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The House Hunters Thread

MishB

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 16, 2008
Messages
656
We''ve hit a significant snag... the building inspection came back less than ideal. Not a deal breaker for us, but it will require some outlay to fix (restumping etc). Our only problem is if some other fool hasn''t had a building inspection done and is willing to pay far more than we are. I think we will still go along and bid, but I think it will sell for far more than we think is reasonable considering the work that needs to be done.

 

DivaDiamond007

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Jun 7, 2007
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Lynnie - our FHA fees are rolled into the mortgage; but we have to pay for the regular inspection, and that''s counted towards our downpayment so it''s not lost money. I think we also have to pay for the appraisal, which is also counted towards the downpayment.

We live in Ohio and are getting an "OHFA" FHA loan. Basically if you meet certain qualifications the state will give you a grant worth up to 2.5% of the purchase price to be used towards the downpayment and closing costs. You also need to have 1% of your own money to put down as well. Seller can pay all closing costs; a percentage; or you can pay them yourself. The program is designed for people like me and DH - make decent money, have decent credit, and are first time buyers with a smaller downpayment. The biggest downside is sometimes they run out of grants, but our mortgage company told us they look good through July of 2010. Whew! Otherwise we''d be putting off closing a few more weeks to have the 3.5% down for the regular FHA and still have some cash left over. I feel like my checkbook is bleeding!
 

meresal

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
5,720
Date: 9/15/2009 10:33:40 AM
Author: NewEnglandLady
Meresal, how exciting!! I''m keeping my fingers crossed for you that the house is finished on time (or early!) so that you can at least nest a little before the baby comes!
NEL- Thank you! We are very excited! Especially DH, since we''ll be moving from 45 minutes to work, to a only 10 minutes to work. I''d love for the house to be done early, but eventhough we''re in Texas, it is still being built over the holidays and winter, so I''m expecting at least a month of delays. Hopefully not thought. I''m also hoping that we can go ahead and have the nursery painted before we move in. I''d feel much better if the paint and construction smell is gone by the time we move in. We''re going to look at another home with the smae floorplan this wekend, so I''ll have some pictures on Monday to share!!
Good luck this weekend looking at homes. I hope it goes well. Maybe it will be the lucky trip!

Thanks for your post gecko!- We are very lucky that bulding was an option for us! We really needed to find two walk in closets for the master and a room right next to the master for a nursery, and most of the places we saw, the masters were on a completely different floor. Also, we won''t need the house for another 6 months, so we would be just hoping that we could find something we loved aroudn that time, and I don''t like leaving things to chance.
 

Lynnie

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Messages
1,166
Diva, you''re making me wish I lived in Ohio! We have to put down the full 3.5%, and pay for our inspection & bank appraisal separately. So it''s costing us a total of around 9K. PA has similar programs, but they vary by county, and of course, Philly doesn''t have such a program! haha... my checkbook is bleeding, too! We have to put another 2K into escrow by Sunday - a second large payment was worked into our offer to make us seem really serious about a quick sale. eek!
We also selected the bi-weekly mortgage payment option, so we could get an extra payment in each year. I want to pay down that principle as quickly as possible, because the PMI is $90/month.

Mer... looking forward to your pics!
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Meresal, we''re also having a tough time finding a house with a smaller bedroom next door (or across from) the master. I always thought that trend of the master suite being on a separate floor from the other bedrooms was modern, but the vast majority of houses we''ve looked at are pre-1950''s and I''d say only half have multiple bedrooms on the same floor.

I''m looking forward to seeing pics on Monday!
 

DivaDiamond007

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 7, 2007
Messages
1,828
Date: 9/17/2009 12:09:09 PM
Author: geckodani
All this hurry up and wait stuff is driving me NUTS!!!
+1!

Our regular inspection was yesterday and it went well. A few minor things - the electric company needs to come out and trim a tree limb that''s interfering with the electric lines in the back, the "butt connectors" on the electric line near the house need to be looked at by an electrician and there was radon detected in the basement. We''re doing an addendum (sp?) with our relator to get the seller to take care of these issues before the FHA inspection/appraisal. Fingers crossed that she doesn''t bail because it will probably be around $1000 to rid the basement of the radon
Everything else checked out okay. We''re also putting railings for the two porches in the addendum since we know it will likely be an FHA safety issue.

