Ok, I know you're wondering what happened with the house hunting. Here goes... we met the realtor at his office at 10:00, and then we drove to 4 houses that he'd set up to show us. All of them were in a 10 minute radius of where we currently live. I think all of them had been on the market at least a month.
I like the realtor pretty well. The description I got of him doesn't really match his personality, but I think I'm ok with that. I thought he was going to be a quiet, smiling man who asked me questions about what I wanted and nodded and answered questions he was asked. Instead, he's a slightly grandfatherly type who has definite opinions about things. He notices whether there are power lines in a yard and how close a house is to a major road with lots of road noise, for instance. He knowledge is useful, but I also need to take it with a grain of salt. I need him to notice things and point them out to me, but I also need to be able to disregard his bias if I don't agree with it.
For instance, he told me in passing that he wants to "get us out of that neighborhood as soon as possible." He's grown up here, he's a native North Carolinian, and I don't think he can easily discern between actually dangerous and kind of run down. We will probably never be able to afford the neighborhood he lives in, and I'm not sure that I would want to if I could. I like the chance to meet people who are a little grittier than me... if I don't have to live right smack dab next door to them. =)
So, we saw these 4 houses. Only one of them seemed like it had potential. The others were only so so, and some of them would've required a good bit of painting, at the least.
Yesterday was a tough day for me, emotionally and physically. Something was blooming that I'm really allergic to, so I felt pretty awful. And thinking about all that will go into this house search was, well, stressful. I was a little angry and disgusted with how little there is available in our location in our price range. The amount that some people want for a mildly unattractive house is astounding. And if you actually want grass and trees in your back yard, you have to pay what to me is a small fortune. At this point, I have no problem with the thought of offering someone $35,000 below their asking price. I think their asking price is ridiculous. And since we have a good place to live for as long as we want, I'm in no rush, and if you laugh in my face, I'll move on. Good luck getting your list price from someone else.
Today, I'm not as angry, I'm willing to limit myself more to looking more strictly in our price range without wild plans for lowballing, and after culling through the long list of potentials the realtor sent me, I'm happy to sit and wait and go see an occasional house when something new pops up. We have a few more we'd like to look at before that, maybe this week, and I'm also going to ask him about the potential of foreclosures. I'm trying to settle in to some mild limbo.
David reminded me that I am quite familiar with limbo. The whole time I was getting a master's degree, I wondered why I was doing it, and if I'd ever finish it. I would've thrown the whole thing over in a heartbeat if I could just get pregnant. My heart was divided between trying to get pregnant and trying to get a master's degree. It was hard to plow ahead with something that I didn't know that I'd see through until the end. But I did it, and God had plans for me to finish.
This is absolutely nothing compared to that limbo time. I don't even really WANT to move right now. Maybe in a few months, but only if I fall in love with a place. I need to just learn to wait and sit tight and relax and be ok with casually looking. Yeah, that's it, I need a big emphasis on the "casually" part. That would help. I just need to stuff down my type A-ness and become all type B and relaxed.
I don't plan to vomit middle class housing angst all over this blog too often. =) Thanks for putting up with me this weekend. I'll let you know if there's something more to know in the process.
Now off to do something cheerful, like make jambalaya for our Sunday school teachers and another couple...