Wedding Woes
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house judging (LONG)

i met the realtor on saturday morning, and we went out to look at a select few houses.  dh had gone the previous weekend, and had narrowed down our master list.  (our realtor has been emailing us houses, we comment on the ones we like and then she drove dh around.)

there is one house that looks really, really good and the realtor saves it for last.  most of these houses are not new construction, so most of the kitchens have a trash compactor.  in a lot of cases, all the other applicances are new -- stainless steel range, oven and fridge -- and then there is this black plastic or almond-colored trash compactor. 

tuck everlasting: i swear, the people who live in this house are either time travelers or they are the tuck family.  the house is vintage 1970s -- swanky 1970s, but still.  all the furniture is cream/oatmeal/beige with brass accents.  there is a lot of wallpaper and mirror everywhere. 

the dining room is bright white, with white carpeting, white upholstered dining chairs, a glass and brass dining table, one mirrored wall and then giant brass sculptures in each of the corners.  i turned to the realtor and just said, "no.  let's go."  it would take about $75k of undecorating to fix that house, and i didn't even get into the entirely beige ceramic tile kitchen (floor, counters AND walls).  as we were leaving, i noticed that the outside of the house is oatmeal siding with cream shutters and beige trim on the windows.

btw, in addition to the 1970s decor, there are no photos of the family past the mid-1980s.  i mean, it was just spooky.  unless you are winnie.

pool house: the main feature of this house is the giant pool ... that we would have to spend $10-$30k filling in.  it's unfortunate, too, because it looks like they spent a lot of money creating and maintaining it -- nice tile along the side, automatic cover, etc.  but we would fill it in -- it's a safety and insurance no-go for us.

each room was carpeted in a different jewel tone: bright blue in the family room, emerald green in the living room, rich red in the bedrooms.  yeesh.

the worst part about this house was that is was right next door to this beautiful queen anne with lovingly painted turrets and gingerbread details around its wraparound porch.

marijuana farmers: this house was really nice.  lovely built-ins, nice flooring, nice kitchen, giant rooms, high ceiling.  next door looks like a marijuana farm -- some kind of white temporary structure that looks like they made it permanent, strung with white christmas lights (oh, white people), random construction equipment, a crumbling staircase with the bricks torn out of the bottom and then stacked on TOP of the staircase.  realtor is also WTF and we drive around to the back.  what we did not see from the front was their detached garage -- that has no roof.  It looks like it was eaten away by raccoons ... from raccoon city.

party at mom and dad's house: mom and dad used to live here, and now the two kids (sons) live here.  and man, is it obvious.

one of the bedrooms had the p90x chinup bar just hanging from the frame.  it also had a futon on the floor.  we peeked inside the closet to check out the space, and it was just four laundry baskets sitting on the closet floor, which is when i noticed that there were no dressers in the house. 

the basement had a built-in giant tv, with surround sound speakers and two different gaming consoles.  they had also put a mini-fridge in the basement, and there were loose weights lying around.

the kitchen would need to be gutted -- old appliances, including an apartment-sized oven.  it srsly looked easy-bake size.  i mean, none of my bakeware would fit into the oven.  all of the cabinets were older, and for some reason, they stair-stepped -- as in, the highest wall shelves were farthest back, and then the middle cabinets were slightly pulled forward.  the shelves below were the same way -- the ones at knee level were forward, and the ones on the floor were pulled back.  whoever built macchu picchu also built this kitchen.

The House: so this was the house that both dh and i were very interested in.  it really is in the perfect location, and the online pictures look really good.  the bedrooms are enormous, and the closets are big, too.  the problem?  the kitchen and the bathrooms.  the upstairs bathrooms almost certainly need to be re-done -- mostly for aesthetic reasons, but also for practical ones too.  there is tiling that goes halfway up the wall, and some of the floor tiles are cracked.  the sinks are tiny and low and the faucets are cheap.  the cabinetry is also cheap.

the kitchen is the biggest problem.  i didn't like the cabinet fronts, but hoped that they could be painted.  but then i peeked into the side of a drawer, and they are really cheaply made.  they're just stapled together, and a quick tug reveals that they aren't even stapled together all that well.  the baseboards are glued plastic, the counters are laminate. 

the appliances are newer, but they didn't replace the dishwasher, and the dishwasher doesn't have very much time left.  i'm already adding up the price for a kitchen gutting keeping only the fridge, stove/oven and microwave when i look down at the floor and see that 1) it's vinyl, 2) it's old and stained vinyl, and 3) the vinyl goes out the kitchen and into one of the bathrooms.  the vinyl weirdly stops at a cheap brass threshhold, and then there's berber carpet in the family room.  (the rest of the house is hardwood floored, with the exception of a beautiful slate tile entryway.)  so now i have to tile that bathroom, and then re-do the kitchen and the family room at the same time so the flooring matches.

