Sunday, February 6, 2011

Homebound...the Last 7 Days

Last Saturday - Our first outing with our realtor.  I have a bit of a hangover from last night's visit from friends.  One house we visit smells like dog pee.  Third home, walking distance to Chris' work, unexpectedly knocks our socks off.  At the top of the stairs of this cute little Cape, Chris whispers to me, "I love this place. We should bid on it right away."  I can't argue. It feels like a happy house. At our last stop, we run into a nice young couple also shopping for a home.  We wish them luck.

Sunday - Chris & I sit down to make an offer on the happy house, but are ready to play hardball in the bidding process.  Our realtor informs us that the couple we met yesterday are putting in a bid as well.  Now we're trying not to blow it.  We offer asking price and put down the largest down payment possible.  The sellers have until 6pm tomorrow to respond.

Monday - I haven't slept in two nights and am going crazy at work.  Chris calls just after 1pm to say we got the house (much rejoicing).  I celebrate with co-workers, Chris joins us, and we go home and crash.  I still can't sleep.

Tuesday - Did we just buy a house in 3 days?  We can afford this, right?  Did we make the decision too quickly?  Can I take a mental health day tomorrow?  I can?  Thank you so much.

Wednesday - Mental health day = shoveling snow, doing taxes, and meeting with the mortgage broker again.  Paperwork paperwork.  How do we get home owners insurance?  Schedule the inspection as soon as possible?  I sleep well for the first night this week.

Thursday - We continue to gather funds, by requesting an advance and looking into borrowing against our 401Ks (first time home buyers have little and sometimes no penalty).

Friday - Chris is on the phone all day comparing insurance estimates. We meet with the realtor again, re-read the fine print, and sign the purchase and sale.  I think we just bought a house.  Well, if everything goes well tomorrow.

Saturday - We spend over 2 hours at the house inspection.  The happy house has no major issues and the inspector gives us a 101 on oil tanks, gutter maintenance, plumbing, termite prevention, and how to get discounts for more efficient insulation in the attic.  I see so many great details that I missed the first time through. Chris says "Doesn't this already feel like home?" 

Since moving to Providence we've spent thousands and thousands on rent.  Now we'll have more control over the results of our work (and paychecks), which in turn leads to more freedom down the road.  We got really lucky.  We love this city, the housing market was ideal, the mortage rates low, the list goes on and on.  We also couldn't have done this were it not for the friends here who have made this city feel like home, and the supports of family and friends who have helped us emotionally through life's dramas, and financially in our pursuit of non-profit careers.  Not for a minute could we even think that we got to this place by ourselves.  And I know the respite of this home will enable us give more when we're outside of it.