New House!

That’s right. Both Jeanne and I are moving. She’s sold her place in Thornton and should be pretty much moved out by Saturday and I’m busy boxing up all my stuff and working around the house to put it up on the market.

We’re moving up into the mountains. A whole different way of living. More snow. Wildlife (including rodents and moose!). And working from home from time to time πŸ™‚

The new place?

Woah! Very very nice picture.

About a month back, Jeanne, Abi, and I were out driving in the mountains. As is our habit, we’ll stop and snag a flyer for a house for sale. I’ve been checking out the Land For Sale site on the ‘net for several years and Jeanne and I have been poking at different types of sites for the past year since she was selling her place. More of a place farther away that we can use for weekends or vacations, either land or a less expensive house. During that drive we went a bit farther up Magnolia Road off of 119 here in Colorado (west of Boulder) and snagged a flyer from a 37 acre horse ranch up for sale for 1.1 million. Lots and lots of money but one of my biggest criteria for moving into the mountains is high speed internet which this place claimed to have. So we decided to see if we can walk through the place and check it out.

Generally you have to have a relationship with a realtor before you can do such things which has kept us from going further in the past but in this case Jeanne had a realtor because she was selling her place. Parvin was nice enough to help us out and got us permission to view the site. It fit a lot of the requirements I had for a mountain place. Nice house with decent floor space, high speed internet, and lots of walking around space on the property. While 1.1 million sounds pretty high (it is really πŸ™‚ ), we decided to further check it out financially and see if we could afford it.

Zillow Listing

With how much we make, what we anticipated to receive from selling both of our homes, I figured we could just make buying this place. It would be right on the edge of the recommended monthly payment. But Jeanne is paying for Abi’s apartment right now which pretty much keeps this just a bit out of reach. Just a tiny bit πