As everyone knows our economy is in the tank. Josh and I bought our house in 2006 - right before the housing market crashed. Yay for us! I vividly remember saying, "We need to buy a house! Owning a house equals financial stability." Well, for us it is our financial undoing. We bought our house for 210k - it is now worth 95k.
I received a scam letter in the mail about how we need to short sale our house and this supposed "short sale specialist" had a buyer all lined up. Yeah right, I know better than that, BUT the letter mentioned The Mortgage Debt Relief Act of 2007 would expire at the end of the year. What? So I looked into it and yes, the tax act will be expiring on January first of 2013. Which means that the amount the bank "forgives" on a short sale, after 12/31/12 will be considered "income" and we would be taxed on this "income". After talking to my father-in-law/CPA/personal financial advisor, we found out this amount we would owe the IRS would be around 30k. Well, we don't have 30k lying around! We realize that whenever we DO sell our house it will have to be a short sale since our house will never recoop the amount it has lost - at least not our lifetime and therefore decided to try to sell it sooner (before 2013) rather than later. In one week's time, we made the decision to short sale, called our realtor and got all the paperwork filled out, listed the house and after one day of showing it received 11 offers. We accepted the one that we hope the bank will approve and the people won't back out of 3 months down the road and now the waiting game begins. Do I think we will really get this short sale done by the end of the year? No, not really, there is always hope but it will be an act of God if it happens. Especially since we are still making our monthly payments. The bank is going to say "Why should we let you short sale? You don't have any "hardships" and you can afford the house" But it is worth a try. We are also keeping our fingers crossed and hoping that The Mortgage Debt Relief Act of 2007 is extended.
A driving force behind our decision to sell now is that my parents recently bought their second flip house. (also a short sale - which took nearly 6 months) I was lucky enough to be with them when they first went to look at the house and make the offer. I told my mom "I like this house, you should get it". (Little did I know that I would be moving in less than a year later!) At the time it was occupied by the owners who were borderline hoarders. It was a disaster. By some miracle they took all their junk with them when they moved out. (We were afraid some jalopies would be left behind!) Now my family is starting the renovation on it and the timeline is perfect for it to be done by the time we should need to move out of our house. We will rent-to-own it from my parents at a reasonable price and my parents bought it cash so all our rent is pure profit for them. It's a win-win situation.
The only negative about it is that it is in Chandler which means a long drive to church. (yet close to everything else!) It is the first glimmer of hope we have had of getting out from underneath the debt of our current house and ever being able to afford to buy another one.
The house needs A LOT of work but my family has never been afraid of hardwork. My dad can fix/build/repair anything and it is actually going to be much less involved than their first flip.
Ready for the grand tour? Here it is, we call it "the Boston house" as it is on Boston street
The front of the house. I love the porch. The posts will be replaced with non-dorky ones. Obviously paint is needed along with new windows throughout the house.
The master has 2 closets (only one shown)
and a lovely bathroom
Nice. These people lived in filth.
Across the hall from the master is Joy's room...
and then down a little further is Claire's...
She says she wants to keep the same color - not happening.
Back down the hall to the main family room.
I'm in love with the fireplace. (Notice yet another wall with spindles - that is gone now too)
Bay window! Some window casing will dress this baby up!
View from the kitchen area.
The kitchen - everything is going, we will open it up and put in an island,
white cabinets and granite counter tops.
The most ridiculous fan ever. The ceiling is really low in the kitchen for some reason. We are going to raise them so the top of the fan hole will be the new height.
View from behind the kitchen counter.
See the room that is blue? That is an addition to the house and for us it will be a play room for the girls. Close to the kitchen so I can see them, but the toys will be out of sight when you first walk in the house.
Across from the play room is the laundry room. It is HUGE!
Some general filth. There are mouse droppings everywhere in the kitchen and laundry room.
When we first came to look at the house when my parents officially owned it and the people had moved out, we found this coffin and electric chair in the shed in the backyard.
I was a little scared when I opened the coffin to see what was inside but thankfully it was just some lighting equipment and a fog machine. These people were really into halloween.
The backyard at this house it to die for! It is on a quarter acre lot. Lots of cement for roller skating, bike riding, baskteball etc. New gate coming soon.
There are no two-story houses in the neighborhood. That is a GOOD thing. In our current house we are surrounded by two-stories and our neighbors like to watch us in our tiny backyard. I hate that.
Those palm trees are going and eventually it will be mostly a grass lawn.
It has 4 different shade trees that are all staying.
IT HAS A MULBERRY TREE! I'm in love. It shades the master bedroom window.
We are going to put Claire's playhouse under it.
It also has a lemon and orange tree along with another tree that we think is a plum.
The front yard also has a big driveway great for the girls to play on.
Pretty much everything in the house is going to be ripped out and replaced. In one demo day my mom and I removed all the baseboards, door frames, doors, carpet, carpet pad, and all the half walls with spindles.
We have a lot of work ahead of us! Let the fun begin! (No, I'm not being sarcastic)
I will update with our progress as we go. I am so excited!