Making my second offer

…or the story of The House That Broke My Heart.

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I still love this house…and it’s still on the market but more on that later.  As soon as I walked in I KNEW it was my house.  Beautiful floors, gorgeous historical accents, easy layout and a fireplace!  The kitchen needed some work-just counter tops, cabinets, appliances and paint and the sun porch/entry in the back was drywall and plywood but still, I KNEW.  As soon as I had seen it all and after it got my dad’s stamp of approval (in about 15 minutes) I told my realtor that I wanted to withdraw my offer on the first house and submit an offer on this one.

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The MAIL SLOT!

 I made a full asking price offer of $75,000 and within days it was accepted.  I went out of my way to drive past *my* house at least a few times a day and was on the edge of my seat for the day I got the call moving me forward.  FINALLY in October 2012 my realtor called and said that they were ready for me to schedule the inspection.  The house passed with only a few minor problems (fixing a breaker and replacing an outlet.)  The inspector said, “For a house of this vintage it’s in excellent condition.”  With this pass I fell harder and just knew I would be in by Christmas.

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That moulding!

So I waited, and waited and waited.  I decorated and rearranged the whole house a thousand times over in my head and then on December 27, 2012 my realtor called and said they had countered my offer.  The new price….$87,000.  And I needed to make my decision quickly.  My realtor agreed that the market and area didn’t support the higher price and so, after waiting for 4 months for MY house I walked away.

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sigh

Within two weeks of it being relisted at $85,000 it again went under contract but that’s as far as it has gotten.  It has spent another 5 months pending and according to the online listing it’s waiting on Financing.

I’m sure people think I’m crazy-$87,000 is nothing for a house but I felt betrayed and played with.  I felt like I was being manipulated and the bank was trying to see just how much they could get from me.

I think about this house all the time but I don’t regret not buying it.  I had dreams of celebrating its 100th birthday and restoring it to the beautiful, loved home that it once was.

I still plan on buying an almost 100 year old home and I still dream about making something beautiful again.  A house is waiting in the wings (just bought by BOA, waiting for it to hit the market) that was built in 1918 and could be even more perfect that this one.  No pictures yet though, I don’t want to jinx it!

-A

PS-while I didn’t notice any ghosts in this house my mother felt an older man in the basement workshop (near the original coal chute!)  I like to think that he would have loved how I cared for his beloved home.

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Making my first offer

After looking at a bunch of houses I was worried that what I really wanted didn’t exist.  I told my realtor that I wanted an older home with character.  In need of updates and minor repairs was even better.  I don’t want anything huge-three bedrooms or two bedrooms and an area I can devote to crafts would be perfect.

This house is 2 bedrooms, one bath, 944 square feet and built in 1918.  It had a decent kitchen and a nice sized laundry room.  The best part was a large open room above the garage that I thought would be perfect for crafts.

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As I met my realtor after 5:oo PM I told her I would meet her at her office the next day when I got off work to put in the offer.  I e-mailed the woman doing my financing the next morning when I got to work and she quickly replied.  She said she was excited for me and that she knew I had been looking for a long time and she was happy to hear that not only had I finally found something but that it was well within my budget.  I told her that I’d be meeting with my realtor that afternoon to put the offer in and asked her to send over my pre-approval letter.  I left work at 2:00 PM and as I was headed to my realtor’s office she called me and said that she still hadn’t gotten the pre-approval letter and that she hadn’t been able to get a hold of my “mortgage lady” all day.  When I got off the phone with her I called my “mortgage lady” and asked her what was going on.  She said, “Oh, I have bad news…I don’t have a loan for you!”  I had been working with this woman from the beginning.  She told me I was approved and gave me a budget and she laughed as she told me I no longer had a loan.  In tears I called my realtor back and told her that I couldn’t place the offer that day.  I then called my parents, in tears and near hysterics.

As I told people at work my (first) home-buying-horror story one of the girls suggested I contact the woman who recently helped her.  Even though I thought I wouldn’t get approved I submitted an application and waited for the “I’m sorry, but no” e-mail to come.  It didn’t.  By that afternoon I had a pre-approval letter in my inbox-something I couldn’t get from the first woman in two years!

On 9/15/2012, letter in hand I went back to my realtor and placed my offer.  My offer was almost immediately accepted by the owner but because it was a short sale I had to wait for the bank to accept it also.  I had heard that this could be a long process so I continued to look at other properties, just in case I found something I liked more….

Asking price: $78,000 (it finally sold in January 2013 for $92,000)

Smelled like: old carpet, almost 100 years of living

Haunted: I don’t think so

I don’t regret not buying this house.  After going back to look at it a second time I realized that the only way to access the only bathroom was through one of the bedrooms.  I think 90% of the time this would have been fine but I know it would have gotten old having to keep my room presentable just in case someone had to go through it to get to the bathroom.

I ended up withdrawing my offer on this house on 10/3/2012 because I fell in love with “The House That Broke My Heart” but I do still drive by it every once in a while to see how the new owners are fixing it up.

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-A

The Beginning

I’ve been house hunting for two years now.  After seeing several places (it feels like 100s!) that were too small, too smelly, too expensive and/or too run down I finally found “The House That Broke My Heart.”  After making an offer (that was accepted,) and getting the inspection the deal fell through.  Now that I’m back on the market, so to speak, I’ve decided to chronicle my misadventures in house hunting.  My hope is that someday (soon??) I’ll be able to write about the love I put into my new place.

What I’m looking for: A modestly sized home with room for me, my cat and some creative touches.

What I’ve found: Plywood floors, broken windows, cat pee, homes hung up in the foreclosure process, and homes that fly off the market before I can get in to see them.

I plan to catch you up with houses I’ve looked at and to tell you more about “The House That Broke My Heart,” but for now here’s a picture of me and Prudie.

ali prudie

-A