Friday, April 3, 2015

Discouraged with this house hunting thing already and we've barely started

Even though this deals with househunting, I'm posting it in the horsey blog because it's more relevant, I think.

We looked at three houses today, despite having no movement on our WA house other than showings. I think Eric and I both needed to do -something-. We're starting to see the restrictions laid down by my MIL and it's grating on us both. We need our own space again.

As we were driving out to the first property he asked me what I thought about just buying land and eventually building our own home. I told him that I'd buy a horse trailer with living quarters and live out of that, just to get out of the house we're in now.

One positive? MIL does not live in this house. We've only seen her 4 times in the past month. So we've at least got that going for us.


The first house we saw was a wild card. It was one that I was desperately clinging to hope that it wouldn't be as bad as it potentially looked in the pictures. Sadly, it was worse.

It was a 20 acre property for 280k, complete with 9 stall horse barn and tack room, additional pole barn that 'needed work' and 2000+ sq ft house near to work for Eric. On paper, sounds great, right?

The barn was FILLED with junk. I took stock and noted that at least I could use the tires for a xcountry jump course and there was brand new fencing we could incorporate, including some posts. But there were no stall doors on the stalls. The property had some drainage issues. It's on the wrong side of Van Dyke (a near by highway) and thus misses out on some elevation changes. We couldn't even get out to the other pole barn because it was too wet and I stupidly hadn't brought my mud boots even though I had kept them from being packed in boxes for exactly this scenario.

Then we got into the house. Granted, it was a pre 1900s house. The floors were crazy off kilter, there was definite rot in the laundry room floor, there was some strange slanting just off of steps that I was sure would make me trip and when I checked out the basement, there was a few inches of standing water on the dirt floor. I could see out through a hole in the foundation.

We didn't linger.

House 2 remained a contender. This property is also pretty close and is just over 5 acres. It's a smaller house at 1500 sq ft but it has a HUGE detached garage that was used for a heating and cooling business as well as a HUGE pole barn with electric and dirt floors, so easily modified to a horse barn. It's also super cheap at 200k.

We had previously driven by and looked in the windows and the wet floor concerns I had with the downstairs room had no trace left of them since they'd pulled the carpet back up. At least I have photo evidence of the water issues in case it isn't disclosed if we proceed. The downside to this property is that because it's just over 5 acres, we can't have our closing costs covered by GM (4.99 and below and they pay closing costs).  That's potentially 20k that we wouldn't have to pay to a house's price and that can be significant.

It still works, it needs updating, but at 200k we can eat that 20k ourselves because the price is good. We'd have to upgrade the pole barn to make it horse acceptable and put in fencing and an arena (preferably)

House three is not far from house 2. It is WAY over our budget at 335k. It has just over 5 acres and 1 stall in the small pole barn (and a very cute arab who nickered at me when I checked it out)  It is not fenced except for a small roundpen but it does back up to a walking/biking trail that horses are forbidden to use. hmmph.

The house is practically new, built in 2000 and has a brand new furnace. Color choices are not my style but that's no big, there are hardwood floors under the carpets (WHYYYYYYYY)  Property wise there's a pond in teh backyard that's stocked with fish but after a heavy rain there's still drainage problems and mud. We would need to bring in fill dirt. Owner dude wants to downsize and move to Florida, since he's retired. He'd negotiate in the brand new tractor (it was nice) to go along with the house.

Ugh, I just feel like we're not going to find what I want. And now we're talking about really staying close to that 5 acre limit, but I guess as long as Eric is aware that means more hay costs through the year, it'll be okay. I was hoping to get in some good pasture rotation to reduce our dependence on buying feed. And a decent arena takes up space. Plus sacrifice pens for the winter. Urgh.

Tomorrow we go see my favorite listing. It's only drawback is that it's one of the longer commutes for Eric. But it's already set up for horses, including several pastures, a sand arena and sacrifice pens. I'm afraid to see it and either a) fall in love and have it sold out from under me like Bishop Rd was or b) have it really not meet expectations like stupid 29 mile house (#1 today).

We are also going to see another house that has some promise. It may even have a TINY indoor arena, it's just hard to tell in the listing.

Goober updates though!

Apparently she's being a royal pain in the ass to everyone. They all speculate it's because I'm not there. Dani has been using her for wednesday night clinics. To that I laugh evilly. MUAHAHAHAHA.

Beth is definitely going to work on her canter (YAYAYAYAYAY) she just had some personal loss pop up unexpectedly with a student of hers, and she's really attached to the kids she teaches so that I totally get.

The shipping company called me yesterday wondering what day they were supposed to pick Gwyn up. They had just called the barn to confirm a pick up that day or tomorrow and barn rightly said "Uhhhh no?"  So they called me and I confirmed, April 19, not April 1st. I guess it's a better problem to have them try to jump the gun than be totally late. Either way, I get to see my Goober again this month and it can't happen fast enough.

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