I gotta run since I have physical therapy tonight - will be around tomorrow though
 

MishB

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 16, 2008
Messages
656
We got the house! The auction today went very well, there was one other serious bidder, but we didn''t get anywhere near our upper limit so we are very happy.
 

Lynnie

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Messages
1,166
Congrats, MishB!!!!


+2 on the hurry up and wait stuff! I felt like it was a mad dash getting all that paperwork in. Now just gotta wait for the FHA & mortgage appraisals...

Diva, when''s your settlement date? Fingers crossed for ya! Bummer about the radon... hopefully, the sellers will just man up and fix it. Now that they know, they''ll have to disclose it to any future buyers, so I would assume they''d be willing to work with you on that.
 

DivaDiamond007

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 7, 2007
Messages
1,828
Congrats MishB
That is soo exciting! When do you move in?

Per our purchase agreement, our closing date should be on or before October 30. We spoke with our realtor and he thinks that we''ll likely close sometime mid-October. No news yet about the inspection addendum, but we met with our loan officer yesterday and things are all set there. We got our OHFA grant and signed all the paperwork. That was a big hurdle for me since I was worrked they''d run out of grants!

It''s hard to not get exicited but I am. I can see my family living in the house but I know it''s not officially ours until we get the keys at closing. Will keep you gals updated and I hope everybody has a wonderful weekend.
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
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Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Exciting news all around!

Congrats, MishB, on getting the house at the auction! That's fantastic--and even better that you were able to stay under budget!

Lynnie, it sounds like you are right in the thicke of the stress. I'm hoping that from this point in it will be a little easier for you. Or at least you can move from digging yourself out of a pile of papers to digging yourself out of boxes.

Diva, how exciting that in a month you'll have the keys to your new home!! It sounds like everything is going well!

Gecko, any updates from you? I know that you were supposed to hear one way or another by Friday, so I'm hoping that it worked out in your favor. If not, then I'm hoping you have perhaps found something else you love :)

We just got back from seeing 4 homes: two were water view with more SF and larger yards. Two were oceanfront, fewer SF and had tiny yards. Our favorite water view home looks perfect on paper. It has been beautifully remodled and doesn't need any work, it has a big, beautiful yard and three huge decks. The location is perfect for commuting, yet the beach is a few steps away and the town center, theater, grocery store, etc. are all within walking distance.

Our favorite oceanfront home looks awful on paper. We would neeed to redo the kitchen, put ceramic tile on about 25% of the floor and hardwoods on another 50%, we'd need new windows, the flood insurance is $7K per year, we would need to redo the bathrooms. There are only 3 bedrooms. Really, there is just one major positive on the list: the view. Our yard is literally the ocean--no seawall or any obstruction (which means more maintenance). The land juts out into the ocean enough so that there is an ocean view from every room. The views are almost worth all of the work we'd have to put into it.

Since we plan to have two kids over the next five years, I know we need to do what makes sense for our growing family. At the same time, our guts are telling us that we would be very happy with the oceanfront house and might actually enjoy the renovations. We're going to keep thinking about it--in the meantime, we'll keep our eyes open for new inventory.
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
Yeah.. we went on another round today (lost the other house). The mold in some of these houses looked like it was going to rear up and chase me.

We''ve come to the conclusion that we''re going to update some outdated furniture, get a new TV and mattress and sit tight on the house hunting for a while. It just seems like there isn''t a lot in our price range that we''re willing to spend money on.
 

Lynnie

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Messages
1,166
Oh, Gecko... I''m sorry you lost the house

I understand how you feel (we lost out on the first house we bid on). It''s such an emotional roller coaster, and, frankly, it''s kinda depressing. I was so sad we lost that first house.
Take a break, destress... I can just about gaurantee the house bug will bite again, eventually. It can''t hurt to keep your eyes peeled for houses to go up for sale... something better could always come along
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Gecko, I''m sorry to hear that as well. I know you weren''t counting on getting the house at all, but it still stinks when you find out you didn''t get it. I agree that this whole thing is such an emotoinal roller coaster ride--we will stop looking for weeks and then a listing will catch my eye...you know how it goes. I didn''t realize it would be this hard.
 

meresal

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
5,720
Congrats MishB!!

NEL, I''m glad to hear you came away from this weekend with some positives!! Everything you''re looking at sounds simply gorgeous!!

Well, we are officially House Builders! We sat down last night, finalized our floorplan, picked out our brick, our stone, our trim color, and signed our contract! Took almost 4 hours, but so worth it!

