that we were excited about buying. We wanted land, but we wanted to be close to other families. Things just weren't lining up. We took the house off the market, had our son, and decided to settle in until the housing market improved.

After Little Dude's first birthday, though, my friend Dayna kept on us. Whenever a house would go up for sale in her neighborhood, she'd pipe up and tell us all about it. At that point we had decided that a move was put on the backburner for a while. We had tried. It hadn't worked. We weren't really feeling like being on the market for forever in this economy. I kept telling her, "no dice", and she kept mentioning new houses.

So that Sunday morning, Little Dude was coughing and too gunky to take to church, so he and I wound up driving through the country and through the town our church is in. Dayna had recently told me about another house up for sale in her neighborhood. I drove all around her house, but I couldn't find the home she had told me about. So, I drove down the main road a little further, toward my sister's neighborhood.

There was a large wooded section along the left side of the road. I wondered aloud whether there might be any homes for sale that backed up to that property. You know, just out of curiosity and just to kill time. I turned left and drove along the wooded neighborhood street. A little more than halfway down, there was a "For Sale" sign. The sign said "Four bedrooms" and it backed up to those woods. Hmmm.

There were two men out in the front yard, hanging shutters up on the front windows. They saw me looking at the house and came over to the van to see if I had questions. Now, before you think I'm a complete nutso, you'll just have to know that this is a safe neighborhood in a pretty safe part of a safe Ohio town. The safest we've ever lived in. The crime rate is nill here. Anyway, to make a long story short, Little Dude and I wound up walking through the house while the men waited outside. It was larger than it looked from the outside. It had nearly an acre. We knew the street, and had admired the neighborhood when we were previously looking for homes, but there hadn't been any homes for sale in this neighborhood then. I took an information sheet with me, thanked the men, and went back to pick up Sam and the girls from church.

When Sam came out to the parking lot after the service, I was reading the information sheet. They were definitely asking too much for the house, but it was intriguing nonetheless. I had timed it - this house was a 2 minute drive from my little sis and her husband. Interesting.

Sam thought it was more interesting than I expected. We all wound up driving back over to the house so he could get out and look around, too. The men were still outside and very politely let him in to check it out. When he came out, I could tell his wheels were turning.

We didn't have our house up for sale at the time. We had no intentions of moving within even the next three years.
But, that night, all we could think about was how close we'd be to everything - and an acre of woods. Our kids would think that was heaven on earth. Just for fun, we did some number crunching that night and were surprised to discover that, if we got the seller to come down $20,000 in price, we could carry both the new mortgage and our current mortgage at the same time. We wouldn't be able to add to our monthly savings and we'd have to make some cut-backs, but we could do it. Once we figured that out, we began to think more seriously.

As I remember it, we went to bed that night (the night of my 33rd birthday - we had celebrated the night before) with a tentative plan to go see the house "officially" with a realtor. As we talked in bed, we said things like "well, it's worth checking out, I think" and "You know, just to see". But, deep down, we were starting to feel the adrenaline creeping up.

5 minutes from work.

7 minutes from church.

2 minutes from my sister.

An acre of woods.



Stephen and Larissa said...

Ah! I can't wait to house hunt for our very first house someday, but it sure does seem like a lot of stress, waiting, and timing!

greenyourkitchen said...

Looking for new home is a big hassle that you can't avoid -- and it is even harder if you have an existing house to sell in an economy like this one.
But from what I've read on news, the federal home-buyer tax credit has recently been extended and expanded so this should be a good news if you are looking to sell or buy a house.
If you want to find out more about the policy, try visiting: This site seems to explain pretty much everything surrounding the policy.
Hope it helps! And Good Luck if you are going to go for that house -- I wish my house had a huge, green yard like that one.

Jacci said...

Hey, guys :)

Green, actually, this post was a commemoration of sorts describing the events leading up to the purchase of *this* house. We aren't buying another one anytime soon. At least, we don't intend on it. Really this time ;)