9.08.2020

Third Time is Not Always the Charm: Our Home Buying Journey

Third Time is Not Always the Charm: Our Home Buying Journey

Not going to lie to you, today's post was meant to be how we bought a house; a happy ending. But the end of this story isn't written just yet. There are a lot of chapters though so get readdyyyyy!

Our Home Buying Journey


I think this story really begins back in May when we got our lease renewal for our apartment in the city. Remember we're still in the height of the pandemic, there are a lot of unknowns and no one really has a plan for what's next. Andrew and I have known for a while that it would either be this year or next we'd find a place to live, probably in Westchester, NY or Fairfield, CT. And it was time to figure out if it was now or later.

We had many talks about it -- first with each other, then with my CPA, financial advisor, and also with our parents just to see what made sense for us financially and see what our options were. We even looked at two bedrooms in our apartment building for the year, but there was noting with our view (and that's the best part of our apartment) so we weren't ready just yet to part with our place. We resigned for one final year. 

Then comes July. 

We spent two weeks in a beach town in NJ and it was our first real taste of freedom in 5 months. It was amazing and truly needed. But when we came back, I fell into a deep depression. I've always struggled with depression my whole life but it hadn't gotten this bad since high school. 

Coming back and not being able to go out without fear or without a mask or just get fresh air without worry took a toll on me. I kind of hit a breaking point at the end of July and I just told Andrew I need out. I always told myself whenever I go to the apartment or to the city and am filled with dread, that's when I know it's time to go. And it was time. 

While not ideal, since we just resigned our lease for another year (10 months at this time), it was something that was just kind needed. We're talking about an 800sqft (max) apartment with two people working from home and I'm starting a second business. To say we felt crowded in our own home would be an understatement between that and not knowing how long this all will last, we decided to take the next step.

Andrew and I have been keeping an eye on Zillow for about a year now and it just so happened that we fell in love with a home in Courtland Manor NY that was under budget, absolutely massive (but pretty far away for whenever Andrew would need to commute) and agreed seeing it would be the best place to start. 

There happened to be an open house on the last weekend of July and we went to check it out. 
We fell in love with the house (although it was probably too big for us) but the taxes were INSANE (like 30k) and while we knew NY taxes are high, this made the house completely out of budget. But it did start us off on our official house hunt.

Andrew's aunt set us up with a realtor who worked in NY and CT and beginning of August we hit the ground running. We're pretty open to anywhere in Westchester or Fairfield with good schools and thankfully there are a ton so we were able to cast a wide net. I'd say we maybe looked at 50 houses? We'd go up just about every day or every other day to see new places and we were checking Zillow by the hour to stay up to date. 

Most were just fine but nothing truly perfect. 

We'd find some houses that were great but were too far or another that we loved but needed more work. In terms of what we were looking for, we wanted an 8+ rated school district, close to the train/easy commute for Andrew (which is about as far out as Fairfield CT and as high up as Peekskill NY) and 4+ bed, 3+ bath. 

Our nice to haves were a big yard, an open kitchen, and room for storage. I know that may seem crazy as it's just Andrew and I but we've been set on the idea of trying to find our forever home vs a starter home that we'll just sell in a few years. 

(now, this is going to be kind of dumb but I really want to protect our privacy and the houses we looked at so I won't be sharing any photos of the places. But instead, you can get what I wore to each showing lolol.)

HOUSE #1

Third Time is Not Always the Charm: Our Home Buying Journey

After a lot of houses, we came across house #1 (what we'll be calling it). We spent the morning looking at two houses in Fairfield (the first one we loved but they had an offer accepted that morning) then the afternoon looking at two houses in New Canaan (house #1 was the first of the two houses). House #1 was decorated exactly how I would decorate it. Blue and white everywhere so it was pretty easy to envision us there. The exterior of the house was gorgeous, it had a front and back porch and an absolutely massive yard on about 2.2 acres of land. 

We really really liked it. 

I left the house thinking "this is amazing but probably not "the one"" but as I went back over the photos and videos and after talking to Andrew some I thought "oh wait, maybe it is." The pros of the house were that it was convenient to the city and Andrew's parents, it had a great school district, it was secluded, had a ton of space for us to live and grow and it wouldn't need hardly any work.

The cons were that there was no garage (which isn't that big of a deal -- more of a nice to have), that it was on well and septic (which is pretty common we found in CT), and the master bath was super small. All the bathrooms were. But we loved it. We knew that with time we could fix things here and there to make it our forever home.

