Friday, December 07, 2007

A Tale of Two, No Wait, Three Houses

Our first trip out with our real estate agent for some serious house hunting left me disappointed at our options. So the next Saturday, we tried again. And at the end of the day, felt we had a couple of very viable options. This is the problem. I want a house. A nice house. A nice big house, so that when I'm stuck at home with the kids all day, there is enough room for us to get away from each other with out driving each other crazy. Vince wants land. Lots of land. Land lots of land with the starry sky's above. Don't fence him in. Remember Green Acres? Yep, that's us. Our task was not an easy one.

So last Saturday, house #1, we looked at a house that Vince was most interested in. Luckily it reeked of dog urine, and was so small even Vince couldn't deny it. It was located on a street called Hardback Court. All I had to do was call it Brokeback Court, and he said he couldn't live there now. He's just too easy sometimes.

On to house #2. Another smaller house on an acre of land, but new and with a swimming pool, so I was ready to give it a look. Nope, too small, no trees, and a questionable area.

On to house #3. Basically I forced Vince into looking at this house. He had no interest, but we were in the area, it was six minutes away from house #2, so how could he say no? Still a smaller house than I wanted, listed at 2,636 sq. ft., but new and on 1 1/2 acres at the end of a cul-de-sac, and heavily wooded. It was beautiful. Not laid out like I'd like, smaller than I wanted, but very high end. Four bedrooms, three bathrooms, but only one living area and one dining area. Great neighborhood, which will be gated, and all lots are a minimum of an acre. The kids had such a good time running around that property, they were elated. Sophia was running around, her cheeks were all pink and rosy. It was a happy sight. And there were deer tracks. Lot's of them, all over the backyard. And the fact that it was like being on the edge of a forest won Vince over. Oh, that and the enormous 23x30 garage. So the house is smaller than I want, but there is room to add on if we feel the need and the neighborhood can't be beat. That's the Antler Ridge house. You can see that house here.

Then on to house #4. Basically the house of my dreams. 4100 sq. ft. Five bedrooms, three and a half bathrooms, a living room, a family room, a study, a dining room, a game room, and a media room. There is even an exercise room off the master bath. And the master closet was bigger than some bedrooms I've seen. I'm telling you, the only thing I could find wrong with this house was the fact that it didn't have double ovens. Then there was the yard. The yard was fine. Not huge, but definitely better than what we have now. There is room for the kids to play. No, it's no acre and a half, and it's not wooded, but o-kay. It's only a 9,000 sq. ft. lot, but look at the house! And we couldn't reach out the window and touch our neighbors house, so while the houses were closer than we would like, they weren't ridiculously close. That's the Glenwood house. You can see that house here.

Ah, decisions, decisions. So getting back into the car, Vince asks me "O-kay, if you had to make an offer on a house right now, which one would it be?" I hate it when he does that to me. I'm not a snap decision maker. I don't like being put on the spot. So I thought a couple of minutes, the inner turmoil building. Do I choose what I want? Do I choose what my husband wants? Do I choose what I think would be best for my kids? My kids of course. But what would be better for my kids? A bigger house? Do my kids care what size house they live in? And how did I get so high and mighty that I think I need a 4,100 sq. ft. house? Why can't I get the Glenwood house in the Antler Ridge area? Am I asking too much? Apparently. Do my kids want more room to run and play? Is that what is more important to my children? Running and playing seem pretty important to kids. Do they even know what they want, and would they verbalize it if they could? Ugh! So I said I'd make a low ball offer on the Antler Ridge house and if it was meant to be , it was meant to be. If not, I thought the Glenwood house would be a great second choice. Vince agreed. We had a decision.

So while we're getting our pre-qual stuff worked out, and our agent is doing a little homework on the area for us, I'm thinking more and more about the Antler Ridge house. It really is the kind of neighborhood I wanted, but the house just seems so small. 2,636 sq. ft. The house we're currently in is supposed to be about 2,450 sq. ft. and I swear it has more room. We have four bedrooms, two and a half bedrooms. A family room, a game room, and a room at the front of the house that is supposed to be a formal dining but we use it as our homeschooling room. I just couldn't figure out where all that extra square footage was supposed to be. So our agent e-mailed the listing agent about the square footage, and he got kind of snippy.

My inner turmoil still going on. I wanted to go look at the Antler Ridge house and the property again, so Sunday after Mass we made another trek out there. It's no short trip, it's currently 1 1/2 hours from where we live now, but only 30 minutes from where Vince works. So his commute will improve greatly.

The property was still great, but the house was still small. We're talking back and forth on how we could extend this wall, or build out over the garage, etc, etc. So as we're leaving we decide to drive around the neighborhood, because there are still a lot of lots of land for sale. Just before it got dark, we came across a house that was still being built. Pretty much done, but not quite. Vince asked if I wanted to see it inside, but I thought it must be locked, how could we get in it. Well there wasn't even a lock on the front door yet. So we went in, and it was a lot like the Antler Ridge house, but a little bigger. 2,814 sq. ft. Laid out a little better. And it had a formal dining, and a study, but still only one living area. It's only on a one acre lot, but still, one acre. And I think the house won't feel so cramped. That's the Deer Chase house. No link for this house, it's not even on the market yet. So now we have a meeting with the builders on Sunday to see if we could afford to build what I want on a lot that Vince wants. Or should we just go with what is already built, and we'll make it work for us.

So wish us luck, keep us in your prayers, do whatever it is you do to send someone good vibes. I just want to make the right decision, whatever that decision may be.

But I do have to say, with all the inner turmoil and complaining I'm doing, I'm feeling like I'm not liking myself very much right now. Nothing has been stolen, Vince is employed and just got a raise, and everyone is healthy. We're just trying to buy a house. Which is what we've been waiting to do for a year now. I need to focus on being grateful, not conflicted. So shut up already!


Jessica said...

Wow, sounds like you've got some great choices. I'll bet they can built what you want on the lot you want! I'll be sending you good vibes. And I'm totally jealous that you are getting to really house shop!!! :)

Jessica said...

P.s. Oh how I want to move back to Texas, I can't get over how CHEAP those gorgeous homes are!!!

Lena said...

What did the builder say? Have you made a decision yet?