It was everything I was dreading. The thing I was worried about the most happened. And yet I live.
I used a highly recommended inspector—one that my realtor said would do a bang-up job. He arrived before I did, so he had a chance to give it a cursory once-over. Right off the bat, he told me he was concerned about the foundation. Not a little concerned. A LOT concerned. As in—he hasn’t seen a house with those kinds of cracks…ever. He took me over the house, showing me the ceiling cracks, the corner cracks, the door cracks. Yeah, this house is a crack whore. (Sorry, couldn’t help it!) The kicker is that I had noticed them but the rest of the house looked so well kept and clean, if outdated, that I thought perhaps I was just over-reacting or making them a bigger deal than they actually were.
Thankfully Brian, being the decent human being that he is, didn’t charge me for his time or expertise. He was more concerned about a woman like me being taken advantage of and not being able to sell the house when my turn came, that he was more than willing to offer up his 40+ years of construction wisdom to help me. But I didn’t want to waste any more of our time, so we closed up the house and went on our merry way. (He even gave me a ride home—8 miles!—so that I wouldn’t be riding in the humidity for an hour. A thoroughly kind man.)
So I called my agent, gave him the disappointing news and told him to withdraw the offer. I’m not interested in a house that is going to give me that much trouble from the starting gate. And while I’m sad the inspection didn’t go the way I wanted it to (we were in the house twenty minutes tops, really), I realized I was more upset that I was losing out on the opportunity to move soon and start living the life I want to live rather than missing out on this house.
On the phone, my mom pointed out that I didn’t sound too disappointed, and the truth is that I’m not. The more I consider it, I think I made the best decision for me. So many people say that when they find The House they just know—that there isn’t any question about it. And I remember saying a month or so ago that I didn’t want to buy a house I didn’t love. I want to be CRAZY about my house, the same way I am about my man (or, let’s admit it—my cats). I liked this house, but I wasn’t in love with it. I want to WANT to live here for years, instead of thinking how it’s only my first home, etc. I want to talk non-stop about it to my friends and lay awake at night, dreading that somehow someone will beat my offer at the last minute, as opposed to calmly reading over the sales contract.
I’m excited to start looking again. I’ve already got one lined up for tomorrow that I cannot WAIT to see—which lets me know I’m on the right track. However, I don’t want to discount this experience—it was like a training course. It helped me to learn the process, so next time I’ll have more an idea of what to expect. I can have more confidence in looking and weeding out what I really want, and not being afraid to say “no” to something that doesn’t capture my heart. I want to walk into a house and know that’s what I want to be doing for the next few years. I want to look at a place and instantly see how to make it mine, instead of wondering how to force my plans and dreams to work in this space. Maybe that’s a lot of wants, but really—that’s what I’m spending so much money on.