Stuff Just Got Real


Last night, I put an offer on a house.

Now, before you get all “good for you” and “congratulations” and all that mess going – it kinda is only a symbolic gesture, or more directly a practice run of sorts.  In other words, I am about as likely to get this house as my permanent residence as I am getting a B-List celebrity to be my permanent girlfriend.

But first … let’s get the newbies to the Bear Feed up to speed.  Since moving to California in December, I laid out what I called the Habitation Master Plan.  In a nutshell – it’s to rent for a bit, find where I want to live, then buy a house.  My current rental on Manhattan Ave in Montrose is scheduled to be renovated when my lease is over at the end of July, so the clock is ticking – just still having a lot of ticks left.  Seriously, putting an offer down now means I would have a mortgage and rent due monthly for at least couple months.  That doesn’t mean I haven’t been looking.  The Hunt has been Afoot for a couple months and I’ve joked my main hobby is attending open houses on weekends.  So what’s changed?

Well – I told myself that if the right property comes along, to put an offer in.  Make it the right offer, even if it isn’t the right time.  So that’s what I did.

It’s a single family house in Pasadena.  Small, but comfortable.  Needs some work, but you’d be hard pressed to see the work that’s needed until you dig into a bit.  Yard is Auggie ready.  Not too far from work, not to far from the fun parts of Pasadena.  There are two big downsides though.  First, it was priced at the top end of what I want to pay and with the work that is needed there will be a pinch.  Second, while it’s priced high for me, it’s not priced high its comprobables.  It’s about as hot of a property in Pasadena as they come.  In fact, when I submitted my offer in last night, I was the sixteenth (16th) offer submitted for the house.  Offers were due last night for review by the owners the next couple of days – and while a counter is likely, they will be countering to everyone to see who will bite.  I didn’t go after an impressive offer to them either — just gave them asking (which we all expect for it to go above asking), and gave them a standard escrow and terms.  The owners are looking for a quick sell, which means I could have given them a 15 day escrow but that would make my situation that much tougher.  My one area that have could have an advantage is this home lends it self well to first time buyers – and my conventional loan will look better on paper than FHAs (but not as good as someone with cash).

If you can’t smell it in my words, I’ve basically talked myself out of wanting this offer to go through.  If you need more proof of that – I scheduled four house tours for this evening to look at other available property.

Still, this offer actually marks a new point in this plan.  This isn’t window shopping anymore, is it.  An offer is an offer.  It’s a suggested contractual commitment to buy.  It is paperwork, negotiations, earnest money, considered legal ramifications, and reviewing of property inspections / restrictions.  It is a big step towards laying down the foundation for what is the largest financial and lifestyle investment we can make.

In other words … Sh*t Just Got Real.

Honestly, there is more that I need to get going on – obtaining options on home loans from multiple sources, finding a proper homeowner insurance in this state that is ‘aggressive breed dog’ friendly, and searching out possible contractors in case work is needed before move-in of any location.  So it maybe better this falls through than doesn’t.


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