Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Moved on; in a new process

So last week was a little nuts, and I never got around to updating what happened with the house situation.

The House from before is no longer an option for us. The sellers didn't agree to make some of the remedies we considered non-negotiable (uh, mold in the basement!) Plus, our architect friend suggested getting out of it.

The same day we were back at the original house taking pictures for our architect friend, our realtor suggested seeing a few other homes. Well, we found a 2nd place we liked! It's significantly more expensive than the previous house, but it's bigger and nicer. There are more decorative things to do at some point (1st on the list: get rid of the granny wallpaper!!), but the house is in better condition.

We had our home inspection this past Saturday, and there are a few things for these sellers to fix, like new roofing shingles and a new hot water heater. But we're very confident in success this time around!

This house has great landscaping, so I'm reading up on gardening. I'm getting excited about plantings and I'm making some plans for the way I want to do our yard! It will be a busy and wonderful spring! :)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

I really should stop loving this house

This is really going to just be a quick status update without much practical advice included.

We heard from the sellers yesterday. We have a list of 11 items of the 18ish that we requested that they are willing to fix for us. Now the difficult decision making really kicks in. Are these 11 enough?

Some of our larger requests, they aren't doing, except to offer us $1,000 to go towards the issues. One of our largest concerns is the damp basement and all the trouble that entails. Our home inspector considered it a major concern and suggested having a basement professional investigate the issues. The sellers had a contractor come in, and their contractor really says there isn't much to be done. His recommendation is to install a dehumidifier and do some basic tuck-pointing as needed. So I started feeling good about the situation again. It seemed like things would work out.

However, I am a lucky girl who has a resource many people don't-- an architect friend who, in the past, has worked with how to remedy old building problems. So I call him, sent him a copy of the inspection report and thought all would be ok. Turns out he thinks there are more issues than are mentioned on the inspection report. So this afternoon, Scott and I are returning with our Realtor to take some more pictures of the spaces he is concerned with so we can get a better idea of what to expect with this house.

I'll keep ya posted on how things progress from here!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Perimeter drains, exhaust fans, and handrails

As I mentioned last week, we're in the process of (hopefully) buying our first home. I'll skip the more boring details (I wrote a REALLY long post on Friday that was just way too boring, so I deleted it) of actually finding a house that we like, no, love, and making an offer and I'll go straight to the home inspection part.

This is the part of first-time home buying I didn't really know about. We all see the shows were people walk through lovely houses and find the one that just feels right to them. Then the prospective buyers make an offer, sometimes they go back and forth with the seller a time or two, and then they're "in contract." That's the easy part my friends. Today I'm just going to give a small hint into the world of being in contract on an older home.

The House (how I will now refer to the place Scott and I are in contract on) was built in 1920. The previous owners have done a beautiful job renovating the kitchen and maintaining/restoring the old, mostly original woodwork and windows. However, as is the case with all old houses, there are a few questions that popped up even as we made an offer, such as, "how long will this furnace last?," "Will this old piping still work?," "What's going on with the basement and foundation?"

So b/c of these questions, and just because it's smart, we got a home inspection (and a furnace inspection, and a radon evaluation). I would HIGHLY recommend a home inspection to anyone looking to purchase a home whether old or new. We learned so much about the house and home maintenance that even if we end up not getting this house, we're much more prepared for another process in the future.

A home inspection consists of having a qualified home inspector come to the home and visually evaluate all areas of the house. Usually you walk through with the person and they explain the issues they see, and many times give recommendations on how it should be handled (i.e., have a certified basement specialist come see this; You can do this yourself with some $6 caulk from Home Depot). Then you get The Report.

Another note for first timers: inspections cost money. And you don't get that back if the house falls through or if there are major issues. The home inspection, with termite and wood destroying insect included, cost us $360. Then we will add money for the furnace and radon inspections as they happen. More info on these guys later!

Our home inspection report is 30 pages long if that tells you anything about our house. We then waded through the report with our realtor to make a list of all the things that we are going to ask the seller to fix before we buy the house. We have roughly 29 items which need to be addressed at some point. Some of these we will expect the seller to repair; others, Scott and I can do them at a later date. Our next step is to submit this list to the sellers and then negotiate again on which items they MUST do. We do have a few non-negotiable fixes that we will pull out of the contract on the house if they are not remedied.

So please keep thinking and praying for us as we discuss things with the sellers and hopefully get a house to move into before these girls are born!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oh, Life

Wow, my life has changed in the past few months. It's been hard to even think of having time to write this blog. In addition to the twins growing, and us being 10-12 weeks (hopefully!!) out from their arrival, we found out about 3 weeks ago we were moving from Upstate NY to Ohio. We got here on Saturday after a whirlwind week, really, of pulling together movers and such. With this move, we have decided to buy our first home. It is exciting and crazy and fun. We're currently in contract on a really cute house that would be the perfect place to start our family!

So, with all the life changes that have come about, I think it's about time for a blog change. It's still about what a woman lives on that isn't bread. And it will still include some healthy recipes that I use here and there. However, I plan to also talk about home (from the first-time buying experience to decorating and pulling the place together in a short time before the girls show up), love (raising two little girls and being married to my amazing husband), friendships (and finding them!) and even some religion occasionally.

Tomorrow is a busy day of meeting with a nurse to discuss and learn about pre-term labor symptoms and then going to the new house for a furnace inspection. My plan is to spend some time on Friday blogging about the first time home-buyers experience thus far!

Have a wonderful Thursday, friends!