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The House Hunt


Whew, what a whirlwind weekend.  Or I should say 36 hours.  We spent Saturday and Sunday back in Michigan house hunting and it was a huge success!  We *think* we might have found our new house which is beyond exciting!  We are still waiting on our realtor to get us some neighborhood comparables and we're giving ourselves a couple of days to process everything before we make an offer of any sort.  Buying a home is something we've really been wanting to do but also a bit nerve wracking now that it's actually happening!  Here is how it all went down...

We decided last minute to head to Michigan on Saturday morning instead of Friday night.  Luckily, it's only a 2.5 hour drive which was doable before our appointments we had scheduled on Saturday and gave us a chance to relax Friday instead of spending the evening traveling.  We played tennis (we're becoming quite the pro's, ha), made dinner, cleaned up the house, packed for the rest of the weekend and watched the Blackhawks v. Kings game.  We made it to bed on at a decent time which I was thankful for.  I'm such a grandma on Friday night's now - I'm all about chilling and going to bed early!

On Saturday morning, we headed out about 7:30 and went straight to our first appointment in Kalamazoo.  As I mentioned before, we were torn between which city we wanted to live in but since, we've officially decided on Kalamazoo.  While heading back to live in the same city we attended college in (Western Michigan University) wasn't my first choice as we will be further from family and friends, we will be in the same city as Nick's work which means no commute for him.  Home prices are a bit cheaper and we won't be too far - only 1.5 hours from my family - so it's really a win win.

We've been stalking Zillow like it's our job lately and had eight houses lined up to look at on Saturday.  Only two of the eight were absolute no way, no hows but the rest were all houses I could see us in, honestly.  I'll spare you the details of each place and instead show you some pictures.. way more fun, right?

Let the hunt begin

Our very first house we looked at!  No bueno, this one was bad.

 I never knew I wanted a pool until this weekend!

 The resident backyard deer.

A peony bush... I'm sold. 

 Another amazing house with an in-ground pool.

Pictures couldn't capture the massiveness of this master bedroom! 

Fun 3 seasons room. 

 Standing water... yikes.

Something of a yard.

The houses were all starting to blend together at this point.

After the hours long house hunting expedition, we went out for a late lunch to discuss our options.  Thankfully we both agreed on our top 3 houses.  We did one more ride by of each of them after lunch and then headed back to my hometown of Holland for the night.  I l.o.v.e. Holland.  I would move there in a heartbeat (words I never thought I would say again if you were to ask my high school self) if I could but it's just too far for Nick to drive each day.  We got to my family's house about 6 pm and my dad, Tammy and this guy were home to greet us.

Just ignore my double chin up there.

We discussed the day and our options over a couple glasses of wine - JUST what we needed to unwind a bit.  We decided to contact our realtor and see if we could head back down to Kalamazoo on Sunday morning to go through our top 3 choices with our parents to get their expert opinion (both of our families own multiple houses that they either rent out or live in).  Our realtor herself wasn't available but she was going to send her colleagues to meet us - perfect!  After arranging all of that, we headed out to dinner.  It was the most beautiful night, 80 degrees and there wasn't a cloud in the sky all day.  We had dinner outside on the restaurant's patio and ran into some people we know.  One of my favorite things about Holland is the community.  It's a bigger town but you can't go anywhere without running into someone.  I have to admit that I used to hate that particular trait but now it's one I've really come to appreciate.  

During dinner, we witnessed a car accident on the street right in front of us.  This street is notorious for them unfortunately.   Is there a worse noise than a car crash?  The silence immediately following one is so eerie.  Thankfully everyone was okay but it was a scary ordeal.  After we finished up our dinner, we walked right across the street to Captain Sundae, the best ice cream spot in the world.  I worked there for many, many years while in high school and college and I swear it is still one of the best jobs I ever had.  A summertime job with all of your friends surrounded by ice cream - does it get any better?  I had my all time favorite, a twist cone with sprinkles.  So delicious.


We pretty much crashed when we got home later that night.  We were exhausted and had to do it all again the next day!  Sunday morning we had a quick breakfast at home before heading back to Kalamazoo to check out our top 3 spots.  We had two ranch style homes to check out, both with in-ground pools.  One ranch needed more work and one was more "move in ready" although there are still updates we would need to do.  And the third house was kind of a wild card.  Basically a dream house if there was one - AMAZING neighborhood, 4 beds, 4 baths with tons of space and the perfect layout.  However, it is a foreclosure and is in seriously bad shape.  Like really, really, really bad shape.  Think a new roof, water damage, a new back yard (they let it get out of control), mold, standing water in the basement, new windows.. yikes.  In our naive minds, we totally wanted to do it but we needed our families to check it out to make sure it was a smart decision.

