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Old 12-09-2009, 10:21 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
756 posts, read 1,563,962 times
Reputation: 283

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Our AZ house is under contract. Close of escrow is in January if we get a good appraisal. We have until then to decide how we are going to manage our move to NC. Feedback is encouraged!

1) We plan to get rid of as much furniture here as we can.

2) We don't know if we will store what is left here and move it later or move it now and store it there.

3) My wife wants to rent first, buy later. I prefer to buy and not rent.
Related to this issue: if we buy, the government gives us $6,500 but only if we buy and close before April 30, 2010.

If we buy, we have one address change; if we rent, we have two. Ugh.

If we rent, we have two moves.

If we rent, we have additional costs over buying quickly.

If we rent, we can visit areas to be sure where we really want to buy. We have visited once and favored the Hendersonville-Brevard area.

My wife wants to live very near to Hendersonville for the arts, crafts, and things to do. I want to live outside of Brevard in the woods and away from traffic - had enough of that for the past 30+ years.

If we buy too quickly, there is a chance of buyer's remorse about many things: house, location, etc.
4) If the appraisal comes in to allow the sale (this is the last hurdle we still face), then I want us to fly back to NC and look for a house. Is this such a good idea in January? We have friends in Asheville who will put up with us for a few days and friends who own a "summer home" in Lenoir (a long drive from Hendersonville) in which we could stay a lengthy time.

What to do? But first we need that appraisal to be right...
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Old 12-09-2009, 12:56 PM
 
Location: FLORIDA
8,963 posts, read 7,775,109 times
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Not sure if housing prices are still declining (maybe someone can answer that), but you may want to wait until it hits bottom. When home sales pick back up, then so will prices. So are home prices still declining there? Are people buying?
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Old 12-09-2009, 01:06 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
756 posts, read 1,563,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ComSense View Post
Not sure if housing prices are still declining (maybe someone can answer that), but you may want to wait until it hits bottom. When home sales pick back up, then so will prices. So are home prices still declining there? Are people buying?
Homes prices here have leveled off - neither climbing or falling. Total sales are up. We sold after just 31 days on the market.

IF prices continue to fall, they could fall more than the $6500 from Uncle Sam, making a wait worth it. Trying to time a market - either direction - is a recipe for failure.

I know winter there is a better time to buy - fewer customers. So, from a financial point of view, I think buying sooner rather than later is better. But what do I know?
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Old 12-09-2009, 01:19 PM
 
1,531 posts, read 3,675,553 times
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I have a couple of houses (over 20) in my 'cart', which might be interesting. I started looking around in august to get a feeling.
I noticed a good amount of sales in november/december. not a lot the months before.
we will look at some of them in 3 weeks and we can just hope, some are still on the market.

When we are finally going to move, I want to move in OUR house - but only because of three kids, school issues and LOTS of furniture (I brought from germany and will never sell them ).

If I were you (no kids moving with you, not too much stuff) I think I would go for a short rental period first, look around and if I would not be 100% sure, I would even go for a long therm rental.
especially for getting a feeling for the different towns and neighborhoods it will take a good amount of time.

worst case - in my opinion - would be buying to quickly and half-hearted - and then regretting it.

hendersonville and brevard sound (and look) quite different to me, maybe you should do a pro/con list.

I am sure, if I would find the right house, I would not mind driving to other places to do the things I like to do.

good luck !

and PS: never forget: happy wife - happy life
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Old 12-09-2009, 01:22 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
756 posts, read 1,563,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by queenofbavaria View Post
never forget: happy wife - happy life
Thanks for the thoughtful comments - and yes, after 35+ years of marriage, your comment is exactly right.
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Old 12-09-2009, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Blue Ridge Mountains
1,907 posts, read 2,969,949 times
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I say look for a house to buy, but ONLY buy if you truly love it. If you don't find a house you truly love, you really have no choice but to rent for a while. I fell IN LOVE w/ my farmhouse deeply truly in love! Btw, I wouldn't stay in Lenoir, that is WAY to far from Hendersonville, remember....you want to ENJOY the process!!! Good luck! Annie
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Old 12-09-2009, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Weaverville
765 posts, read 2,430,848 times
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We started looking 5 years ago with annual trips to the area to get a feel for the various neighborhoods/towns. In spite of that we only decided to look a the Weaverville area at the last minute and would have bought a completely different house and neighborhood. We did exhaustive research on the internet in advance of the buying trip. I knew the prices of homes in each section of the area, which way they were going, and even how much the closing prices varied from initial and final asking price (important knowledge when negotiating).

Use internet resources like Google Earth for virtual drive bys and several real estate sites to do your searches. Let us know what you are looking for here with respect to the type of neighborhood, type of houses, costs, resources, utilities, access to stores, remoteness, public transport (Weaverville just lost its one bus route into Asheville), distance to hospitals, shopping, etc.

In our case I would have loved to get out to a more remote area but my wife is more practical so we are near I26, stores, town, but are away from the more rapidly developing and congested area of Arden. Keep in mind that Asheville is realy a small town. I can get from near Weaverville to the Biltmore entrance in 15 min. and to the airport in 20 min. It used to take me that just to get from one side of Manassas to the other. Good luck with your appraisal--Larry
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Old 12-10-2009, 03:45 AM
 
Location: East Asheville
758 posts, read 2,187,023 times
Reputation: 403
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyFriendly View Post
Our AZ house is under contract. Close of escrow is in January if we get a good appraisal. We have until then to decide how we are going to manage our move to NC. Feedback is encouraged!

1) We plan to get rid of as much furniture here as we can.

2) We don't know if we will store what is left here and move it later or move it now and store it there.

3) My wife wants to rent first, buy later. I prefer to buy and not rent.
Related to this issue: if we buy, the government gives us $6,500 but only if we buy and close before April 30, 2010.

