We're 2 weeks into the house we didn't know we were going to buy when 2017 rolled around and I have to say, this has been one of the best "surprises" the Lord has had for us!
So in January (2 months ago), I took our big beast doggy on a walk around the neighborhood. I noticed that there was a house for sale in this one cul-de-sac that I've always really liked, so I told Chad about it when I got home. The only problem with it was that there was no pool - something that we SWORE we would have in the next house due to the major lack of community swimming options here in C Town. I finally found the house on Redfin, only to see that it was under contract already. Even though it was a long shot (and Chad was shaking his head at the thought of moving into a non-pool home), I sent the listing over to our realtors anyway, just in case it fell out of escrow. It was well priced too! My thought was that we would have a way larger down payment on that place than we had had for our first house so hey, our mortgage may have been lower. Great thoughts, right?!
The next day our realtor called us to say that that particular home was only days away from closing escrow, but that they had just picked up a listing in our actual dream neighborhood, so hey! Did we want to take a look at it before it hit the market? I said, "sure, why not?" and that same day, after I picked Carter up from school, I lugged the 3 kids over there and hey-o, LOVED IT!
When I got home to tell Chad about it, my tone was more incredulous than "let's seriously buy a new house." I really didn't think it would work out. First of all, the price point seemed out of range considering our new car purchases and the general mid-point that we were at in our Dave Ramsey Baby Step #2 life. Secondly, we were informed that the ONLY way we would be able to get the place is if we sold our current house for way over market value - yeah right, how was that going to happen? Lastly, the house seemed like a GIANT undertaking, maintenance wise. There was the pool, which (now that we were faced with the real possibility of owning one) made me nervous because who the heck knew how to take care of one of those? The previous owners had installed an extensive amount of solar panels, which apparently, one has to get cleaned once a year (who knew?). There are vaulted ceilings, so how about that air conditioning bill in the heat of summer? On top of all of those ACTUAL concerns, I wasn't a huge fan of the flooring and just KNEW we would have to completely start over in terms of decor (furnishing the backyard, as well!). Our dog was a thought too! My gosh, we would have to train our already-sensitive beast to function well within a new neighborhood. But more than anything, I was concerned about the utility bills and if we were being classic Chad and Nicole: jumping head first into an albeit awesome purchase, but still a VERY large buy.
Chad seemed undeterred by every problem that came up, though. He was thinking, "God wouldn't lead us into a bad decision," but I was like, "yeah, but what about free will! We have the choice to say no to this (super awesome) huge house! Should we be saying no to ourselves?" Real theological debates, you know? Bahahahaha. But he felt great about it anyway so he told our realtor to "Make it happen, captain," and off we went into selling our place.
Within 24 hours we had 3 showings before it hit the market, had a sign set up in our front yard, a photographer came through for the listing - ALL WITHIN THAT FIRST DAY. We were in shock. The next day, we had a handy man completely ravage our home with repairs - sending Snow into a frenzy of uncomfortableness. Within 2 days we had a few offers, one of which was full price - ZING! It was insane.
Escrow went smoothly, but no joke I was still a non-believer up until the VERY last few days of the whole thing. I didn't pack ANYTHING because truly who knew if ALL of those ducks that were necessary were going to line up? Everyone involved in the transaction had a contingency except for our buyers. So our buyer's loan had to close to allow our loan to close to allow our seller's loan to close on THEIR new house to allow THOSE seller's loan to close on THEIR new house. I mean, plenty of room for something to go awry, right? But in the end, it all worked out!
There was a gap in occupancy, so we stayed at my parents' house for 4 nights and then we moved the heck in here! It's been awesome. I feel like the pool has provided us with an actual life change. I keep calling the place "Club Cisneros" or "Resort de Cisneros" - it's like we moved to Puerto Rico and have been enjoying some luxurious outdoor lifestyle all of a sudden! And all of those utilities I was so concerned with? The gosh dang amazing solar panels takes care of it all. I mean - heyyyyyyyy-oooooooooo. We kept their gardener and hired a pool guy so that way we wouldn't mess this place up - hahaha. During the gap in occupancy where we had to stay at my parents' house, we signed Snow up for this insanely extensive training where he would be boarded for 2 weeks - how great was that timing? So he got trained (we got trained when we picked him up) all right before bringing him to a new house and new neighborhood. Truly great.