Buying a home is a big deal or should be a big deal to anyone who is in the market to buy real estate.
Every now and then my wife and I enjoy trolling through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) to see what homes are for sale in our area. It’s nice to get any idea of where the house prices are at and what people are selling.
While at work the other day I was having lunch with a colleague and I knew that she was looking to sell their home to buy a new one. They were struggling because they have looked at houses for the past 2 months and nothing has come up that caught their eye.
Every evening after dinner they would sit at the kitchen table and look at MLS listings writing down any potentials and letting their agent know that they would like to book a viewing.
If it wasn’t the price that pushed them away it was the shady renovations or the property was too small. It was always something. They are not new to the home buying process as they’ve owned 2 other homes prior to the one they are in so they know what they are looking for.
That’s the nice thing about not being a first time home buyer as you now know what you want and don’t want. I know when we come to sell our current home that I’ll be looking into any houses we visit a bit more carefully after what I’ve learned over the years.
The reason they need to move is because of health reasons and they want to buy a bungalow so one of their children doesn’t have to walk up and down stairs. Their youngest son has a medical condition that causes him pain in his right leg and it is only bound to get worse for him.
I wasn’t going to bring up the house offer situation because I know they have put in a few offers but lost them to price wars. It’s not uncommon in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) to be faced with price wars when you put in a house offer because there are so many people looking to buy and only so many houses in a certain price range. If you are looking to put in a house offer you must go in with the best offer otherwise you risk losing the house of your dreams.
Scary House Offer
Luckily, I didn’t have to bring up the conversation about how house hunting was going for her family because she gladly did with a semi-smile on her face.
I jumped right in and said that they must have put in a house offer and it was accepted and that’s why she was happy. Nope, not the case. Next time I’m keeping my mouth shut I thought to myself. So, the story goes like this.
It was a windy afternoon when they had picked up the kids from school and made an appointment with their realtor to view a house for sale. The house was close to the school which meant it wasn’t far for the kids especially for their son.
When they pulled up to the house they instantly looked at each other because they knew that this was going to be the house for them. They loved the outside and sure enough the inside did not disappoint them either. Their realtor told them they needed to move fast if they were interested but something caught their attention.
It was a small circle street where the house was located backing onto farmland but not one house was for sale, many were. The house they were interested in had a house in between them that wasn’t for sale and then two more that were for sale.
They started to wonder if it was the neighbour in the middle that was the problem or reason the others were selling. What if they were going to be putting in a house offer next to the worst neighbours in the world. When they approached their realtor about it she did agree that it was odd but nothing to worry about.
She did not listen to her realtor, only her gut instinct which told them to back away unless they could find out why so many houses were for sale. I suppose that makes sense to me and likely something I would question too. The landscaping on the houses for sale were well-kept as were almost all the houses on the street.
Knock, Knock- Who’s There?
Although I couldn’t sympathize with her as I haven’t seen something like this before I was able to calm her down as you could see smoke coming from her ears. She doesn’t want to keep house hunting and now that they found their dream home they are running out of time.
The only thing I suggested to her was to go and knock on the neighbours doors that are selling their houses. She could introduce herself and tell them that she were thinking of buying a house on the street. I suggested she sit down with her husband and write out a few questions that they might want to ask the home sellers about the neighbourhood.
The worst that could happen is they find out the truth and the one house in between them all really does have crazy neighbours and that’s why they are all selling. I only say the worst because they likely would never put in a house offer on the one house they’ve fallen in love with.
On the other hand if they were moving because of a scary neighbour you don’t know why there was so much animosity and whether it would happen to you. Maybe they did something to their neighbor they are not admitting which fueled the fire.
It doesn’t hurt to knock on the supposed scary neighbours door to talk to them too because you might just find they are nice neighbors and the for sale signs have nothing to do with them. Then again first impressions can be wrong. Uh, this is tough, I thought.
If there is an issue someone might speak up about the situation just to let you know before you put in your house offer. On the other hand they might say nothing at all because if they do then no one would want to put in a house offer if they know there is a scary neighbour in the hood.
