I am back to finally share the last installment (for now) of Our Home Journey… and bum bum bum bum… our 6th home together and the first home we have bought!
Before you hear about our new home… you may want to catch up on the prior six we have lived in in the past 6 years!
Intro and Dwelling One
And now here we go… our home!
Our First Home with a MortgageWe had looked and looked for houses… from the beginning of October until January. Maybe that is normal? We don't know we had never done this before. Our budget was on the low side for the area and what we wanted/needed and we just kept walking into houses that just did not cut it. They were either a MAJOR flip job (think everything in the house had to be replaced) or to way to far out (we knew we wanted to be central). To boot people kept telling us we should look in this neighborhood or that neighborhood… and the the back of my mind I would say, sure with an extra $50,000-$100,000 we could go there.
Early on, before we were fully ready to buy we found a house we really liked and it was priced right! It was a flipped house with 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths, great open living space. But we knew it would not last- too good of a deal and it was bought before we were ready to make an offer.
Right at the beginning of January I went back to looking at rentals and was about to give up. Then Andrew and I talked, crunched numbers and decided we could boost our budget just a tiny bit and see if that made a difference. We looked one more time and found three houses we liked! Perfect no, but great for our family.
We decided to put an offer in on another flipped house with a good location for us and the huge blessing- 4 bedrooms/2.5 baths. We thought there was no way we be able to get that extra bedroom, but there it was! The only catch was the living area was small and a big space for entertaining was a top priority. We decided we could take down the wall between the kitchen and living room and it would work.
So we put in an offer and after some negotiations the house was ours. Bought our first home and did our first renovation! We have been here just more than two months and we are still setting up. It is taking more time than we expected, but that is okay. It takes time and a home is never really finished!
|View from the front door of the "great room."|
|View of "great room" from the back.|
|Eat in area/dining|
|Master bath (maybe the smallest bathroom you have ever seen but it is so nice to have)|
|Laundry- super organized right?|
|"Big Kid's" room aka BD's room for now|
|The totally unfinished nursery and a bad picture at that… it is not actually this yellow in there.|
|And how is this for imperfection… the "back right room" /the office/guest room/who knows!|
We Learned…*People have a lot of thoughts about where you should live/how you should buy/etc… take the good advise and leave the rest.
*Keep to your budget and keep it on the low side as much as possible. I have heard it said that you should keep it at 30% of your take home pay. We tried to keep it at 25% or less of just Andrew's income. The bank will give you a bigger loan than that. Just because they will does not mean you should or you need a house that is that expensive.
*A home does not have to be perfectly ready to have guests. We had a meeting at a house the first week we moved in. Was everything ready? No. But one of the points of having a home is the fact that God calls us to be hospitable.
*If you think moving into a rental has a lot of expenses (like we did) just go ahead and buy and get ready for REALLY expensive. From lawnmowers, to paint, to furniture, to the unexpected. Make a priority list and take it one day (or year) at a time, it does not have to happen all at once.
*Pick the most lived in rooms and set those up first. To be honest the office/extra bedroom and the nursery are still a disaster… but we don't need them yet so it has been fine to wait.
*Be patient things don't get set up overnight!
*And I sure there is more to come in the years (hopefully) we will be here.
Catch UpIntro and Dwelling One