We are so excited!
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Ooo, congrats, Meresal, that is so exciting! I saw your thread last night about finalizing the floor plan--what did you end up doing?

Today is a down on the house hunting roller coaster. D ultimately decided that the renovation house was too much work and we could easily go significantly over budget. We saw another oceanfront house last night that he fell in love with--it''s 4 bedrooms/3.5 baths, 2,400 SF with very dramatic views of the ocean, a garage, an in-law suite, wraparound deck, private beach, and doesn''t need any work at all (though it is VERY white--so lots of painting). Anyway, the issue is that it''s at the tippy top of our budget, so we were going to give a low offer. We found out today, however, that the seller has already accepted an offer, but is keeping the listing active until Oct. 6th in order to try to get more offers. We''re still considering putting in an offer, but since the seller has already accepted one offer I doubt ours would be high enough. Ugh.
 

meresal

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
5,720
NEL, I''m sorry to hear about the other offer on the house. If you love it though, wow, that''s a hard decision. It sounds breathtaking!

We decided to go with the open floor plan. Here is a pic of the open archway that we chose.

front entry open1.jpg
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
It looks beautiful! How exciting that you get to see your house being built--I''m sure it will be fun watching it come to be!
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
Man, this really is a roller coaster!!!

NEL - Ugh. That sucks. I hate how sellers play games like that!

Meresal - How exciting! I can''t wait to see the finished result!

I think we''re going to expand our search to include an area with a less desirable school district. The thought being that we''re not thinking about even having kids for another 2 or 3 years, and it''ll be another 5 before we''d have them in school, so if we get a starter home, we can sell it five or six years and move to a better district.

But then I worry that we won''t be able to sell a house BECAUSE it''s in a bad district. *sigh*
 

meresal

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
5,720
Date: 9/22/2009 3:15:59 PM
Author: NewEnglandLady
It looks beautiful! How exciting that you get to see your house being built--I''m sure it will be fun watching it come to be!
NEL, thanks! I''m hoping it''s a pleasant experience. There is alot that has to be done in the next 2 weeks, and with the baby and already using most of my vacation for the wedding, I''m trying to figure out a way to squeeze it all in. Eep.

Gecko- Thank you! I hope you are able to make a good decision. I would imagine that you will be able to sell to a future family just like yourselves. Not quite ready for kids, but ready for a home, none the less. It will all work out!
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Gecko--I think it''s a good idea to expand your search and just go see what the new area offers. I know in our case we started with three towns, but had sort of eliminated one based on several factors. Now we''ve shifted our focus solely on that town because it fits our budget best. Like you, we''re definitely considering school districts (or proximity to private schools), but we''re also 6 - 7 years away from having school-age children. I don''t know what to tell you, just trying to relate :) I wish I had the answer!

Meresal--You have so much going on right now!! Getting married, then pregnant and buying a house all within a month would be enough to make anybody a little crazy! You will definitely find a way to squeeze it all in! Besides, it''s all very exciting and wonderful stuff, so that kind of helps the stress from becoming too overwhelming. I bet you thought you''d get a break after all the wedding planning :)

We have resolved to just back off for a bit and are not expecting anything to happen this fall./winter. We have two appointments scheduled for this weekend--one is for the super-nice oceanfront home that is at the top of our budget, but also an amazing deal. The other is for the quaint oceanfront property that would need extensive renovations. The super-nice house already has an accepted offer, so ours would just be backup. We''ve got a list of the renovations we''d like to do on the quaint house, so we''re going back for a second look and to make sure our list is reasonable.

We''ve told our agent that we don''t want to keep using chunks of her weekend and kicking residents out of their homes so we can hem and haw over what we want. After dozens of open houses and dozens of tours with our agent, I think we have a much better idea of what we want and if neither of these options works out for us on Saturday, then I''m just going to take a step back, be patient and wait until something we love hits the market. Since we''re focused on oceanfront property I don''t expect anything else to come onto the market until spring, but who knows! As it is, I''m not going to stress out about it--the whole house hunting thing has sort of taken a toll on me and I''m tired of my mood being determined by news from our agent.
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
NEL - Thanks for commiserating! I hope you find something you love this weekend. I''m also getting sick of losing my weekends to looking at a bunch of houses. It gets tiresome!!!

I''m still conflicted on the school district thing. *sigh*
 

Lynnie

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Messages
1,166
Meresel - pretty layout! And I love those windows! I agree, what a crazy and exciting time for you, with all that''s going on right now!

