6am on a Saturday and I am up and ready to write. I have an incredibly busy weekend ahead of me, but didn’t want to miss out on my favorite quiet, writing time (coffee is brewing, so we’re almost there)!
As anyone who follows me on social media may know, we took a big step yesterday in our seemingly never-ending search for a home. I decided today to give more of a backstory to our hunt, in addition to sharing the news. If you know the story or don’t care about the backstory, hop on down to House 3 hah.
Our search began last year. Nick and I were living in a 1br (+den) apartment in Wilmington and it was an old, built-in-the-sixties complex. It wasn’t much, but it was our first place together and we loved every bit of it (though we could have done without the galley kitchen). When our lease was close to ending, we decided to look for a new apartment.
We found a complex that we really liked pretty quickly, I think. It was in a good location and there was a specific corner unit available that was perfect because of the extra windows and light. We put a deposit down on the apartment and, shortly thereafter, were told the current tenant would be renewing their lease… Safe to say we were furious—there is no way in which it should have even been made available to us in the first place. After that, we needed to reevaluate.
Nick sat me down one day not long after and asked me what I thought about buying a house. We had discussed it many times before, but, at the time, were—in my opinion—not “there” yet in our relationship. However, we talked it through quite a bit and decided to begin the search for a house.
We found an amazing home later in the summer and were weeks from settlement, when the inspection showed water in the crawlspace and step cracks in the foundation. I won’t go into too many details, but after much deliberation, we decided it would be best to walk away; I was heartbroken. As we continued the search, heading into the fall/winter months, our options were becoming more and more limited. We found ourselves close to settling on homes that weren’t what we wanted just because we were so desperate to get in a house, so we decided to wait through the winter.
After the new year, we resumed our hunt. We switched realtors, locations, and wish lists. After looking at homes for some time to absolutely no avail, Nick came around to the idea of new construction. Shortly after, we came across the chance to build House 2. It was a twin home (two houses connected in the middle) in the same town we live in now. The price was right, the location was great, and we were able to squeeze in some of the upgrades we really wanted.
February 28, we signed the contract. It was such an exciting moment for us—we both felt like we were getting what we had been looking for this whole time. We knew there were things we wanted that we wouldn’t have, but also that it was our first home and not likely our last. Settlement was set for August 28.
Long story short, since I’ve talked about this recently, the original developer of the community is pretty much known scum ’round these parts and hadn’t addressed the “open spaces” of the community. The county, therefore, put a hold on all building permits. For months, we sat there hoping and praying for things to pull through, but about 3 weeks ago, our builder sat us down to tell us they had no update, there was no update in sight, and that they would release us from our contract if we wanted.
The addendum was signed yesterday.
Which brings us here. By Thursday of that week, we were looking at new locations further south in Delaware (near where House 1 was). There were two new construction communities we had in mind and, as soon as we drove into the neighborhood of the first, we knew we were in the right place.
With everything we’ve been through, we weren’t willing to sacrifice on much. If we are going to be at it for this long, we were going to love our house. Would the house be perfect? No, we’re not custom building our dream home; but you can bet we’d work to get as close as we can. What we kept thinking we’d be missing in House 2 was kept in mind to transform our “must-have” list.
The process is nowhere near over, but yesterday, we took the first step towards House 3. They are beginning a new phase of development and we snagged the best lot of the lot. It, of course, came at a price, since all the lots in this phase are considered “premium,” but because we don’t have to sell a house, they gave it to us for less. Since the new phase hasn’t been started yet, we have to wait for them to build the road in that section—that will begin in August. By November, they will break ground on our home. So long as Nick and I are proactive when it comes time to get in, sign our contract, make our selections, meet with the flooring company, etc., we could be one of the first finished next spring.
Nothing about this process is a guarantee—we’ve learned that the hard way 3 times now. This new house isn’t a guarantee until they hand me those keys and I dance (and likely trip) over the threshold. Buying a house has been an absolute nightmare, spanning—in the end—2 years; but yesterday we stood on the lot where our first home will be, where we will start our lives as a married couple, and where we’ll bring a couple tiny humans into the world. There are going to be some amazing memories created on that lot and everything we’ve gone through will be worth it.
We are two very lucky people. This hasn’t been an easy year when it comes to this, but we have always been surrounded by love and support—without which we could not have made it this far. I am very excited to take y’all on the journey of our first home and continued prayers and positive energy for a successful ending will continue to be much appreciated!!