We went to the foreclosed house first and went through it and our parents recommended a pretty quick "no".  Too much damage, too much work, too much unknown.  I had kind of known in my heart of hearts this was a bad idea but the potential for this house is off the charts.  However, it's just not practical for our first house.  Maybe the next one ;)

Everyone liked the two ranch style homes and after visiting them both a second time and putting lots of thought into it, one was really standing out to me.  4 beds, 2.5 baths, in-ground pool, nice neighborhood, 3 seasons room, giant master suite and a peony bush - yes, yes, yes.  Not the one I posted on Instagram of course, I decided on the other one :)  The more I think about this place, the more I want it!  It's perfect for us and we're so excited!  We're still waiting to hear back from our realtor with some more info but it's crazy that this ball is officially rolling.  Here's to home ownership!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend, too :)
Linking up with LeeannCarly and Biana

46 comments

  1. Sounds like a perfect weekend!! I'm totally the same way on Friday nights so that I can have a productive Saturday :) a pool would be amazing!!! I spy that pretty white mani - still need to get that color!! Congrats on narrowing down the town - that seems to be the hardest part!! Thanks so much for linking up (link is live too!)

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  2. Wow what an exciting whirlwind weekened! So so so happy you guys are leaning towards a house with a pool. Dealbreakers for us were no master bath and no pool. We knew we needed an en suite bathroom and a pool, best investment we ever made ;-)

    Can't wait to see which house you choose and how you decorate!

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  3. What a HUGE weekend!!! Can we trade please! We have been house hunting outside NYC for months and it is brutal. I'll move to Michigan please :) That icecream looks sooo good! I would move back just for that if I were you ;)

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  4. That's great that you found a house/made a decision so quickly!! Sounds like a great house too - I would love to have a pool! Congrats! Good luck with the next step, and we're going to need more pictures!

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  5. Good luck with everything!! I hope you guys get the house you want! That ice cream looks SO yummy! And I completely agree about the car crash, it's so scary witnessing one!

    <3, Pamela
    sequinsandseabreezes.blogspot.com

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  6. That is so exciting that you guys picked one already, I hope all goes well with he offer! That has to be the best feeling!

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  7. yay! that is so exciting and i love that you found one that you loved so quickly. i get you in the foreclosure house. my husband and i saw a yellow (!) house that was built in like the 20s and it was sooo cheap (like $30k cheaper than what we bought) and it was absolutely, unbelievably, amazingly gorgeous. 4 beds, 4 baths, huge yard (with a bridge and creek...) basement, garage.. everything. and it was so grand. like, it had a ballroom. it was amazing. but it would have taken so long to fix up, and money we didnt have. we dont know enough about houses, you know? sad face. too much work. but anyway, i love the house that we did buy, and it was the most 'move in ready' that we saw, and we've still done heaps because thats what happens, boo.
    my comment is really long so i'll end it with ice cream yay! car crash boo :(

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  8. Eek what an exciting time! I hope all goes smoothly as you start the official process!

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  9. eeeee!!!! How EXCITING!! Most people don't like the thought of house hunting but I love the journey. i mean, when we finally found ours we had no idea what to do with our free time since we were no longer scanning real estate apps, etc. haha Cannot wait to see how this unfolds for the both of you!! xoxo

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  10. I am so excited for you and Nick! I can't believe you think you already found the house - I've heard horror stories from other homeowner friends that it took them months! My thoughts are with you for a smooth and painless process moving forward!

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  11. I just stumbled up on your blog from the link-up! My fiance and I are house hunting as well, we pretty much live on Trulia! I can't wait to follow your journey :)

    x. Sabrina | Simply Sabrina

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  12. Sounds like lots of work and fun for house hunting! I know you'll find the perfect place!

    Car crashes are scary. It's the worst sound for sure.

    That cone looks amazing, yum!

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  13. I'm so excited you guys had good luck house hunting! It seems like you had some really beautiful options. I think I would be sold on a pool and screened in porch- which probably is not the most practical way to make a decision! And YUM, Captain Sundae! I think I mentioned this before but one of my best friends went to Hope, so we would go there whenever I visited!

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  14. Awesome!! I'm glad all that 'hunting' seems to have paid off! Think good thoughts and let us know how it all pans out.

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  15. Yay!! Congrats on finding the potential "one" :) so exciting!! And be sure to send me some peonies! ;)

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  16. So when is the pool party? :) We're all coming over :)
    Hope that standing water isn't in the house you've picked... that scares me.
    I'd say I need ice cream myself after that sound of cars wrecking - that's the worst noise :(

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  17. I am exhausted just reading your post! House hunting is exhausting but YAY that you found one *possibly* Here is to it working out if it's meant to be. I will pretend I am cheersing you with some of that delicious looking ice cream!

