House Hunting

Alex and I bought our bought our first home 5 1/2 years ago. We thought it would be our forever home, but in the past month we began searching for a new home. Today I'm sharing why we're looking and what our plans are for the future. 

We put in 3 or 4 offers before we got our current home in 2013. We payed $170,000 which is kind of insane and could probably sell it today for $280,000. Our home is a little more than 1,700 sq. feet, 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms. It hadn't been updated when we purchased it, but overall was in great shape. I painted every wall, every piece of trim, every closet, and the kitchen. We did a small makeover on our guest bathroom and a bigger renovation on our master bathroom due to a water leak (insurance payed for that one). We had our carpet replaced in 2018 in a collaboration with Mohawk Flooring, and our garage was renovated by Lowe's.

Up until a few months ago we had always planned on our current home being our forever home. Why? We LOVE our area, the school district, and our neighbors. We're close to our jobs and can access Austin's three major highways in a few minutes. We are close to restaurants, shopping, and lots of parks. We've always discussed wanting more room, and have been planning a MAJOR renovation once our twins are out of daycare. Our kitchen is our least favorite part of the home as it's pretty small and not great for entertaining. We can only fit a 5 person round table in it. Our living room layout is not ideal as we only have room for one couch. We don't have a playroom which isn't a big deal, but we've never had a media room or area just for the kids and their rooms are small.

We envisioned renovating our living room, guest bathroom and kitchen, but the additional square footage we would get would be minimal. Our plan was to take out a home improvement loan, move out of our home and renovate (kitchen, living room, flooring, trim, guest bathroom, popcorn ceilings).  However just thinking about this major renovation stresses me out.

And then I was driving home from work one day and saw a new development sign in a beautiful green area directly next to our neighborhood. Alex and I immediately contacted the development company and set up a meeting to learn more. Our realtor, Stephanie, went with us but unfortunately the houses were too expensive and not our style.

That idea was squished. Then a month or so later Stephanie emailed me a home that she saw pop up just a few neighborhoods over and thought we might be interested. We were! Our realtor called immediately to infer. Unfortunately it already had multiple offers (after being on the market for 2 days), and they were deciding that morning. However the realtor advised Stephanie he had a beautiful house in the same neighborhood coming to the market very soon. We were sent photos of the listing from a few years ago and fell in love! We were able to see the home a week before it was listed and put an offer on it that same night.  The home had everything we wanted...perfect location (we could walk to our old neighborhood and see our friends), a block from the elementary, the space, the layout, the kitchen for entertaining, office, dining room, on a culdesac, 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, and DIRECT access to the neighborhood pool, park and hiking trail. We don't have a pool in our neighborhood so that was VERY appealing! We didn't hear back for a few days, and then the seller's realtor advised they wanted to list it on the MLS and see what other offers they could get.

We were bummed but understood where they were coming from. A week later it went on MLS, and we put an offer on it the next day. We went over asking price, wrote a sweet letter with photos, and agreed to all their terms (30 day close, free 10 day leaseback). We knew they had another offer, but were very hopeful as the realtor seemed to be swaying towards our side. We waited on pins and needles for two days. And then we got the news they accepted the other offer. I cried and was extremely disappointed. It's tough because we are very specific to 2-3 neighborhoods in a very close area which makes house hunting hard.

 Outfit: Jumpsuit (wearing a Medium $30) | Shoes | Hat | Sunglasses

So here we are. We will get future MLS listings via email, but I envision it taking a while before something works out because we are so specific to an area. The Austin and surrounding area housing market is NUTS! If you go on to Zillow or Redfin in our area, pretty much every house is pending. Most places aren't on the market for more than a couple of days and everyone is offering over asking price. Thankfully we're in a position where we don't have to move and can focus on saving. I struggle with wanting to update our home but then not wanting to put money in to it if we're going to end up selling it. 

Thank you for following our journey, and I'll keep you posted on what's to come! 

No comments: