"Dream home, oh dream home, wherefore art thou dream home?" While I usually don’t speak in Shakespearean, I have found myself asking this question a lot lately. Daniel and I have been house hunting for a little over a year now. It has been a blast so far! The fact that we aren’t in a home yet brings me to 2 conclusions:
- Apparently we are EXTREMELY particular & selective when it comes to houses.
- It has not yet been in God’s infinitely wise timing for us to own a home.
It has also been quite a learning experience since this is all new for us. Embarking on a new chapter of life and doing something you have never done before can be quite invigorating and equally exciting. I feel like we get a little smarter with each week that goes by. While we haven’t found “the one” just yet, hopefully it will happen soon. Here is some advice I would pass along to anyone else who is in the process, or thinking about starting the process, of house hunting:
1. Start with a realtor.If you are new to all of this, you will need help. Our realtor has been so great. An experienced realtor will save you lots of hassle and can guide you through the tedious paperwork while offering valuable advice along the way. Make sure you have someone who is working for you, with your best interests in mind. Go with someone you know and trust. If you are new to an area, ask for recommendations and get a company & person with a great track record.
2. Be picky. Know what you want, and what you don’t. Do not settle! If you have some “non-negotiables”, don’t compromise on those. You’ll be happier in the long-run. This is an environment that you will be in for a long time, so you better make sure the atmosphere is one that you enjoy and that makes you feel happy and comfortable. Houses have lots of personality, and some will “speak” to you a lot more than others. The ones I click with give me a great first impression and they are homes that I can see us starting a family and raising kids in one day. You just get this “feel good” feeling from walking through it. They also meet up to our criteria and have all or most of the things we are looking for in a home: spacious, open floor plan, fenced in back yard for Pey Pey, and a pool certainly doesn’t hurt!
3. Consider all the choices. This will help you a lot with the step above. Think about your ideal circumstances for where you would live. What school district do you want to be in? What area of town do you prefer? How many bedrooms? What neighborhoods do you like? What style of house? There is a lot to think about when choosing a home. Weigh all your options carefully. The answer to these questions will greatly help narrow down your options and keep you from being so overwhelmed.
4. Don’t stress. Make the most of your time looking for a home, because it won’t last forever, unless you have struck it rich and plan on owning lots of houses right away. Have fun! You get to browse in multiple homes and compare them to each other. It’s such a neat experience.
5. Be patient. It’s ok to take your time. We certainly have! I know that won’t be something we regret. You never want to make a pressured or rushed decision. After all, it is most likely (or should be as Dave Ramsey says) the biggest purchase you’ll ever make. Be wise and cover your decision in prayer…which brings me to the final point.
6. Trust God. I saved the most important thing for last. He is all knowing and His timing is perfect. We want all of our decisions to center around His will for us. Our prayer is that He is honored through this process, and that He’ll give us undeniable peace about the home we choose. We trust that it has not been the right time thus far, and we trust that He is faithful to provide. He knows exactly what we need, what we want, and He always takes care of us. So, for now, we will keep seeking God’s wisdom to help lead us in the right direction as we pursue owning a home.
For now we are keeping the faith! I have no doubt that one day I’ll get to post a blog on here about our new home and how perfect it is for us and how thankful we are that we took our sweet time and trusted God’s timing in all of this. Until then, we’ll keep enjoying the process of house hunting!