I’m the Customer Service Lead at MLS4owners.com, a real estate advertising company that works with sellers who want to sell without using an agent, so when Mr. Wetzel and I started thinking about buying a house, I already had some exposure to the market and a pretty good awareness of what kinds of homes were available. Most homes in good neighborhoods that would meet our needs were about $100,000 more than we could afford, so we knew that we would only be able to buy a house that was a fixer-upper. So, in the Spring on 2009, we started our search.
We decided to use an agent specifically because the agent we chose had a lot of experience with fixer-uppers. My friend, Leighanne, used to flip houses for a living with her sister. Flipping a house means that they buy a house that need a lot of work done on it, fix it up, and then sell it for a profit. Our agent was Leighanne’s sister, Heidi Waltos. Heidi was able to help us understand which issues in a house were easy fixes, and which things would be too much for us to handle as freshman homeowners.
We walked through dozens of houses. We looked at hundreds, if not thousands, of others online. And we learned a lot about what to look for in a home when you’re on a tight budget and willing to put in a little elbow grease to make a place livable.
We tried to place an offer on one house, but another offer was accepted before we got ours finalized. We placed an offer on a second house which got accepted, but during the house inspection, we discovered a mountain of hidden problems that made the house too much for us to handle as newbies. Then, in April 2010, we made an offer the cute little rambler shown in these pictures, and after a 3 month processes, the sale closed in mid-August. We were homeowners! Who knew this would ever happen?!
(These pictures show what our house looked like in early April when we first came to check out the house. The foliage was enchanting.)
I’m not a licensed real estate professional, and I have no authority to weight my opinions, but as a homeowner and savvy buyer, I’d like to share with you some of the things I learned while going through the buying process. This mini-blog series may be good for you if you’re looking to buy a house, or if you’re a seller interested in a buyer’s perspective. I’ll create a new category on the blog to talk about the Wetzel’s home-buying process, called “ewhouse,” and I’ll add a landing page to the category section up above. I hope you all find this information useful!
These pictures show what our house looked like in early April when we first came to check out the house. The foliage was enchanting.