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House Hunting... How many houses did it take?


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We are currently looking for a house and I'm getting discouraged. We've narrowed it down to one (after seeing pretty much everything in our price range) and our agent is showing us another one tomorrow that just was listed yesterday.

 

I dunno, maybe we are too picky? We do want to keep our housing costs lower, so we aren't really interested in raising our price range anymore.

 

How many did it take for you to find "The One?"

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It was the first one we saw. And then we were outbid. I still get a little misty about it every once in awhile. If only we'd bit just a little more...

 

It took another twenty or so before we bid again.

 

Maybe that is part of it.

 

We bid on the 3rd house and the seller's were beyond unreasonable. We walked after trying to counter a few times.

 

I fell in love with the 6th house we went to. And when our agent called with a few questions, we found out they had accepted a bid while we were in our showing.

 

Bleh.

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I'm always amazed when people list low numbers. We saw (but sometimes rejected Very quickly) about a hundred when we bought our first home. ... In looking at some new areas recently, a realtor showed us 15 "just to get the feel for the area". ... I can imagine it might take fewer if we had already narrowed our search to a *very*specific* neighborhood.

 

But even as a motivated buyer, I want to know what's out there and feel like I've made a truly educated choice.

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First house in my first marriage....probably 50 over the course of 1 1/2 years. That was more my XH being too picky imo....but we ended up with a house we did both love. Second house in first marriage...probably 25 over the course of a couple of years.

 

When I got divorced and bought my first house on my own, I only actually looked---as in going TO the house---at about 6. On line shopping has helped the process a lot.

 

We have already looked at dozens in the new city we are moving to. New areas to learn and waiting to sell this house....so we are taking our time.

 

I think in general people do not look at enough houses before settling on one.

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We are military so we have to make quick choices. With our latest purchase, we flew out here last year over Memorial Day weekend thinking we would buy a house that we could c;lose on in mid-late July. We worked with a realtor and he found us (some we had found too) eleven houses to choose from which had our non-negotiables- basement or storm shelter, 2 car garage, three bedrooms plus other rooms or four bedrooms minimum, area for landscaping. We narrowed it down to house one and eleven and chose house eleven. We saw the first ten on Saturday, the last on Sunday after church and we put in an offer on Sunday afternoon. We had an acceptance that day. The previous house we owned was one I only saw before making an offer and us buying but it was one of maybe six houses. I sent my dh pictures of the house and described the house and neighborhood Both of the last two houses we have been really happy with OUr first house was also one of about ten and the house was fine, but the neighborhood was not really our cup of tea. That is why with our next two houses, we chose neighborhoods first and houses second. We have been much happier now.

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Honestly, I never rely on realtors, they are the worst for listening to what we have to say. We even had one who was a good friend and she STILL showed us homes we had clearly said to put on our DO NOT LOOK list.

 

We were VERY specific in what we wanted......here we wanted 1. Land, 2. No HOA, 3. lots of trees for privacy, 4. No clearly marked sub-division with homes that look alike.

 

What did our realtors always want to show us?????? The model home in sub-divisions where we could see in our neighbor's house and pick model A, B, or C.

:glare::glare::glare:

 

We spent a LOT of hours on websites finding homes that appealed to us and lots of hours driving around without our realtor to see them from the outside first.

 

Dawn

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The more houses we have bought, the fewer showings it seems to take!

 

This fall we will begin looking for our 5th house to purchase. It will be our 10th house that we've lived in. We've got it pretty down pat what works for us and what doesn't. We can narrow down to a specific price, general layout, and type of neighborhood before we ever go to a showing. That usually narrows the showings down a LOT. I can't remember how many we looked at for the first house. But for our second we looked at houses until I was sick of it. The third one we looked at maybe 15 or so. The fourth one was probably around 10, and that was that high of a number because we weren't real sure what neighborhood we wanted.

 

I think it helps for us that we aren't afraid of cosmetic work on a house. We have purchased some ugly ones, and made them nice. We are looking at the bones.

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It has varied (we've bought 5 houses) ... the first few were local moves, and so we'd look at 3-5 a weekend for 4-5 weekends.

 

The others have been out of town, and we've always seen at least 10. For this last one, we had 3 days, and saw 26 houses. The 26th is the one that dh had his heart set on from the beginning (the owners were taking it off the market so a showing was difficult to get), and that's the one we ended up buying.