We asked to go back the next day to see it one more time and the good part was I loved the house more than I did before but the bad part was it didn't go too well and I didn't get to do what I wanted to do there. It's a long story that doesn't much matter but that night we talked a lot, fought a little (we were both #stressed) cried some, and then put in an offer. They had gotten an offer that morning so we put in at full price and just waited.

We didn't get the house. 

The other buyer offered all cash and we couldn't compete. Sad, stressful but also we just saved a ton of money so we were ok. We had gotten the process out of the way and we'd be ready to do it again. Throughout this whole process we knew that if it was meant to be, it will be. So we kept looking. 

HOUSE #2

Third Time is Not Always the Charm: Our Home Buying Journey

5 days later we put in our second offer on house #2. This was in Hawthorne NY and I think it got listed the day before the really big storm that rolled through the area so we couldn't see it for two days. We were there on day three and it already had two offers. One was super low and the other they were considering but hadn't accepted. We loved the house. It was totally updated, had a TON of space, was walking distance to the train, and only 20 mins from Andrew's parents.

The cons were the neighborhood -- not that it was bad but this was the nicest house on the block (and most expensive) by a lot. That leaves a big question mark on how the area will change and fiar. It wasn't bad it just wasn't as nice as the house. That was the big hang up. That and the yard was kinda on the small side but with some TLC, we could make it bigger. We put in (another) full ask offer that night. 

We waited to hear back for two days, and then another two days and then the weekend... as the sellers left it up longer they kept getting more and more offers so we're waiting to see what everyone brought to the table. By this time we were kind of annoyed that they were even looking for other offers but tried to keep a positive spirit. 

Then (on the day they were supposed to decide) they asked for our best and final offer... But the first offer was our best and final. So Andrew and I had a long talk about what we could do to sweeten it, how much more we were willing to pay, and so on. It was hard because we don't want to overpay for this house that (without this kind of market) may never sell this high again. We went back and forth a hundred times with our loan office and ourselves and decided to take a break from talking about it, make a decision separately and talk in an hour.

Andrew got out of the shower about an hour later and we had both decided to keep the offer we submitted final. If they didn't want full ask, then this house wasn't for us. Turns out, it wasn't for us and they accepted another offer (unsure what it was!). 

So again, while we were sad we were sure that our house was out there and we would find it. We had faith in the process and finding the right home. And while we were eager to get out of our apartment, we technically weren't in any kind of rush because we still had our apartment. The main issue now was we had seen just about everything on the market.


HOUSE #3

Third Time is Not Always the Charm: Our Home Buying Journey

And so we went back to the drawing boards. We started looking at older listings and setting up a few options that all happened to be in Fairfield and a week after hearing we didn't get house #2, we picked up our search again. I remember the morning of the showing I was having terrible anxiety and I could feel an attack coming on (not because of anything, that's just how I'm wired sometimes). There was a lot of traffic going up so I was able to sleep for most of the ride there and a lot of my anxiety went away.

I remember kind of becoming alert in the neighborhood of house #3 and was like this is nice. Then we pulled up and I was like wut. It was the perfect day out, the sun was shining and it was a setback house on a quiet road with a big yard. The curb appeal is there.

By this time, I was exhausted

I was tired of seeing duds, tired of getting rejected for houses and so I just went in not really having anything prepared for this house. I didn't really look at the pictures or give much thought to the house in general. For every house we visited, I would film a walkthrough and even that I was like nah.

But as I started to walk through the house I was kind of taken back. It had everything on our wishlist and our nice to have list. As I was walking around I asked our realtors why this had been on the market for over a year. In this kind of market, it's unheard of! So there had to be something wrong with the house... right?

The sellers' broker explained that they had an accepted offer a while back but the guy was going to flip the house to sell. The story was that he took multiple months to finalize permits and contracts and the seller got tired of waiting so they canceled the deal. Then a second buyer came in and was under contract sometime in early March but either lost his job due to COVID or got a divorce (or both, story unclear), and therefore the loan fell through on the house.

So here was this amazing house, ripe for the taking -- a hidden gem in the rough -- and it was like everything made sense. All of the other houses had to fall through for this one to happen. I had all the good vibes. 

This was Friday and on Saturday we put in an offer -- trying to be aggressive this time, they came back with another offer between where we were and the listing price, and we agreed. WE HAD OUR FIRST ACCEPTED OFFER!!! WE ARE GOING TO BUY A HOUSE!!

