I had originally said I’d write about this process and I have not. At all. Because NOTHING HAS HAPPENED. It’s like driving slowly off a cliff. Nothing’s happening right now, but you know that when something happens, it’s gonna happen all at once. Until then, you’re going 15 miles per hour and still making bathroom stops.
We go to open houses every weekend. The inventory seems to ebb and flow. Up until now I considered “inventory” to mean pens and pencils and printer paper. Now, it means four hundred thousand dollar houses. Last weekend we saw 7 places. This weekend, 2. We’ve also put in 3 offers. I guess I could tell you about that process. My coworkers have talked about how much they freaked out when they signed their first offers, outlining how much money to be paid when. Our real estate agent had us sign a blank offer. We agree to a pricing strategy before hand (lots of competition – bid at this price; no competition – offer the list price) and he fills out the paperwork and submits right before the deadline. In this area, they usually do open houses on Saturday and Sunday and all offers are due on a specific day and time so that the sellers can review them all at once. I like it because it gives me some time to think about a place without worrying that it’s going to be snatched up (not to say that some have accepted offers before their offer deadlines…they have…and they’re bastards). Anyway, here are the 3:
- Our first offer was on a 900 sq ft 1 bedroom. It had beautiful french doors leading from a front living room to another living room. I literally have no idea what we would have done with these two separate rooms. Especially because the kitchen was an eat in, so we didn’t need a dining room. Speaking of the kitchen, it had a cerulean backsplash, white cabinets, and LAUNDRY in the kitchen. The bedroom was huge, with a semi-walk-in closet that had custom rods and shoe holders. The basement was kinda damp, but we wouldn’t have to go in there, since…did I mention…LAUNDRY IN UNIT. List price = $350K. Offer price = $360K. No deal.
- Second offer was a 2 bedroom with beautiful trim in the dining room, a HUGE YARD, and deck and finished part of the basement. This yard was so huge, it was actually zoned as a separate parcel of land to build on, but some angel kept it fenced in with this 2-family condo. The finished basement section was strange. You had to walk through common basement to get to eat and the ceilings barely cleared 6 feet. No matter. List price = $369K. Offer price = $390K. They got 11 offers, many well over $400K (our max). We couldn’t offer our max. The furnace was 30 years old. 30 years! That shit is expensive. Could not offer our max.
- Third offer was the most disappointing. We started looking outside the city. It hurts to admit that. I will have no car, but live away from public transportation. Like, what? It had hardwood floors, french doors, 2.5 bedrooms, walk in closet, beautifully laid out kitchen, garage parking, grassy yard….It was pretty sweet. List price = $375K. Offer price = $400K. Yep, we offered our max on a place in the ‘burbs. And we didn’t even fucking win it. 2nd highest. The winner was $15-20k over $400K.
The last one was the hardest. I actually cried. It was the first one I legitimately thought we’d win. Especially since sales in that town have been about $10K over list for the last few months. I thought $25K had it. Honestly, we can only put down 5% and we’re not willing to waive inspection. People who waive inspection are fucking crazy. Shit here is built in the 1800’s. It has asbestos, flooding basements, lead everywhere, fire hazard electrical. Don’t waive inspection you morons.
It’s a demoralizing process. I calmed myself down by looking at the calendar. There are 4 weeks of open houses and offers before we need to panic.
Why would we need to panic? Oh, because we didn’t renew our lease, like idiots. Our landlord said that if we renewed, we wouldn’t be able to get out of it or transfer it to anybody. It’s up at the end of August, so we need an accepted offer by July 1 with a 60 day closing or July 15 with a 45 day closing at the latest. 4 more weekends before we panic. 4 very long weekends. There better be some more to look at this week. ARGGG.
Oh and the first place we were supposed to look at when we began this process was listed at $399K. Sale price was posted today. $450K. For 700 square feet. Are you fucking kidding me???
This article made me feel a smidge better! Just a smidge.