i say all this to the realtor, and she says, "you are far more practical than your husband."  my parents redid their current house when i was in high school and i was dragged to every handy andy/builders square/home depot/lowes/sears/homegoods/abt in the area, but this is just ridiculous.  i tell her that we cannot afford this house in this current condition at this price.  oh -- AND there's a chance this house needs a new roof.  and maybe a new water heater.  and all the doors need to be replaced because they are all hollow-core.  at least the windows are double-paned (original to the house, but double-paned).

she says, "this house is not going to sell for this price.  would you buy this house for asking price minus $frillion?"  well, they would need to put that as the price because it needs so much work.

so this house is basically being sold for the location.  the seller refuses to lower the price -- she wants someone to come at her with a number, and then she will consider the offer.  dh and i want to offer her $frillion less because of all of that.  i mean, really.

so either we are back to waiting for something else to come on the market, or we ridiculously lowball this seller and hope she blinks first.  the upside is that dh and i are pretty comfortable in our current apt, so we are more than happy to wait for something better to come along.
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Re: house judging (LONG)

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    After hearing your stories and my sister's, I can't wait to go house shopping.  There's so much to judge out there.
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    GBCKGBCK member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment
    The racoon city reference = + 1000 coolness points.

    I hoe the owner of THe HOUSE gets smarter/more desparate. 


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    "Party at mom and dad's house" sounds like a less trashy version of the Riggins boys' place from Friday Night Lights.

    "Tuck Everlasting" sounds like house we lived in when I was little, including (and especially) the mirrored wall.  How was that a thing?  Our mirrored tiles had little gold-colored veins running through them--tres classy.
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    Ha @ 70s house.  If that was 70s house, our's was most definitely 60s house.  Complete with goldenrod, avocado and rust wallpaper on the ceiling in big top-style stripes.  *cue creepy clown music*

    Also, THE HOUSE.  How is the seller sitting?  I mean, are they moved out and just camping out waiting for the perfect price?  Lowball it all the way, hmo.  Fire with fire.
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    Dead @ Macchu Picchu kitchen.

    If you could be convinced to buy the Tuck Everlasting house I will send you a caftan and a turban. 

    What is the harm in making a low offer on the last house?

    If I lived close to an Ikea I would be doing this with my kitchen: 

    http://semihandmadedoors.com/

    You can buy Ikea cabinets minus the doors and drawer fronts and then pay this other company to make you prettier and more substantial doors.  Of course you still have cheapy Ikea cabinets, but they look fancier.  And hey, you or the next owner are just going to want to remodel again in 10-15 years anyway.
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    I just a friendly gal looking for options.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
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    dh and i are considering seriously lowbaling The House.  it would be about a third less than asking price.

    i mapped out an ikea kitchen, and it's $3k for cabinetry on one wall.  i don't have a problem with ikea kitchens, but i suspect dh might.  we will need to talk about it.  it can look nice --
    http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/before-after-franks-dramatic-ikea-kitchen-remodel-174756
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    Ikea is Ikea, you take it for what it is.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_wedding-woes_house-judging-long?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:47Discussion:4c1dd4f6-8f0e-436b-abea-716f717e8e0cPost:f94dd52b-01cd-4697-8bf3-c2e441226449">Re: house judging (LONG)</a>:
    [QUOTE]What is the harm in making a low offer on the last house? Posted by zsazsa-stl[/QUOTE]
    I'll tell you what the harm is:  the owners could be like the insane guy I was stuck with on a business trip several years ago, who, when personally offended by what he deemed a lowball offer on his house, counter-offered higher than the listing price.  Don't ask me what he hoped to accomplish, other than making me wish I was anywhere but there.

    At the same breakfast at which he told me this story, he confounded the waitress by ordering "oats" when he meant "oatmeal."
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    DG1DG1 member
    5 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary First Comment

    There are ikea kitchens at several price points. It's not all disintegrating particleboard.

    FWIW, I'd also factor in the cost of remaining in the rental for an extra couple of months while the work is done. I suspect it would be worth it if it meant you didn't have to live in a construction zone with no kitchen for a while.

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    So the harm was he turned it down.  If the choice is low-balling or no offer, I still think you should low-ball.
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    I just a friendly gal looking for options.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
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    1) find out if the seller is on a business trip
    2) find out if anyone from ww is on a similar trip
    3) if 1=/= 2, then lowball offer
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