House buying

So, J-- and I have been looking for a house for about a month now. We've learned a few things:


  • Basements in this area effin' blow. Whatever crap some ice flow left in this hole thousands of years ago is begging for the next ice age, just to remove the apparent seventeen miles of clay that comprise the majority of the land.

  • Apparently you can repair a foundation/basement that is leaning into the house at roughly a ten-degree angle with some steel rods, steel plates, and enough concrete to anchor a damn bridge.

  • Real estate agents (except ours) are a bunch of liars.

  • "For sale" on a sign doesn't actually mean the house is for sale.

  • Housing prices are a joke in Ann Arbor. Here's a for instance. I had friends in Chicago who bought a 1,500 square foot condo in Wrigleyville (the area right around the stadium). They paid ~$300,000. For $40,000 less, you can buy a piece of shit house on Seventh, which, last I checked, wasn't nearly as fun as Chicago. (see bullet one about basements.)

  • Way too many people in this town think pink is a good color. Without exaggeration, we have toured upwards of six homes where one or more rooms had pink as... well, saying it's a dominate color is an insult to all those colors (like white) that really want to dominate, but just can't get it together.

  • Speaking of paint, we have now seen five shades of green that do not exist in nature, all of them applied to the walls of someone's bedroom. Even mirrors would be an improvement for those rooms.

  • Fuel oil leaking at a rate of one ounce a day will completely saturate a house with its smell within a week.

  • No one in this town understands the concept of grading the dirt around the foundation away from said foundation. (see previous two bullets about basements.)

  • And tonight's final lesson: Railroad tracks != good neighbors.

Today almost broke me... we lost the house we wanted. But, we couldn't just lose it by finding out it was off the market. Oh no. We had to have our agent draw up the papers, set up a time to meet him at the house in question, have him be late (again), only to then tell us that some other dumbass agent had offered that morning, but hadn't updated the listing. While we're standing in the driveway of what we'd though up until that moment was going to be our house. Yeah, nice.

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