Some information and musings after the jump!
I swear on Offbeat Home there was a post about things someone wished they knew when they bought their house, but now I can't find it. But it was helpful and talked about things to consider like what kinds of television and internet options are available (cable was only available in our location in the last year and the next town over had no cable lines at all, leaving satellite and dial-up as the only options), whether or not to test for radon, what kind of heat/cool system is installed, checking out the neighborhood, considering the amount of grass to mow, whether or not there is space/light for a garden, and so on and so forth.
But, it happened really fast. We had stopped looking. Our real estate agent called up and asked to meet us at an undisclosed location . . . because she wanted it to be a surprise. Turns out, the house had all the things we loved about the other places we had seen, all rolled into one; A finished, walkout basement. A sun room. Two methods of heating. A sweet kitchen. Two levels. Enough closets. Nice landscaping. Not in an association (I can get bees and goats!). Well water. The real estate agent listed the house on Saturday night, we saw it Sunday. We made an offer Monday. They made a counter offer Tuesday. We accepted their offer Wednesday and then it was all banking and paperwork from there on out. We closed on March 9th and moved in March 10th.
But there are definitely things that we learned along the way . . . the different kinds of loans, how some people (I'm looking at you, husby) apparently don't keep any paper records for any reason including for the IRS, and how the season of seeing a house can vastly change your opinion of it. I mean, here in the great snowy north, pretty much everything looks desolate and lackluster in the dead of the winter. Despite that, we bought the house and thankfully it has lovely landscaping. It could have gone the other way and there are some people who intentionally try and sell in the winter while the snow hides the ugly. But also here in the Granite State, there is radon gas, something that is often good to test for, especially in houses that have a basement. Nothing dampens the joy of a new home quite like dropping dead from its breath. But other things, too, especially in the rural. Like I mentioned above, access to fast internet is decidedly lacking in a lot of areas. There are also the Home Owner Associations (HOAs) to consider. I have this extreme dream of owning bees and goats, not things compatible with most HOAs, even here in the sticks. We looked at some houses in HOAs and I wasn't thrilled about my goats being contraband from the get go. Thankfully, this house is free and clear and has space for my future hives!
Thank God for my father in law who rented a giant UHaul for us. I am ashamed at how much crap we own and flabbergasted at how much shit we managed to cram into our tiny apartment. They managed to back the loading ramp right into the slider and out everything came. The cats were the worst to move, they yowled the whole entire way. But they love the house. We now have internet and tv, yay! And we have extra room for hosting our crafty potluck. Here's my most favoritest thing. I made the mistake of sitting here one day before work . . . man, I wanted nothing more than to leave work and return to its snug embrace.