When will this end…
Go with your gut
After chatting to my colleague about this for half an hour my head started to thump as I could feel a migraine coming on. I don’t know if it was because I get migraines often or because the entire situation seemed so stressful to me. I get it though, it’s a huge financial decision. I’m the type of guy though that wouldn’t stress, I’d just say meh, we’ll find another house.
As you can tell by my suggestions above there was always that ‘But’ or ‘Maybe’ or “What if?” which only means that you will never know the truth until you move in. If I were them I’d just keep on looking for another house to buy if too many for sale signs are bothersome.
When they say home buying is tough, they aren’t kidding.
Would you put in a house offer on a house that had 2 other houses next to your potential new neighbours house for sale?
CBB Week At A Glance
This week was fun only because I didn’t do anything around the house except for clean and help out like I normally do. I just didn’t have the time to get any outdoor work done so I’ll have to work on it next week. I don’t have much left to do anyways. Oh, I did adjust the outdoor garden light timer since it’s getting darker earlier now so that counts as some sort of outdoor maintenance work, doesn’t it? haha!
We brought our son to an indoor kids gym which was free because of his age and he LOVED it. He ran, bounced, jumped and tumbled for 2 hours and was absolutely exhausted by the time he was done. I think he slept a record 13 hours after that fun day out.
Other than that we went to the dentist to get our third cleaning this year and did a bit of groceries. Since the weather was so nice we made a few trips around the block with the buggy and played out front with our boy.
That was my week… how was yours?
Published This Week
Just in case you’ve missed any of my blog posts this week I will share them all below. If you are looking for past Saturday Weekend Review posts scroll down to the bottom of this post where I will list up to 5 previous weeks for you to read.
If you have a question that you would like to ask Mr.CBB fill out the Contact Mr.CBB form on the Home Page and send in your questions. If you want to share a story via a Fan Question only please ensure that there is minimum 500 words and lots of details…we love details!
Right now CBB is posting Tuesday (Grocery Game Challenge) , Thursday (Personal Finance Post), Saturday (Personal Finance and Weekly Wrap-Up and a recipe on Sunday!
- Buy the least expensive house in the most expensive neighbourhood
- Click and collect online grocery shopping is here
- Pumpkin Biscotti with pumpkin spice icing
Submit your Deal or Brag:
Saving money while grocery shopping is essential in the CBB family and that’s why we share our grocery shops every week in The Grocery Game Challenge 2015.
What I love the most is when my fans share their amazing shops with me whether it be groceries or other deals they find at a garage sale, online or freebies!!!
If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder@yahoo.(ca) < remove brackets) or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.
Hi Mr. CBB and Fans,
This week I was able to get 2 brand new chairs still in the box which we traded our drafting chairs for. The other photo shows Free lemons and potatoes which I received from a friend.
Great score and thanks for sending me your photos and sharing this with us. – Mr.CBB
Making A Difference (MAD)
Note: If you are a personal finance blogger (anywhere around the world) and would like your blog to be MAD featured simply drop me an email and I’ll explain the process to you.
This is my way of giving back to the personal finance community through networking and sharing knowledge with my fans.
Greetings CBB readers!
I’m a late 20-something guy from western Canada that gets just a little too excited about a good spreadsheet.
I started http://www.mynerdylife.com as a place to share my knowledge, experiences and thoughts about personal finance. Though being the nerd that I am, it’s also a place to discuss other things that excite me, including travel, investing, earning and redeeming rewards and some of the latest technology.
Living in a high-income-high-spending city, I constantly see people earning/blowing absurd amounts of money, yet they seem no happier for it. For example, there’s a guy down the street that has a Corvette, an Escalade and a CTS, yet I only ever see him sitting alone in his garage with his cars rather than with his family. Or the entire subdivision down the road where houses START at $1-2 million. I can only imagine what kinds of debt those people are in, not to mention the immense financial and career stress that comes with it.