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  18. yah!! SO excited for you! so glad you two found your first house! good luck with the buying process. i hope everything goes smoothly! xo jillian - cornflake dreams

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  19. Yayyy for house hunting! Hoping everything will work out and you can get that house! Sounds like a great weekend, and I could use that ice cream cone! xo

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  20. Getting closer and closer to being homeowners - SO excited for you two! I would like to become a member of your pool if you end up with one BTW ;)

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  21. Ice cream AND house hunting!? What a weekend! Hopefully everything works out with the one you guys want :) I loved the photos! The residential deer.... LOL

    http://neatly-packaged.blogspot.com/

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  22. Glad you all had a successful weekend of house hunting - we searched for 6 months before settling on our place and it's exhausting (we weren't in a rush so could take as much time as needed)! And the peony bush - that would've sold me too! :)

    Paige
    tomatoesforcucumbers.com

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  23. I am so envious!! We have like ZERO inventory where we are looking :( Honestly like one house comes up a week and by the time we look at it has about 17 offers on it. Ugh CA real estate blows!!

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  24. How exciting! So glad you were able to find one you really liked! Great idea on getting the parents involved. I loved reading your house hunters recap...very thorough ;)

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  25. Well, sounds like you had a successful weekend! I can't wait to watch you on this journey, so excited for you! Um yes please, I'll take a house with a pool :)

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  26. Oh, so exciting!!! Sounds like you've found the perfect first house. Can't wait to hear how it all turns out!

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  27. Can I tell you how much I love looking at real estate???? I can't wait for that time to come! Ohhhh you'll definitely have to let us know which one you pick!! Oh and I'm also very happy you call them sprinkles (I mean they aren't jimmies right??) xoxoxo

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  28. OH WOW! So happy for this exciting new chapter!! Home ownership is great- even with the few cons that go with it. And who would not LOVE to have a pool in their back yard. Surprised Michigan has so many backyard pools with it as cold as it can get...

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  29. House hunting is super fun and exciting (albeit stressful, too)! I could definitely see a pool being one of those things I never knew I needed, haha. Can't wait to hear what happens next! :)

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  30. Shopping for a house was SO stressful. I remember DG and I looked at 14 houses in 2 days. I can't believe one house had standing water! Not a godo way to sell. Also, that ice cream cone? OMG. Thanks for linking up with us! xo

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  31. Two things specifically jumped out at me: sprinkles on your ice cream (which looks divine, by the way!!!!!!!) and that pool. Now I need one in my backyard. I never knew I wanted one so badly either!

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  32. How exciting! Good luck with getting the home you like! The peony bush is sooo pretty and looks nice and spacious!

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  33. Sometimes I really miss looking at houses to possibly buy. I loved going into someone else's house and see how they decorate. My husband I talk about that all the time how we loved that time in our lives. I hope you're going with the house with the awesome pool. I'm super jealous you're even looking at houses with pools. I've we were to buy a house with a pool we'd probably be house poor! They're so expensive here!

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  34. Good luck!! We're house hunting too, its hard!

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  35. Congrats on finding a home you and love and best of luck with your offer!! The house hunting process can be so tedious sometimes! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!!

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  36. Girrrrrrrrrrrrl! I can't believe how fast life is moving.

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  37. Good luck! How exciting! I need to get out of SoCal, no way I will ever be able to afford a home here. Please explain the three seasons room, I've never heard of that!

    Thanks for linking up for MMG :)

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  38. Isn't Zillow addicting?? I'm glad that you guys had such a productive weekend in Michigan and that your parents were able to look things over. Buying your first home is stressful/exciting/monumental/wonderful all at the same time. Hope you land your dream home!!

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  39. Yay for a promising house hunt! That is sooo exciting! I am sure y'all can't wait to be back closer to family SOON. We just started our house hunt and met with our realtor for the first time last week... now I feel like my life is consumed with looking at listings online, haha.

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  40. AWW!!! So exciting but girl, what a busy weekend! I hope y'all had some time to rest. And an in-ground pool??? I've been begging Cory to let us get one but no luck. Can't wait to hear more about your house :)

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  41. See. I told you I'd get to this! I so love this post! I'm so glad you're getting things in order and having a great time. And also you've made me decide I now want a pool. I can't wait to see the final choice!

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  42. So exciting! I hope the house you want works out for you! I can't wait to see more pictures! And an inground pool? Yes, please!

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  43. So excited for you! I hope it all works out with your favorite house!!

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  44. Oh! You are moving near where I will be moving. My boyfriend went to police academy in the Kalamazoo area. Very cool. And pools are so nice :)

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  45. Such excitement..
    Maybe you will get the call on the top pick of home choice :)
    I hope it works out!

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  46. Wonderful collection of the house hunt!! These will be definitely helpful for everyone. I would surely bookmark this site and every day I’ll get more and more latest information.

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