The Light At The End Of The Tunnel Is A Porch Light
Thursday we went and looked at the only house left on our list. The pictures and description made it sound fine, so we kept it marked as a potential house, but we weren’t really expecting much. We have been in that position before, where a house looks and sounds great and we get pretty excited about it, and then show up to see that the realtor has been both generous in their writing and is a wizard with Photoshop. Add to that the fact that this house looked good but was priced really low, and we were pretty sure we’d be leaving disappointed yet again.
Boy am I glad we went.
This house has everything we were looking for, and a little bit more. The garage is only a 2 stall, but it goes straight into the backyard so we can easily extend it back. I say easily because the yard is actually pretty huge (something like four tenths of an acre). It has a formal dining room, which I really wanted, and a formal living room that is already sectioned off perfectly to just become Geoff’s office. The layout is fabulous, the appliances and flooring is all in good shape, and there’s a list of things we’d like to do to the house. This is a major bonus because every other house had things we had to do to the house to make it what we wanted.
Added bonus: it’s so low on the budget scale we would have money leftover from our down-payment savings AND it’s a sizeable chunk less monthly payment wise than we’ve been budgeting.
Yes, we were kind of in love with it.
So was another couple.
As we’re looking through the house, our realtor shares with us that there is another couple that was in on Tuesday that was very interested in the house and was coming back this weekend to take a second look. On the one hand, this added a little pressure. Did we really love it enough to go for it? Were we comfortable enough having seen the house once? We agreed we’d go home and talk about it, and told our realtor we’d call her in the morning to update her on what we were thinking.
We spent a couple of hours wracking our brains trying to come up with concerns about the house. Things we didn’t like, things we were nervous about, things that we couldn’t fix, anything negative about it. The only real negative we came up with was that we wondered if the low price was indicative of a hidden problem, but that would come up during a home inspection.
So we didn’t even wait until morning. 3 hours after having left the house we emailed our realtor to ask her to write up an offer.
The big question was, what kind of offer would we put in? With another couple interested, it was highly likely they would submit an offer as well. If that happened, the seller could essentially do whatever they wanted. They could choose one offer over the other without so much as a word to the “losing” couple, they could put up a counter offer, or they could say no dice to both and tell us both to put in our best final offers. We would have zero control, and no knowledge of what the other offer was to try to fight for it. Considering the house was so well priced to begin with, we decided the best way to avoid that problem was to just go in full price. Not usually a recommended course of action, but given the competition and the already low price, it made sense to us at this point. After our realtor agreed that was the smart choice, she wrote it up, and the next day we took an extended lunch from work to go sign the paperwork.
A pen has never felt so heavy.
Our realtor called the selling agent that morning to let him know we’d be submitting an offer. Our expectation was that he would call the other people interested in the house, since that’s what realtor’s typically do, so we put a time limit on their ability to respond to the offer under the threat of us revoking it. This wasn’t our idea but our realtor’s, and it’s something I’ve seen done on numerous occasions. The limit isn’t so much of a limit on the seller, but more of a limit on the other interested parties since they’d have to move pretty quickly to submit an offer for consideration as well.
The offer was officially submitted around 1PM. The sellers had until 11PM to make a decision and get back to us. I was prepared for a tortuous 10 hours.
A little after 5 our agent called. The sellers had accepted our offer.
In just under 24 hours we went from walking in the front door of the house to having an offer accepted on it.
Now the fun part starts. The sale is listed as pending since there are a bunch of things that have to happen before we can close on it. We have 10 days to get the house inspected and get a list of any issues to the homeowners. If something terrible comes up that they refuse to remedy to our satisfaction, we can walk from the house with no penalty. Fingers crossed this does not become a needed bit of information. We also have to get the mortgage set up. We already have pre-approval, but of course we need to do all the final paperwork. The offer on the table currently has a deadline of November 30 for the closing, so barring any disasters, we will be holding the keys to our new house by December!