Thursday, April 12, 2012

House Hunters: Arizona Edition (Day 3)

This is it! Hopefully this was our last day of house hunting, and one of these homes we've shown will be where we're living soon :). 

Wednesday: House #1

 This was a home that we'd been excited to see from the beginning, but it took a while for us to get to see; the seller kept putting off visitors (it seems like she wasn't feeling well and needed to straighten the house before people came over. We were worried she was having second thoughts about selling, but it ends up she's moving to Idaho, so the sale seems good).

 There are beautiful trees outside of the home provide great shade for the house and keep it cooler.

It has a great living room design, with beautiful big windows.

The dining room is on the other side and has great windows as well.

The kitchen is a bit older, in terms of appliances and cabinets, but is a great size and is still nice. The silver lining is we could always remodel the kitchen, and not feel badly about redoing the kitchen with upgrades(versus moving into a place that already has upgrades that we don't like). The appliances are also all pretty old and would need to be redone. 

Blurry picture, but you can see the nice fireplace and very nicely sized room. It seems like the perfect place to be cozy with the family.

A great added feature of the home is the downstairs bed/bath (perfect for guests) in addition to the other downstairs back. This house has 4 baths in all!

The master bath is a bit outdated, but with newly remodeled floor!

The master is a great size, but in the front of the house, which I don't like as well (not as great of views out the windows). 

Beautiful room with vaulted ceiling just down the hall, plus two more besides.

On the side of the house, they have a lemon, grapefruit, and orange trees.

Also, there's a nice deck outside for meals al fresco.

More big trees out here means a cooler home.

Great size, with 5 bedrooms, 4 baths 
Very homey feeling
Not updated, so we could put our own spin on everything and add value to the home
Great neighborhood (seems friendly)
Near a nice greenbelt and bike trail that can take you to an awesome city pool (the city pools here have lazy rivers, water slides, the works)
Lots of shade trees
Mature fruit trees 
Nice layout, overall

Small backyard
Lots of updates we would want to do
Master bedroom is in the front of the house
Some of the trees are a little too close to the property
Kitchen appliances are old and would need to be replaced
Older home (1989) so it might have some issues due to its age (roof, etc.)
Priced higher than it seems valued

Wednesday: House #2
Decent outside, but has the unliked by me  palm trees (a bit of a problem here in the desert).

This one has a pond, too! In the front instead of the back. 

Nice plantation shutters, but does unfortunately have blue carpet. This house felt like it was stuck in the 80s a bit. 

Master bedroom is an okay size, with a deck overlooking the pool. 

Decent sized master bath, with a huge shower!

View from the deck gives you a peak of the nice South Mountains, plus lots of nice trees.

It has a nice sized pool, but the rest is just paved and the gate around the pool, while good for kids, is a bit of an eyesore and probably could have been done in a better way. 

The fireplace is...interesting...but the plus is, it has one! This could be remodeled into something beautiful.

decent location for Ed (one of the closest to campus we've seen)
Nice size with plenty of bedrooms
Jack and Jill bathroom upstairs
Nice deck with view
Fairly large sized backyard
Kitchen is very large
Plantation shutters in the front

Lots to redo, and the home has a high price (the highest we've seen) with no room for negotiation
A bit of street noise
Backyard not very pleasant
Blue carpet
Not a good general feel to the place
Lots of palm trees

Wednesday: House #3

This house was one of the few one story homes we looked at (I have a huge preference for 2 stories, despite their lack of practicality in the desert). We really liked the outside and the landscaping. 

Right when you walk in, the living room/dining room is off to the right. It's separated from the rest of the house by a short hallways and is a little off in terms of layout, but is painted a very nice color. 

The kitchen isn't anything fancy, but is all relatively new, clean, and a nice size with a ton of storage. 

Out back is a little fire pit, which would be perfect for those evenings outside. 

The backyard itself was small, but nicely landscaped and fairly easy to maintain. 

There was a nice side to the house as well, with beautiful trees!

Going back in from the outside, you are in the family room, with the kitchen beyond. It's a good amount of room. 

Going through a short hallway, you reach the master, which has nice windows and looks out onto the backyard. 

There are three more small bedrooms along the side of the house, with another bathroom and a laundry room on the other side. 

The view out the master is very nice, though you do get the feeling those two story homes are looking in at you. 

The street itself is gorgeous. Lined with beautiful trees and a block from a park. It seems like a great place for a family. 

Very cute curb appeal
Good sized kitchen and island
Easy maintenance backyard
Newer home so fewer needed updates
Great neighborhood
Pretty windows in master and nice master bath

smaller one story with somewhat odd layout
no fireplace
small backyard
high HOA fee
not a lot of personality inside

Wednesday: House #4 (The last house! Hopefully...)

This home was on a beautiful cul-de-sac and had a great olive tree in the front.

The living room was a great size (though with patterned carpet that would be replaced).

There is a dining room space (currently housing a foose ball table) that has pretty windows.

The kitchen, while not our style, is undeniably nice, with a huge island and cabinets galore. Plus, there's a great space to eat in the kitchen. 

The backyard was spectacular! Just massive, with lots of space and plants. It would be a wonderful place to be outside. 

There was a great outdoor patio for eating and lots of nice trees everywhere.

The yard extended to the whole side of the house as well - it felt like yards for 3 homes instead of one! You could do so much with it. 

Inside the family room was a nice fireplace with lots of space..  

Ed loved the hardwood in the office and could definitely picture working down here. 

The master was lovely, with that beautiful garden view. 

And a great master bath!

The other bathroom? Not so nice. There was a ton of water damage and rust, which made us really worried about the upkeep of the house in general. Also, the daughter had just showered, and the whole upstairs felt really moist and humid. 

The rest of the bedrooms were really small, with one divided in two, but no exit out the back room. Definitely an unusual layout. 

Beautiful staircase, though - we loved the hardwood.

Great location on a cul-de-sac
Great size and downstairs layout
Huge beautiful backyard
Large fireplace
Hardwood floors in some of the house
Beautiful view from the master
Huge kitchen

Water damage upstairs
Very small bedrooms with odd layout
Upkeep concerns within house and in backyard
Updated, but not with our style, so we'd be paying to redo already nice work

So, that's it! From all the homes we've shown, we really liked 3 of them. Can you guess which ones? Of those, We put a back up offer on one (that probably won't go through), a regular offer on another (which we should hear about any minute), and have been torn between that one and a third house that will will definitely offer on if the 2nd one falls through. 

Ed and I both feel like kids on Christmas morning - so, so antsy (I had trouble sleeping from 5 onward), and we're so nervous to hear what happens. If our offer is accepted, I think we'll go with that house, but we're still not 100% sure. As Ed (and many, many others) said, this is the biggest purchase we'll ever make. I sure hope we make the right one. 

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