NEL, good luck this weekend! I hope something pops up for you.

Gecko, I hear ya on the whole school district thing. We pretty much had to stay in Philly (read: really sucky public schools). So it''ll either have to be Private or Catholic, or move in 6 years or so. Hopefully, DH should have a decent income that''ll support Private or Catholic, but who knows? The future is filled with so many "what if''s", especially in this economy


So our appraisals were today. Apparantly, we won''t hear anything til Monday. So another weekend of waiting. It sucks, knowing that it''s possible the deal could somehow fall through, at any time. Ugh. I won''t feel relaxed until keys are in hand!
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
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Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Gecko, are you guys still mulling over the newest house option?

Lynnie, I hope the appraisal went well, you''ll find out tomorrow, right? Now I completely understand why nobody feels secure until keys are in hand. The whole process is stressful!

We saw our top 2 houses yesterday and are still trying to figure out what to do today. We eliminated the renovation house. I loved the lot--the house has more ocean frontage than any other house on the market in that area, but the neighbors are in the midst of a property dispute with the current owner and it''s not something I want to inherit. The neighbors actually came over to talk to US about how the disputed land is theirs even though the surveyers had come and roped off the property the day before and it''s clearly not. The owners have assured us it would be taken care of, but I don''t think that issue would be going away anytime soon.

The nice house was beautiful with amazing views, but it still needs a few updates (it was last renovated in the ''80''s). And it''s just so darned expensive--it''s a good deal (selling for $500K below assessed), but we''d still be paying taxes/insurance on the assessed value, which is a hefty chunk. If I planned to continue working after having kids, it would be fine, but if I want the option of being a SAHM, this home would make it more challenging. Oh well, it already has an accepted offer, so it''s probably a moot point, anyway.

I think we''ll just keep on hunting and see what pops up in the coming months. I''m ready to take a little break. So is D!
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
NEL - Oy, I definitely wouldn''t want to inherit a land dispute like that! Not a good foot to start off on with the neighbors! And I hear ya on the pricing thing. *sigh*

Too many what ifs is right Lynnie!!!

So. Even if I got pregnant tomorrow (not likely) we''re still talking 6 years minimum before we have any sort of school issues. And while I''m a big believer in public schools, I don''t think it makes that big of a difference as far as elementary is concerned. So I''d be okay with private school for a few years.

And there are some NICE houses that just happen to be in a crappy school district. So. We''re going to go and check them out. If we absolutely fall in love with a house, we''ll go for it, school district be da%$ed. And figure it out when kiddos hit, either by moving, or private school.
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
Okay, this house belongs on a LISTING FAIL website. The listing says, "Needs interior repairs." THERE ARE NO WALLS!!!

Check it out:

Nowalls!!!.JPG
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Gecko--great news! I completely agree about the school district issue. When are you going to go check out the new houses on your list? I can''t wait to hear how it goes!

Those pictures literally made me laugh out loud. Needs interior repairs, haha. Does putting up walls constitute a "repair"??
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
NEL - I know right? Interior repairs my ass. Try "you need to rip this house down and start over." Sheesh. Craziness.

We''re going sometime this week to look- I just emailed our realtor.
I''ll keep you posted!
 

NewEnglandLady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2007
Messages
6,298
Sounds good, Gecko! I can''t wait to hear about them!

I told the realtor we were passing on both houses (unless the deal falls through on the nice house) and that we were going to take a break.

And then I saw a listing for a house that had been delisted last weekend and relisted for a significantly lower price this weekend. It''s small and needs renovations, but has several of the things we would really like (oceanfront with lawn, 4 bedrooms, 2 full baths, a garage, etc.) so we''re going to go see it Wednesday evening.

So my break lasted approximately 4 hours.
 

geckodani

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2008
Messages
8,896
Date: 9/28/2009 6:56:17 PM
Author: NewEnglandLady
Sounds good, Gecko! I can''t wait to hear about them!

I told the realtor we were passing on both houses (unless the deal falls through on the nice house) and that we were going to take a break.

And then I saw a listing for a house that had been delisted last weekend and relisted for a significantly lower price this weekend. It''s small and needs renovations, but has several of the things we would really like (oceanfront with lawn, 4 bedrooms, 2 full baths, a garage, etc.) so we''re going to go see it Wednesday evening.

So my break lasted approximately 4 hours.
Well, special circumstances.
 
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