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Wednesday, September 23, 2020

We Bought a House - and there's a rollercoaster story behind it!

We bought a house - and there's a story to it!

Incase you missed the news on Instagram and Facebook – WE BOUGHT A HOUSE!

And ohhhhh is there a story behind it. 

You see, the story doesn’t even start with the house we bought… it starts with the house next door… and you better strap yourself in because you’re in for one seriously bumpy ride.

Here’s what happened >> 

As I said, the story actually starts with the house next door. 

You see, Jesse and I have been waiting and saving and praying for a house for the last seven years – and we’ve spent the last 6 or so months looking to buy said house.

Essentially, for the last year you would have found me scrolling through real estate apps on my iPad, looking for potential houses.

We’d made one offer that was rejected (and then the house ended up selling for $306K more than the asking price 😳) and looked at a bunch of others that just weren’t the right fit…. but then one week, I thought I’d found the right house.

The photos made the house look amazing, it had 4 bedrooms, was in the neighbourhood we liked and was even within our price range. Overall it seemed pretty promising – but we had to wait until Saturday to see it.

Saturday rolled around and, as anyone who has ever looked to buy a home would know, the pictures just didn’t stack up. 

The house needed quite a bit of maintenance as it had been rented for quite a few years whilst the owners lived overseas and the fourth bedroom was a strange half bedroom/half loft storage space situation going on that just wasn’t going to work for us.

But as we walked away, I noticed the house next door. “Now that is my dream house” I told him, only to be met with eyerolls from a husband who thought I was living in dream land.

“It’s not for sale” 
“We couldn’t afford it”
“How about we focus on what is for sale?”
Okay, fine. Point taken.

So we left, expecting we’d be looking at more houses the following week and that one would be another fail.

It was back to the drawing board and back to praying for the right house.

But that week, I couldn’t stop thinking about the house and I felt like I needed to go and see it again. I thought we could maybe renovate it, making a lower offer and then spending the money to re-do the back of the house to make it more functional.

Problem was, I didn’t know how much said renovation would cost me… so we sent a message to a builder friend to get an idea of cost.

The next Saturday, whilst Jesse and I were out for a walk, he got back to us – and it seemed like renovating that house could be an option. The open for inspection was in 15 minutes time so we raced back to the house to shower and get changed and got to the open with ten minutes to spare.

And of course, on the way in we had to walk past “the dream house” – so once again I was telling Jesse how I wished we could buy that house instead.

We walked through the house next door, looking at what we could and couldn’t do and talking to the agent about price. 

As we were walking through the house, we decided we would make an offer and if we got the house for the right price, we’d renovate.

But then as we were driving away, I noticed a line of people outside “the dream house” – and a woman checking them in that looked very much like a real esdtate agent.

PLEASE! Can we go in? I begged.

“We can’t afford it” 
“You’re going to get disappointed”
and off we went.

On Sunday, we talked with friends about our plans to make an offer on the house next door and I jokingly mentioned “the dream house”. We said our goodbyes promising to update them on what happened with the offer the next day.

But I couldn’t get “the dream house” out of my head.

So on Monday, I decided to Google… and I found the listing.

It was listed off market with the agency we were about to make an offer with.

With the offer letter sitting in my drafts folder of my emails, I called the agent to find out what the house was listed for, expecting it would be way out of our budget.

But it was listed at almost exactly the same price.

I deleted the offer email from my drafts folder and texted Jesse (who was at work) and within half an hour had booked a private inspection of “the dream house”. 

Knowing how disappointed with houses so far, we decided that Jesse would go to work and I’d have a look through the house with my parents. 

When we got to the house, it needed more work than first expected, but it had so much potential… and we had to laugh that it seemed the owners were as obsessed with Disney as Jesse and I. The house was filled with Disney things, as well as different furniture pieces and ornaments we had in our own house. It was strangely like walking through a weird alternate reality version of my family home.

 So, with Jesse’s agreeance, I handed the agent an offer letter with a handwritten letter that introduced ourselves to the owner.

The waiting began.

We prayed about it, our church was praying about it and we continued to pray about it.

The next day, we found out that our initial offer was rejected, however, the owners were willing to accept a higher offer.

We decided that Jesse needed to see the house before we made any higher offer, so we went back for a second look on the Saturday and made a higher offer that afternoon.

The waiting continued.

And this is where the wheels fell off the bus

We waited all afternoon, distracting ourselves by going on a walk and playing games and wondering if we’d get a yes or no. 

Jesse thought it was a definite no, I thought we were in with a chance.. but we kept on waiting..

Sitting down to eat dinner that night, I thought I’d check my email to see if the agent had sent us an email instead (me thinking emails were easier to break bad news than phone calls) – only the email I found was the last thing I was expecting.

It was an email from our (previous) mortgage broker, asking us where we’d be getting the extra savings from to pay the difference.

Extra? To pay the difference?

Big red flag.

Emails were sent back and forth and I started to panic.

The mortgage broker had assumed we were borrowing money from family (we weren’t) and had told us we could spend much more than we could.

We would have to come up with hundreds of thousands of dollars on the spot if the owners accepted our offer.

We were a complete and utter mess. We were angry and confused and devastated and were desperately praying and hoping that the owners would reject our offer.

But then, just minutes later, I had a missed call from the agent. Followed by a text.

The offer was accepted.

The text should have been met with shouts of joy, but it was instead met with the sound of wailing.

We were so broken.
So confused.
So upset.

The agent wanted us to come to the house that night to sign and exchange the contracts. Wanting to see if there was any way to work things out, we asked if we could get back to him tomorrow.

