Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Our House Hunt, Pt. 4

Good evening Bloggy Friends,

The last time I left you I was finding out what the seller thought about the offer we made on 1230 S. Juniper. We had a feeling he might counter, so we were ready to adjust our bid to help seal the deal.

(cue fuzzy fade out)

Ring. Ring.

"Hi Josh, it's Jim. I talked to the seller and he has decided to DECLINE your offer."

That's right Bloggy Friends, we were rejected. The seller wouldn't budge on the price, he wouldn't give a cent in seller's assist, and he was unwilling to deal with a First-Time Home Buyer (FHA) loan. How absurd. This is a buyer's market, and the majority of these buyers are using FHA loans. We sadly decided to say, "So long. Farewell. Go *beep* yourself!" This was disheartening in a lot of ways. After looking at dozens upon dozens of homes, we were ready to call it quits. We were tired of looking at houses, we were tired of making decisions and we were tired of keeping track of what was "new on the market." Plus, we were so excited to put in our first offer, only to have it flat out denied. This didn't do a lot for our confidence, but our time was running out, so we had to pick up our weary legs to go marching in the house hunting parade once again.

It was nearly a week before Jim could compile a list of new homes for us to see. New listings start to taper off as the summer winds down, so our options were beginning to seem more limited. Had we missed our chance? When the time came to go looking, he took us to properties in Graduate Hospital and Passyunk Square, but we were running into the same problems. Graduate Hospital was either too expensive or too far from public transportation, and the homes in Passyunk Square were either too old or a block or two out of our comfort zone. Things weren't looking too promising, until we turned the key at 1218 Latona.

Now we were getting somewhere. Located in Passyunk Square, 1218 Latona was similar to the home on Juniper Street. It was around 1100 square feet, newly rehabbed, and on a quiet street near the subway. There were a few problems, however. First of all, the home was located directly across the street from an abandoned warehouse. This bothered us at first, but we felt better when two neighbors told us the owner of the building was planning to tear it down to add homes to the street. Another problem was that there was only one bathroom in the house, but there was ample space to build another. It definitely wasn't the "butterfly in the gut" feeling we had before, but we decided that the house seemed practical, so we put in an offer. This time we were more creative. We asked for $5K off the selling price, $10K in seller's assist and an extra $5K to help compensate building a powder room downstairs.

We asked that the seller get back to us by 6 pm the next day, but that didn't happen. The agent was unable to get in touch with him, because he had left for vacation right after listing his home. Who does that? We still hadn't heard a word after three days, so we told Jim to take us out once again. This was getting old, but the game was about to change. We were walking out the door to attend an open house when Jim called with interesting news. The agent from 1230 S. Juniper called back to say he had changed his mind about our original offer. He was ready to give us practically everything we asked for. Then, out of the blue, the agent from 1218 Latona called to say they would also be willing to give us everything we asked for - even the $5K for the powder room. So in a matter of minutes we went from having no options, to having two properties vying for our attention. It was decision-making time.....

To be continued..... (this is the last time, I promise!)

Love, Josh


Bill Fogle said...

I hate you. I love you, but I hate you.

And I'm not going to tell YOU which house I hope you got.

Feeling the pain? Huh ...?

(Just kidding with ya ... sortof.)

Rick Watson said...

yeaaayyyyyy! I know which you chose!!!! Juniper!!!!! Great choice!!!! I love it!!!!

Casey said...

Frustrating times indeed. We had a similar situation. We made a lowball offer on our house, she didn't decline, but didnt respond. We moved on, made an offer on another house (first day on the market, but we were the backup b/c someone else got there first) and a day or so later, the first lady called back to talk some more.

We skipped out on the other house we'd made on offer on (I wasn't crazy about it anyway, but it was a good deal) and made a deal to get this place. I'm so glad it worked out. I wanted this house from the beginning anyway.

Can't wait to hear about the final decision!

Bill Fogle said...

So ... Rick thinks you took the house on Juniper? That wasn't clear to me.

Exciting and nerve-wracking story, Josh. It's a lot to go through.

Bill Fogle said...

The house on Juniper Street is kickass, with the dark-colored stucco and the beautiful front door. The patio looks really nice, and check out those glass brick basement windows (that's what we have and we LOVE them!).

But both places are very nice and, it seems to me, pretty similar.

WAITING ... (spoken like the guy in "Princess Bride")

Rick Watson said...

Bill you know they HAVE to choose Juniper. There is no question here as to which is the most fabulous both inside and out! Isn't that right Josh?!

Rick Watson said...

Enough already! Tell us bitch!