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Real sudden-like, I am as close as I've ever been to being a homeowner.

Over the weekend that I was sick, Jeff and I toured a couple of condos in various locations around downtown KC. For some odd reason, I had gotten a strange bug in my ear about buying a condo, or at least to see if it's possible. Not really seeing it as something to immediately pursue, but still a reasonable thing to explore for future consideration, Jeff and I walked through a bunch of places.

The one that stuck out the most didn't really occur to me until a good while later. Jeff agreed, should I buy a place with an extra bedroom, to move into it and pay me rent. When we realized that the cost of breaking our lease that is effective until September 1st was two full months' rent and the forfeit of our deposit, we put the idea of moving out of our heads for a while.

Then, last week, I got a dangerous idea and sent an email to the woman that showed us around. I asked her if the agency would be willing to buy us out of our lease if an offer was made. She replied that it depended on the offer. I then mentioned the unit in which I was interested, and her response was pretty telling. She wrote, "We'd love to sell you that one!" Her poker face seemed to melt away, as it became apparent that the unit sitting vacant for over a year had created some motivation to get it sold.

I plan to offer almost fifty thousand dollars less than the asking price, and if it doesn't work out, I walk away. I have nothing to lose by being told no, and waiting could possibly work in my favor anyway. So I don't see any reason to push into a situation that is more demanding than I want. I have already received very good indications from the sellers, as to the current disposition of the downtown condo market and its effect on the unit in question. When she showed it to us, she remarked upon looking at the price in her cheat sheet that it was "way overpriced." She also made sure we heard her say that the current real estate environment is definitely a buyer's market. The aforementioned exclamation point served as the icing on the cake. I will make this offer.

I have been approved for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with palatable terms. I'm ready to make a real offer. It's going down on Monday evening. But here's the bottom line. If everything goes according to the magical storybook, they will accept my possibly overly optimistic offer, buy me out of my lease, and make me a homeowner. If they don't, then I go back to be a potential homeowner for a while. I personally think the chance of everything working out the way I want is remote, even though so far, everything has worked that way.

I just hope I can sleep in the meantime.

UPDATE - 2/7/2007

They did not accept, and countered with 30K more than my offer. I have talked to a lot of people, and the general consensus is that I'm an idiot for not countering back. So I ran some numbers this morning, and found that increasing my bid by 15K would cost me an additional $100 in monthly payments, and that's acceptable. I sent the counter-offer along about an hour ago.

1:34 AM, Feb 3, 2007

4 comments

R.A. Heller wants you to know:

Good luck to you John. Nothing greater then owning your own property. I am currently in negotiations to purchase the family farm. If all goes well I am starting a vineyard. I was just hired as an apprentice with a local winery so that I can gain a few years of experience before I things start rolling too fast.

1:57 PM, Feb 5, 2007

R.A. Heller blurted:

Good luck to you John. Nothing greater then owning your own property. I am currently in negotiations to purchase the family farm. If all goes well I am starting a vineyard. I was just hired as an apprentice with a local winery so that I can gain a few years of experience before I things start rolling too fast.

2:00 PM, Feb 5, 2007

bahua cut in with:

Thanks for the dual well-wishes.

9:08 PM, Feb 5, 2007

bahua cut in with:

For everyone's information, I have now officially made the offer. My buyer's agent will FAX it along in the morning, and they have until the 7th to accept or decline it. I will let you, my silly readers know exactly what happens, as soon as it happens.

Holy crap I might be a homeowner.

12:01 AM, Feb 6, 2007

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