Thursday, February 16, 2006

House Hunters

We're doing it. We've decided to sell our townhouse and buy a single family home. This is a decision which simultaneously makes me excited, nervous and concerned.

I am excited about the prospect of new digs. I am nervous about finding the right house and how long it might take to sell our existing one. And I am concerned because I have a habit of experiencing buyer's remorse, and you can't exactly haul a house to the return department. I am also concerned because I am married to a man who took six months to decide on a new dishwasher.

My husband is very involved. He wants things to go smoothly, sure, but mostly he wants to reign me in. In his opinion, without him I'll be the one waving my checkbook wildly during an open house, saying, "It's got four walls, and no one else wants it! I'll take it!" He is aiming to prevent this. He suggests that perhaps, the house we buy have more to offer than a roof and indoor plumbing, it's shining feature the fact that it is not attached to anyone else's house.

Fine. There are certain things we should agree on. We've come up with a list. We've created a spreadsheet of must have's (four bedrooms, please), not important (who cares if it's freshly painted unless it's freshly painted in colors we selected?) and must not haves (I am allergic to chain link fences). We should be selective.

We should not, however, be anal. I don't want him to start consulting consumer reports and jotting down serial numbers. And while I'm interested in the direction a neighborhood is headed in, I do not want to read a one hundred year forecast detailing the likely status of the neighborhood long after I'm dead. I do not care about my grandchildren having a difficult time selling the house. Life is hard. They'll survive.

As per his custom, my husband is unable to articulate what he wants in a house. He is only able to reject what he does not want. Also per his habit, he would prefer to buy a house with untold glory for the cheapest amount possible. As in, any amount over ten dollars is going to be subjected to intense scrutiny.

My saving grace hope is that there was exactly one item we purchased which did not involve multiple trips to thirty retailers and renewing a subscription to Consumer Reports. When the television broke, it was replaced in fourteen hours.

So that will be my strategy. When I find the house which sings to me, I'll simply move all of our electronic equipment to it immediately, thus ensuring his speedy signature on the dotted line.


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