T Nation

My Dilemma...

Hey Everyone…

I apologize for the LONG read…

OK, so I’m hoping to get some input on a situation I have going on… It concerns buying a new house (new to us, not ‘new’ per-say), it seems family, co-workers, friends and my realtor, don’t help tip the scale in any one way. Nobody wants to be the bad guy if something doesn’t work out… Not that I would buy a house just on what other people say, nor blame anyone if I made a decision, just basically wanting some opinions…

Here’s my deal. My wife and I bought a 60ish year old all brick cape cod 4 years ago next month. We’ve more or less did a bunch of work outside and re-did just about every room inside. Problem is, it’s too small. It’s only about 1400 sqr. ft with .15 acres, also the layout of the home doesn’t work for us, and it’s about 30-40 minutes from my parents, who watch my son for us. If I were a bacholer or if it was just my wife and I, it’d be perfect, but my 18 month old son accumulated a ton of stuff the last 18 months, and we are expecting again… So bottom line, we really need more room…

This whole looking for a new home thing started a year ago when we found this house on the Internet, just goofing around, but it was perfect. What I thought was a high price then, I wished I woulda just paid it and been done with the whole thing, also we didn’t think it was wise to buy the first thing we seen, but… We put an offer in after looking at a few other places and they didn’t take it The house sat on the market for a few more months, we told our realtor that we wanted to put another offer in because nothing compared to that place. However, before we could put another offer in the house sold… We looked for houses ever since, and again, we found even a perfecter (if that’s a word) place, 3 acres, HUGE garage, close to my parents, we put an offer in like 3 days after it was on the market, for 4K higher then the asking price, but... Again we lost it... That was back in October, turns out the shady listing realtor also sold it, so no matter what we woulda offered, his clients would have put in .01 higher and got it… Soooo…

Just recently my Uncle told me about thee, and I mean thee “perfect place” and from what he said it was in our price range. 13 acres, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2 car attached garage and a 12’ X 24’ garage/shed, huge kitchen, vaulted ceilings, HUGE deck and again, close to my parents… We thought for sure this was going to be the house… However, it came on the market $40000 higher then what we want to spend and $65000 higher then what we thought it was going to be…

So again, another let down… On Monday we looked at 2 places. Today we went and looked at 4 houses, or shall I say 4 pieces of crap… Actually, the one we looked at has a ton of potential, however, it needs a ton of work… Every rug/floor would need to be replaced, every room needs repainted, the kitchen and the 3 bathrooms need to be re-done (can you say pink toilets and showers) and the master bedroom is set up really stupid, so that’d have to be re-done as well. Now, I’m a somewhat handy fella, but it’s a lot work, with having my son and my normal husband and father duties, plus my full time job and my band… I just don’t know where I’d find the time. However, if we did get this place, I could probably make a ton of money if I sold it, even if I only stayed there a few years… This house is a bigger home and a really good layout, however just needs a lot…

Now, with all that, I mentioned my wife is prego… She is also loosing her part-time job at the end of this month, not that big of a deal and she gets severence till the end of July and she can also collect… She’ll probably find another part-time gig after this 2nd baby arrives…

Sooooooooooo… With all that, what do you think??? Should I wait for our perfect place to hopefully come down in price? Do I just suck it up and buy it? Or do I buy the house that needs a TON of work??? Or, do I wait for something more feasible to come on the market and just make my place work? Not sure how to do that, but, there’s a got to be a way…

One part of me thinks about getting this place and re-doing it, again it’s close to my folks and in a school district we like, and then if I want in a few years, sell it and maybe buy something else, or we might love the place then and just stay there.

Orrrr… If we bought this place that is just a bit out of our price range, we’d probably never leave… Other then black topping the driveway and finishing the basement, maybe putting up another garage or something down the road, the house is PERFECT… We could move in there and not do a thing, except maybe paint, but even that wouldn’t have to be done…

The reason I’m thinking of this place more, and more is, well it is the PERFECT place for us and we would probably never leave. I’m afraid if I don’t take the leap now, I’ll always be behind the 8 ball, that the perfect house will be just out of my price range… By all means, I’d be house poor for a few years till we grew into the mortgage payment, but I thought my mortgage payment on my current house was high when I moved in, now it’s like nothing… Could I afford this place… Sure, but things would certainly be tight… At the same time, we’d still have some loot in the savings, I can always earn money if I need to and the house is only 5 years old and built very well, so I can’t see too much happening to it as far as repairs…

My realtor thinks the house is bit over priced and the husband is relocating, but the wife is staying behind to till the house sells… This is house is like 4doors down from the first one we lost and it’s out in the middle of nowhere and the other one was on the market for a long time, so we are hoping this one may not sell, and if we put an offer in, they’ll take it… It’s too early to put an offer in now… It’s only been on the market for 2ish weeks…

OK, soooooooo… I hope you all got this gist of it, if you even read all that… If you did, please let me know your thoughts, opinions, suggestions, advice… All of it…

Thanks…

LJ

Bloody hell mate! You’ve got a lot of words in you don’t you…

There’s far too much info to comment on all of it so I’ll give you my 2cents worth and make of it what you will, ok.

Even though you’re a ‘handy’ person, I wouldn’t get involved in extensive repairs to a place you move into. You have a young child with another on the way and that’s NOT the time to be focussed on other crap, focus on the wife and kids.

Have you taken into account the selling costs, moving costs, solicitors, lawyers, estate agents fees, refinancing fees etc? That alone will eat up a shit load of money that could be probably be better utilised by you right now, given you family situation.

If all that money to relocate is available to right now, why not have someone add some rooms, do an extension to your existing place? As long as it’s not over-capitalising the property compared to the local market, it might be a better investment for you?

Of course a lot depends on your ‘wants’ Vs your ‘needs’ doesn’t it.
Have you thought of the possibility of renting out the house you’re leaving, rather than selling it, and using the equity to borrow for the new place? It saves selling costs etc and depending on the rent you receive, it could give you a tax break or perhaps even a positive cash flow… but I know little of the overseas market so that’s just a thought for you.

My answer is getting as long as your question, so that’ll do.
Hope it’s given you some food for thought.

Cheers.

[quote]Irish Muscle wrote:
my advice, kidnap your neighbor’s cat.[/quote]

Love your avatar.

You put in an offer on what the property is worth to you.