Saturday, February 28, 2009

We're Buying a House!

The short version is that we are buying a house on Val Vista and Queen Creek, 4 houses down from my sister. We close on March 27. It's about 600 sf bigger and has a pool.

If you're really interested, here's the long, long version. Last summer, when the market started getting really low, we and Susanne and Greg started looking at lots. We have been talking about wanting to live next to each other for awhile. Our dream would be to build custom homes next to eachother. So, we found a neighborhood that we really liked. However, after really looking at finances, etc, we realized that even with the price of lots coming down, we probably wouldn't be able to build for awhile. We decided to put that idea on hold and start looking for a house in S&G's current neighborhood. At least we'd still be close until we could realistically buy lots and build. Right around September, S&G's next door neighbor moved out unexpectedly. We had our realtor look into the property, and it turned out that they were going to be going into foreclosure. We were excited because it was the floorplan we wanted (the same as S&G's, plus it's a corner lot with a gigantic back yard). The process was that it would go to a trustee sale (an auction at the trustee's office), and if it wasn't purchased, then the bank would foreclose. We approached the owners to see if they would be able to do a short sale and avoid the foreclosure. It turns out that they just couldn't do that because they were also going into bankruptcy. So, we were going to try to go to the trustee sale and buy the house. It was set for early October. Well, due to the bankruptcy, the trustee sale kept getting postponed and postponed, every 2 weeks. There was an automated recording that would keep up informed of the status of the trustee sale. Every 2 weeks I would call, and it would say that it had been postponed due to bankruptcy. So, we waited and just figured, when it happened it would happen. We weren't in a huge rush. Well, in the meantime we've been keeping our eye on other properties in the neighborhood, just in case. We even went to look at a few. There had been a house just 4 houses away from S&G's that had been in short sale for about 6 months. We hadn't really thought too much about it, because it looked from pictures that the pool took up the whole back yard without any room for grass for the kids. Well, about a month ago, Greg ran into the next door neighbor and he told Greg that they were trying to work things out with their lender to redo their loan so they could get back into the house. So, at that point, we weren't sure what was going to happen. But, we really thought with their financial situation, the likelihood of the bank working things out for them was small. Okay, so here's what finally happened. A week ago, the house that was 4 houses down finally went into foreclosure and was listed at $50K less than it had previously been listed when in short sale ($100K less than the original listing 6 months ago). We thought that we should at least go see it at that price. After seeing it, we really like it, and decided that we could probably put some grass in the back for the kids. Well, apparently lots of people had that same idea, because within 24 hours of being on the market in foreclosure, they had 5 offers and had accepted one. That was on Friday a week ago. But, we thought, that's okay because we still think we have a really good shot at the next door house. So, we were getting ready to leave on Monday for Disneyland, and on Sunday I called the automated recording to double check on the next date for the trustee sale on that house, and to my shock, it said the sale was cancelled - not postponed, cancelled. So, we called our realtor to look into it. On Monday, while we were driving to California, he called us back to tell us that the next door house was indeed out of the picture. The owners were able to get their loan reinstated and were no longer heading to foreclosure. We, of course, were happy for them, but a little bummed. Plus, we knew the other house was already pending. But, we trust the Lord's plans for us. So, we just asked our realtor to keep an eye on the pending house in case anything fell through with that deal. Well, while we were at Disneyland on Tuesday in Toon Town, we got a call. The people whose offer had been accepted ended up getting a job transfer and were unable to proceed with the deal. So, all interested parties were told to submit their highest and best offer by 4pm. We were assuming that some of the other people who had originally put in offers would try again. So, while at Disneyland, walking between Toon Town and Fantasy Land, we gave our realtor our offer to submit. Apparently, Disneyland really is the happiest place on earth, because the next day, as we were driving home, we got another call that our offer was the one accepted! We had to stop at a rest stop and hook up the laptop to Juan's cell phone to get internet and send an email saying that we accepted the terms of the few changes made to the offer. We went into the office and signed papers Thursday. The inspector is going to the house on Monday, and we should close in 30 days. Crazy!!!

It's so amazing how God worked the timing out. The very same weekend that the next door house fell through, this house came up at a way cheaper price! After sitting and waiting for 5 months, this all happened within a few days. And after thinking we didn't have a chance with all the offers already on the table, that fell through, and we were able to get in and get the house. God's timing really is perfect! I also think He knew that this was going to be way less overwhelming of a house for me. It's in great condition with only a few things to be fixed up, painting, pool fence, etc. The next door house would have been a much bigger undertaking!

We are so excited to be living so close to my sis and her family. The cousins will be able to see each other all the time. We can be such better help and support for each other. They have the swingset and we have the pool. We're all set!! We're also across the street from the neighborhood park. We'll be closer to most of our friends. The only drawback is being further from Juan's work and church. But, the pros definitely outweigh the cons. I'm going to take pics when we meet the inspector Monday.

We will probably try to rent out our current house. Let us know if you or anyone you know may be interested!


Joy said...

This is very cool and sounds great. Congratulations! Isn't it awesome when everything just falls in place like that!

Sarah said...

Wow, how fun to live next to your sis!

Good to know if Mark and I are ever over there, we could see you both in one visit.

Congrats and happy moving!

Roy D. Slater said...

Congratulations! It's great to live so close to family. Just remember that if you have a pool you'll probably want an automatic pool cover. It is so much more convenient than having to clean the pool all the time.