Tuesday, April 08, 2008

House Hunting Here

Both of these "green homes" are located in Pittsboro, NC just outside of Chapel Hill--beautiful and energy efficient to boot!


Any tips? Sound Advice? Tried and True Tricks? I'm all ears...

18 comments:

Shannon said...

Live as close to Craig's work and the kids school as possible. I Love, love, love this about where I live. That's great that your looking at green homes. Even though your lender tells you, you can afford a certain amount purchase less. Debt is debt. Always lurking in the back of your mind. How exciting purchasing your first home.

Tasha said...

I agree with Shannon. When I look back a year ago at what our lender told us we could afford based on Dave's contract, we would have been living very paycheck to paycheck had we spent that much. They qualified us for about 25% more 15-20% more than we spent. Our morgatge is comfortable within our salary, and our student loan payment is about 60% what our morgtage is, so had we gone up to the next house level, we really would have stretched ourselves. We had to landscape the lot, and that cost more than I ever could have imagined, and it wasn't things we could do ourselves. You get out of residency and it has been so DANG LONG, we had couches, lamps and washing machines from my dad's second wife (to whom he is no longer married) furniture from my junior high era (not in a cool retro way, in a heinous way) a crib from a yard sale (same) a 30.00 kitchen table from a going out of business sale, etc etc, and you want it all nice and NOW and it is way too easy to get in over your head. We did a little. You get a great house, if we stay inLogan, we we will never leave this house, so you want to fill it up, and I felt like I had practiced great restraint for 11 years of my marriage, and we went a little foot loose and fancy free. So, keep the whole picture in mind. My dad said to buy as much house as we could afford, because our family would grow and we wouldn't want to move in a few years, and I guess that is somewhat true, but keep in mind that being house poor means that you better really love that house because you won't be able to afford to go anywhere else. Look around the neighboorhood, do you see swing sets, etc? I lived around all retired people in PA, and I loved my neighbors, but living in a neighborhood of families had been such a difference here now that I have kids who need playmates, and I need them too.

Ok, that got long. Email me anytime.

Also, it needs a guest room for the Adams. Have I said that 10,000 times?

Jordan said...

Tasha, don't worry, there will be a room with your name on it!! I love love all the advice, keep it coming!

Anth said...

Ooh, those are so pretty!

Michelle said...

Both those houses look so wonderful. I'm in the same boat so I have little advise or tips. But I do agree about living close to work and school. It really does make life so much less complicated. I read what your friend Tasha wrote and what great advise. It really is so tempting to throw caution to the wind. From what advise my friends give me I have learned to look out for almost any expected or unexpected expense. Like finding your tax bracket and property taxes, and insurances- you know all the hidden stuff that quickly adds up. I think by adding up all the expenses you get the real picture of what life may be like. We still are floundering out here so I can't wait to get to where you're at. But really I have been house hunting for the past year in every state imaginable! Enjoy your house hunt and even if it tends to be a bit of a fantasy!

Heidi said...

Ahhhh....

Melissa said...

North Carolina is a great place to live! I would live near where your husband will be working because the traffic in the triangle is very heavy. I live in Whiteville, NC which is about 45 minutes from Wrightsville Beach and about 1 hour from Myrtle Beach. It is a small town with a slower pace of life. I love your blog and read it daily. I am also expecting a baby, which is due in July and I have an almost 3 year old daughter. Let me know if I can give you any info. about North Carolina. I have several friends that live in Raleigh and all over the state.

Have a great time house shopping!

Ingrid said...

Jordan - We just returned from house hunting ourselves and it really is tempting to purchase an amazing, enormous, gorgeous house especially with the way the market is right now...but I keep reminding myself to be responsible and purchase less.

Best wishes and congratulations! Such well deserved and happy news!!! We will be living closer to you now than we have the last 3 years, so hooray for us...

Carol said...

What a fun, exciting, and stressful time. I have a love/hate relationship with house hunting. I love it most of the time, but it is really frustrating when you see what looks to be the perfect house and then you go into it and it isn't anything like you expected. Oh well, it is still fun. If the market in NC is anything like the market where I live, then my best advice would be to offer significantly less than the asking price. Let's say you are looking at a $500K house, then I wouldn't be embarrassed to offer $400K for it. You might be surprised how low sellers are willing to go and it can't hurt because no one is going to dismiss an interested buyer when the market is so slow. Anyway, good luck to you. Can't wait to see the pics of the one you find.

Amy said...

No tips... just drool over those houses. Lovely!

Becca said...

a green home is my dream home.

Kelly said...

Jordan, you're killing me with those gorgeous Craftsman homes. sigh.

We think we've found our landing spot in Arizona, and I really used that advice of your sister's about paying attention to your preferences. I so appreciate her posting that comment. We feel really led to the house we've found, but at first the only thing drawing me to it was an unexplainable preference. Good luck!

Jeni said...

I love the house on the right...especially the cool design on one of the floors. I also loved all the windows and the built-in benches with storage. Very sexy house.

No advice on buying houses. I think we'll rent for the rest of our lives:)

amy m said...

Oh I am so jealous. NC is so beautiful...so beautiful. Are you actually looking at those houses because I say yes to both of them. Both darling.

congrats.

Anonymous said...

You don't know me, but I've read your blog for awhile. I'll echo what others have said in that I've seen many physicians and their wives think that they are at the end of their financial troubles only to discover that they are at the beginning when they buy a house. If you have debt from medical school, it will weigh heavy for awhile. Maybe buy less house and pay off the debt fast.

Next, I've tried not to fall in love with a house on the internet. Wait to see how it feels when you are in it. Every house has a feel to it, and you will know which one is yours.

Lastly, live close to the church. It may not seem crucial, but early morning seminary will come one day. The battles will only be worse if you have a long drive.

Jordan said...

You guys are all great. The advice you've given has helped me think of things I wouldn't have otherwise.

Melissa said...

I'm just in awe over those amazing homes!!! Moving to Colorado really dropped my standards of what I wanted, it's just so expensive there. I say get the one you want. By the looks, I don't think you can go wrong.

michelle said...

I'm dying over those homes. The truly awful old Utah "architecture" (it doesn't even truly deserve that name) that is so prevalent here means we have a split-level! How I hate the split-level. I dream of actual stories, upstairs bedrooms, a gabled roof...

You have gotten some great advice here. One more thing I would recommend: if you find a home you really love, walk around the neighborhood. Drive by at different times of day. See what the neighbors are like, what they're doing. See how it feels. I don't love our house, but I surely do love our neighbors and neighborhood. Also, try to find a great realtor. It really helps when you are unfamiliar with the area -- ours ruled out certain neighborhoods, busy streets, etc. before we even went looking -- things we would not have known. She also called the R.S. president of our new ward to ask her about the ward!