catching up

It has been a LONG time since I’ve posted, yowza! We have been deep into purchasing our new house, cleaning,  moving out of our apartment, cleaning some more, and fixing up our house. I thought it might be kind of fun (or at least interesting/informational) to do a little break down of what we personally went through in purchasing our house. I think I talked about it in my previous post, but here’s a little recap- we originally found a house that we thought was going to work out great. It had 3 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, a full basement, and a detached 3 car garage. There was so much room to make ours, with what we thought would be some minor improvements and updates. We made an offer on the house. Once the offer was made, we began working with our bank. I had to provide proof of insurance, our last two months bank statements, proof of employment, proof of earnest money, etc. It seemed like so many things! It is no joke buying a house! On top of all that, we had to schedule an inspection and appraisal for the house. I am so so thankful we did an inspection because the house was in way worse shape than we even realized- the chimney was crumbling and needed to be torn down and replaced, the foundation of the garage had shifted and one of the walls had cracked so much you could almost put your hand in it, the grading in the yard needed leveled so water wasn’t pouring towards the house when it rained, the roof was in bad shape, and the ceiling in the garage was so full of mold that it was falling down and the garage door wouldn’t open all the way. It was just such a disaster. I don’t know how we didn’t notice some of these issues when we first walked through, but it was a lesson learned for sure. We were able to walk away from that house because of the inspection being so bad and weren’t penalized, thankfully! Back to the house hunt we went. And we found our new home so quickly! We went to an open house to see it- honestly, I had pretty low expectations from the pictures and didn’t want to get my hopes up after what we had just been through with the other house. Walking through it, though, I just fell in love. It’s nothing grand or spectacular, but it was exactly right for Josh and I (and of course, Rocko). The house was built in 2002 (unlike the other house built in the 1960s, I think), so that made me feel better already. It was built on a slab, so we wouldn’t have to worry about water in a crawl space or basement. It has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and a 2 car garage…exactly what we were hoping to get, but hadn’t been able to find in our price range. The house is on a corner in the neighborhood and the neighborhood is basically a giant cul-de-sac, so there is no through traffic, which is wonderful!! There is an open, empty field behind the house, so we don’t have to worry about more people or houses behind. I knew as soon as we left that we were putting an offer on it. Of course, it can never just be easy- we put an offer in on that Saturday knowing that offers were being accepted until that Sunday evening. The seller was elderly and had gone out of town to visit family, didn’t own a cell phone or a computer, and the weather ended up being very snowy/icy and unsafe to drive back in. But, we didn’t know any of this had happened! We didn’t hear anything all Sunday night or Monday morning. I worked myself up so much, I had a stomach and headache! Why do I do that?? I knew in my heart that everything would work out, that God was going to provide for us no matter what, that if this house fell through there had to be a better one out there for us. I finally reached out to our realtor when I still hadn’t heard anything around lunch on Monday. He explained that the seller had been out of town and unable to look over the offers, but was meeting with their realtor right then to make a decision. I was so anxious. Just a bit later, I received a text message that our offer was accepted and we got the house!!! I was SO relieved and excited! And so we began the process all over again of moving forward with getting a house- I had to compile previous bank statements, proof of home insurance, proof of earnest money being received, and proof of employment. There were also several phone calls back and forth with the bank about our different loan options and monthly payments dependent upon what our down payment would be. I finally got everything together and sent off to the bank for the mortgage department to begin their part of the process. And let me tell you, it seemed like that would never end. Just weeks and weeks of waiting after rushing around getting all that paperwork together. The weeks slowly went by though and we finally closed on the house in April. Closing on a house is a whole other kind of stress. There are pages upon pages upon pages for you to sign. Not to mention the large amount of money being taken out for the mortgage on the house. So. Much. Money. In the end, for us, it is worth every penny. We still had possession of our apartment until the end of June, but as soon as we had the keys to our house, we began cleaning and moving stuff over. We just couldn’t wait to be in our own space again. I spent an entire day at the house sweeping, vacuuming and shampooing the carpets, cleaning the toilets, sinks, and showers, wiping down the insides and outsides of the cabinets, and wiping down the appliances. For the next few days, I packed my car with as much as I could and stopped by after work to drop it off. Taking a smaller amount over at a time was great because I could unpack everything right away and put it in its place, I didn’t have to just throw a bunch of boxes wherever they would fit to worry about later. That illusion quickly came to an end that following weekend though. Josh’s parents came in to town to help us pack up a uHaul and move everything out. I really don’t know how we would have done it without them…although I can guarantee it would have taken at least twice as long and would have been much more stressful. We were both really grateful to have them both there helping. I was just throwing stuff in whatever box or container was available with no organization at all. Moving so quickly meant that we did exactly what I was trying to avoid haha- boxes stacked up randomly and furniture stored wherever it would fit. I am the type of person that really doesn’t like things not being in their place, so I had to rein myself in not to stress out too much. We had about two weeks before some of our friends were coming to stay with us, but that gave us an extra little push to actually unpack everything, organize, and settle in. When we did our original walk through during the open house, we knew we wanted to replace the flooring eventually, but we didn’t think there would be much other work for us to do right away. Once we got in, we realized we actually wanted to do quite a lot. Even though the house is “young” (17 years old), everything was original- it needed new appliances, new paint, new light fixtures and blinds (they were all covered in a dirty, dusty goo), and new curtains. Whew, isn’t buying a house so much fun?? Really, isn’t it?? Despite all the stress of house hunting, a bad inspection, closing, cleaning, moving, unpacking, painting, replacing things, cleaning the apartment, decorating, more painting and unpacking, rearranging, this house has been such a blessing for our little family. We’ve been able to share our house with many visiting friends and family (honestly, more people have been to/stayed at our new house than the house we lived in before for 3 years!) and now this adorable little house has become our home.