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The House Hunt: Part 1 – Taken by surprise

It’s official. We have begun the elusive hunt. After 2 and 1/2 years in our apartment we’re ready to take a leap and spread out a little – or a lot – more.

My mom has been a realtor for about 7 years now, so I’ve seen her help a lot of people house hunt and now it’s our turn. Our lease is up at the end of September, but both Pat and I like to feel very informed, so we’ve started to keep an eye on what’s being put out on the market and how things are moving.

We saw a few houses through appointments last week, and made 8 appointments for today. To be perfectly honest about 6 of them were completely not an option – either gross, poorly maintained/remodeled or overpriced – most of them all three. We were just about to see our last showing and then I remembered another property that I had seen listed, but hadn’t seen pictures posted for yet. We were nearby so I suggested we drive past to see what it looked like. And then we saw what it looked like.

It is an awesome house. It hits all the checkmarks. The right number of beds, baths, garage spaces, type of basement, yard size, neighborhood – the only thing that could be improved was a slight change in layout of the kitchen and maybe a different color of appliances, but that’s being really picky. But, we weren’t expecting to find anything we were really serious about until at least late spring/early summer.

This was our kick in the pants to talk to someone and get all of our pre-approval ducks in a row. After talking numbers, this house hunting things feels official now. It’s like we’re adults or something…

Now, if you know me at all, I’m not one to sit on something. True, I like to feel absolutely informed, get all my details, research back and forth, up and down – but if I want something I usually make my mind up pretty quickly. And I really like this house…and I think I want this house…so I am (not so secretly) kind of jumping out of my skin, not knowing what to do with myself while trying to keep things slow. Pat is more calm and collected (at least for now), especially since, like I said, we weren’t expecting to find something we like for a few more months. So now it’s kind of a wait-and-see sort of thing. We’re going to look into what our conditions are for our lease – if we could get out early with a penalty or not – and what type of allowance we can afford ourselves in terms of lease and mortgage overlap (we wanted to allow ourselves a little bit anyways to hopefully be able to paint and move in comfortably without too much of a rush).

Everyone’s house hunting experiences are different. What has yours been like? Anyone else hunting currently, like us? If you’ve gone through the process already, was it a whirlwind or a slow, dragging process? What was the most frustrating part? The most exhilarating? Any advice for us? I’d love to hear anything anyone has to share!

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