And so our night was spent crying. Yelling. Searching. Calculating. Wondering. Questioning. Praying.

We didn’t sleep at all and by the next morning, realised there was no other answer we could give but no. 

So with eyes swollen from crying, I sent that text.

We knew all along that the plan for the owners was to start an auction campaign on Monday if they didn’t accept an offer prior, so we knew they needed an answer before Monday.

There was nothing we could do to fix things before Monday so we had no choice.

Our phones were filled with messages from friends trying to comfort us and work things out for us. Our church group chat was filled with people as equally shocked as we were. We spent the day questioning how God could let this happen.

So we tried to comfort ourselves. We watched non-sad Disney movies (which are very hard to find, may I add). We ate roasted marshmallows before dinner. We tried to pick apart the house and point out every negative thing. We prayed. We tried to convince ourselves it was for the best.

And on Monday, I had to pick up the pieces.

I knew we couldn’t go ahead with the mortgage broker who had made the mistake, so on Monday I reached out to a new mortgage broker to start the process again. 

We thought we wouldn’t be looking at houses again for months, but the mortgage process had already taken us months so far and we never had official pre-approval.

On Monday, I told our new mortgage broker “there’s no rush” – and by Thursday, I was eating my words.

The next day, he called to ask me if we still wanted to buy the house and if there was any way we could still buy it. I told him yes, but no. 

Then he told me we could have bought the house all along.

I didn’t know what was worse, the initial mistake or finding out that all of the pain never had to happen.

Assuming the house was going to be officially on the market in the next couple of days, I thought we had no chance. They were going to be running an auction campaign and I was sure the house would sell for more than we could afford.

On Wednesday night, we went to our bible study group feeling pretty flat. We didn’t want to talk to people, we didn’t want to talk about it – but we knew we needed God and we knew we needed our friends, so I asked that they would pray for wisdom for us.

And on Thursday morning, I woke up with the incessant thought that I needed to call the agent to apologise…. But I didn’t want to.

I was embarrassed. 
It all felt too raw. 
I was convinced that he would be angry at us. 

So I kept telling myself no – until I was so frustrated with this thought I just decided I’d do it… and if he was angry we’d escape the embarrassment by only looking at properties with other agents.

But when I called, I wasn’t met with anger. 

The agent told us that not only was he sad we couldn’t go ahead with things – the owners were too.

In fact, they were so sad and feeling so flat, they decided to wait to go ahead with the auction campaign. On Friday, they’d decide what they wanted to do next.

So he told me, if I could come forward with an offer in the next 24 hours, he thought they would be very willing to consider it… even if it was lower.

I hung up the phone totally flabbergasted. How was this happening? How did we have a chance?

Because Jesse was so upset, I decided not to upset him further and had to figure out what to do next on my own. 

So I prayed and prayed and prayed… and I called back and made that offer, expecting it would probably be a no. 

A few hours later, the agent called again to ask me if we could come in to sign the contract and pay the holding deposit for the property so they could present the offer to the owners with everything ready to go. 

It was late on Thursday afternoon and I had asked if they could give the offer to the owners on Friday so we didn’t lose a day of the cooling off period.

Then I had to let Jesse in on what I’d been busy with all day. I asked if he could leave work half an hour early and told him what had happened so far – and at 5pm, we were sitting at the mortgage broker’s office signing mortgage papers only to rush to the real estate agent to sign the contract and pay the holding deposit.

Thinking we wouldn’t hear back until the next day, we went home to eat dinner and distract ourselves by watching Carl Barron…. and then my phone rang.

It was the other real estate agent, calling to tell us that the owners had asked to meet with her tonight to consider the offer and if they went ahead, they would extend the cooling off period for us.

But it was one particular word she said that threw me off. 



I was so confused. She hadn’t presented the offer to them yet, but she was congratulating us? I thought maybe she was congratulating us for getting the mortgage sorted… so we waited.

Anxiously watching the clock and waiting for an answer…

At 9:30pm, I still hadn’t heard back, so I sent a text “Hey, any updates on the offer?”.

A few minutes later, I got a phone call. She’d only just left the owners and was so excited. They’d accepted our offer. The cooling off period had begun.

Talk about a whirlwind.

I texted our mortgage broker and had to send a message to our church’s group chat and a few friends that pretty much said “Ummm, hey! Remember that house we were going to buy but then couldn’t? Well…. Now it looks like it’s ours!”.

We were all so shocked and confused and excited, but to be honest, we felt like we couldn’t really celebrate until everything was finalised because of everything that happened before.

So the next few days were spent busying ourselves. Organising pest and building inspections, getting mortgage details, contacting solicitors, trying to figure out what was happening.

By the following Thursday, every single piece of the puzzle had fit together. The mortgage application was approved. The valuation came back at the right price. The pest and building inspection was fine. 

So on Friday at 5pm, the house was officially sold…. to us!

Because it was an off-market sale, we had no sold sign and no sticker, so we loaded up our letter board and took a cheesy photo outside the house instead… feeling like total dorks and in total disbelief that we just bought a house!

Now, I don't know if God always works in such dramatic ways to save you money, but I do know that He is good - and I'm kind of glad for this whirlwind story because it's never made us want what we're working towards more. We are so fired up and feel totally undeservedly blessed.

And that’s only the beginning of the story…. 


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  1. So intense but I'm so happy it worked out! It really seems like that house was MEANT for you guys and you knew it from the beginning :) I'm excited to hear all about the move in (when you do!), see pictures, everything!

  2. Certainly was a ride Kristy and Jesse - glad it all worked out in the end some things are just meant to be.


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