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By the end of our search, including open houses, we looked at over 100 houses. We never made a bid on any. We made a bid on our current house the same day we saw it. Ironically we'd been trying to get in for a viewing for years (house was on the market 3 years) all that time, but they wouldn't let us in as it would have been a contingency sale. Finally we saved up enough money to buy without selling our house, and voila, they let us in, and we made the offer.

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We are currently looking for a house and I'm getting discouraged. We've narrowed it down to one (after seeing pretty much everything in our price range) and our agent is showing us another one tomorrow that just was listed yesterday.

 

I dunno, maybe we are too picky? We do want to keep our housing costs lower, so we aren't really interested in raising our price range anymore.

 

How many did it take for you to find "The One?"

 

First house: Market was super tight. We found the exact neighborhood, and there were two houses from which to choose. If we didn't grab it right then, it would have been gone.

 

Second house: We saw five or six houses in one day, but we knew it was "the" house when we walked in the door of the second house.

 

Third house: Found online before moving out of state. Flew out to see it, looked at two others just for comparison because our realtor didn't know us and wanted us to be sure.

 

Current house: Found it online, couldn't get it out of our heads. This was two years ago, the market was flooded, but we never looked inside another house. Even when the sellers rejected our first offer, we waited it out and offered again several weeks later. This was it.

 

It seems like you are doing the same thing. You've looked at a bunch of houses and have narrowed it down to one. That sounds good to me. I don't think you are being too picky. You are being discerning, and you aren't settling.

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It seems like you are doing the same thing. You've looked at a bunch of houses and have narrowed it down to one. That sounds good to me. I don't think you are being too picky. You are being discerning, and you aren't settling.

 

Yeah... I'm not "in love" with the house left on our list. Our agent keeps telling us we can make an offer on the 1st house that we walked from, but my husband is frustrated by them. LOL He's willing to make them wait in the meantime.

 

Interestingly, the house that remains on our list is on the street that intersects with that first house.

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When we first started looking, we were thinking of buying a duplex and living in one side and renting out the other. We looked at quite a few - maybe 15 or so. There were 2 that we liked but were outbid on. Then we decided that we would just buy a single family home, and we ended up buying the first one we looked at.

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We scheduled appointments and looked thoroughly at about 20. I spent hours searching online to narrow it down to those so we took "virtual tours" of over 100. Our needs are pretty specific because my fil lives with us and we were trying to find either a garage apartment or two masters or something to easily convert to what we want. We put offers on 3 houses and were either outbid or they had contracts come in before ours. We have a contract on a 4th house which we really like better than the first 3 and will hopefully be closing in 45 days or so.

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The house we just moved into was the third house I looked at THAT day (the day I had to go out and find a house b/c we accepted an offer on ours).

 

I walked in the front door, through the family room and had my phone calling dh by the time I got to the kitchen (probably less than a minute). I told him he had to leave the office and come see this house.

Edited by MariannNOVA
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This time? 40 or so, over the course of two days. Our realtor was exausted, lol. We ended up buying the first one we had looked at, one which Mr. Ellie had found on-line before we left home for the weekend to come out looking...we just wanted to be sure, you know, since we were moving from California to Texas and would probably live here until Jesus comes. :D

 

The house before? Four or five. When I walked into The One, I knew it right away.

 

Before that? One. :-)

 

And the very first house? Three or four.

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We actually looked at no less than 50 homes. I met with our realtor 6-8 times and we looked at no less than 10 homes each time.

 

The problem was that we weren't finding ANYTHING that matched what we wanted, so we were having to look at what might work and that meant looking at a LOT of houses.

 

We finally found our house when the MLA listing was corrected to show the correct number of rooms and sq ft the day that it was taken off the market. We were looking for at least 4 bedrooms (preferably 5) and at least 3000 sq ft with a large-ish yard (bigger lot than the standard 60x120) that was fully shaded. Our house was listed as 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, and 2000 sq ft on a standard lot when it's actually 5 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms, 3400 sq ft, and on a lot that is about 60x180 and is fully shaded. If it had been listed correctly, we would have jumped on it immediately. As it was, she had it listed all summer and didn't get any showings because people thought the price was outrageous for the size of the house it was listed as. It was actually a nice deal.

 

We made an offer right after we had both seen the house. My dh got to see it the night I found it on the MLA listing and I drove down three days later to see it. We put in an offer on the spot.