Third Time is Not Always the Charm: Our Home Buying Journey
(^me when we had an accepted offer)

Like... holy crap. We got a house. Our house. I was so excited. Now the real work began.


Sunday's we always go up to Westchester for dinner and right before dinner we got a call from our agent. She said that there was another showing that morning and they had put in a full ask offer with a higher % down and asked what we wanted to do. Our current offer was about 20 below ask, a 90 close (because we had to get rid of our apartment), and full downpayment at signing. 

We hung up with our agent and my heart sank. How could there have been a second offer? How was it possible that they put this house on the market for so long and the day we put an offer in, someone else comes in as well? We got a second call from our agent saying that the seller talked to someone and was worried since we were so young that we wouldn't qualify for our loan and she was worried since she's been burned before.

We were told that she (with the last accepted offer) had planned and paid for movers and when the contract fell through, she lost her $35,000 deposit (hold all thoughts until later). So she asked us to put in a stipulation that if we didn't buy the house after contract signing, we would cover her moving costs. 

First of all, $35,000 would move you to the MOON. 

A quick google search and we could that you can have a white glove mover come in and move you to CA for $15,000. So our guard was up. What was this number and why is she thinking we wouldn't get approved? We had a preapproval letter from our lender and we tripled checked with him that there is no issue, which he assured us there was not.

Remember, we really wanted this house. This was the house. So we presented her with two offers: 1. Full ask, higher % down (and all at signing), proof of funds, 45 day close OR 2. Full ask, same % down (and all at signing), 60 day close, and $15,000 IF and ONLY IF we didn't get approved for a loan. We also wrote her a letter explaining who we were and how much this house meant to us. And this was all during dinner. So Sunday was a stressful night. 

With the 15K, we knew we would be approved for the loan so it was a risk we were willing to take but not one we took lightly. We thought it was absurd to ask for $35k and took it as her trying to re-coop her losses from her last move. We didn't like it at all but made sure that everyone was aware that we would ONLY pay it if we didn't get approved. This will be important in a second.

Then on our way home, we got a call back from our agent and said they accepted our second offer. So we were back in business. Six days later, we had our home and septic inspection. It was really happening! It was exciting and overall both inspections went well. The next day Allie came over to shoot my apartment to list and rent out and the following day, we were off to NJ for the week.

We went over the inspection report with our agents, our lawyers, our parents, and each other. There were two minor (what I like to call) yellow flags and we asked a lot of follow up questions and did the normal back and forth of making sure they fixed X and Y and cleaning out this and that. Normal stuff -- due diligence -- and our goal at this time was to get this contract signed. We liquidated stocks, trusts, and various accounts, we listed our apartment online, we started making plans.

And then things kind of just went quiet. 

Our realtor stopped replying to us, our attorney was asking us what the update was and we started to get a bad feeling. A week had passed and there had been no update to anything. We still had questions that needed to be answered by our agent and the lawyers were still negotiating everything.

Until we heard that the seller is asking that the $15,000 be for not getting the house at all (this is now the following Thursday). Meaning for any reason if we don't buy this house, we owe her $15,000. Not just if it's on us but if the house doesn't appraise, and we need to renegotiate the deal, we owe her $15k before getting to draft a new deal. Or owe her $15k just to walk away.

We loved this house but we were not going to be bullied. We stood firm and said no. We agreed to the $15k only on us failing to secure the loan. We would never be willing to do so for something very much out of our control. So we stood strong. The agents communicated that this was their line in the sand and that it was a take it or leave it deal. 

Now let me remind you that 1. they bumped up our asking price. If the house wasn't going to appraise, it would be on them 2. They would never see the $15k if (and when) we buy the house. The $15K would never go to her if this went through and 3. This is PENNIES compared to the price of the house they were willing to lose. 

But Andrew and I held strong. Called their bluff. Said no deal if that is the case. And the sellers walked away on September 4th. And we lost out on our third house. 

This one stung. It was really sad. 

We had made plans, we had drained accounts, we listed our place, I started dreaming up the space and being able to have my parents come to stay and visit. I envisioned our life, the updates we'd make, the things I want to buy, I started looking into cars... it stung. I cried. 

