I have always loved perusing real estate listings. Every Friday, we would get a pull out section in our local paper of real estate for sale that I would study to find my dream home (spoiler alert-it was usually the biggest and/or most expensive).
With this in mind, it should come as no surprise that I started looking at houses as soon as I moved to the DC area almost two years ago. I saved some money living with my dad the year before our wedding and thought we might be able to find something with a mortgage payment for than less than what we were paying in rent. I also really, really hated our apartment and couldn't wait to get into our own space.
I quickly learned that houses out here cost a small fortune, particularly when considering my Midwestern mentality of what homes should contain. It became clear that we were not ready and able to purchase a house, but I am very grateful for my early research. It taught me to manage my expectations and understand the market in this area better.
As time went on I continued to browse listings, showing the particularly interesting ones to Brian (I found one two houses down from Dunkin' Donuts!), but with no real idea of when we would be buying.
At the beginning of this year, we decided we wanted to make buying a home a priority. We saved enough for a decent down payment and we wanted to take advantage of the wonderful interest rates before they inevitably increase. Plus, the lease on our apartment was set to expire in July, and we did not want to commit to another year of renting.
Armed with this knowledge, we got serious about researching neighborhoods and homes. Up next, I'll discuss our somewhat unconventional home search.
How did you know it was time to buy?