thursday night, everyone took off work early to see the house. josh's mom and her bf drove and hour and my dad came over from chestnut hill and we all piled into some cars and drove over and were there promptly at 5:30. and we waited. and waited and waited. and called and called and called. and no one came. finally, we went home and found out that there was a misunderstanding and wires were crossed and it sucked. i felt bad esp for josh's parental units, since they had to drive so far and kevin took time off from work. we were all upset bc everyone's time had been wasted.
so josh's mom harnessed her middle school sped teaching powers and gave the real estate agent a piece of her mind and told her that in order to restore the trust she eroded she can pay for the inspection. so she did. i love josh's mom and hope to god i am never on the receiving end of that tone. it is scary.
so i get a call from the real estate agent all "don't feel like you cant trust me" and "i am here for you" etc. fine. things are a little on edge; josh's mom and I are doing this good cop/bad cop routine with the agent and it is working well. so far, ok.
so saturday morning we all pile into cars (again) and take a longer look at the place. the parents like it and state many obvious facts - it is a lot of house, busier street than we have now, do we really need that much space, stairs hard to climb with a baby seat (there was a lot of baby planning that weekend - not by us!). but overall, things look good. we are still liking it and both of us are looking forward to the inspection.
inspection day on sunday. the guy is great so so thorough and nice. he really goes over everything with a fine toothed comb and writes a comprehensive report. fantastic. so then we all go back and discuss some more. this needs to be fixed, that needs to be taken into account, etc. fine.
now we had been asking for the utility bills for the last week. even though they are not required to hand them over, we wanted to see them to get an idea of whether we can afford the maintain the place. we get the runaround from the seller's agent and finally monday i call the companies and get the averages, highs and lows for electric and gas. they are on the high side but doable. she had three kids and four tvs and has to heat and cool two floors (we would only be sleeping on one) and although we took all that into account, we didn't count on it going that much lower. but what we really wanted was a month by month. they told us we could have it tuesday. ok fine. we knew we had to make the decision soon but wanted to see those before we did.
then on monday our agent informs me that we have to decide if we want to back out by the 13th. i am shocked. so we have one day to get the list of things we want fixed from the inspection, haggle back and forth about what has to be done, AND somehow get estimates on what each of those things would cost so that if the seller doesn’t want to do it, she will take that off the price of the house. both of us are floored and unhappy: we were rushed into the offer process (granted, we let ourselves be rushed bc we loved the place so much). we were ill informed on HOW to place the offers and negotiate things (she knew we were first time buyers and i told her we would need tons of hand holding, we got none of that), after the inspection, she didn't tell us that we only had until tuesday to back out (if she had, we would have send the list on sunday and had more back and forth time) and assumes that we know what we know all the future steps and what needs to be done. we don't. it is obvious. really obvious. she doesn't like dealing with our parents' questions and doesn't seem to be on our side at all. josh said it well last night - we are not only working against the seller, we seem to be working against our own agent. we both don't feel like she is in our court and that is making us uneasy.
if we go ahead with this, in the next four days, i have to hire a lawyer and write a $10,000 check. and then a week after that, i need to write another $40,000. if we felt more secure with this agent, i would be ok with that. but we don't. none of our concerns are being addressed and none of our questions are being answered. this is a daunting process and our only ally doesn't seem to have our best interests in mind.
even though we sent the list and got a slight extension on the deadline for negotiations, we are going to pass on the house. we love the place and are both disappointed, but there will be other houses. like josh said last night, it is better to regret not buying it than it is to regret buying it. i couldn’t agree with him more.
here are some deepa analogies i came up with this morning:
it's like going to the mall with $300 and seeing the perfect dress of $275. now the dress is perfect and you can afford it, but now you only have $25 left for the whole day. I think we decided that the dress is nice, and fits perfectly, but maybe we can find another dress for a little less and then i can buy shoes to match.
i have been shoe shopping for a while now and have only seen shoes that i kind of like that are in my price range but not love. i wouldn't want to use any of the ones i see as an everyday shoe; some of them go with some of my outfits and some go with others, but none of them are perfect. then i see it, the shoe that fits so well. and it goes with everything and i love it and can see myself wearing it for years and years. it was $700 but now is marked down to $400! the value is there and i probably won't find such a great pair for any less, but do i really need to spend $400 on shoes? probably not.
these thoughts compounded with the low trust and comfort levels with the agent convinced us that this is not right for us. there will be other houses - you never know, i might find those $700 shoes marked down to $200 in my size. i might just have to take the time to sift through the bins...