But that means it just wasn't meant to be. Maybe we dodged a real big bullet on this one. And there is a lot more to the seller side of the story that I don't really feel comfortable sharing. But think about this: was there a second offer? Did two people before us just so happen to fall through? Or is there a common thread here? After everything went down we started to recount all the events that had happened. And now we think it was for the best.

So what now? Now, we're going to wait. I think we're both a little emotionally drained honestly. We'll keep our apartment listed and if there are any takers we'll find a two-bedroom in Westchester or Fairfield that will let us do a short term lease so that in April/May of next year we'll be ready to buy a place.

Anyone else going through this, I wish you the best! It's the most stressful process and the biggest decision of your life!! But I think everything works out the way it's meant to and I'm really excited to see what our house will be like in the future. 


52 comments:

  1. Oh man Krista- this is crazy what you guys have gone through! I feel like I had to read the section with the third house multiple times since it's so nuts. Fingers crossed fourth time will be the charm for y'all!

    xoxo A
    www.southernbelleintraining.com

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  2. We bought our house 2 years ago and it was the MOST stressful time of our lives. We were married and ready to live in a home together instead of throwing money at rent every month and we didn't get our home until 6 offers later. Lots of back and forth like you explained and we had no idea it was going to be such a rollercoaster of emotions. You will get your house it will just take time and you will be so glad it didn't work out with all the other houses. Best of luck and fingers crossed for ya'll!

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  3. It's the most stressful process ever! Hang in there :-/

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  4. Ugh I can’t even imagine going through all of this 😩 Your dream home is out there waiting for you!!

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  5. Literally going through the exact same thing! We’ve been house hunting for almost 2 years. The market in Boston sounds similar to NY/CT. I’m dreading the idea of going into cold and dark winter and both of us working from home from our tiny apartment. I know how stressful this is (including with anxiety). Wishing you guys all the best! It will work out and in the end you WILL find the best house for you!!

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  6. We’ve been in the situation where we lost a house we really wanted more than once. My husband being in the military we’ve moved so many times, but buying and selling homes is SO stressful. Especially in a competitive market. We were one of 3 offers on our current home. Our agent had a partner with a client trying to buy it so she kept trying to push us into another home (a whole other issue) and in the end we had a big deposit, had secured financing and offered an incredibly fast closing so we got the house we wanted.
    You will get an amazing home, but I’m sorry it’s being so hard for you! Wishing you the best luck for the next one!

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  7. I just bought an apartment in NYC last year. I spent so many hours on street easy and drove my real estate agent nuts! I had a few rejected offers which of course was defeating at the time but now that I’m in my new place I wouldn’t want to have been in any other! Keep your eye on the prize and an open mind! It’s all worth it!

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  8. My husband and I went through a very similar process. Three different a houses we put offers on. Two went into full inspection only for us to realize their were major issues and the current owners were not willing to compromise on their prices. It was devasting. But we ended up finding out house a few weeks later and in the end it was for the best. We looked at it as a first house stepping block to what we actually want and this house made the process seem easy compared to the other three we lost. But house hunting is not easy and not perfect, and at times completely devasting. I hope you guys find your dream home soon, or that it finds you. ❤️

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  9. Buying a home is so stressful. I am so sorry that happened with the 3rd house. That is completely unreasonable, and I really think you dodged a bullet. Take a break and regroup.

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  10. Krista so sorry to hear this has been a hard process for you and your husband. Can totally relate here in Texas with the sellers market. We just moved six weeks ago. Fell in love, LOVE with houses and put offers three times when each house had been listed less than 48 hours only for our offer not to be accepted. One house we even offered significantly over asking price. Found a fourth house we also loved but unsure about the location. Put in an offer, got accepted and closed in 15 days (talk about stressful!!). Recently drove to the areas where the other houses were that I thought we really wanted to be and turns out I like the area where we are so much better. All this to say, it will work out exactly how it should and I know you guys will end up in the perfect home for you when the time is right!

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  11. Hang in there. What I’ve read isn’t out of the norm! It takes months / years to find the right house. Please know you’re not alone. The right one WILL come along. And honestly so glad you didn’t get that last house. Sounded so sketchy and just not worth your time. Don’t give up - the housing market is on fire right now. You’re going to lose out if you give up ! Take some breaths and get back at it! You guys got this !

