We’re Under Contract…

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After four, long months of feverish house hunting, we are seriously under contract on a house!!  If all goes as planned, we should close next month.  Yay for us!!  🙂  God has answered our prayers!

To say the Florida real estate market is rebounding would be more than accurate, particularly in our area.  As soon as one comes on the market, it is swiftly scooped up.  It seems out of state investors are in full force and my only prayer is that it doesn’t lead to a repeated bubble.  At any rate, here we are.  Elated doesn’t begin to describe our feelings at the thought of being liberated from our tiny abode, otherwise known as our apartment.  I really shouldn’t complain as 1,500 square feet is not small, however my disdain for it has more to do with my desire for a more permanent situation.  I’m so looking forward to hanging curtains, unpacking all of our boxes, organizing and decorating!!

Before any of that happens, the house needs to be painted and new flooring!  So, despite a possible closing next month, we will not likely move in until sometime in May.  But, at least, things are headed in that direction!

The master bathroom also needs to be gutted because of mold behind the shower wall, so we’ll completely renovate the master bath prior to move in also.  The thought of a claw footed bathtub sounds delightful!  I think I have finally convinced my husband of their popularity and how nice it will look!  I love all things antique-y and he leans more toward trendy, although sometimes we actually meet in the middle of what I’ll call “classic” style.  Haha.

We definitely will take loads of before and after renovation pictures and I hope to have a few spare moments to share them with you!

I have a “coastal” theme in mind for the living room … a white couch with coral print accent pillows paired with turquoise or slate blue print accent pillows; a white coffee table and end tables (one end table square & one round perhaps); two coral print accent chairs… This is what my thoughts are so far for this room.  The white couch has a slip cover, which can be easily machine washed.  I’m all for practical decorating ideas.  This is so exciting to me because it’s the first time in our twenty year marriage that I’ve actually hand picked our furniture.  Most of what we’ve owned in the past has been second hand or a concession I’ve made to my husband’s tastes.  This time around, I actually have a firm idea of what I want!  Only took me twenty years!  Haha.

We will have a large family room downstairs, but we already have a couch, love seat and tables for that room.  We sold our formal dining room set before we moved so we will need a new set.  I really like the farmhouse tables I’ve seen around and would love something very durable, yet pleasing to the eyes too.  A cross between casual farmhouse and elegant every day style.  Does that exist?  I don’t know, but what I do know is we will have many family dinners around this table and that they will eventually include grandbabies.  I don’t want to worry about every nick and scratch on our new furniture.  So…that’s the idea behind that.

We already have friends who want to come visit us this summer and my dad is already planning his visit for Thanksgiving!  So, we’ve got to get settled in quickly!  🙂

The house we’re purchasing is a short sale and, honestly, there have been very few “updates” since the house was built in 1988!  It’s as if the house is stuck in a time warp.  Now 1988 was a great year.  It is, after all, the year I became a mother for the first time!  However, homes need a little TLC and updating every now and then!  The previous owners had a cat and the carpet has long done its duty.  So, that is one reason the floors need to be redone.  I have bad allergies to cats, so that’s a non-negotiable.

The 80’s watercolors cornice boards will be one of the first things to come down.  Hideous!  Haha.  I personally adore natural lighting and the back of the house allows plenty of that with all of the gorgeous windows.  So, I’m not sure I’ll want anything but blinds.  We’ll see.  At least that’s not something that requires immediate attention.

My husband and I made a list with two columns.  One for immediate items that need renovation and the other for items that can wait, but definitely need attention.  We also attached approximate dollar amounts to each area, so we have a general idea of our future expenditures related to the house.  We weighed our total investment against the average CMA in our area.  In the end, our investment still makes sense.  We showed our analysis to our trusty realtor (who’ve we’ve spent a great deal of time with over the last four months!!) and he commented that he’d never seen anyone ever do this before!  I couldn’t believe that!  Especially when one is purchasing a short sale that needs a lot of work, one must count the cost!

We’ve had every conceivable home inspection performed recently!!

We had the following inspections:

  • the general, extensive home inspection (including the pool)
  • mold & radon
  • termite
  • structural engineer (to check an area of concern)
  • well (& sent water sample to lab for testing)
  • septic (& had it pumped out)

I think that just about covers it!  Whew, what an exhausting time!  Although these inspections can add up to a big chunk of change, we feel like they offer a bit of insurance or, at a very minimum, a glimpse of what upcoming expenses may be. After all we went through with selling our previous house and having to pay so much for items that failed the home inspection, we wanted a very thorough picture of what we might be dealing with in advance!  This way, we limit our surprises!  Word to the wise…

This house is really special.  If we didn’t feel that way, we would not be willing to invest so much into it.  It’s in a wonderful neighborhood that is close to everything you’d need, yet in a peaceful surrounding.  There is a creek with rushing water that runs along the backside of the house, which funnels into a big river.  Yet, we are not in a flood zone.

Once we close and the dust settles, I will take some pictures, particularly of the back of the house.  The scope of the glass on the back of the house is amazing and beautiful!  I call the house a “diamond in the rough”.  Haha.  For some, maybe the present state of the house would be alright, but for us, we know it can really shine and be so much more!

We’re looking forward to the transformation!  Hope you’ll join me on this journey…

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