house-hunting comes to an end…for now

me and bob3A lot has happened within the last couple of weeks.

Bob and I have decided not to buy the house. We were so close to closing. So close until it all fell apart.

Almost two weeks ago, the mortgage loan company called to discuss the appraisal report. Apparently, the mold in the basement was so extensive that there was potential for the structure of the basement to be completely destroyed and the only way to find out was to have a structural engineer come in and assess the damage. This meant more $$$ out of our pockets when we didn’t even own the house yet. In addition to the assessment, depending on the extent of the damage, we’d have to apply for a different kind of loan – one with a higher interest rate. Again, more $$$.

A couple of hours later, our lawyer called to tell us that  there was judgment on the house in the amount of several thousand dollars. Long story short, even more $$$ from us.

In the end, it just wasn’t worth it.

We’d gone through so much with this house. Much more than what I’ve mentioned here. We’ve put a lot of time and money (lawyer, inspection and appraisal fees) into it and for us not to be getting it in the end was/is heartbreaking. For months, I’d been imagining us in this home: a pink and grey-themed nursery for the little one, shiny new appliances, new paint jobs and just generally more space for everyone. All superficial, I know, but it was disappointing nonetheless. So when Bob brought up Plan B, moving into his old apartment in a different part of Queens, I was less than thrilled about it, in spite of the prospect of being able to save even more money. I’ve mentioned it before, but for those that don’t know his old place is owned by his family, so of course with a “family discount” the rent is basically pennies (and it includes some utilities). We also have the added bonus of having his mother next door and his grandmother downstairs, should we need their help or they need ours. But the thing that kept bothering me was the idea of moving into yet another very small space, now with a baby on the way. Not to mention, the not so-convenient location, public transportation-wise. But after a few days of thinking on it and discussing my concerns with Bob, I’d come around to the idea and have made peace with it. I’m even kind of excited about redecorating his old bachelor pad into a cozy family home and chucking a bunch of stuff we don’t need (I’ve already started and it feels GREAT). What’s even better is that in about a year, probably two, we are going to be able to afford a slightly bigger, better home (one that doesn’t have mold problems, fingers crossed) provided the housing market doesn’t pick up too drastically. There’s also the potential for Bob to pay off his school loans in the meantime. We’re just going to have to get really crafty with our space. Hence, I’ve started a new Pinterest board called Space-Saving. Because everyone knows a Pinterest board makes it a creative and fun challenge!

So that’s what we’re doing. We get to stay in Queens for a while longer, which is great. We have lots of family and friends nearby (many of which who have already offered up their generous babysitting services!), which is super convenient. And even though things didn’t go as planned, we are going to make this work. I’m confident that no matter where we end up, we’ll be together and we’ll be happy and that’s really all that matters.

18 responses to “house-hunting comes to an end…for now”

  1. Aw, man. Sorry about all the hassle you went through with the other place, but it sounds like with the mold issue and the added hidden costs it was probably a blessing in disguise. That’s a major bummer though, to have gotten that close to something and have it not work out. But maybe you’ll end up needing the extra family help more than the extra space when baby first arrives! Sounds like your alternative plan is a good one.

    • Jillian says:

      “Blessing in disguise”. That’s a perfect way to describe the situation. But yes, you’re absolutely right. The family help, I’m sure, will be invaluable to us.

  2. Sharon says:

    So sorry to hear about the house. I understand the disappoint especially since you were so looking foward to decorating and creating the home you always dreamed of. Sometimes to get to our destination we have to detour just a little bit. It is all part of the journey and the wonderful thing is you will be near family who will most likely fight over taking care of your little blessing and be able to save for a home that does not have any issues.

  3. Georgina says:

    I think it will be lovely having family so close when the little one joins. My cousins grew up with their nan and their great-aunt next door, and spend all their time running in and out of the three houses. It makes for nice ‘communal’ living.

    • Jillian says:

      Yes, that’s exactly what Bob said! He grew up with “open doors”, going in and out of the apartments of whoever was living there at the time (usually aunts and uncles). But you’re right, it’ll be great for the baby to have family so close!

  4. Emily says:

    I am sorry about the house, but honestly its probably for the best. Not sure you want a new baby in a house that has mold issues (i understand that can be cleaned) but who knows if there would be other future issues/probs/more hidden mold.

    With a new baby having so much family around is so much easier. You don’t really need a whole lot of room until the kid is like 2-3 years old anyway 😉 and like you said you’ll save money and get other debts paid off.

    Besides, I’m excited to see how you redecorate your new space 😉

    • Jillian says:

      Yes and that mold was definitely an issue once the baby came into play. So many people warned us against it, but the mold guys kept saying that it could be fixed 100% so we kept on. But I think this might have been the universe telling us that the house was not for us.

  5. lena says:

    I’m so sorry to hear things didn’t turn out the way you’d wanted (us, too!) but I’m glad you’re feeling positive about the new home, and all the amenities it offers!

  6. Laura says:

    I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t get the house, but it sounds like it’s for the best. It had so many issues that I’m sure you’ll be glad you don’t have to deal with that. Good luck with the move! when are you moving into the other apartment?

    • Jillian says:

      Thanks Laura! We’re looking to move by the end of April. I think that will give us enough time to get things set up in the apartment (painting, sprucing up, etc.) before the little one arrives!

  7. em says:

    Sorry about the house! I don’t think your original plans sound at all superficial. The dream started to seem real, and then poof :(

    Though the smaller space is less than ideal, it sounds like an adventure and a (good) challenge. Decluttering will definitely go a long way in making it all feel less stressful and fresh.

    • Jillian says:

      Thank you Em! Yes…decluttering. I’m great at it. Bob, not so much (he has such a sentimental attachment to his things). But he’s going to learn quickly when we start accumulating all this baby stuff! I’m excited for a fresh start though. It’s like that first page of paper in a crisp, new notebook. Feels good!

  8. rooth says:

    Gah, sorry to hear about the crummy ending to the house hunting saga but I’m sure that it will be the right decision for you both. There’s no need to rush into something that isn’t right for you, just to do it, and it sounds like you’ll be in a better situation in the future

  9. Chiara says:

    I’m sorry to hear about your house woes – that sucks! I have no idea why buying a house is so difficult, but I’ve never known it to go easy for anybody. Like other people have said it’s good you’re not rushing into something else too quickly – it’s always good to take time to process these things. Oh and I love the sound of your Pinterest board x

  10. ashley says:

    You know what, I think this MAY have been divine intervention, as crappy as it all was. Having family right next to you with a new baby is probably going to be a major saving grace!!!!!!! (!!)

    I bet you will get the house of your dreams quite soon, but in the meantime, don’t forget that you LOVE Queens :) I’m such a planner that I sulk when plans don’t work out the way I envisioned, but usually always it turns out for the better!

  11. Harriet says:

    I am sorry for the house… You are going to find the perfect house in time I’m sure! Good luck! Greets, London Removals Ltd.

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