Yep, that's right...
We have begun timidly looking into what sort of property we plan to purchase in the next one to five years...so I wouldn't exactly call it hunting yet.
Note that I wrote "purchase" rather than "move into"
you see there are many options here...
We could buy a ready made place
...like the one down the road,
with 40ish acres, a barn, an already fenced in pasture, a beautiful four bedroom home (with a porch!) and a storage barn.
<Which is by the way "somewhat" out of out price range - like take our budget, divide it in half and tack that half back onto the whole...so meaning its 1 1/2 times what we would be able to spend comfortably...bummer>
Or, we could buy a place with land and an older smaller house
maybe slightly nicer than this one...but still an older UN-ideal house that we could live in for a while then knock down after we built our real house
or...better yet, we could turn it into a guest house
<another word for a house for MY MOMMA someday! just a thought...and I like it!>
Or we could buy land and stay where we are for a while with the plan to eventually build a home
Which means that we would have to choose house plans...and clear the land, and fence it and build the barn and landscape and gravel the drive and run water and electric, and phone lines and have a septic tank or sewage lines placed...argh
until you have to follow through on it.
I already mentioned we have found one place we love...but its expensive and well...
...well, its not exactly for sale.
Which kinda hinders us from buying it.
So we've been looking around and have come across a few (very few) other properties that seem to be worth looking at.
Ideally we would keep our short drive (15-20 minutes) and have at least 10 acres
<and no skeezy houses nearby>
I didn't think this was a tall order
...but apparently it is.
Right now we live about 8 minutes from the grocery and drug store but about 15 minutes from "real" town (which is known as Wal-Mart here) and our drive to work is about 15-20 minutes.
Some of the properties are great because they include a lot of land and they are in rural setting
<read as not across the street from a sorta skeezy neighborhood>
however they would involve an even longer drive to work -not ideal- and also from the grocery.
Some properties are located conveniently close to town but have smaller lots and very close neighbors <which may potentially mean problems with their car eating dogs and fireworks scaring the horse, again>
We found some very pretty land close to where we live now
...then our realtor informed us that about 95% of it was in the flood plain of the nearby creek...not ideal!
Knowing him sure is handy!
Which brings me back to yesterday...
We met our realtor yesterday to look at a house...
The Hubbs, the Child and I had made a drive by a week or two ago and my hopes were high.
Yeah it looked like the beds needed to be straightened a bit but the size of those trees! And the beautiful old Bradford pears lining each side of the drive! And the size of the yard! Plus we hadn't even seen the swimming pool or barn yet! EeeeK!
As we pull in I noticed the large Japanese maple by the front porch...one that size would surely cost hundreds of dollars to have planted! EeeeeK!...but wait...are those Christmas lights still up? "Hmm"...I think as the sweat drips off my nose and forehead due to the sweltering July heat...the heat index by the way was said to be something unreasonable like 116 yesterday...
There was an old 50sish car of some sort parked in the driveway too...something tells me this may not be just any old Joe who owns this place...it has been on the market for a while now...
The owner is home and will lead the tour of the house, which I understand from the few previous times I've seen houses on the market (along with Hubbs or from when Momma was house hunting) is not typical...he is a polite man who you can tell dearly treasures the various antique furnishings and civil war memorabilia he has throughout the house.
The house itself is great...many custom features that the original homeowners placed such as curved cabinetry doors in the kitchen, deadbolt locks at the top of the doors leading outside to the backyard with the pool to prevent children from drowning (never a plus), beautiful high ceilings and custom rounded windows in the foyer and great rooms and even a small room that served as a nursery inside the enormous master suite! There is back deck that spans around the back of the house with old, established crepe myrtles looking out at the pool and even a little mini bar with running tap out by the pool! The pool area is fenced in with a privacy fence already also!
However, the problem with buying somebody else's house is this...its still their house when you look at it. And after buying our first house, while I can still see us sitting on our back deck with our mojitos watching our children swim with their friends on the other side of the crepe myrtles and I can see that sweet little baby girl in her little pink nursery nook in our bedroom and I can imagine huge Easter egg hunts under those beautiful blooming bradfords...
...I now am adding up the cost of having somebody come remove the algae and tadpoles (seriously they had legs!) from the pool, hiring a timber company to clear the forest that was the pasture (we couldn't even get to the barn - I was sooo disappointed!), new carpeting, refinishing those poor beautiful but dried hardwood floors, a new built in microwave, oven, stove top, dishwasher and refridgerator, updated cabnitery fixtures, and fixtures in the bathrooms...plus hireing a painter to come paint the trim throughout the house and remove wallpaper...
< Now, I don't mind painting walls but after multiple horrible, scarring experiences with removing endless walls of wallpaper in my Momma's house I say "H-E-double hocky sticks NO" to EVER doing that again! And I hate painting trim too-no horrid memories there just don't like it!>
...and that wouldn't even touch cleaning up the flower beds
<note, I said cleaning up not ripping out- there are tons of gorgeous plants on the property- and I HEART a property with pretty plants!>
Which reminds me...have you ever seen the movie Money Pit?
If not you should!
So the Hubb's and I decided that if the place were in better shape we would probably be willing to pay the asking price or near it...there was just no way we could justify paying that for it as is.
Caleb's hypothetical little sister would have loved her little pink nursery nook...and her little paint pony out back behind the pool.
C'est la vie.
One more reason that house hunting is so hard...
you have to leave all of your hypothetical, potential memories at the door when you leave.