Life's Unexpected Curveballs & Divine Intervention

There are a few instances in life that are significant to people. Off of the top of my head I would say that short list includes graduation from college, marriage, death, birth and buying your first house.

In each of those situations life becomes slightly more complicated or complex. When you graduate from college there is an assumption by most that you become a bona fide adult, you now must live on your own, start a career and pay your own bills.

That’s a big deal.

So it is for the other things on that short ordered list. While it may be a good complication, in most cases marriage, birth, death and home ownership is stressful, complicated and complex in different ways {good and bad}.

Many conversations ago Nick and I concluded that we did not want to have children. While I sometimes struggle with that choice, not because I want kids but because I think that’s what is expected of me, I know that our decision to be parents to fur babies is a better fit for our lives.

I feel blessed to be in a relationship with somebody that has the same expectations in that department as I do; many times people believe they can get their partner to change their minds later. Changing somebody is never the answer.

Nick and I will never have to worry about that {hopefully}.

So what other things make an incredible impact on life? Marriage.

Ah, marriage.

Well, I would officially like to announce that…

Nick and I…

ARE…

NOT ENGAGED!

Nope, he did not pop the question and I don’t have a diamond the size of Pippy’s head on my finger, yet. Though that definitely is something Nick should think about, in a very serious way.

*Wink, Wink*  {I hope he reads this.}

Okay, Okay, I will stop beating around the bush – Nick and I are going to buy a house… our first house!

We have been tossing around the idea since we moved here last year. When we made the move to the D.C. metro we figured this would be where we plant some roots and stay awhile. At the beginning of this year we started looking at a bunch of houses online just to get a sense of what we like and if what we liked was affordable. Originally I wanted to live in a single-family home and Nick wanted to live in a condo. In an attempt to make him happy, I agreed to take a look a couple of condo communities being built north of us.

I instantly fell in love with the first property we saw.

Seriously. It was an instant love affair.

It was roomy, it was designed to the nines, it had {well offered} everything we had ever dreamed in a home. I wanted to put an offer in on it immediately.

Yes, I lost track of reality.

If you could see the property you likely would not blame me.

It was reasonable and close to the price point that I had hoped we would consider our max. However, something deep inside of me thought I should continue to look around.

It didn’t hurt that Nick was telling me out loud that we had to continue to look. Plus, there was another builder/developer that he favored in the same community building condos down the street. I appeased him {thinking he would see things my way later} and we went to see the other condo.

Nick fell instantly in love with this property.

And, like the good girlfriend that I am, I instantly despised everything. So I went room to room picking out exactly what I hated about it. I made a pretty significant mental list of my complaints so that when the conversation happened {and I knew it was going to happen} I would be able to specifically explain to him why I hated the property.

First, it was decorated for my grandmother.

Second, it was almost $100k more than the property that I loved.

Third, and that’s when it happened, I drew a blank.

So I did what any reasonable person does, I started to use his points against him.

Fourth, ‘oh, you like that it’s almost 3000 sq ft? But you said you want a smaller property. Point for me!

Really, we went back and forth for months about these two properties. And as we debated each of the new buildings were going up in price. So that now Nick’s believed property was beyond our price point, yet he was still considering it. He wanted to make it work. There was no talking him out of it. And it was driving me crazy.

How does somebody not recognize a property that is beyond his or her financial means? It’s like going out and buying a car that has a payment larger than your monthly salary. That doesn’t work. Ever.

I was hard pressed and going crazy, so I suggested getting a realtor. When Nick finally caved and saw the utility in having a realtor, I felt a weight lifted off of my chest.

Enter: Robert.

Almost instantly Robert became a useful asset to me. After viewing the condo Nick loved, he told Nick that it was overpriced for what you were getting and likely beyond our financial ability.

Whew. I thought I was safe.

Yet we still talked about it. And, much to my chagrin, we still continued to visit it. Even this weekend, with Nick’s parents visiting, we took another trip to our beloved community. Though to give Nick some credit we always planned to show our parents the first two places we believed to be the bottom of our threshold.

