So big news to share today!
WE BOUGHT A HOUSE!!! AND ARE NOW HOMEOWNERS AGAIN!
It was a pretty surreal event as I’d imagine most times are when you drop hundreds of thousands of dollars on something, haha… But amidst all the congratulations being passed around on the day of our closing (something I remember enjoying MUCH more on the opposite side of the table!), deep down I wasn’t nearly as excited as I was hoping to be at this stage of the game :(
The house itself is great, and both my wife – and especially my kids! – are completely in love with it (the backyard is insane!), but as soon as we made the decision I began having pangs of regret even though I knew it was in the best interest of my family… And probably why I’ve been so quite about it lately here on the blog – I knew it would be a hard thing to write about!
But I’m hoping things will change once we’re officially moved in and living there?? Rather than being so stuck in my *head* as I am now?!
While the house we chose wasn’t The One I would have picked on my own, at the end of the day it really does check off a number of boxes – and more! – for us, so I’m trying my best to remember it’s not just about me anymore and to suck it up and focus on the positives…
And there really are a ton of positives here:
#1. The backyard! I don’t know how the former owners did it, but they managed to transform this backyard into one of the most serene and beautifully landscaped sanctuaries I have ever seen in my life. It literally feels like you’ve walked into your very own botanical garden of flowers and trees and bird houses and all kinds of other magic that lights up your eyes on the spot. And thus – why my kids are gaga over it ;) “There are so many places to play hide and seek!!”
#2. The sunroom. If the gardens weren’t enough, it also comes with an epic sunroom where all these blog posts will probably be written out of going forward! Haha… With the help of my beloved coffee, of course ;)
#3. The space. It wasn’t the biggest one we saw, but it also wasn’t the smallest either, and fits nicely right in the middle with plenty of room to grow into (or not) if we wanted. With just the number of rooms needed that we’ll fully maximize.
#4. The overall care and attention. From the appliances to the HVAC to the water heater to the roof – it’s all been meticulously maintained and updated within recent years, giving us that extra peace of mind that nothing major should be looming around the corner… Although I’m fully aware that that can change at a moment’s notice! ;)
#5. The price tag. At $337,000, it slips nice and under our targeted budget of $350,000, and while we did have to pony up some for closing, our realtor was able to negotiate it well through multiple offers on the house, and even got them to throw in the riding lawnmower that will 100% be needed to maintain the place, haha… (more on that in a bit – which you already know where it’s going!)
#6. The school zone. While we did flirt with other school zones due to a lack of homes on the market, we were both super happy to have landed in the one school district that’s been at the top of our list the entire time. So yet again another win in the kids department!
So overall, a pretty good list to look forward to, right??
So why the hell am I so anxious??!
Well, you can’t have the pros without any cons of course, and unfortunately for me those are standing out a lot more than I’d like them to be…
#1. We didn’t get the dream community I was really hoping for… This was partially my fault as I totally misjudged just how many houses would come on the market, especially in the exact location we were shooting for. We initially saw 2 of them right away as we started our search, which led me to believe many more would show up over time and I ended up becoming picky and lost the one we should have nabbed. Only one other has since come on the market, and it was equally as overpriced as it was poorly maintained so it was an immediate no go…
#2. It felt rushed towards the end… Mainly because I severely underestimated just how much my wife did NOT like our Plan B of renting. The initial idea was to “keep our minds open with owning” and then if we didn’t find The One, to go back to renting for another year until we did, but as time went on I quickly realized just how much she did not like the idea of having to pack up and move all over yet again, thereby crossing off that option and adding a new layer of urgency to matters. To make things worse, there weren’t even any new rentals coming onto the market to pick from in our desired school zone!
#3. We don’t know enough about this new area we chose yet. From the outside there doesn’t seem to be any red flags, but it was one place we didn’t know too much about before visiting the home for the first time so we’re still cautiously optimistic… I remember once reading that it’s always best to try and spend the night there or at least visit it at all hours of the night, but we just didn’t have it in us to try and pull that off, haha…
#4. That backyard is going to be a b*tch to maintain!! Something I swore I’d never take on, but after seeing my kids light up upon their visit I just couldn’t lay down the hammer and figured it couldn’t be THAT bad if others managed to do it, right???! Especially with a fun little riding lawn mower to play with???! And all that extra time with nature?! (Look how bad I’m trying to convince myself here, haha… I am FREAKED OUT!! SOMEBODY SAVE ME!!!)
#5. We dropped $70,000 of cash to secure it. Not unexpected at all, and again less than we budgeted for, but still never fun to see that much money leave your accounts no matter what you’re using it for :(
#6. And lastly, I’m just not “there” yet with all this home ownership stuff still… I’ve been putting on a pretty face and was good there for a moment as we got going and did fun stuff like *looking around*, but now that things have become a reality and there’s no backing out, I’m feeling all those pressures again I remember hating the first time around… Even though logically I know we’ll be perfectly fine and it really isn’t the end of the world! In fact, it’s the BEGINNING of a whole new one that my family’s super excited about!
And really, it’s that last part there that calms me down the most whenever I start getting into my head, and what I imagine will eventually help me overcome this current mind mess I’m in…
It may not be the most ideal home or situation if I had it my way, but as I’ve realized at the start of this journey, it’s not just me calling the shots anymore and if everyone is saying this is The House for us, well, then it’s the house for us and I need to be at peace with it!! And we already bought it anyways so why am I still stewing on it??!
I’m sure you won’t be shy with the comments, but this is just me getting it all out there and keeping things as transparent as I can, as life – and finances – aren’t always so pretty ;) I was really hoping to be excited about it all and tell you I’m over my fear of owning – but nope!! It’s still very much lingering there! Haha…
Though if there’s one main takeaway here, it would be to allow a LOT more time for home searching than we did, especially if you’re targeting a specific community. If I could do it over again I would have started our search 3-4 months earlier which would have allowed the reality of owning to settle in more, as well as the opportunity for more houses to come on the market… Maybe we would have landed on the same house in the end, I don’t know, but at least I would have been more prepared for it!
And that’s where we’re at now, with things… With more to come later, I’m sure ;)
Comments/questions/positive vibes – pass ’em all over!!
Thanks for listening!
Jay loves talking about money, collecting coins, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his three beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!