Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The Search: Failed Attempt

It's been over a year since my last blog, whoops. We recently purchased some land and I know that the next few months, err, year or two, are going to be very busy. I want to be able to look back and remember some of the small details, funny stories and memories made in this whole long process. I have no doubt that it will be hard and stressful, but I know that the end result will be awesome and I can't wait. It will hopefully be enjoyable to look back and see the transformation of this piece of property turning into our new home.
I am starting a little late, we purchased the property in October of 2013. Of course the search started before that, so I have some catching up to do. I hope to get caught up fast because I know as soon as it warms up enough to be out there working, that is where we will be.
We decided a while ago (talked about it even a couple years ago, but not seriously until 2013) that we wanted to move. Several reasons. David already owned our house when I met him and I moved in a couple years back. Since then, I have changed basically everything about it that I could. Painted, new floors, new furniture, an almost perfectly manicured yard. It's not that it's a bad house, it definitely isn't. It's a great house. And since I had never owned a house before, I don't know that I wouldn't have happily chosen this house myself.. but now I know I want different, different, and more different, at least for OUR lifestyle. Don't get me wrong, I love our "home"-- just not this house, this neighborhood, this part of town that has taken off and has way too many people and not enough room on the streets, or the brand new middle school that is in my backyard.
In the spring we started looking at both houses and land. We had a few things on the list that we definitely wanted but besides those things were basically just looking at everything. It made it easier for me to figure out what I wanted, by figuring out what I didn't want. The three main make or break points we began with were: 1. LAND (no typical house on top of each other neighborhood) 2. OPEN FLOOR PLAN and 3. DRIVE TIME TO WORK.
We looked at hundreds of houses and pieces of land for sale from the spring through the fall of 2013. HUNDREDS. Online and in person. Almost every day that David was off of work, we spent all or most of the day driving around a 45 minute - 1 hour radius of Augusta. David was born in Carolina and I have no ties to keep me a Georgia resident, so we were looking in Carolina and in Georgia.
By early summer we had found some pieces of land that we liked okay, nothing that we had to have. All of the houses we were coming across were big fat NO's. Until David found a house in Lincolnton, GA that was bank owned and reduced. I went to look at it by myself at first and loved it. Once we got inside though, we found major issues. We made up plans to fix these problems and kept coming back to it. It was a 20 year old house with definite issues, but in our minds we could still fix it and it be worth it. The property was gorgeous (4 acres, pond, pool, old trees, antebellum style house) and it was in the country. We put in an offer and went back and forth with the bank. While that was going on we met with a contractor and got an estimate to "fix" the house. YIKES! There were just too many problems, more and more each time we went. We withdrew the offer and that was that.
Isn't it beautiful though? Withdrawing our offer put a HUGE damper on the whole process for me (I think David too, though he hid it better). I am more than okay with it now, it was for the best.  After we withdrew our offer we pretty much stopped looking at houses all together and focused on finding land to build on. The plans and potential sitting in front of us right now are more than I could have hoped for with the house I thought I had to have. Can't wait!

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