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We came on a weekend-long house hunting trip 6 weeks before we moved from Houston to New Orleans. We saw 11 houses the first day and 11 houses the 2nd day. We kept a running top 3 and every house we saw either took the place of one in the top 3 or was no longer in the running. We went back the morning of the 3rd day and saw our top 3 one more time, and wrote a contract on our favorite. Turns out our top three were the first, third, and 17th houses we saw. We have been very happy with it. We would have loved one of the others in the top 3, too. It really came down a toss up between the two of them and DH chose based on commute time.

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So glad we kept looking because we found "the" house when I had given up hope. Our list of must haves and likes was very specific and very long! Ended up with more than I ever expected. Sometimes patience pays off.

 

We had made an offer an a house I didn't love. Thankfully they were totally unreasonable and we walked away. I always think if it's the house for us we don't have to push it through or put up with awful sellers.

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about 150-200.

 

That was because we had to work ourselves through a lifestyle change that we weren't going to be able to implement.

 

We had started out wanting to buy a farm and start an organic business. But then all the farms we like sold, and we didn't have time to build, and all of the houses we liked sold until we were backed into the only house that could hold our family--in the middle of town with .6 acres.

 

And we love it. Every day we wake up thankful we live here, and we're so, so happy. I say all the time that they'll wheel me out of here dead.

 

BUt if you had told me in the beginning this is what I would have had? I would have totally laughed at you.

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It's kind of sad, because I LOVE looking at houses, but we never seem to look at very many before we buy one. First house....it was the only one we looked at. We weren't planning to buy yet....we went to an open house just out of curiosity, but the house turned out to be perfect for us, so we bought it.

 

Second house we were moving to another state, so we only had a few days to look...looked at maybe half a dozen houses and bought one.

 

This house....we looked at 10-15 houses altogether, but then wound up coming back to the 5th one we saw, I think. We didn't think we were ready to buy THIS one yet, either (still trying to sell house #2), but it was a foreclosure and we felt like it was too perfect and too good of a deal to pass up. Hope it works out as well in the long run as our first impulse buy!

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I fell in love with the 6th house we went to. And when our agent called with a few questions, we found out they had accepted a bid while we were in our showing.

 

Bleh.

 

This happened to us, except it was probably the 20th house we'd seen. Our realtor called their realtor while we were still at the showing, and they had just accepted a bid from the people who had seen it the night before. 7 years later, I'm still bummed about it! :tongue_smilie:

 

All in all, we looked at more than 30 houses, before we finally bought this one. We didn't love it, but the pool looked inviting and we were desperate at that point! :D

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When you all say "looked at," do you mean you physically toured all those houses? Or are you counting houses that you virtually toured online, or drove past and realized you didn't like them enough to stop?

 

We are house-hunting right now, and between my husband and myself we've physically toured about seven. Our heads are spinning.

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With our first house? DH looked at about ten, but picked the first one that he looked at. That is the only house that we have actually purchased. When we moved to Hawaii (we rented) we looked at tons and tons of houses online and only looked at one in person.

 

M

We bid on the 3rd house and the seller's were beyond unreasonable. We walked after trying to counter a few times.

 

I fell in love with the 6th house we went to. And when our agent called with a few questions, we found out they had accepted a bid while we were in our showing.

 

If you are getting outbid, then they are not unreasonable, you are just out of your price range. When we sold our house, we had two people make below-asking price bids. But, we were in a nice, established neighborhood and it was one of a handful four bedroom houses in the neighborhood (it had been a model home). We received a full price offer from a couple who also offered to pay closing costs. Guess which offer we took? Maybe look at lower-priced homes where you will have more wiggle-room?

 

There were two other offers on it, but we outbid the highest offer by $1000. and we got the housel.

 

Right. It isn't unreasonable for sellers to take the higher offer of the offers that they receive.

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We narrowed it down online that met our basic criteria and ended up purchasing the 6th one we looked at. Ironically, that one had not made our short list because it was out of our price range originally so we'd not even seen it. But the builder was motivated so they dropped and offered us a lot of concessions. We closed in May and here we are.

 

I would definitely say don't get discouraged. Hang in there and don't settle. The right one will come along.

