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[personal profile] cin1607

The house I've been renting for the last what? 12 years? was originally built to be temporary housing for workers building the big museum in our area. So it's a "temporary" house that's about 100 years old now. Because of the fabulous location and equally fabulous low rent, over the years I've learned to live with things like the lack of heat or air-conditioning and the weird electrical box with the screw-in fuses that make me wonder if *this* will be the winter it all burns down. And the fun fact that the walls are actually wattle and daub (clay, sand, and in this case, probably horse hair) that I discovered when a part of the wall in my bedroom fell in. I thought they were plaster on lathe. Not so! Just a thin veneer of plaster on daub! Fun and historic! Also now re-plastered by me, with unfortunately not much skill. Which brings me to the biggest problem with this house: the landlord is entirely uninvolved, and pretty much uninterested in getting involved in fixing any of its problems. And since I'm not willing to pay to put a new roof on it myself, I made the decision this summer that it was time to bail on this one and buy my own.

I know that house-hunting is supposed to be a long process. But I'm not known for my patience once I've made a decision to do something. I think I contracted a realtor in June and scheduled myself time off in July so I would have time to pack. Ha! I'm such an idiot. *g* But to be fair, the first house (actually, I'm only looking at townhouses, as I've vowed to never mow again) I was shown was perfect! It needed some cosmetic work, but was large, open, in my preferred location, and surprisingly well under my budget. And also surprisingly, already under contract. *facepalm* The seller's agent was on vacation, so my agent didn't find out about it until afterward. So I got to see and fall in love with a house I couldn't have. :P

The next house I wanted to put an offer on was in a neighborhood I didn't realize existed. And it was pretty perfect, too. The kitchen needed a little updating, but otherwise it was in a secluded, yet central location, had gorgeous hardwood floors, and nicely proportioned rooms. Thankfully my realtor got a copy of their HOA agreement before we started on any paperwork, because it turns out that the entire complex is a pet-free zone. O.o That had never occurred to me! I figured HOAs would dictate landscaping and curtain choices and tell me what color I could paint my front door. It never dawned on me that one would tell me I couldn't have pets in a house I owned.

The most recent possibility is neither big nor perfect in any way, other than location (I could walk to one of my museums) and price, but I think it has potential and most of its problems are cosmetic. Except the windows, which need to be replaced immediately. (They not only move up and down, they move side to side! And can't be locked at all!) So I'm meeting with my realtor tonight to write an offer.

But the house is a short-sale, so I'm not holding my breath on this one. My realtor's husband, who showed it to me since my realtor has a bum knee, told me that there had been two offers on the house already. One had been refused, and the second offer never got any response from the bank, so they moved on. That information prompted this conversation:

"So what were the other offers?"
"The agent wouldn't tell us, so we don't know."
"What do you mean, the agent wouldn't tell you? Why wouldn't they tell you that? Why wouldn't they warn people not to waste their time with offers below the ones already rejected?"
"They wouldn't discuss it. But I can tell you the bank's not going to take the asking price for this."
"Then why is it the asking price?? If they won't take that, why don't they ask for what they want?"
"They're just trying to generate interest. But if you want this, you should offer as much as you can afford. Offer high, and hope for the best."
"That's nuts. And I'm not playing a guessing game with the bank in the hopes that I discover their super, double-top-secret, magic, actual price for the house."

Anyway, there was so much crazy in that conversation, I don't even know what to think, and I left out all the outraged sputtering from me. So I spent an afternoon on the phone with my mortgage agent while he explained to me which parts (all of it, actually) were BS, and I'm going to do as he suggested and make what I consider a fair offer, and if they take it, great. And if they don't, I'll move on. Perhaps with new realtors. We'll see. But here's hoping. :)
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