If we buy, we have one address change; if we rent, we have two. Ugh.

If we rent, we have two moves.

If we rent, we have additional costs over buying quickly.

If we rent, we can visit areas to be sure where we really want to buy. We have visited once and favored the Hendersonville-Brevard area.

My wife wants to live very near to Hendersonville for the arts, crafts, and things to do. I want to live outside of Brevard in the woods and away from traffic - had enough of that for the past 30+ years.

If we buy too quickly, there is a chance of buyer's remorse about many things: house, location, etc.
4) If the appraisal comes in to allow the sale (this is the last hurdle we still face), then I want us to fly back to NC and look for a house. Is this such a good idea in January? We have friends in Asheville who will put up with us for a few days and friends who own a "summer home" in Lenoir (a long drive from Hendersonville) in which we could stay a lengthy time.

What to do? But first we need that appraisal to be right...
GuyFriendly, Lenoir is out of the question for this purpose. We suggest you allow your Asheville friends to put up with you indefinitely.

1) Dump all the possessions you can. Move only what is so sentimental or irreplaceable that you can't bear ever to part with it. Remember that even your favorite chair may not fit into your new setting (size, style, colors) and consider what you'll pay by the pound to move it (AZ to NC) and then possibly re-finish or re-upholster it vs. what you'll pay to replace it brand new after you get here.

2) Move and store here what you want to keep. It's practical--if you need to access it, it's here. It's important--it moves your psyche into your new home.

3) Considering all that I know about you and your wife (even without considering financial incentives), I think you should probably purchase. Note that this contradicts everything I have ever said about renting before buying. We rented before buying only because we had to (until our house sold), and we were mighty glad we did, but we didn't have the guidance of friends who had lived in this area for two years or more, who knew both us and the area. You do! We didn't have that going for us even 19 months ago, when we bought the house we now live in. You do!

Still, you have visited here only once. Wow. If we had purchased the house we fell in love with on our first visit here (in 1991), it would definitely have been the wrong choice for us. It was 20 minutes south of Brevard, way too isolated for us.

So there's always the risk of emotional buying. Let's grant that. Let's even consider the "worst case scenario"--that we will have bought the wrong house and will have to sell it and move again. Hmmm... not fun.... but you're already selling in the worst of times and places, GuyFriendly, and whatever you do now will mean moving... so how is the "worst case scenario" any worse than what you're already about to do? If you do this now, you can do this again!--and remember!--I'm presenting the WORST case scenario.

The BETTER/BEST case scenario is that you'll investigate well, find the house you love that makes sense for you, buy it, and live happily ever after. Hey... why not BELIEVE!!

_______________

So where IS that happily ever after house--for YOU?

Again, knowing what I know about you and this area...I think you might be extremely happy in the Hendersonville/Brevard area--much happier than I think you would be in downtown Asheville or communities north, south, east, or west of it (considering traffic, prices, amenities like sewer and water, and natural environment).

NOTE: Your wife will not find arts and crafts in Hendersonville (and certainly not in Brevard) at the level she would in Asheville. Asheville is a town of almost 80,000 people, 100,000 people if you count surrounding communities. Asheville is loaded with arts and crafts of all kinds. So it depends on how many arts and crafts opportunities your wife wants to have within 15 minutes or so of her home.

You also both need to realize that Asheville will be far enough away that you won't want to drive there often even in the best of weather conditions.

And you, GuyFriendly, will not find the natural environment I know you're hungry for anywhere within Asheville or Hendersonville city limits. You need to be in forests like those surrounding Brevard. BUT: You will then live out your old age in a relatively remote area. You will be distant from the best medical services. One of the best hospitals in this region is in Hendersonville, not close to Brevard when you need urgent care.

SUGGESTION: You might love Black Mountain, and I think you should definitely consider it if it's affordable. In fact, I think it would be perfect for both of you! Please check it out! It has the natural environment that you're looking for, GuyFriendly, yet is close to your wife's need for arts and crafts (both in Black Mountain and in Asheville). Major hospitals are pretty close by, not more than 30 minutes away in Asheville. Community spirit and community character are wonderful! It's almost like "Little House on the Prairie" re-visited.

Again, I'm drawing on all that I know about the two of you, and all that I know about this region. A good compromise for you might be to purchase a house between Hendersonville and Brevard. Or in Black Mountain. Personally? I'd much rather have you in Black Mountain, just 15 minutes' drive from my home in East Asheville!

Of course, neither one of you will find nirvana because neither one of you will get exactly what you want. For a couple, choosing a house for life in WNC usually requires compromise!

You ask about the timing of exploring your options here in January. There may be a day or two when you may/should not feel comfortable about driving (icy) roads, but generally January is a great time to look for houses here. The landscape will be as unattractive as it will ever get! We found our dream house in the winter. We loved it even in the winter!

Hope that helps.
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Old 12-10-2009, 08:04 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
756 posts, read 1,563,962 times
Reputation: 283
That helps a LOT, my dear friends! In fact, of the houses I found on the internet that I liked, Black Mountain had two of the BEST. Oooooh.... I have to go look again and then share this with MrsFriendly (). Pardon my typing, I am still wiping away tears from an email I got today.... happy tears; tears of joy and relief; tears of love.
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Old 12-10-2009, 10:22 AM
 
Location: FLORIDA
8,963 posts, read 7,775,109 times
Reputation: 3444
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyFriendly View Post
That helps a LOT, my dear friends! In fact, of the houses I found on the internet that I liked, Black Mountain had two of the BEST. Oooooh.... I have to go look again and then share this with MrsFriendly (). Pardon my typing, I am still wiping away tears from an email I got today.... happy tears; tears of joy and relief; tears of love.
Cool, glad to hear that you're so excited.
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