I've got houses on the brain right now. We realized last week that there's nothing stopping us from buying a house. We've always moved around a lot due to the military, but neither one of us has any obligations that mean we *have* to move anymore. The only thing stopping us is basically my own wanderlust. I've never really thought about settling down somewhere before. I've never really loved any of the areas the military has stuck me enough to consider living there full time on my own.
We decided that Georgia is a decent place to put down some roots since we're going to be here for my husband's job for at least a few more years and buying a home will be so much cheaper than renting has been. We've been living in a 100+ year old, 3000 sq ft house with 100+ year old insulation. The rent is pretty high, but it's the utilities that are a bitter pill to swallow. We average about $400 a month to keep the house at 78 degrees and that's just electric. Yikes.
As we've started looking at houses online we've started to formulate our wishlist and the list of things that are absolute deal breakers. Obviously, good insulation is a priority for us and we're not interested in looking at giant houses. The most important thing for us though is a great backyard with a decent amount of space and some privacy from the neighbors.
We've found a house that we think is perfect for us. It sits on a wooded lot and our yard would be an acre. The woods go far past that property line. I think the creek is the cut off, but I'm pretty sure there's at least a mile of woods before you come out to the next street over. It's close to Ft. Gordon, where my husband (and half the town) works. It has a country feel, but it's only about two minutes from I20 and maybe a minute from shopping and restaurants. The house itself has been well cared for. It was built in 84, but whoever has lived there has maintained and replaced everything so that it feels MUCH newer.
For whatever reason the house is listed for what seems like a really cheap price. We're trying to save money for retirement and more travel so we've been looking for really modest houses and we're amazed that this house would fit into our price range. We knew going into it that to find a house in the budget we've set that we'd have to compromise on some things, but with this house we really wouldn't have to give up anything we hoped for. We're honestly scratching our heads about why anybody would hesitate to buy this house when it's in such great condition, sits on an amazing lot, and has such a good location for commuting to the post. All we can think is that our priorities for houses must be a lot different than other people's priorities.
I thought it would be fun to hear what everybody else considers their housing wishlist and deal breakers. Either the things that attracted you to your current home or what you'd look for in a house if you started house hunting today.