Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Third Time's a Charm?

Okay, wow. House #2 turned out to be falling down, quite literally. And we just weren't sure it could be salvaged, for any price...so we walked away. It was totally heartbreaking. I wish we didn't have to spend $300 on a professional inspection, but that was $300 well spent considering we could have had tens of thousands of dollars in repairs to even make the house livable. But we moved on to greener pastures...

House #3! We have an accepted offer, and we had our inspection yesterday. The report wasn't super great, but for the right price we should be able to see a return on our investment. We're following the classic real estate rule of purchasing the worst house in a good neighborhood. And realistically, this neighborhood is more upscale than the previous two houses (which were on the same street).

Check out some interior shots in all of their old person glory (and it smells like it looks like it smells):

Front door and porch


Kitchen (and half bath through the doorway)

Dining room

Living room

Family Room

Sun porch with ghostly apparitions

Full bath #1

Bedroom #1

Bedroom #2

Master Bedroom

Master Bathroom

We've got a looong to-do list and certainly have our work cut out for us, but at least it will be our very own!

Monday, May 2, 2011

House Hunting Continues

I figured it was about time to update on the Great House Search of 2011. We ended up choosing...(look at each other and giggle)...House #2!

But don't get too excited for us, because we got outbid on it at the eleventh hour. It was disappointing, and dare I say a little heartbreaking (cue the violins). We took it in stride and moved on to...

House #1! This house has been a bit of a unique situation for everyone involved. It's what you would call a "distressed property", which means the homeowners have a financial situation that required the bank to step in. So many properties are falling under that category these days, but since it's a relatively new crisis for the real estate market, every bank handles them differently. Sooo, that means this has been quite the learning experience for everyone involved. You would think that because this house has been on the market and vacant for a year and a half, when a qualified buyer comes along the bank couldn't get rid of it fast enough, right? Wrong! Or kind of wrong at least. They'd love to unload that house from their books, but they've got a stack of 387,998 on their desk in exactly the same situation. Ick for us!

However, we've had a bit of a unique situation. An agent for the bank (not WITH the bank) in some capacity purchased up all of their distressed listings and works to sell them on the bank's behalf. They knew what the bank wanted to get for the house, and they negotiated through their Realtor with us on a price. This probably made the whole process go a lot faster had they not had the third party agent.

At this point we thought we were all well and good. But life can never be that easy, right? The homeowner—who we weren't even aware was still involved at this point—couldn't hold out any longer to file for bankruptcy. Which then pulled the house off the market until a judgement could be made on her assets. Which could take 60-90 days. Which made us want to rip our hair out slash gouge our eyes out. But fast forward to a mere 30 days after hearing this news, and the bankruptcy was settled! Had to be some sort of record I think. The bank, whom we think is now in full control of the property, accepted our offer!

We have a quick 5 days to complete our inspections and get this show on the road. B's parents are coming up this week to give us an architect's expert eye, and we might just have a contractor tagging along as well. This house is in less-than-pristine condition, and has its share of problems...from what we can tell. We're no experts, so we'll just have to wait and see. We've got to decide how much is too much to invest in repairs and hope the magic number is below that. I really want this house! I've been mentally redecorating for months now, and I'd like the ideas to get out of my dreams and into my car house. I can really picture us living in this house, so I just want it to happen already!

So there you have it, folks. Keep your inspection fingers crossed for us this Thursday!