How to Help Alleviate the Stress of House Hunting
August 11, 2019
So hubby and I are on on the hunt for a new home, and y’all… buying a home is STRESSFUL. This is not my first go around, but it has been almost 6 years since I purchased my first home, and now we are on the hunt again for our expanding family. SOOOO… I just need a good word vomit because I cannot be the only mama stressed out of her mind during this process.
A little back story… My first home was a home I had from a previous marriage, and now that Matt and I are expanding our family, even though I was awarded the home, it just wasn’t right for us. Too far from Matt’s work, and too far from Matt’s parents whom help tremendously with the kids, and ultimately, too small being only 2 bedrooms and ~1300 square feet. With two kiddos we decided to look in Grapevine, TX, a town I just adore. So the hunt began, and we put our home on the market. I found my DREAM HOME in Grapevine, put in an offer set to close the same date I was selling my home, and could NOT be more excited. Then… we found out the accepted another offer. So, I was crushed (if you follow me on Instagram, you saw the tears for a few days! Ha)
Well, we kept looking within our price point, to either not find anything, or be set up for disappointment after seeing a home I just adored. Fast forward to April 29th, and our home sells, and we are left living with my in laws while we house hunt… and here we are, in August of 2019, still at my in laws. Now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adore my in laws, but cramming 6 of us into a 3 bedroom house is a lot. THANK GOODNESS they have let us stay while we search, but it has been an emotional rollercoaster trying to find our dream home.
I have seen 4 homes that I have fallen in love with, and 3 of them had other offers beat us out, because let’s face it, in Grapevine, the list price means you better offer $10k over if you love it! Well, after disappointment after disappointment, I finally decided to expand where we looked for homes, and found a house that I am once again in LOVE with. And again, it is going to be a multiple offers scenario. Soooooooo… this time I am trying to 1) not get my hopes up and 2) just tell myself whatever happens, happens. But man am I ready for us to have our own space again.
So, here are some tips to help make home buying LESS stressful, at least for me.
- Know your budget, and I mean REALLY know your budget. In my experience, you always seem to get approved for way more than you can reasonably afford. So, be sure you start the process buy speaking to a few mortgage companies to explore rates, and see if you qualify for a mortgage. I always like to make an offer with my pre-approval letter. From there, be sure you talk with your spouse, and stick with the budget. It is easier to ease by by $5,000, then $10,000, and next thing you know you’re $50,000 over budget and struggling.
- Look online, and then look in person. Twice. My realtor has been amazing, and even though I am sure he would like to be rid of me, he has really been so patient, and worked so well with our family and schedule. Matt works out of town often, so I would actually meet Ray to see the home first, because let’s be honest, if mama doesn’t like it, then it is getting scratched off the list and I don’t even need to waste Matt’s time looking for a house. But if I like it, then I talk with Ray (realtor) and we schedule to see the house again so Matt can decide what he thinks. This also lets me decide if I liked it as much as the first time I saw it (since I am a very emotional response person).
- Just breathe, and let go. Ultimately, it is out of your control. If you get the house you love, awesome! If you don’t, just know that there is a grand plan for things and it will all work out in the end. I say this in hindsight, because for every house that hasn’t worked out for us, we have found something we liked even more. (That being said, once you decided on one, STOP LOOKING!!!). It doesn’t hurt to take a break for a day, and just woosah.
- Love your spouse. Your relationship with your spouse in more important than any home or material object. I remember being so upset over wanting a house, and he was hesitant. But me being me, was being eager and pushy. I was waiting on Matt’s signature on the contract, and he was thinking it over. So upset, I went into the other room with the kids. Matt and I both stressed, with tension between us. I had some time to myself, and after thinking it over, and walked up to Matt, and told him that if he did not want the home, to not put an offer on it because no home was worth the strain on our marriage. He leaned in to kiss me and said, “I will remember you said that. I signed the contract and sent it to Ray.” A humbling moment making me realize just how precious marriage is, and how much we both care for one another trying to put each other first (it isn’t always this way, but this particular way was just perfect).
So that is where we sit. An offer on another home, hoping that this is the home the universe has planned for our family, and waiting to see if our offer is accepted. So stay tuned.
UPDATE: We did not get the house. They received a cash offer and it beat ours. Soooooo… had my tears and am back and ready to house hunt! Thank you for everyone who has been so amazingly supportive!