House Hunting

I’ve mentioned it before, but Mike and I are currently looking for a house in Dallas! We’ve held off for this long not knowing if we were going to stay in Dallas once he completed his PhD, but going through a year of having my parents in the same town as Louise pretty much solidified the decision for us.

In any case, it’s been an interesting road so far. 2013 was a crazy year for the Dallas real estate market, according to our Realtor, our friends, and everyone who lives here. It’s a seller’s market right now, and houses are going like hot cakes! You can’t “think about” a place – you see it, you like it, you buy it. That’s great for me since that’s how I operate, but Mike likes to noodle on things for a while.

Based on our personalities and the knowledge of the market, we decided to take the following approach: we would spend 3-4 weekends looking at houses in our three preferred areas (North Dallas, Lakewood area, and Lake Highlands) to get a feel for what we could get in our price range (about $1-2 million. Just kidding). After that, we assumed we’d feel comfortable enough about what we knew to be able to pull the trigger once we saw something.

This plan definitely worked. We started the process mid-September and have been out four times. We have honed our preferences quite a bit from our original list. We cut North Dallas from the consideration set, mainly because we want the option of a decent public elementary school and that area doesn’t have that. We are pretty set on finding an original ranch-style house around 2200 – 2500 square feet and updating it ourselves. We found one this past weekend in Merriman Park Estates, but although it was almost exactly what we were looking for, a couple of things gave us pause – the asking price and the fireplace smack dab in the middle of the living room. We really want to avoid moving an entire fireplace if we can.

I think this is going to happen quickly – meaning, the house will go on the market, we’ll look at it that day, and make a decision by the next day – so I’m happy we know what we want and that we’re ready to take action! The sooner we buy a house, the sooner we can start tearing it apart and making it our own!

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