It's hard knowing where to start this. The dumpy home, which we purchased at the beginning of this month, has been a long work in progress. I've been looking for our next project since the day we bought our last one, in 2007. I'm always working towards the next goal on our never-ending to do list called "Life Goals". Even so, this house caught us a little off-guard.
Our last home, and yet-to-be-completed project, was a triplex in University City. Yeah. It's not done yet. So even though I'm always looking for the next perfect place, we weren't quite ready to make the jump. We hadn't started saving and we didn't have a tenant lined up for the apartment we were moving out of. None of this slowed me down when I saw the dumpy house listed for sale, on our dream block, just 4 doors down from my parent's Philly home. It had only been listed for 1 day, but the price was so good, I was afraid it had already been taken off the market. Five frantic calls to various realtors later, I turned desperate and knocked on the door of a neighboring realtor. I was right. They had stopped accepting offers and planned to make their final decision in the next 24 hours. My neighbor spoke to the owner, worked a little magic and convinced them to look at our offer as well!
They begrudgingly let us see it too. Yikes.
We weren't sure where the money was going to come from or why we were further complicating our lives, but we knew it was too good of a deal to pass up. The dumpy house was being offered at less than half the value of other homes on that block. In center city. 4 doors from my parent's home. The same home we planned to move into in the next month. We were unbelievably excited and scared at the same time. They were only considering cash offers and all of the other bidders were contractors. Seven of them. All with experience in this type of bidding. We decided our only hope was to overbid...by a lot. Just 3 days after the dumpy house was listed, our offer was accepted. Commence happy dance. And then panic as we attempted to figure out how in the world we were going to pay for a home that we'd been told was not capable of financing, given it's "condition".
The next day I started the work of finding a loan. I expressed our concern about the state of the house and was told not to worry. Good one. A couple weeks later and our appraisal comes back clean. We got the house AND we can pay for it! Happy dances all around. Below you'll find the photos taken by the appraiser. I should probably send him a gift basket considering I was unwilling to take pictures on our visit because I was too afraid.
This is it. The one in the middle, without the sale sign. It wasn't on the market long enough to warrant a sign. Doesn't look so bad, right? Tricky, tricky.
Back of the house.
Back of the house.
Oh that's one last thing. This dumpy house smells about 4 times worse than it looks. Home sweet, dumpy home.