Friday, August 10, 2007

Seeing what's out there

AB (and Leif since he was home from school recovering from a pukey day yesterday) came by and grabbed me for lunch. We ran out to a development nearby where I work. It has intrigued us because it cuts AB's commute literally in half and mine down to about 1/3.

And that's about all it has going for it.

We walked around the view lots, impressed and picked out a few to inquire on. We loved the builder's style and had seen a few of the homes last year at the Parade of Homes. We started writing down a lot of numbers and dreaming "what if".

We went to the model home. Of course we walked into the house, which really threw Leif since we don't just walk into a house. Once he got over the shock of walking into a house unannounced he kept yelling "anyone here?"

Amazingly, there wasn't. We had expected to get bombarded by a sales person of some sort.

We wandered around the three bedroom, two bath house. It was pretty. Nice slate tile, custom cabinets and countertops. Leif kept asking to "go upstairs and wake them up". Because apparently there should be people there and they must have been sleeping.

Our dreaming turned to dust when we saw the price. $439,000. We don't live in the big city. This house had no view, no hot tub, pool, outdoor kitchen, or even a freaking walk in pantry. (One my anal retentive requirements for our next home.) It was about the size of our home, a few hundred square feet larger thanks to the bonus room, but that's it. And we will be LUCKY to get $200,000 for our house - though we hope for $220K.

We actually know a few people in this development who are paranoid and a little freaked out by the stall in home sales around them. Neighborhoods left undeveloped, houses not moving. Yet houses are listing for at least 50-75% more than what would be reasonable anywhere else in town.

We haven't decided when we will move, though it would be nice to be on that path by the time Skadi is moving out of our bedroom and into her little room (thereby fully eliminating my guest room). According to my MIL (one of the most savvy real estate agents ever) we have a lot of work to do on the house (new carpets, paint trim outside, little details inside) before moving - we know this, but sometimes need to be reminded.

We are kicking around staying in the house until Leif goes to first grade - in which case I am thinking I might go the bunk beds route and put both kids in the bigger safari themed bedroom and use the guest room for toy storage. Or not. Not many people visit us anyways, but I like having an extra queen bed around for those nights when AB snores or can't sleep and tosses and turns, or one of the kids is sick and needs us close (our bedroom is across the house).

Then 10 minutes later we kick around the idea of trying to move next spring. Who knows. Our goal right now is to get an idea of what's out there and for how much.

Plus, who knows if we could even sell our house right now. We will have a challenge with selling it in a good market because of the towering monstrosity behind us. In a crappy market? Ugh. My MIL recommended renting it... yeah, that's the headache I need on top of working full time and raising two kids is dealing with a rental.

AB is supposed to be calling the agent for the house on the coveted lot down the street this afternoon to schedule a viewing. It is still for sale and has dropped in price. We will see what that presents. (Though our friends down the street tell us you must like purple to move in... thankfully I don't mind painting.)

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