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We've looked at approximately 24 houses. As with anyone, we had a price range; however, we had other criteria which limited the number of houses available. The house needed to be fairly close to my husband's work. He use to drive 45 minutes to work and did not want to do that this time, if possible. It also needed to be big enough for our family. Other things which are for safety (and just preference) were: no corner lots, no houses on busy streets, some trees but not extremely heavily wooded, no galley kitchens, bedrooms big enough for sharing, etc. Also, we wanted a house in one of the suburbs that doesn't have an income tax.

 

We found a lovely home in a nice neighborhood toward the end of our search. We put in an offer which was less than they were asking but still a bit more than the value. They had no previous offers in the last five months that it had been for sale. Our offer was given to them on a Thursday. They had two showings that weekend so thought if they countered high we would counter again and thus letting them drag it out all weekend to see if they get a better offer. In the end, we walked. The house was overpriced to start and they only reduced it by $1k. No. They did not get any offers that weekend.

 

There were several more houses that we viewed, and finally we put an offer (which was accepted so under contract and going through inspections) on my husband's "dream house". It isn't my dream house, and actually it really isn't close to what I was wanting. He is thrilled though (it's on a beautiful lake).

 

Our realtor has been fabulous. She was always available to show us anything we wanted. Having lived here her whole life (she's older) she knows all about the neighborhoods - good and bad - as well as the builders. She found issues and faults, and she didn't hesitate to point them out to us. Because we are relocating (my dh is already living here working) she knew she would get a sell, so she had no reason not to be honest and give truthful pros and cons. Note: I know there are many honest and trustworthy realtors out there. Unfortunately, through the many sales (purchasing and selling) of houses and land that we have had, we have always had horrible realtors. This was a refreshing change.

 

I found all the houses online and made the list. She would only point out any that I missed due to not including certain area names in the search.

 

To save driving around time, I recommend searching addresses and houses online. Google Maps is a good source for determining if the street is busy or what businesses may be near. Remember that a lot of pictures (and room dimensions) can "lie". Reators are pretty good at taking photos so that flaws are hidden just to get you out there.

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When you all say "looked at," do you mean you physically toured all those houses? Or are you counting houses that you virtually toured online, or drove past and realized you didn't like them enough to stop?

 

We are house-hunting right now, and between my husband and myself we've physically toured about seven. Our heads are spinning.

 

 

If I counted the houses I looked at online, also, it would be about 3-400. We even looked out of state.

 

 

We walked through about 1-200 physical houses. :D

 

Eventually it all was a blur, which is why I hate the advice to paint it all neutral colors. I never remembered those houses. I bought the house with the red dining room, sage living room, and tangerine bathroom. :D

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TONS!!! So many that I lost count. But then one day as I was taking my sisters kids to school I passed by this house I passed it every morning and was in love with and it occurred to me that we hadn't looked at it. So hubby set up the appointment and 9 years later I still LOVE my house.

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Yeah... I'm not "in love" with the house left on our list. Our agent keeps telling us we can make an offer on the 1st house that we walked from, but my husband is frustrated by them. LOL He's willing to make them wait in the meantime.

 

Interestingly, the house that remains on our list is on the street that intersects with that first house.

 

I'd wait until you are in love, if possible. You poor thing, you are six months pregnant and trying to find a house and then move!:grouphug:

 

We bought our current house after having our first offer rejected, waiting three weeks, and offering slightly higher. The sellers were disappointed but worried about going through a second summer with no sale. It's been my experience that difficulty with sellers is often (not always) the result of difficult realtors.:glare:

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Justamouse said "Eventually it all was a blur, which is why I hate the advice to paint it all neutral colors. I never remembered those houses. I bought the house with the red dining room, sage living room, and tangerine bathroom. :D ":iagree: I have never bought a house that was done in neutral all over. I hate neutrals and am a real color person- like my favorite job at a giant sewing project in our church was to match threads and bindings to the fabric. It really bothered me to have unmatching colors.

 

Anyway, my first house had a lot of blue, second had neutral carpeting but colorful draperies, and third house (this one) has great colorful window treatments, a wonderful slate green kitchen, and a sea motif in the lower flower that leads out to the pool.

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When you all say "looked at," do you mean you physically toured all those houses? Or are you counting houses that you virtually toured online, or drove past and realized you didn't like them enough to stop?

 

We are house-hunting right now, and between my husband and myself we've physically toured about seven. Our heads are spinning.

 

We have physically been in that many. We have driven by probably twice more than that and elimated them based on things like the neighborhood, a busy street, an extremely steep yard, having a ravine behind it, the neighborhood being poorly maintained, etc. It's sick really. LOL!