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  12. I am going through something similar. First, I was furloughed in March, was laid off in July and am getting married in October. My fiancé lives in Baltimore (I live in Ohio) in a house provided by his work. I am not allowed to live in this house. So, we’ve been trying to find a place... similar to you we’ve been rejected multiple times, jerked around because we’re young and as of now still have nowhere to live... less than a month until the wedding. So, while unemployed I’ve had to go month-to-month on my rent (extra $500 a month y’all while planning a wedding) and it looks like we won’t get to be together after the wedding. It hurts. This time sucks. The housing market sucks. I feel for you girl.

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  14. I’ve been eagerly awaiting your home update, and now absolutely devastated that it hasn’t been the joyful update you were expecting to share! I hope you know how many people are out there sending you love and support, even all the way from Perth, Australia! I just know when that right house comes along everything will all fall into place ����

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  15. We bought a starter home because finding out forever home was so disheartening, I get it :( I know it will all work out in the end but it is really hard emotionally and mentally. Excited you’re looking in Westchester, I grew up there and my parents still live there :)

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  16. So frustrating. We have all been there. One thing I will say that has been passed to us is next time with the right house include a letter about yourselves. Sell YOU to the house. Long story short our realtor told us this never happened before but sellers wanted us over a cash offer because we were young, local people and after they denied ours they changed their mind. It never hurts to pull at someone’s heart strings! Good luck!!

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  17. This resonates so much with me right now. We keep going 30+ over asking and house keep getting bought our beneath us with cash/no inspection offers. We’ve seen so many houses and made so many plans, but it’s just not in the cards right now. I’m pretty pessimistic about it all at this point, especially since the last offer we submitted was my dream house. Good luck to you on the rest of your journey.

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  18. I feel a little dumb but I just learned about how insane property taxes can be, $30k though HOLY MOLEY! I wish there was a handbook for buying a house because I literally know NOTHING. I feel like this experience is so common, so many of my friends have had issues with buying homes and all of a sudden owed over $10k more at closing they didn't realize they needed and then had to scramble to get the money. I am so sorry this all happened and hope you find the perfect house when it comes along! xxx

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  19. I'm so sorry, buying a house is so stressful and it's a lot of money to be stressed about.
    I remember when we bought our house the market was so crazy that houses were selling within 5 minutes of being listed. Most of them sight unseen. We'd get emailed listing from our realtor and set up a time that day at lunch to look at it and she would call back a hour before showing and say "Sorry it's already got an offer." It was super frustrating. You will find your house and it will be perfect and beautiful keep your head up!

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  20. I just want you to know that my fiancé and I are LITERALLY in the exact same spot you guys are so I know exactly how you are feeling and I wish I could give you the biggest hug- the market f***ing sucks across the country right now. It’s so competitive and when you lose an offer (on any house), you can’t help but feel sad and emotionally drained and hopeless. I know everyone says that “it will all work out” and “everything happens for a reason” but it doesn’t help the way you’re feeling at all. Looking for a house and the buying process is so freaking exhausting and stressful and I just want you to know that I’m here for you and I feel your pain! And Don’t forget to lean on each other for support... Sending you a virtual hug this morning!

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  21. Even tho it felt like it was your dream home, IT WAS NOT! Everything happens for a reason and your forever home will come! I am so sorry this all happened but I do believe and trust a lot of good come after the bad!

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  22. I know you’re bummed. That’s completely normal. But my cousins tried buying a house in the same area y’all are looking and ran into the same experience. It took them a little longer than they would have liked but they did find their forever home and it was the best one of all. So things do happen for a reason and it seems like y’all dodged a bullet with that last seller. Seems like she doesn’t really want to sell unless it’s some amazing deal that doesn’t match the value of the home. I’ll be thinking of y’all and I just know you’ll be so glad you had to wait when you do finally find your house! ����

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  23. I’m so sorry! What a wild story for House 3. I remember losing out on a house I loved due to things outside of my control, and it took me 7 months to recover and start looking again. After 1.5 years of looking and being as discerning as you are I finally found my home that I love and I don’t have any sadness over the lost one. It really does work out one way or another. Stay strong!

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  24. I'm so sorry this happened! Just wanted to put a plug in for Fairfield (the town!) it's just north of Westport and the schools are great. It adds ten minutes on the train which obviously hurts when you're already on there for an hour but prices are much better!

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  25. Sorry to hear about this! We are currently living in Rockland NY and also looking for a new house specifically in westport. I've been looking for about a year now, but we were not ready for a commitment until recently, but the market is extremely tough at the moment. Also I'm seeing the same quality of houses selling for about 1 mill more now than last year! My advice would be to keep looking and tracking pricing, but think about waiting it out for the hopes that in the next 6 months the market will come down. That's our plan, even though its definitely a bummer. Good luck!

