The easier search: Finding a house

I’ve been wanting to buy a house since I found out about Obama’s housing credit last February. I was considering buying a house on my own this past summer, but B asked me to wait until we could buy a house together. I knew that not buying one this year might make me miss out on the housing credit… but I had a suspicion that it would be extended and I didn’t want to make a rushed decision by that summer anyways. So, I waited.

Then B and I got engaged and soon after we heard that the tax credit was being extended. As long as a contract was signed by May 1 and closing was by June 30, 2010, we would get the money! So the search started again and we both just assumed that we’d buy an already built house. We had our needs and wants ready to go:

Needs:
1) 3+ bedrooms
2) 2+ bathrooms
3) located in one of 3 suburbs that we like with good schools
4) with enough yard to fence (and ability to fence)
5) single family house (no townhouse/condo)

Wants:
1) newer house
2) vaulted ceilings
3) wood floors
4) open floor plan/attached kitchen and great room

And, of course, it had to be in our price range. Details.

I emailed my brother to ask for a recommendation on realtor, and he suggested we take a look at maybe building a house like he did. I didn’t think that we had time but he called a builder he has met with and it turns out, we could still build a house before the tax credit deadline. So, we met with builder #1 and found out that if we signed a contract by the end of the year, we could have a house built and closed on before the tax deadline. Unfortunately, the only development the builder could offer us were “technically” in the right suburb… but were so far towards the back edge that it would take us a half hour or more to get to work. PASS.

It was at that point B remembered that M/I is one of the biggest builders in Columbus and said maybe we should check them out. I emailed them through the M/I website with our wants and needs and a very nice sales rep emailed me right back and set up a time to meet the Tuesday before Thanksgiving at a model she thought we’d like. She told me that if we wanted to build a house we’d need a contract signed by… December 15!!

I figured that if we were even going to think about building a house and making that kind of decision in a matter of weeks, we needed to hit the ground running with looking at older houses. I’m an “explore all of your options” kind of girl, and commitment is scary! Especially commitment that would cost me hundreds of thousands of dollars! I made appointments to see four different houses the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

So now it was finally Tuesday and we headed to the model home to meet our sales rep, Jessica. And that is when things got crazy…

(to be continued)

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