 

If you are getting outbid, then they are not unreasonable, you are just out of your price range. When we sold our house, we had two people make below-asking price bids. But, we were in a nice, established neighborhood and it was one of a handful four bedroom houses in the neighborhood (it had been a model home). We received a full price offer from a couple who also offered to pay closing costs. Guess which offer we took? Maybe look at lower-priced homes where you will have more wiggle-room?

 

We've not been outbid ever. We offered a reasonable price based on comps and they continued to demand full list price (in a down market after their house has sat on the market for months with no activity..) Really.. we weren't being unreasonable at all. :glare: We even came up a little and they countered again with full list price! (At that point, we just walked away...) Their agent said that they were just REALLY stuck on the list price even though he told them that our first offer was reasonable and second was more than reasonable based on comps.

 

Tonight we found out that their agent has contacted ours to see if we were still interested in the house and willing to reopen negotiations.

 

I don't think they thought we would walk. But, I mean who really expects to get FULL list these days when it is over the comps?

 

 

Eventually it all was a blur, which is why I hate the advice to paint it all neutral colors. I never remembered those houses. I bought the house with the red dining room, sage living room, and tangerine bathroom. :D

 

Ahhhh yes. They all run together for my husband too. Except the one that we have affectionately called the one with the "Dead Room." Let's just say it was taxidermy to the extreme. LOL!

Edited by GAPeachie
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The first time, we just picked a floor plan in a planned neighborhood.

 

The second, we looked at our current house and bought it. After we saw this house, we looked at a few more just for comparison, and then bought it.

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When we bought the house we are now living in, it was within the first five. We were just looking, but fell in love with this house right away. After 10 1/2 years we just sold (closed this past Thurs. and are renting back until our new house is finished) and went through the whole house hunting thing again. This time we were a lot pickier and our "must haves" were very specific (3rd house). We probably looked at close to 40 houses in person (many hundreds online that fit our criteria but were ruled out because of yard, photos, etc., many we drove by before scheduling a showing to make sure we liked the area, curb appeal, etc.) and just didn't find one that was right. We looked for about 4 months. Ultimately we ended up building the floor plan that we fell in love with a few years back when we first started thinking about moving. As we are nearing moving day and are able to walk through our newly built house on the lot we chose it feels so very right - everything we wanted. Good luck! I think when you find "the one" you will know.

Edited by Blessedchaos
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I look at 100 houses in 3 (neighboring) states.

 

The moment I opened the door to my current house I knew it was the one.

 

:iagree:

 

1st house: looked at 12, bid on one, lay awake all night and was relieved they countered, which we rejected.

 

instead, we changed continents

 

2nd house: looked at 78 during the first three days of a house hunting trip. very discouraged. went to dinner with friends. looked out their front window at the for sale sign across the street. called realtor, saw house before dessert, offered, countered, had coffee, owned house.

 

3rd house: looked at almost two hundred. walked into the one we bid on, and knew it was the right one. problem was they had an offer with conditions. went home, sold our house, submitted an unconditional offer, at asking price, owned dream home.

 

4th house: looked at 6 in a neighborhood we knew really well. narrowed it down to two, same floor plan, different renovations, picked the one with the most light.

 

5th house: dh bought it without even opening the door; the land was that amazing. and now the house is, too.... after many walls removed, a few new walls put up, windows widened.... its been 20 years, but its great now!

 

;)

be not discouraged....

 

ann

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Once we looked at 70. (The realtor insisted on us looking at ones we knew from the neighborhood were totally unsuitable! We ended up driving ourselves around the areas we were interested in and finding one for sale by owner.)

 

This time we probably saw 30 houses.

 

I say take your time and don't feel bad about seeing so many. It's a big purchase.

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We bought our first house last fall. It was the sixth house we looked at (as in, physically toured). I still completely love it.

 

Could there be another house out there that would have been even more perfect for us? Sure. But neither one of us felt the need to hold out for it. There are probably a lot of houses that we could be really happy in, and this one is a particularly fine example of the genre. :001_smile:

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We just bought and moved in our second house. It was the 30th and last house we looked at. It took three days and we were exhausted and discouraged. We knew as soon as we pulled up that this was "the one". Luckily, everything went smoothly because there wasn't even a distant second.

 

For our first house, we probably looked at close to 60 over a 3 month period.

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