One Life, Well Traveled

A Personal Blog

The search begins again

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Now that the the job situation has been remedied, Marianne and I can return to our house hunt refreshed, renewed, and with a greater sense of security than before.  The previous search for our future home ended in late February when I found out my time at CASTL would come to an end unexpectedly early.  We had even extended an offer on the 12th Street House, which was rejected, but with the full benefit of retrospective the winners from this delay will probably be us.  Interest rates have crept even lower than before, which makes taking out a mortgage a very attractive offer considering that it is something we were likely to pursue even if the market wasn’t so favorable.   We’ve also signed the lease for another year on our current rental, and that translates to having time on our hands to carefully consider our options.  If that wasn’t enough, however, the prices for homes are still dropping like stones around here.  It’s important to remember that the offer we made on the aforementioned 12th Street house was for $165k, when it was listed for $189k.  It’s now listed at $130k (albeit as a short sale, but still), a drop of almost 30 percent in only four months.

I am sure that there will be a great deal more to be said once we have visited a few of the homes currently on our to do list.  For now, however, the following are the most notable contenders:

12th Street – Notable now for being the home that might have been, it still has a lot of appeal not the least of which is because of the price.  It’s also the only one of this batch we’ve seen in person.  That makes for an excellent baseline by which to measure all other comers against.   Pluses are: Tons of charm, great location, Price. Minuses are: Short-sale, odd layout will require future renovation, tiny odd shaped lot, stairs of death.

Eastbrook Drive – Very cute home is probably most notable for being essentially walking distance to an Elementary school in a very nice neighborhood.  It also has a ton of space available, essential to potentially being a “forever home” for us.  Pluses are: Great Neighborhood, Tons of Space, High Efficiency Environmental Controls, close to delicious noms. Minuses are: Pricier, potentially very substantial utility costs due to size, 29 North Traffic to go anywhere.

Monticello Avenue – Better known as the Yellow Home, this one is perhaps notable for being very happy looking.  Much will depend on how it shows when we visit, but it also has a price advantage as far as we are concerned. I will admit the pictures of the basement give me pause.  Pluses are: Happy Yellow, Good Asking Price, Close to Downtown.  Minuses are: One bathroom, Basement of Terror, Pretty old construction may mean problems.

Short 18th Street – Like the previous home, much will depend on how it shows when we visit, there are not many pictures.  The price is also reasonable, if a big higher than we might like.  The back yard and deck look pretty gorgeous, and the rec room in the basement could work as a fourth bedroom.  Pluses are: Pretty in Back, Close to Downtown, Bonus Room(s).  Minuses are: Price is a bit high, high property tax rate will be an added yearly cost, Bus stop right next door could mean lots of noisy foot traffic close to the house.

Banbury Street – This house is a block down from our friend Will, has a lot of space, and is in a nice neighborhood that we know about.  The price, however, is way way high, essentially the most upper limit of what we could even think about.  We’d likely have to sit and hope the price comes down.  Pluses are: Plenty of Space, Looks nice inside and out, good neighborhood close to friends.  Minuses are: High Price/Tax rate, Friends may be bad influence on future generations.

We’ll likely hit all of five of these when we go out with the Realtor this weekend, so further thoughts will be forthcoming, particularly on the four we haven’t seen the inside of yet in person.


Written by Tarsus

July 19, 2010 at 6:06 pm

Posted in House Hunt

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