We have a house. We have a house! Hurray! We’ve owned our house for exactly twenty days and it still feels unreal. After my last post about our house hunting adventures, we switched realtors yet again, saw over fifty more houses, and submitted an additional 11 offers. For a total of 18 offers! Every single one of them fell through for one reason or another. Our poor realtor was absolutely stunned. He couldn’t believe we were losing on SO many houses! It was right down to the wire – it was March 18th and if we didn’t have an accepted offer by March 19th, we wouldn’t close in time to move before our lease was up and our backup plan (which we didn’t actually have) would have to go into effect. We were looking at moving into a month-to-month lease (and paying through the nose) while we continued to house shop. That would have been a)stressful b)expensive, and c)undesirable since our new closing/move dates would be much closer to when the baby would be born.
So, we prayed, a lot. We started looking at houses outside of our preferred location (for commute times). We started looking at houses outside of our established parameters (i.e. no HOA, no recent builds, etc) Basically we were looking for anything, with the knowledge that we would probably only live there for a year or two, and then move AGAIN. We prayed some more. We asked everyone at our Life Group and all our friends back home to pray. Things were serious!
Wednesday we spent all day trying to set up appointments to view houses that evening. The kids were worn out and grumpy from spending every evening and weekend doing nothing but looking at houses. Lover was stressed trying to balance work and house hunting and an emotional wife. I was stressed and overwhelmed trying to coordinate with our realtor, find houses we wanted to see, take care of the kids, oh and be pregnant too… it was a rough time. Our realtor touched base with me several times that day to let me know that most of the houses we were trying to see were unavailable, already sold, or simply refusing viewings for some unknown reason. I was on the verge of losing it.
I put the kids down for a nap, and sat on the couch trying to relax. Then our realtor called. At this point, I assumed he was calling to say that all of our viewings had been canceled for that evening. He started out by asking, “Hey Jenny, do you remember that house on Amherst?”
Did I remember it? Of course I did! It was one of the first houses we saw with Bill, and we totally and completely loved it. It was older, in a nice neighborhood, and had tons of vintage charm and quirk. It was love at first sight. We had put in a really strong offer, but someone had outbid us by several thousand dollars and had more cash to put down.
“Well,” Bill said “turns out the original buyers backed out, apparently due to an inspection issue that has since been resolved. But they were no longer interested, and our offer was the second best offer, so the seller’s agent just called me to see if we still wanted this house.”
I was trying so hard not to bawl my eyes out, right then and there on the phone with Bill. Did we still want it? Do three year old boys like playing in the dirt? Yes, we still wanted this house. YES, YES, YES!!!!
I managed to answer in a somewhat dignified tone “ah, yes, I remember the house. We loved it. Yes, we are still interested in it.” Bill proceeded to say something about talking to Lover about it, and getting back to him in the next half an hour or so to confirm. I hung up the phone, sat down on the couch and cried. It was definitely an ugly cry. Such feelings of relief and exhilaration and incredulity. I cried for about twenty minutes, then pulled myself together and called Bill back. I told him we were on board and to send over the contracts.
I hadn’t talked to Lover about it, but I knew that we had both loved this house, and he wouldn’t have any problem with me giving the okay. We were devastated the first time we lost that house, and I knew he would jump at the chance to get a house, ANY house, but especially THIS house, that had been our favorite!
I confirmed everything with Bill, and e-signed all the paperwork while I anxiously waited for Lover to get home from work. The waiting just about killed me. Finally, I heard Lover come in the front door, and I met him at the top of the stairs. “I’m sorry,” I said. “we canceled all our showings for tonight.” His shoulders just slumped and he looked at me confused. “Because…” I said, with a sparkle in my eye “the buyers on Amherst backed out and NOW WE GET TO BUY IT!!!!!!” Lover grabbed me and hugged me and I cried some more and we jumped around and were all giddy and it was awesome.
God gave us the perfect house, in the perfect location, just in the nick of time. We had to wait till the bitter end, trusting that He would come through for us. It was really hard, but we did it, and we trusted that he had something great for us, and boy did He ever. Our Heavenly Father pours out on us an embarrassment of riches.
Amherst is a 3 bedroom, 3 bathroom raised ranch with a ton of quirk and charm. It is about fifteen minutes from work, less than five minutes from church, and most of the friends we have made since moving here live less than ten minutes away. We couldn’t have picked a better location if we had tried.
The bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, kitchen, living and dining rooms are all upstairs. The living room has a brick wood burning fireplace. (Don’t worry, we didn’t inherit any of that furniture!) The fireplace is massive and awesome.
The dining room has a brick wall that is completely different from the fireplace brick just steps away. We love it. It’s moody and gray and totally makes the space. The kitchen is well planned out and very workable, and the cabinets are super sturdy – made by the previous owner who was a master woodworker.
These pictures are all pretty horrible (they are the listing photos) so I’ll follow up sometime soon with better pictures. But everything works, everything is clean, and we’re loving all the space to spread out.
There is a second brick fireplace in the basement family room, that is completely different from the two types and colors of brick upstairs. It’s also huge and awesome. We got to keep that geese carving/decoration thing above the fireplace too. :)
The family room is fully half of the bottom story of the house. In between the family room and the garage is a utility room with the laundry and a half bathroom with – wait for it – a brick wall that is nothing like the other brick walls/fireplaces in the house! Yes! :) This bar was made by the owner, along with all of that orange paneling you see (it wraps around the outside wall throughout the whole basement. We are actually considering keeping the orange, if you can believe that.
There’s lots more to see, but we’ll get to that as I have time to blog about it. It’s been a VERY busy couple of weeks, and we’ve got a trip back to NY coming up, along with traveling to my brother’s wedding in Spain, and oh yeah, I’m 31 weeks along today. So things are busy. So far we are working on the house little by little, painting a room here, taking out some cabinets there, and we are loving it.
Oh, and the yard! We have a yard again! It is the epitome of awesome. It’s overgrown and neglected and has about six trees that need to be chopped down post haste. But it’s fenced and full of grass and dirt and the kids absolutely love it. And it has a lilac bush. :)
So that’s where we are. Living in our new house, on Amherst Dr. (How funny is that, Wendhurst and Amherst? It’s like it was meant to be :) Settling in, unpacking boxes, and feeling thankful every day for the house that God gave us. We’ve already met several of our neighbors, and they couldn’t be nicer. Also, none of them call us at 5 in the morning to tell us our kids are being too loud. :) We are loving this house and we’re so thankful for all that God has provided us with.
Till next time,