I know I've been MIA lately, but for good reason! We got home from Ottawa on May 13 and the next day, we bought a house!
While husband and I were in Ottawa, we chatted about the house hunting process and how exhausted we were. We had been looking for a couple months and nothing was really right for us. We saw two houses that we considered putting offers in for - one we didn't offer on because a family friend (who is is contracting) came to look at it and told us not to buy it as it had some serious foundation issues; the second one we were going to bid on, but by the time our realtor came over to go through the bidding process, there were 6 or 7 bids already, with several hours to go, so we knew the house would be bid up and go beyond our budget.
So while in Ottawa, we decided we would stop looking for awhile. But, we had already made an appointment to see some more houses on the Monday morning when we returned, so we kept that appointment with our realtor and said after that, we'd take a break and let the bidding war that is called summer go on without us.
We met up with our realtor (actually our realtor was on vacation, so we met with his colleague) and the first house we saw that day was it! We both loved it - the location was ideal (even close enough to my office that I can still walk to work if I want), husband loved the kitchen (his domain, not mine) and I adored that there was an entrance foyer and a mud room at the back, so the cats would have a very difficult time trying to escape.
(Side note: I'm such a worrier when it comes to my fur babies - one major reason why I didn't want to buy a house is because I feared our cats would escape out the door and be lost. Right now if that happens, they can only get out into the apartment hallway. So with this house, there are two doors that we have to go through to enter or exit out the front or back, so you go through one door and have to close the second and walk through the foyer/mud room before you get to the second door. That peace of mind is priceless in my opinion.)
Anyway, so we went and saw the other homes on the list for that day, but we kept going back to the original house. By the time we were done for the morning, we knew we wanted to put in an offer. So we went for lunch while the realtor went back to the office to dig up some information.
After lunch, we went to his office and saw the comparables, chatted about what the listing agent had said and debated our options back and forth. The listing agent had said the couple selling wanted between $20,000-$30,000 more than the original asking price, so we put in a bid that was on the higher end of what they actually wanted, as we knew there would be multiple bids. We also had our family friend, the contractor, come by and take a look at the house and sign off on it.
And then we waited... offers were due at 7 pm that night. That night! So that means we saw the house at 10 am and we would know less than 12 hours later if we owned it! At 7:05, the realtor called us and said there were 7 bids on the house and did we want to change our offer (the message from the listing agent). We said no, as we knew our initial offer was a good one. About an hour later, I got a call - it was down to us and one other couple, and did we want to up our bid. I woke up Mark, who had been sleeping during this time (he had to work that night at 11 pm). He said to up it $3,000 and then went back to sleep. So I phoned my sister and she said that the other couple was probably thinking something similar - increase their bid by $2,000 or $3,000, so if we upped ours by $4,000, we had a better chance to get it. And really, what's another $1,000 when you're spending that much money? So that's what we did. About half an hour later, we got the call that the house was ours!
We are sooooo excited to be homeowners. A couple days after, the nervousness kicked in - so much money and stuff to do! But now I'm back to excited.
We move out of our apartment on June 30th and we get possession of the house on July 1st. We'll be spending the one night at my in-laws and leaving all our belongings in a U-Haul truck.
So, over the past month, I've been calling around for home insurance, getting quotes on some house stuff (we want to replace the furnace as it's old, and potentially the front window, which is the only window that wasn't replaced in 2010), getting mortgage stuff settled, finding someone to sublet our apartment and playing with all the budget numbers.
We've started going through all our stuff and packing the non-essentials. I actually love the whole moving process. Well, not the entire process, but I love the packing and unpacking part as you get to purge your belongings, find old treasures, sell/donate stuff and just 'cleanse'. So we're doing that right now and I am loving it. Not loving the mess though... :P
So hence, I have been rather quiet on blog land. But I will try to post more often now as I think things are settling down a bit.
I will post something about our Ottawa trip soon! And I'll try to get some house pictures up.