What I've Learned About House Hunting

June 13, 2019

Photo by Hilltop Photo Co.

You may have noticed I've been a little MIA in the blogosphere these days, and that's because I've been spending a good chunk of my weekdays and weekends house hunting.

That's right-  ya girl is looking for her own place!  And although that's an exciting statement, the process itself is far less exciting.

As a first time home buyer, I'm no expert by any stretch. But here's what I've learned about house hunting so far:

You would think buying your first or a new home would be fun, right? It's one of those exciting life milestones, but the fun part is lacking. It requires a lot of online searching, viewings and decision making. And pretty much 100 percent of the time, you will be going up against others who are also interested in the same house. It feels very cutthroat; like a big gambling game. The last thing I want before getting my first home is a bunch of drama. These factors can suck the fun right out of the entire process. The more you can shrug off unexpected surprises, the less crushed you will feel. 

I've found that when you walk into a place that feels like it could be  "the one,"  you will really start to envision yourself there. Setting up your living space, sitting out on the patio, baking in the kitchen, etc. And if you can see your family/friends there like I usually can, that will really get your heart racing. It's obviously not great to plan for something when it's not officially yours yet, but if you are able to see it so clearly in your mind, that's the feeling they're talking about- that  "this is it"  feeling.

My parents have always told my brother and I not to get too excited about things, because we both hate being disappointed. But there are certain situations where you can't help but get your hopes up. In the house hunting process, it's best to NOT get your hopes up, because literally anything could happen. It's not yours until you have the keys in your hand, unfortunately. I'd be lying to you if I said I don't get excited. But because of this, I've faced great disappointment. The less excited you get until it's officially yours, the better off you'll be. 

You know that long list of things we all want in our first home? For me, it's something that is updated with lots of natural light, great closet space and an unmistakable cozy vibe. We also have a short list of things we prefer- mine are white cabinets, light paint colors and laminate floors. But I've learned that even though we may have a list of requests, we should be open to homes that don't meet all our wishes. The most recent house I put an offer in on had oak cabinets, which I would normally be completely against. But because everything else about the home was perfect, the cabinets didn't bother me at all. When it's  "the one,"  small details like this won't seem so important. 

I'm writing this rolling off a weekend that was devastating on the home buying front, so advice for both myself and you is don't quit. It can turn into the most frustrating experience ever, full of heartbreak and unexpected turns, but real homeowners keep telling me when you finally land in a place of your own, you'll look back and understand why the others didn't work out. It is SO hard to see that in the moment, and if I hear it one more time I might SCREAM. But I know they're not wrong; in fact they're so RIGHT. It's really freaking hard and you will get discouraged, but don't quit. Keep looking and be patient. The right one is out there. I believe it, and so should you.

Happy hunting,

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