On the Hunt

>> 10.13.2011

We're looking for a new house. Actually, we've been looking for a new house for the past few months. If one of the three homes that we put an offer on had accepted, we'd be moving in about now. Really, I wanted to share the big news with a reveal of a new house, but instead the blog has been close to silent over the time that we haven't been able to find anything. So, now you know that we weren't exactly skipping house projects and going on a spending freeze because we were broke from the wedding, but because there are going to be big things in the future!

Oh, and while I'm on the subject, I have to give a shout-out to my favorite thrifty home-buying discovery. I know that it isn't available in every city, but check out Redfin if you can! The site is really user-friendly, but more importantly, it also gives you access to stats that normally only real estate agents have available!


In Texas, we're a non-disclosure state, which means that the actual sales price is normally only reserved for buyers working with members of the MLS. With Redfin, signing up with a free account gives you those same privileges and lets you make your own decisions on what similar homes in the neighborhood might be worth. I can probably blame Redfin for letting three other buyers outbid me on homes because I've been using comps from the past six months as motivation to keep looking for the better deal.

Oh, and as a bonus, it has a direct link to the Google Street View of the home. Call me a late bloomer, but I didn't know until recently that there is a full screen option in Street View. I can't tell you how much gas money I've saved by using Street View to "drive" around neighborhoods instead of my own car!

In addition to the site, Redfin has also partnered with local agents to offer commission rebates on sales made through the site. I've decided to use another agent, but this could be another great way to save $$$.

I'll admit that I do have fun searching for homes, but after making the decision to buy earlier this year and saving up every extra penny we had, I'm ready to make the big purchase! Sure, it might be easier if I wasn't so picky (more on that later) and if I didn't feel the need to get a good deal...

Anyone else on the hunt for a new home? How long did it take for you to settle on a house?
 
(Of course, I have no connection with Redfin and I'm not being paid to mention their site.)

8 comments:

Rachel October 13, 2011 at 9:23 AM  

My husband and I are beginning to look, with plans to actually buy next year. We're still scoping out neighborhoods and school districts and figuring out what our must-haves are. The biggie though is that I want an older house (like the 1950s era one I was raised in) and my husband wants a newer house (like the 90's era one his parents live in). Yeah....we're still trying to sort out that compromise!

Oh, and like you, I am also somewhat picky. At least we have a large inventory of houses to choose from!

Danielle and Clint October 13, 2011 at 1:38 PM  

Congrats! I thought you had been MIA for awhile.

Sara @ Russet Street Reno October 14, 2011 at 8:38 PM  

That is a cool tool, so glad you are going to have many exciting things to share soon!

Jamie Lee October 16, 2011 at 1:10 PM  

How exciting! I'll have to check out Redfin. I am obsessed with Zillow and look up different areas in different cities all the time just for fun.

Peter and I are interested in learning more about buying a foreclosed home. I think it's a little too early to say that we're on the hunt, but I'm hoping that a hunt will happen soon.

Sara October 17, 2011 at 9:19 AM  

Found your blog through the NewlyWoodwards and subscribed to it! I love what you're doing over here and can't wait to read more! Keep up the good work!

Jackie October 17, 2011 at 9:52 PM  

Yes! We are in escrow and hopefully closing in the next week or so. I am an avid Redfin user. Love the street view too!

Anonymous,  October 19, 2011 at 3:45 PM  

It didn't take us long at all.

We looked at about 5 houses, viewed one the day it went on the market late at night and made an offer the next morning (and got it).

It was the right house in the right neighborhood at a good price.

I love redfin too - my old boss works there!

Chy November 11, 2011 at 9:30 PM  

The house we are in now was supposed to be another 2 year flip, like the previous 3 houses. But we somehow fell in love and just celebrated 20 years in the same place (record for us).

We were driving down this street in the middle of an afternoon and saw the sale sign. Went home and contacted our realtor to see if we could go and take a "peek". Loved it, put in an offer, they accepted, went home, cleaned our house, someone looked at it that night, made an offer, we countered, they accepted, done deal by bedtime!

The only downside was that I lost a very good friend and neighbor, who was away when this quick transaction took place, came home to find out we were moving and didn't speak to me for years because we were moving from a "starter" area to a more classical area with bigger houses. We had twice as many kids, so needed the extra room. Ironically enough, we have now reconnected on Facebook and her current house is huge!! But we're friends again and all is well.

Hope all goes well.

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