When I left you on Friday, I was recounting the findings of our home inspection. While disappointed in the wiring issues, we decided that the home was still worth pursuing, but did ask the current owners to cover half of the estimated repair costs.
While we thought this was fair, as we probably would have offered lower had we known the extent of the knob and tube, the sellers weren't that keen on dropping the price at all. In fact, we were starting to suspect that they wouldn't budge in the slightest.
Luckily, that wasn't the case, though they didn't budge a whole lot. Their offer was less than half of what we'd asked for, which was half of the repair costs. Essentially, that meant they came back at under a quarter of the rewiring estimate.
That meant the ball was in our court. We had to decide if we thought the home was worth it. We were more than a little overwhelmed.
At this time, I was also investigating encroachments, as the sellers wanted us to sign an acknowledgment of an encroachment. The survey didn't reveal which party was encroaching, as it was done long before either structure had been built, but after consulting with a real estate lawyer, and learning that title insurance should help us if our structure turned out to be a problem, we decided that this highly complex issue wasn't a big problem for us.
Which left us only with the knob and tube. The insurance concerns were foremost in my mind, along with a fear that squirrels might get at it and burn the whole place down (as I've already explained, house hunting can make you freak out a little).
I was also worried about covering the repair costs so soon after moving, and had to do a lot of number crunching to see if we'd be able to swing it at the same time as all the other costs, including the lawyers' fees, the balance of the downpayment (you pay a deposit with your offer), some necessary furniture, moving van, etc., etc. It adds up, and we were certainly not going to take on a potentially uninsurable property (or, more realistically, a property with a terrible insurance rate and the potential of being ordered to fix it to maintain our coverage) without being certain we could afford the repairs immediately.
We were also a little peeved that this was such a surprise. We'd deliberately asked about the wiring to avoid such issues. However, we had to put aside our annoyance in order to (or at least try) to make a rational decision. It's always hard to take emotion out of the equation, but we didn't want to give up on an otherwise great property for us — which met our location and proximity to transit and friends requirements, while being structurally sound and surpassing our hopes for space and yard in our price range — just because we were annoyed by a surprise.
So out came the pro-con lists, comparable recent transactions in the hood and others nearby, and a look at what else was currently on the market in our price range.
And, of course, a lot of discussion. Mr. Speedy and I sent frantic emails and text messages back and forth on the way home from work and sat down to chat when we both were home. We had to make a decision, and we were approaching the end of our offer deadline.
Finally, we decided that even though we weren't keen on the rewiring surprise, the house was truly our perfect starter home.
So, now that we've dotted our "i"s and crossed our "t"s, I can tell you that we accepted, and we'll be in our new place come June!
Things were pretty tough getting to the decision, but, after talking it out we were both 100 per cent confident in our decision.
And, while in many ways the work is just beginning — we have mortgage options to firm up, a lawyer to provide information to and an insurance policy to obtain in the immediate future, not to mention giving notice on our lease, packing, moving, furnishing and redecorating, we're still trying to take some time to celebrate.
We're now homeowners!
Catch up on the home hunt: