Um, it wasn’t supposed to be this easy!

I’m buying a house.  Wow, just to see those words stirs up so many emotions.  Disbelief at the top of the list.

Due to many circumstances it became a pressing need to move from my current location in late August.  Changes to my rental agreement would make maintaining even the most barren lifestyle impossible.  The emotional and mental toll the situation was having on me was apparent to many of my colleagues and friends.  About two weeks ago I found a duplex and began to mull over the information.  On Sunday I drove by the property a second time, looking in the windows and walking the backyard.  Then I found the price had dropped significantly.  And bids would only be accepted through Tuesday at midnight.

The price was great, three other comparable duplexes sold on the same street for well above the asking price.  Additionally, starting on Wednesday the bidding would be open to investors.  In the past two years the value of this property has declined over 50% making it a considerable find in California.

So armed with just enough information to be dangerous I contacted a realtor licensed to work with HUD (Housing & Urban Development) an agency that buys homes from owners that default on FHA loans.

Ideally I would have designated some free time (ha!) to research the process, terms and practices.  I would have a binder prepared listing my needs (yard, 2 bedrooms, safe neighborhood) and my wants (skylights, remodelled kitchen, second bathroom, backyard to rival Yankees stadium).  I would have carefully researched county tax codes, utility usage rate averages and school districts, neighborhood crime rates and the best fencing material on the market.  Then I would have interviewed realtors, poured over listings and toiled for months.

And I could have done that, would have done that, in time.

Instead I found myself laughing with Mom over one house (listed at $20k cheaper) which was gutted, the victim of an “apparent fire”.

As it turns out, time moved quicker than I expected.  Just three short weeks after deciding it was time to move on and move out of my current rental I made an offer.  Less than 24 hours later offer accepted.  Which is where I sit now.  In 48 more hours the contract will be signed and I’ll still have more questions than answers.

But the financing is secured, the timing is perfect and the price is right.  Instead of waiting for the chips to fall perfectly into place I’ll take this calculated risk and begin the process of owning my own home.


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