Yes, I have finally re-surfaced. Well, sort-of. Ish.
A couple of weeks ago I received my "official" job offer for the dream job in Northern VA. Praise the Baby Jesus!! It only took two weeks from interview to offer - but I swear, those were among the longest two weeks of my life! (I'm scheduled to start work on Oct. 7th. Yikes!) I'm not a patient person. Lazy, yes. Patient, no.
So, once the job-offer was in hand I immediately started the house hunt. And it's been pretty disappointing.
Five years ago I was relocated to Hampton Roads during the height of the property boom. Homes were selling before they even "officially" came on the market! It was a NIGHTMARE! Finally, I wound up literally begging for an interior town home, in a so-so neighborhood, with (let's all say it together) freaking pink carpet. And we all know how I felt about THAT place. *gag* I thought those days were behind me. Sadly, that's not the case.
Oh, it's easy to be seduced into the whole "buyer's market" propaganda that's being bantered about these days - but honey, it's all about location. And in Northern VA - close to DC? Property is always going to be a hot commodity. I discovered that fact rather quickly - among a few others.
The housing boom from a few years ago? That led to a lot of foreclosures as well as "short sales." Ever heard of a short sale? Me neither! Basically, a "short sale" is when the home owner decides they can no longer make the mortgage payment and puts the house up for sale - at a price that is less than what they owe the bank. So, if the home sells at the advertised price the home owner must receive their bank's approval for the sale. And that can take anywhere from 3 to 10 months.
The principle behind this kind of sale is that the bank would rather have some money than none. However, there are banks that don't want to play the game and that leads to a potential buyer wasting months thinking they've got a home only to find the rug pulled out from underneath them at the last moment. Needless to say, this is not a gamble I'm prepared to take.
My real estate agent has meticulously weeded out that type of property but the remaining inventory is not only limited but flying off the market as soon as it's listed. I'd already resigned myself to the fact that I wouldn't be able to afford a single family home near my workplace - but to discover that a single family home (in a good neighborhood with good schools) was going to require both a long commute as well as almost a half a million dollars? OUTRAGEOUS!!
Case and point, yesterday I made a full-price offer on a home that came on the market Friday. Two days on the market! I was outbid and told about it yesterday evening - literally hours after I had submitted my paperwork! One must strike while the iron is hot and sadly, I don't have the luxury to make the 3 hour road trip every day - what with my daughter in school and all that jazz. *groan* I'm sure I'll look back on these days with a certain fondness in later years but damn, it sucks now.
Wow, I'll bet a long boring post on the trials and tribulations of home buying is about the last thing that could either amuse or interest you! Sorry! It's basically my life right now. Later I'll post about how I told Jackass of the upcoming move and all that that implies (yes, I meant to use the word "that" twice). Also, my friend for whom I'm house sitting is coming home on Saturday. Um, yeah. That means that my daughter, my kitties, my crap and I must find a place to relocate PRONTO!!
Oh, and for the record? Finding temporary furnished housing that allows pets is a BITCH! **huff, huff**
Ok, rant over. I'm including a lolcat to alleviate the depressing tone of this post. I miss you guys!! I need to buy a fancy-schmancy phone so I can blog/tweet/FB while I'm on the go! I promise to catch up soon!