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  26. I'm sorry, Krista. I went through something similar two years ago. I had lived in my home for 12 years (I was a very young first-time home buyer) and had really started to hate what the neighborhood had turned into. I started a search and found my dream home. It was similar to my childhood home, had a great yard, and was a great location. The back-and-forth with realtors, me, and the sellers began to get contentious and honestly ridiculous. What I will say, is where I ended up is better than I could have ever imagined. I have wonderful neighbors, my dream house, I feel safe, and it's definitely not what I had originally planned. Just remember that these hurdles and let downs along the way make the end result that much sweeter. You have planned and saved and done everything right - it will pay off and it will be amazing! We're all rooting for you!

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  27. Krista,I live in the CT area where your were looking for a home and right now, your experience buying here is very typical. Houses are being listed way above value and so you won't be getting any great deals in this market. It is a seller's market to be sure as many people are escaping NYC. Driving around, there are so many NY license plates! Having sold real estate in this area in the past I would caution you to treat it as a business deal and try and take the emotion out of the equation. Seriously study the price history of the home as it will tell you the true story of the house and it's value over the long term. While your desire to want to get out of the city may be high right now, when you look at the prices that homes went for before the banking collapse of 2008, they are similar to today's values. Once the economy tanked, people here were living in homes way above their market value and to sell them they were looking at some pretty big losses. Pre covid the market had been very flat for a very long time in Fairfield County. Often when people move to an area they are completely unfamiliar with (meaning they did not grow up or live in the area previously) they often find after they purchase that it sometimes is not what they thought it was. When you are talking about an expensive home purchase perhaps renting in the town you are interested in would be a good first step. Rentals are high here also, but you and Andrew don't seem to be in a rush to be in need of school systems and city commutes right now. As a native I can tell you each town from Greenwich to Westport has a different personality and renting here could let you really investigate more fully what each has to offer and how it fits in with what you are eventually looking for. Best of luck in your search and don't think about redecorating anything until you have a signed contract in hand because you will just end up feeling frustrated.

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  28. Omg!! Long time reader, first time commenter here. This blog post had me excited and devastated for you all at once. What a crazy ride, and all during a pandemic!! Trust your gut that this wasn’t meant to be. The situation with the third house sounds fishy and scammy. The right one will come to you!!!

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  29. When we looked for our first home, we had soooo many fall through and we ended up finding the most incredible home (600 times nicer than any we made offers on)! It all happens for a reason and thank goodness you didn’t accept that shady deal because who knows what is wrong with that house! �� Good luck, you’ll find something soon!!

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  30. I really feel for you and Andrew. I’m in the process of leaving a one bedroom apartment and buying a house with my husband too. It truly is such a difficult process.
    My husband and I had the same mindset as you going in, if it was meant to be it would be. Low expectations, it wouldn’t kill me to live in this tiny place another year.
    Similarly to you, our inspection went well, well and septic inspections went well, nothing major wrong, things moving along. Then all of a sudden the owners want to push the closing date back because they won’t have anywhere to live.. but they put their house on the market and accepted the offer?? It was stressful and we pushed back as well. They were using some of the repairs as leverage to pressure us but we held out. Thankfully, that part worked out and we will close this Friday.
    I can only imagine the let down you feel. Definitely sounds like it is for the best though, def seems sketchy. Wishing you and Andrew peace and comfort!!

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  31. My fiancé and I found the most perfect house a few weeks ago, our offer was accepted, but the sellers just would not negotiate at all on 2 major repairs (roof and sewer) and wouldn’t allow our inspectors on the property at one point. We were totally bummed out, especially since it was a seller issue and not house related or financial, but we are now near closing on a house that is somehow even better, and on the same street! House #2 was on the market before we had been approved and snatched up within a day, we loved it when we first saw it, but weren’t far enough along in the process to make an offer. House #1 had to fall through in order for us to wait long enough for House #2 to come back on the market, and lucky for us those initial buyers didn’t walk away from it due to any inspection issues - we think they found a house they simply liked better. You will find your forever home when it’s right, sending good thoughts your way!

