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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

House Hunting Part Three

When I ended Part Two, I was fleeing in panic before committing myself to buying the house I thought I wanted.

Only I kept thinking about House 5--the one that had everything I wanted except a basement. It was lower priced than the builder's home by a big enough dollar figure that I could actually change the few things I wasn't crazy about and those items were few and far between. I even liked the colors the walls were painted.

I asked my agent if we could go back to House 5 and take another look. She set up an appointment for Sunday at 11am.

I went home, loaded all my pictures on the computer, and started thinking hard about what was really important to me. Did I want that basement enough to live in a cramped house with flooring and fixtures I wouldn't like and couldn't afford to replace for years?

House 5 wasn't brand new, but it was only five years old and had only had one owner. They'd taken good care of the house.

Other pluses were the lot was setup in a way that gave maximum privacy. There were houses behind it, but I could only see the roofs from the back patio. There were houses on either side of this house, but you couldn't really see any neighbors from the backyard either. And not only was it private, but it was quiet and serene. It would be a great place to recharge at the end of the day.

But no basement. All the boxes and books and dishes that I have stored in my Minnesota basement would have to fit--somehow--into the bedrooms or closets in the house. Some stuff I could get rid of, but a lot of it...well, not really.

The question then became did I want a basement so much that I would go with a house that didn't measure up to a house that had everything else I wanted?

I decided I wanted the house that had all the cool living space. I called my parents, figuring they'd talk me into the basement, but to my surprise, they didn't.

And when I went to bed that Saturday night, I knew that unless my second look at House 5 was a complete disaster, that was the house I'd be making an offer on. That was meant to be my house.

It shocked me. I always pictured my house with a basement. I also was surprised that there were things I liked about this house better than my house in Minnesota. That feels so disloyal, but then I remind myself that there are things in my MN home that I like better than House 5, too. I guess it evens out in the long run.

My second look at the house didn't change my mind. Sure there are some things I want to change--some of the light fixtures aren't to my taste, but then my style is modern/contemporary and most people prefer more traditional lighting. And I would like to screen in the patio to keep the bugs away. But ultimately, the house is move-in ready and I don't actually have to do anything to live there happily.

When we went back to my agent's office to put in my offer on the house, I didn't panic. I was a little nervous, but mostly calm and that's how I know I made the right choice for me.

Of course, then the nerves changed from making the right house decision to would the sellers accept my offer?

To Be Continued.