Monday, August 20, 2018

we're building a house!

the sunset across the street from our lot!

we are looking forward to being homeowners again and so excited that this will come in the form of building a home! it's been 2 1/2 years since we sold our first house & started the nomad-ish life! since then, we have stayed with my parents, lived in an apartment, and lived with my in-laws for a year now. we are so thankful that we were able to stay with both of our parents and save some money during grad school!

but it's been a long few years of storage units and living out of boxes, and we are so excited to have our own house again soon! we have done A LOT of moving over the past three years, and we are looking forward to the day that we can move all of our stuff out of storage and not have to move again for a long, long time! we are still in the beginning stages, so we won't be in our home until spring or summer of next year, but we are excited to know what our next step is!

we started talking about buying land and the possibility of building a home around the beginning of June. since then, we've been looking into what all is included in building a house and all of the associated costs/steps with it. we've walked the lot we wanted to purchase, had a land surveyor come out, figured out where the house would sit on the land, figured out water/power/sewer hookup, figured out grading, building permits, and blueprints, talked to multiple builders, and talked to multiple banks. we did a lot of research the past few months and recently we were able to buy an acre of land to build on! so we are officially land owners!

it is exciting to think about being able to pick out everything that will go into our home! it actually worked out that building a house that we could grow into fit best with our budget right now! it is really hard to find a house with an acre of land where we live, and any we did find required a lot of updating to the house. after looking at options and calculating things out, we could stretch our money a lot further by building a house where we can make everything basic and simple (then upgrade years down the road). we really wanted land (and to hopefully never move again, haha) so we are happy that we have an acre!

it has been a sloooow process so far because we've been interviewing multiple builders and meeting with multiple banks to line up our options, and trying to schedule all of these meetings in-between our work schedules! things were happening behind the scenes, but at times it just felt like nothing was happening because there wasn't anything tangible to see yet. but we are going to have to be patient because building a house is a slow process in itself! haha! when you are buying a new house on undeveloped land, there is a lot of things you have to check off before you can really start building. i think once we finally break ground and start grading it will seem more real!

it actually worked out that all of this preliminary stuff has taken a while to sort out because I just started working in June so we really needed me to get some more financial work history since I have been in school the past 2 years & doing unpaid internships those 2 years. we also wanted to "shop around" on mortgages and see what all of our options are. since i started my job in June, we've been trying to save up as much as we could for a down payment, and this has given us some more time to save before we apply for pre-approval. it will still be a little while before we can apply with the bank because we are waiting on our official blueprints that we need to have when we apply, and they will take a few more weeks to get back. then the pre-approval process will take a few weeks, so it will be another few months before we break ground, but it's coming!

it has been fun to walk the lot and pick out where the house would go! neither of us knew anything about the process of building a house, so i feel like we've learned SO much over the past few months. we started looking at the possibility of building around the same time i started my job, so i've been learning my job during the day then learning about building a house at night! haha! school is over, but learning is lifelong, right?! we have been dreaming about getting started for a while now, and we are very excited that the process is moving along!

it is exciting times and i will be updating our progress and the things we learn along the way during the next few months as this process moves forward! there are so many things that go into buying land, preparing a lot, finding a builder, and creating a custom home! so i'm sure there will be some interesting posts along the way! and i can't wait to take photos throughout each step of the process! below i will share the "before" photos of our lot & the official stakes that show where our land begins and ends!

 looking down our lot from the road front

 Thomas marking trees to show where the house will sit

Thomas writing what the flags are marking

 the front left corner of where our house will sit soon!

 walking our lot and dreaming about the home we will build here

 stakes the surveyor put down to officially mark off our lot

have you ever built a house? if so, share all of your advice! :)

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