Tuesday, May 28, 2013

House Hunting...(double) SUCCESS!

With Nic's escrow closed and the packing party started, I was PUMPED to be right behind her with my escrow closing only two weeks later!  How is that for one thriving monster move?!  We are moving even closer to each other with only a short four miles between our new and "real" homes.  But it wasn't all fun and games to get there as you know from my last post on Fun or Frustrating but at least it is over!


When I went home to the Bay Area to visit my family over my Spring Break in April, my TH took this house hunting nonsense on full boar.  He had the week off as well so he went with our realtors and looked at nearly ten different homes.  After speaking with me multiple times a day we decided to just go nutty and put offers on every/anything we saw.  If it was a house, in our budget and in a nice area of Orange County we put an offer on it.  We didn't care if it needed work, was smaller than we wanted or not the best layout; we put in an offer.  We could always do the work later, we could always make the house bigger (if the city allowed add-ons of course) so, we were willing to be flexible.  We were mindful of resale and stayed away from freeways and any other unsavory buying deterrents like having railroad tracks running through our backyard, ect.

We ended up putting in five offers in a span of two days and were just hoping that by doing so our odds would increase.  We were REALLY sick of being the first runner up in a constant state of back up position.  While it is good to be in back up, unfortunately for us, no one ever fell through so we were still losers in the end.

Then one fateful day, our super smart and hardworking realtors had another agent in their office get a listing that had yet to go on the market.  It was JUST what we had been looking for and they were determined  on getting it for us.  I mean they had already door knocked on 300+ homes in a neighborhood we liked just trying to get someone to list with them...so they were ready to get us a home run!  They just had a feeling about this one and they jumped right on it.  They told the selling agent we were just what her clients needed and to take a chance on us (insert ABBA song here please) asking to let us put in an offer before she listed the property for the world to see.   The selling agent agreed and as usual our realtors, packaged us up with a bright red bow, made touches to our lovely little biography and sent us to the sellers...

The sellers not only loved our "young couple starting a family" story but accepted our slight over-bid of their suggested list price and accepted our offer without even showing or listing the house. BOO YA!  This meant that for ONCE we weren't going to have to get all Hunger Games on people and fight till the death for this home. It was ours, under the radar and after they accepted our offer we officially started our 45 day escrow.   We had 15 days to back out for any reason which meant we had a lot to do in a short amount of time and the clock was always ticking. We had to schedule inspections, appraisals and make sure our loan was all in order.  As a buyer once escrow starts, the ball is in your court and you better make sure you sink that shot!  We were advised to drive by as much as possible at different times on different days and make sure what was going on in the neighborhood was what we wanted..we became local stalkers and made the most of our 15 days.


Because the market is so competitive we had to make some concessions we maybe wouldn't have done, like take the house "as is" or not "contingent on appraisal".  Since we didn't have those luxuries,  we focused our energy to the positive and were determined to hope that it would all work out.  Because we couldn't back out if the appraisal came in too low (that would mess up our loan and require us to come up with the money of the houses cost), we were really praying it would come in right where we wanted it.  After days on pins and needles we got the call.. SUCCESS! It came in to the penny and we were one step closer to making this house dream a reality!

Next up home inspection.  Unless something came back really scary (termites, geological issues, wood rot, ect) we would be good to go.  After a very nice man came through and went through every nook and cranny, he gave it his stamp of approval and again, SUCCESS!  We were one step closer to that big day 15 where we were removing contingencies and 100% all in....whoa.

That fateful day arrived, we met our realtors at the local Starbuck's, signed off and it was done....done...DONE?! Wow, we bought a house!  Now was the easy part, riding out the rest of escrow until we threw down our thousands of dollars for our down payment, did our last walk through and got the keys...next up, NEST-A-POOLOZA!

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