Being a graduate student, I decided to continue living at home while I was in school. That will likely change in the near future as I complete my studies and move in with my partner, but more importantly it has given me a huge financial edge over my peers.
Sure I’ve had a few financial breaks (no rent while living at home) and some might say my case isn’t “typical”, but honestly these days no one’s life is typical. Others I know are struggling to make ends meet or are congratulating each other on their new massive mortgages. Some are doing very well for themselves, but most of them are spending just as much as they earn if not more.
Meanwhile, I’ve been working part-time (except for 1 year) for the duration of my studies and have managed to accumulate an investment portfolio approaching 6 figures in less than 3 years. All the while feeling no worse off than my high-spending peers.
I don’t claim to be an expert and I’ve certainly made my fair-share of financial missteps, but I’m happy with my progress and can’t wait for things to really pick-up when I start my career.
I love hearing about the experiences of other people and the tips and tricks they have to share. I find it incredibly motivating to see some of the big-guns of the PF world make huge strides despite humble beginnings.
My hope is to share similar inspiration for others to show that anyone can take charge of their finances and live a fulfilling, meaningful and happy life that doesn’t require a massive income.
Hope to see you all around the interwebs!
Food and grocery shopping is a BIG part of CBB because food is a large part of the budget which people struggle the most with.
If you are someone who would rather buy convenience meals or products consider cooking homemade meals or baking from scratch.
Not only will you save money but you will be proud of what you accomplished and you’ll see that from the smiles on those you feed.
If you don’t already know I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I share recipes from other Food Bloggers from around the world.
I also share recipes on the blog once a week on Sundays either made by my in-house home blog cook Nicola Don or myself. So we’re not just a boring personal finance blog. This is a fun, interactive blog where we talk about everything that happens in our world.
This week our Top Recipe Pick goes to Kelley who blogs over at the Miss Information for these amazing looking Apple Pie Cookies.
Since we are in the height of apple season I thought this was a brilliant recipe for all of you who have tonnes of apples to use up.
Every week I will pick a blog post of the week from around the web that I found interesting and want to share with you and an Editor’s top blog post pick.
Editor’s pick (That’s me Mr.CBB) goes to Catherine over at Plunged in Debt. She wrote a interesting post about asking Why is Halloween was so Expensive?
I know when the wife and I stocked up for this Halloween we bought 4 boxes of Chocolate Bars on sale for $6.99 each reg $15.99 and the other day we picked up a box of Sunkist treats just in case there were kids who couldn’t eat chocolate.
We are still toying with the idea of getting non-edible treats for those kids that can’t have any candy at all but are not sure what to get and how much to spend? The costume we have for our son was given to us so it is another free costume year for us. I’m sure as he gets older we will see more costs involved with Halloween.
How much do you spend at Halloween?
How people find CBB
Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Keep in mind any spelling errors below are because I share with you the exact way they typed their search engine query to land on my blog.
- Halloween Creepy Finger Cookies- Yep, they are creepy alright! Don’t believe me? Check them out!
- What if they stick the wrong price?– Haha, always a funny one in the bunch. This is about the Scanning Code of Practice.
- Why wife spends so much?– Maybe you should ask her and not the computer. Just a thought!
- Does Mac’s Milk sell homo milk? – It probably took you more time to search for an answer, if you even found one than it would have to just make a phone call.
That’s all for this week friends but be back here next Saturday to enjoy the next edition in the Saturday Weekend Review Series. Don’t forget to subscribe to my daily blog post by entering your email address on the home page and verifying the subscription email once it is sent to you.
- The Saturday Weekend Review #139: There’s a cheaper way to save when buying used stuff
- The Saturday Weekend Review #140: How Distraction Theft Will Make You Their Next Win
- The Saturday Weekend Review #141: Could your budget handle a 6 hour workday?
- The Saturday Weekend Review #142: 5 Things I’m thankful for everyday not just Thanksgiving Day
- The Saturday Weekend Review #143: Should the wealthier sibling have a financial obligation to the parents?