Home is often a feeling more than a space. Every time I've looked for somewhere to live - be it renting, buying or even picking a university - I've felt that connection to the space. I swear, three steps off the bus when touring my university, I knew it was home even if I couldn't explain why.
We've seen oh, 6 houses so far. Not so many to be tired of the process, just enough to have a good sense of what is available. There were houses I liked, houses Mr. Lina liked, aspects of every house we liked... but none said home.
Saturday, we found a house I could see my kids running around in, playing tag or catch in the back yard. I could see me cooking and entertaining, talking to friends while the last appetizers were coming out of the oven. Mr. Lina could see where his desk would go, where he could move from bottling home brew to storing kegs and building a bar, my non-team sport playing husband even mentioned that the back yard was big enough for a football game. I would claim the basement office as my sewing room - laminate flooring, HUGE closet, a window and good lights. My mom sews in the basement, I see the advantage of kids playing within ear shot.
But it was more expensive than what we had seen. While I knew it was within reason, it was enough we wanted to sit with a calculator and double check. Fortunately, the market we're going to is cooler than what we're leaving so not all decisions have to be made the day of listing. We arranged to go back last night. We also asked to see other houses of a similar size and price to see what the competitive set was like.
First house was lovely. On paper, better even. Newer windows, very well cared for, finished basement, beautiful gardens, $20K less... and yet I wasn't happy.
Second house was the same floor plan as Saturday but 190 sq ft smaller - slightly smaller living room and master bedroom but still big enough. I didn't like it at all. Honestly, their real estate agent is not doing them any favours letting them show the house with lights missing or out, finger prints on the walls, furniture blocking traffic flow... Where the first house was well maintained and loved, this one wasn't cared for and it showed.
And then we went back to our Saturday house and it felt like home.
From the minute we pulled into the driveway, I felt comfortable.
So I'm now in the limbo where we put in an offer and are waiting for their response. I figure there will be some back and forth on price and while I'm okay with that, we can't get into a bidding war that goes above asking.
But my heart feels good about this.