We’re kicking off 2018 by tackling on of the top to-do’s on our list: buying a house!
In the spring of 2017, my husband and I decided to sell our house a rent for a little bit. Kind of a crazy idea, but let me explain:
It was definitely a Seller’s Market in Michigan, and we didn’t want to miss out. We knew that our last house wasn’t going to be our forever house, so we decided to jump in. We did a little bit of apartment research, and were able to find something super cute and close to town. Over the summer we were able to walk up to the Farmer’s Market and other events in town.
We found out that, while the walking-distance perk was nice, we didn’t attend as many events as we thought we would. This made living in a downtown area not as much of a priority as I had thought. Where I live, the closer to town you are, the higher the taxes are, so we’re happy to avoid that a little bit.
My husband started a new job in December which was another big thing on our to-do list. This definitely helps in buying a house. He was at a little bit of a dead-end with his previous job, but fortunately his new job has endless opportunities. I’m really excited for him.
We really started house hunting after Christmas 2017, we are SO OVER apartment life. Even though our apartment is very nice… it’s worn out its welcome. It’s time to buy a house. I’m sick of hearing the neighbors walk, talk, and whatever else they’re doing upstairs or next to us. I do not like the parking lot. And there isn’t enough space in the kitchen for all my gadgets (Christmas Baking 2017 was quite challenging!) – baking is my thing.
When we moved into our last house, we painted every room, walls and ceiling. It was such a pain! We swore (literally and figuratively) that we would hire a painter when we moved into our new house but now that we’re getting closer to closing, we’re rethinking our grand plans of hiring painting, carpeting, and moving. I can be cheap (frugal sounds nicer), I just don’t like the idea of spending so much money all at once.
Here’s what we’re doing to save some money buying a house:
- Painting ourselves. Well, painting the house ourselves! There’s 10 rooms plus entry way (2 stories tall), hallway, hallway going upstairs, and upstairs landing. I’m most nervous about the 2-story entry way. As I think through this, I think I just don’t know how to do the 2-story painting, so I’m chickening out!
- Cleaning the carpets. The carpets are in really good condition, and could make it a couple of years. We’re going to borrow a carpet cleaner and deep-clean the carpets a couple of times. This should buy us some time on carpet replacement.
- Moving ourselves. Moving is so hard. We had originally thought we’d hire someone to move the big stuff and we would do the rest. Now, it just doesn’t seem worth spending hundreds of dollars. (Side note: I’m so picky anyway I would probably end up doing more work anyway!) I will just rent a moving truck (side note: rent your moving truck as early as possible. Usually you can adjust your dates as the move gets closer. Typically the longer you wait to lock in a price, the more expensive it is. I’ve seen prices be 4-5x more when making your reservation less than a week out!
- Having an over-lap in our closing date on the house, and end-of-lease for our apartment. We’ll have about two months to clean, paint, and move. Hopefully it won’t take that long to do all of our chores, but it sure beats having to do it all in one weekend!!!