WE BOUGHT A HOUSE! An Empty House Walkthrough + Homebuying Experience
Happy TUESDAY! Most of you probably already know this if you follow me on instagram – but if you don’t – my hubby and I BOUGHT OUR FIRST HOME! We closed this past Friday and got the keys to our new home sweet home. The entire process took us about six weeks start to finish from our first day looking at houses to closing and it was by all accounts a super easy transition. We are so grateful we had a good home buying experience. We got lots of requests to show you our home PRE-decorating so today we are doing a new home walkthrough and sharing our home buying story!
WE BOUGHT A HOUSE!
An Empty House Walkthrough + Homebuying Experience
OUR FRONT DOOR!
We worked with Nikki Thompson as our realtor (and fun fact: she actually sold my parents their house just a few minutes away from us a couple years ago!) and she was honestly fantastic. We first reached out to her at the beginning of July because we knew our lease on our apartment was up at the end of the year, and we wanted to get a feel for homes and prices in the area.
Nikki was great. She set us up with an online portal, found homes that fit our price range + other must haves and set up our tours on the weekends. We only went out three times before we saw our home.
Some of our must-haves were:
- Finished basement (at least part of it needed to be finished because we knew we wanted to make it a living space).
- Backyard (fenced, preferably).
- Newer kitchen + appliances.
- Three bedrooms (with enough space for my office).
They weren’t crazy out of the this world requirements, but like anything, we had to look a little bit to find one that fit our list AND our budget. Adam and I both agreed early into this process on our budget because we don’t want to live outside of our means. We wanted to make sure we absolutely could afford this home, no questions asked. Nikki was also really good at not sending up home listings that fell above our highest price. I didn’t even want to look at anything I potentially couldn’t afford.
We saw probably 10 or 11 homes before we went into this one. We both knew right away after walking into it that it was our house. We both just had a good feeling about it. There was minimal work to be done on it, the kitchen was brand new, three bedrooms, a fantastic basement and SO. MUCH. STORAGE. Honestly…there isn’t anything I don’t love about our house. It’s the perfect size for the two of us with room to grow. The backyard is fenced for the puppy we are adopting later this year.
We feel really lucky that we didn’t have to compromise on much for this home. It was right in our budget and the location couldn’t be better. It doesn’t add any time on Adam’s commute and it’s the same distance to the city for me. PLUS it’s still only like 10 minutes away from my parents. That’s like a triple win.
MASTER BEDROOM + BATHROOM
When it came to applying for our home loan – I honestly expected it to be a lot worse. The biggest headache was writing down our job and address history from the last two years because we’ve had several job changes and address changes in that time period. Getting all our paperwork done was a HEADACHE for sure, but once that part was over, it was pretty smooth sailing. We worked with Navy Federal for our home loan, and they were AMAZING. Our loan officer was there every step of the way answering questions, and the small hiccups we did have were taken care of really quickly.
Basically – we can’t thank Nikki and our loan officers enough for helping us find the best house we could for us.
THE FINISHED PART OF THE BASEMENT! THERE IS SO MUCH SPACE IN HERE – WE CAN’T WAIT TO SHOW YOU WHEN IT’S ALL DONE!
PIN THIS FOR LATER:
I was hoping that this experience would be a positive one and I’m happy to say overall, it really was. There were, of course, a couple bumps on the road to homeownership, but they were resolved relatively quickly. It was definitely stressful before we found our house – I didn’t really love the process of searching for the right house for us because I just wanted to FIND one already (fun fact: I am NOT the most patient human in the world).
I think the best advice I can give you is to find a good realtor who will advocate for you to the seller and get you the best deal possible and to have a great bank and loan officer who is patient with first time homebuyers. They answered all our questions and walked us through the process without making us feel like we didn’t know what we were doing.
If you are in the St. Louis area and need a great realtor, I highly recommend Nikki. You can shoot her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I know she would be more than happy to help you find your perfect home.
What was your first home buying experience like?! Let me know in the comments below!