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  32. Wanted to let you know that I went through the same thing last year. I was looking for my first home (as a first time homebuyer and also not a "traditional buyer" as I was only 25). I was looking in the same area as you) Fairfield County CT, and just wanted to let you now that itll all work out. My first place that I absolutely fell in love with had an accepted offer 15 minutes before mine. The second place, I learned, was just a mess waiting to happen as it failed the inspection miserably (then the property manager was a big a**hole and tried to take money from me). Then the third place I thought was perfect, but ended up going to someone willing to pay $35k OVER the asking price. Nearly a year later, I found my perfect place and I have been in it for a year. When the time is right, and the house is perfect, itll all fall into place. I look forward to having you in town hopefully soon! Sending all the good vibes your way!

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  33. I don't think I've ever commented on a blog post before but OMG this is my life right now! I've been in NYC for years with no plan to leave. I thought I was doing great mid-pandemic, after all, this was my city and I was going to power through! Then I left in June for a few weeks to get some fresh air and EVERYTHING felt different. I came back dreading everything about it. My apartment that I once loved so much felt microscopic, the outdoor dining that I thought would be enough was frustrating and barely providing any comfort at all. I went from seeing myself here for years to come, to looking for a way to get out of the city every other day. I bought a car, hoping it would provide enough freedom but it just added more stress and the realization that I cannot live here right now. I went through the home buying process (rushed, same as you), the bidding wars, and FINALLY signed a contract on a house. I haven't closed yet (closing is in 2 weeks) and I'm just holding my breath it works out. I don't know if it's any consolation but you're not alone, so many of us are struggling through the identical journey. You will absolutely find your dream home. A few things that my agent and I eventually figured out worked to sweeten the deal: 45 day closing, generous earnest money at offer, pre-approval vs. just pre-qualified for mortgage. I have friends that also included no requirement for repairs under $5,000 and it worked for them. Best of luck, you'll find what you're looking for, I promise!

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  34. This is brutal, Krista. We’re going through something similar and it just makes an already difficult process so much more difficult. Send you and Andrew good vibes while you regroup. You will find the absolute perfect house at the absolute right time.

    Thinking of y’all! 💙💙💙

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  35. This is a brutal world when buying or selling a house. We have done it multiple times here in Portland Oregon where the market is hot and houses expensive. Sometimes I don’t trust realtors. There seems to always be another offer when we buy but never when we sell. But what can you do but trust people. I can tell you one thing for sure. You will find a house and it will be right and you will look back and be so glad things all happened the way they did. Don’t lose hope. It will happen and it will be exactly as you hoped.

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  36. I feel for you Krista! My husband and I have been trying to purchase a home and get out of the rent cycle since May. We got married last year and have been dreaming and saving to become homeowners. The rates are low but my goodness the market is tough. We’re checking Zillow, Realtor and Redfin constantly! We’ve lost out on a few houses ourselves and have been close to getting the deal done just to be left deflated. But we have such a strong faith in the Lord that we know He will lead us to the home he has specifically for us. But I am right there with you with the anxiety and it being emotionally exhausting. Godspeed!

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  37. We need some Easter eggs here to find this mystery house! Also, why did YOUR realtor go silent?!

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  38. I was literally yelling reading this and then made my husband read it, too. I’m so sorry that happened to you. But why did YOUR realtor go silent?? Also, I wish we could see this last house. Something similar (not as drawn out) happened to a friend of mine and they still haven’t sold the house. Karma!

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  39. I hear you guys!! So sorry this happened to you! We started looking for houses outside the city as well in January before our July wedding. We saw a bunch before the pandemic and even private showings during. Then two weeks before our wedding, we find what we think is the perfect house. We sort of let our agent bully us and tell us we had to go in over asking based on the price per square foot. Then it goes to highest and best, kept the same offer and we were accepted. By the end of the week, we did the septic, oil and general inspections. Once we got those reports back, there was more work than anticipated and just so close to the wedding we were miserable. So we pulled out of the deal and our realtor. Now we’re with a new realtor and on a new hunt. Hoping we find something soon!

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  40. Hello from alllll the way out in L.A. Sadly, I also believe this is a common experience. Don't give up. The right home will come along. Rooting for you!

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  41. I am sorry to hear :( my boyfriend is a RA unfortunately due to the historically low interest rates there are a lot of buyers with low inventory making it a sellers market. I know it seems unreasonable regarding the 15k if the house doesn’t appraise but that is fairly common. Especially right now with covid there are a lot of issues with people getting pre approvals for more than they can afford. Don’t give up! It can take a while it but it will happen! We lost four deals before ours got approved and remember always offer what you feel comfortable with! Though it sucks you made the right decision to not give into the sellers requests.

