October 23rd, 2011

happy happy, sisters happy

Big News! A Beach House in Seaside, Oregon!

This used to be a 'Friends Only' entry.

As most of you know, I rarely ever post entries that aren't public. But Marilyn and I aren't ready to go public with this news quite yet, so I'm sharing it only here at LiveJournal with my Friends.

Today was a very big day for us. After all of the things we've been through in 2011 -- and having our appraisal come out lower than we'd hoped -- Marilyn and I actually started to look at some houses for sale. We went to see one last weekend up the Columbia River Gorge -- a condo that we'd admired ever since it was being built was up for sale, so we decided we just might be interested.

After we shifted away from doing a major (expensive) remodel to our house, Marilyn realized that we just might be able to purchase a second property. This could be a wise investment for us, but also something we could enjoy and stay in as a vacation property -- one we could share with friends and family and even 'donate' from time to time for charitable purposes. Keep in mind that no one in our family has ever owned a vacation home, so even thinking about something like this is huge for us! But we've faced some amazing changes in 2011, so...

The Gorge condo was nice, but not really what we wanted. Plus it was spendy and small. Then while in Seaside over the weekend, we suddenly wondered what property there might cost... Searching online quickly proved that anything on or near the beach was super-costly, and small. But we found a townhouse that seemed amazingly affordable -- and Marilyn emailed to find out more.

During this past week she was contacted by the realtor and set up a viewing for today. We invited sister Sue to come along and left the house first thing this morning to head for a noon meeting.

No, this is NOT a fixer-upper. It's been a rental, so it needs some cleaning and a few minor repairs. (We'll have it checked out officially to see if there's anything else, but there's really no reason to think there might be.) I took a few photos, so I'm anxious to share them! Plus I have some photos that were used online to pimp out the property that I'll also share.

Unfortunately, both Marilyn and I got so wrapped up in just looking at things that we stopped taking photos fairly early on (!!!). So there's really nothing from upstairs to share. But the Master bedroom, ensuite bath and huge walk-in closet are AMAZING! I wish I did have photos, because it's hard to believe. It's even bigger than Marilyn's current bedroom (which easily holds a king-sized bed and has a huge walk-in closet). There are two other large bedrooms upstairs, too -- along with a large landing area just outside the first bedroom. Plus a second bathroom (shared by the two bedrooms) -- which is really nice. (Nicer than my bathroom here at home.)

Pat (the realtor) brought Marilyn the paperwork to sign to the Pig 'n Pancake in Seaside, where we were having lunch. So we've put in a bid, and if it's meant to be it looks like we're going to buy a beach house! (woo hoo)

So here are photos to share of the townhouse (it has a mirror house attached), located five minutes away by car from the turnaround in Seaside!

beach house 1 - outside in front
The townhouse

beach house 2 - half bath main floor
Half bath on the main floor

beach house 3 - door to deck
Door to the deck

beach house 4 - dining area
Dining area near kitchen and deck

beach house 5 - kitchen
Kitchen

beach house 6 - living room
Living room

beach house 7 - Marilyn with the paperwork
Marilyn with her paperwork in front of the house!

beach house 8 - not our photo - outside front of townhouse
Front of the townhouse *

beach house 9 - not our photo - outside townhouse, side yard
Front of house and side yard *

beach house 10 - not our photo - deck
The deck *

beach house 11 - not our photo - front door, hall and kitchen
The front door, hallway and kitchen *

beach house 12 - not our photo - kitchen
The kitchen *

beach house 13 - not our photo - dining area and kitchen seen from living room
Dining area and kitchen as seen from the living room *

beach house 14 - not our photo - living room fireplace
Fireplace in the living room *

beach house 15 - not our photo - upstairs landing
Upstairs landing *


The photos with the asterisks are NOT mine, by the way -- they came from the website where we first saw the property. This explains why the rooms are either empty or decorated differently than now...

I'm so excited I can barely sit still to type this! Obviously we're continuing with the refinance we started when we were going to remodel the kitchen (and do some other stuff), so we're already on our way toward making this happen. Marilyn's finance person will do her part tomorrow, then it's only a matter of WAITING. This is a short sale (for those of you who understand such things), which does mean we can be waiting for several months to find out if we get the house or not. But we're in no hurry, so that's okay by us. Happily this was NOT a home for someone that was lost when the economy went bad. The woman who owns it apparently has several other properties like this one that she rents out (some in California). We've always said we'd never want to have a house -- at whatever price -- under the circumstances where we gained while someone else lost their residence.

The price? Well, we've made an offer, but we might need to raise it later on. Let's just say it's $100,000 less than similar townhouses sold for a few years back! The price has been reduced repeatedly, which is why we can afford it (we hope!).

We have creative thoughts about how we'll furnish it if we do, indeed, get it. We'll probably buy some things, but mostly we'll move furniture from our house there -- and maybe get a few new items for our Portland house that we've been wanting (and needing) for years. But we'll be very careful about this, because we're going to have to watch our spending really closely when we're making two house payments every month.

More about all of this soon. Sorry this post is so long, by the way! I suspect I'm rambling like mad. (grin)