Sunday, August 14, 2011

Second-date Update

Riddle me this Batman: How are house-hunting and dating alike?
Apparently, a lot.
I've made the grown up decision to purchase a house.
Also... I.... went on a date. Two, in fact. I know right? Crazy things are happening. Soon pigs will grow wings and fly! But I wouldn't count on hell freezing over just yet. As I write this I must inform you all that a) I have not purchased a house, and b) I'm back at square one on the dating "thing."
I know that my singlehood is legend and that there is even talk about a "family curse," but the reality is that a) there is no curse, and b) the legend is, as always, not as true as we'd like to believe (or not believe?). I am normal. I am part of a large group of people who are single. Actually, a very large group of millions and millions of people according to the U.S Census Bureau.
Although our single status doesn't stop us from waking up, going to work, and enjoying life, most of us would like for it to GO AWAY. Hell, some people will pay good money to have it go away.

Sidenote: I don't have cable but as I write this I'm at my brother's house watching "Millionaire Matchmaker" and it's awesome. I love this lady. She just burned a woman's "wish list"heh

The other legend about me that everybody knows is that, well, I'm part gypsy. I went to a dozen schools as a kid, I've lived in several states and two countries, and my attempts to escape from Arizona are as bad as Jim Carrey trying to escape his town in "The Truman Show." I just can't seem to stay in one place. Except now. I just passed the 6-year mark (on and off) of living in the same state. Hell, I've been living in the same neighborhood all this time. That's unprecedented. So since things are going well and my job is stable. I've decided to plant some roots.

And here's what I learned about my two mini-journeys.

First - you must gather information. "Buying a house is a big responsibility and should not be taken lightly." Yeah yeah, tell that to the people who screwed it up for the rest of us. Look, I have a job, a social security number that is actually mine, and money. I'm ready to buy.
Don't blame me for the past. Yes, learn from it and be cautious but don't make the assumption that I'm out to screw you over. I have my shit together. That goes for both lenders and men.

Second - get a wingman (or a real estate agent). You need someone who will help you make wise decisions. Who will listen and understand what it is that you want and help you achieve that goal. Second opinions are always good to have but don't let them make the decision for you. Consider wingmen (or wingwomen, or compadres, or comadres, etc.) as a second pair of eyes, not a second brain.
My real estate agent has a list of essential things that I want in my house. If one of the homes clearly lacks what I'm looking for then we cross it off the list. If she sees potential in something she has me take a look and form an opinion. On the other topic: my bff patiently listens to me bitch hehehehe

Third - narrow down your choices. According to Zillow, there are 24,000 homes for sale in Phoenix. I'm not sure how many straight, single, men there are but for this blog's sake let's say 24,000.
Let me make one thing clear, there's no line of guys waiting outside my door wanting to ask me out. But, I'm not completely without choices. As I said above there have to be a few essentials that you're looking for. And the number one, non-negotiable essential for a guy to have is that HE MUST BE SINGLE. Don't give me any of that Ross Gellar "we're on a break" crap. Don't tell me that things "aren't working out" between you and someone else. Don't be give me the "well, we have an agreement" bullshit. In fact, I am declaring a three-foot radius around me as a "No Bullshit Zone." Done, basta, finito.

Four - once the search is narrowed down, you must explore further. So we went to see a total of four houses a couple of weekends ago. I only wanted one. The same occurred with the above-mentioned two dates. I know what I want, but not only that, it's a feeling too. A connection, if you will.
Now it's not that you automatically start putting in your furniture, knocking down walls, looking at color schemes. And you definitely don't start planning a wedding and thinking what your children will look like. Do we learn nothing from Cosmo, television, and movies? What I mean is that...I was interested.

Which leads us to step five, make an offer.


Okay, okay, that's not exactly how it happened. Don't get me wrong, that's what the end result was, but it wasn't that cruel. See the thing is it would be great if everything and/or everyone just bent to our will but unfortunately that's not how the world works. At least not for me. Remember that documentary about Michael Jackson? He went into that Las Vegas furniture store and pointed at what he wanted. Done and done. Yet, was Michael Jackson ever really happy? Look again and you see that the owner is just indulging him and the cameras. Who knows if that furniture ever made it to Neverland Ranch :(

Totally lost my train of thought.

Ah yes, the offer. A stressful situation if I may say so. Put an offer on a house, it gets accepted, and as my real estate agent pointed out: "This is the door you're gonna walk through every day for several years." Not the same thing as with the guys. With the guys it's more like "Do you want to continue learning about this person and seeing what can happen?"
Then comes that sting. Ouch. You get so excited about the possibilities, you've thought about things, you've made sure your Ts are crossed and your Is are dotted. So why the "no"?
Who knows. Actually, I do know because I had to give my own "no". What were my reasons? Sure it's a buyer's market, but that doesn't mean you just go in and get what you want.
You can try to to argue the situation, "But I'm a solid person, blah blah." You can try to re-negotiate, "Tell me what you want and we can work things out." Or you can just accept that it's not meant to be. Actually, you should just accept it because it's unlikely that you'll change a seller or a guy's mind. Let's be honest, you put up the best offer you had. If it's not enough, it's not enough.

There are still 23,999 other houses for sale :-)

The search continues.