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  42. So sorry you’re going through all this! We are about to embark on the same journey - trying to find a house in WestcHester. We’ve also been keeping an eye on the market the past year or two and it’s been WILD around here. Every place is either an overpriced dump or just plain overpriced. Hearing your story is super disheartening, but I hope for both of our sakes that things quiet down in the next few months! Would love to hear more about what you did in the lead-up to get prepared for house hunting. Best of luck!!!

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  43. Wow! This was quite the roller coaster ride for you all. So sorry it ended like it did, but you’re right, that just means something better is in store. I’m a firm believer in what’s for you, is for you, so that means something absolutely incredible (with no shady business) is headed you and Andrews way!

    I can do relate to feeling like you want out of a city. I’m not in NYC, but my partner and I had big plans for moving this year (on top of a wedding we’ve now cancelled, twice). Being in are small space, in a city I’m ready to leave is a constant downer and I’ve been especially depressed over the last week or so. Although your story doesn’t have a happy ending (yet!) it’s a good reminder that I’m not alone. Things will get better and you’ll end up where you’re meant to.

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  44. I'm so sorry this happened! We were burned on a couple of older listings - they all had good stories for why it had such a high DOM timeframe. Our realtor told us that under 60-90 days, there's lots of good explanations. Past that point, something is going on with the seller. You gotta love it to buy it and the market is thin - but I hope it works out on the next one!

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  45. Wowwwww thank you for sharing this house hunting journey with us. I live in Brooklyn. I want to purchase a house in the future. But I know it won't be easy. I know that your house is waiting on you, just for that right moment. I know nothing of buying a house, but I'm taking notes of the many things that can/will or may happen! Praying for strength for you and Andrew!

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  46. Ugh!! What a painful process! I'm sorry to hear about all the house buying issues. I'm not trying to leave the city or buy now, but I do have friends who are. It seems intense right now. I'll be joining in a few years... or months... who knows. This is such an emotional time. I totally felt you when you said you were dreading returning home to the city. That is when you know it is time. I hope here are a few things that help you feel comfortable and excited while you are still in the city. Your forever home is out there!!

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  47. I’m so sorry. I just bought a home recently too and when our first offer fell through-I pretty much held my breath until we signed at closing for the home we ended up buying. My husband said I was being pessimistic but I got so excited with the first offer I was so worried the second would fall through. Thank you for sharing so many details-I really appreciate that and find it helpful for first time buyers as there is so much that goes into buying a house. We lost money on our first offer too since we had paid for inspections....but we are so happy in our home now and I’m glad that first offer fell through. Happy house hunting!

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  48. What a rollercoaster. House hunting is such an emotional process! We had to go $34k over asking to get our house (first offer, 2nd one we considered offering, we'd been following the market/looking for 6 months) in Saint Paul, MN. Wrote a letter, only did 10% down to keep cash for reno and fixes, and 30 day close is super standard here. Our market has been hot for years, and unfortunately on the selling side we happened to list during the only downturn - the stay at home order in March/April - so got just under ask. A friend was looking this summer at the price point of our starter home we sold and put in 5 offers - most over asking - before finally getting his 6th accepted.

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  49. I'm so glad you are going to wait. I think the market is going to go down. Try to get something with a little land. As Mark Twain said, "Buy land, they aren't making it any more."

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  50. Hi! Buying a home is SO exciting, I hope things pan out when it’s meant to be! And I totally understand the anxiety of making an offer, the back and forth, the waiting, etc.
    One thing I’d love to note, especially because you have a large following and your language holds power, saying “good school district” is inherently racist. Buying your way into a high property tax mostly white district is a form of private school. I totally support moving to a more suburban area if that fits your lifestyle best (yard, greenery, space) but please do not mention the reason of buying your way into a “good school district.” If you want more information, I’d highly recommend the podcast “Nice White Parents.” Happy house hunting! Yay to space and yards!

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  51. Krista, I have followed you for years and it's crazy how similar we are - especially when it comes to mental health and when my husband and I bought our home 2 years ago it was THE WORST. It's so many ups and downs and highs and lows and we really had to hang in there. It pushed both of us and with a lot of patience a house that made sense for us for now came about. It's hard going from apartment to house because of timing but it will work out in time! stay strong!

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