Meaning, we did not want to pay any money for a house that we were not going to like. I mean, we live in a fabulous place right now. We are renting a fabulous apartment. Realistically speaking if the property owners would allow us to tare down the wall separating the two apartments we would buy the property that we rent today. Combined the two apartments would be 2200 sq. ft., 6 bedrooms {if we wanted} and four bathrooms. However, that was not an option. So we agreed that we would look for a house that is the equivalent to our apartment style living we are used to. If we could not find something, we would continue to rent.

More and more it seemed we would continue to rent. There was nothing out that that we fancied and it was slightly depressing.

Anyway, let’s come back to this weekend. So we took Nick’s mom and dad to the two original condos. Nick believed they would each love his property and not be impressed with my original selection.

Boy was he wrong.

They really liked the property that I fell in love with, pretty much for the same reasons that I had. He had to admit defeat. {To be fair, his parents thought his property was equally as beautiful.}

Condos are a funny thing. You get your square feet in vertically, which means there are a LOT of steps. I was huffing and puffing each time I had to climb the stairs. However, for us, we thought that we could accommodate that small thing. But when we start to think of our families, our daily lives and the possibility of getting hurt, the steps are not easily dismissed.

Condos were becoming less of an option.

So on Sunday, without our realtor because he cancelled on us, Nick, his parents & I went real-estating. We found properties we were interested in. We looked, we called, we reconsidered and continued to look for hours and hours.

We happened upon a set of condos that were being built. They had less steps and felt more like a regular home. It was the style that Nick and I really love. We fell instantly in love with the idea of these buildings but there were a few red flags that made all of us slightly uncomfortable. However, one thing really stood out and that was the location.

In an attempt to understand what these homes would be worth in a few years, Nick and his dad asked about the comps in the area. The agent for this developer did something that is probably frowned upon in the field – he answered the question… truthfully. Sort of.

Nick was persistent and the agent knew he could not dismiss the fact that his buildings were located strangely. So, in an attempt to make his property appear more lucrative, he told us about a property a couple of miles away that were essentially comparable. But he told us they were going to be wildly more expensive.

We went there.

Even though I complained that it was late, I was hungry and slightly bored.

We went to this property. Exactly 5 minutes before they were expecting to close up shop and enjoy the rest of their Sunday afternoons, this property was visited by the four of us.

I will thank GOD for the rest of my life that we went to this property. I will thank GOD for the rest of my life that Nick’s dad wanted to go check this place out. I will count my blessings forever that we happened upon this amazing place.

Nick and I found an amazing new construction.

It’s a home.

It’s a place that we can live for the rest of our lives it we wanted to.

It has EVERYTHING and a million more things.

After an hour we knew walking away from this property would be a critical error in our lives. The lot that we wanted would likely not be there 12 hours later. It was perfect. And somebody else was going to recognize that, too.

We gave them a check to hold our dream home, the lot that we wanted and the style that we liked.

 

Nothing made sense. Really. None of it made sense.

It was not a condo. It was not an end unit. It was not in the location that we once expected to call home. Everything about this place was wrong.

But Divine Intervention cannot be fought.

And, yes, I believe this had everything to do with Divine Intervention. This place is absolutely perfect. Nick and I don’t even have to consider selling and finding something better for us in 10 years.

I will share some of the details about our beautiful new chapter in later posts. I feel like everything is too new and I don’t want to jinx anything.

However, there is a moral of the story: don’t give up and don’t settle. Oh, and listen to the experts. I am talking about Nick’s Dad and the people upstairs that helped guide us to this place. It was nothing less than a miracle.

It’s important to know what YOU want. It is important to know what YOU can afford and it’s important you take your time when making life-changing decisions. We knew that we didn’t want to be stuck living in a place that would not make us happy. We knew that we wanted to live in a nice area, with nice amenities and that offered a lot in the way of community and safety.

In the next weeks we will be making more decisions about our home, our lives and our futures. Because Life is Complicated Enough… it is important that you find a match in your life that makes sense. That means find a person you love for who they are, not who they could be or who you want them to be, find a home that fits your lifestyle, your tastes and does not break the bank. Do not settle for anything less than you deserve. Fight hard for what you want, but don’t fight against the opinions and suggestions of others. It is important to consider others and their experiences. Sometimes the unexpected choices in life can you lead to happily ever after.

Ask me, I can tell you.

Until Next Time,

Be Happy.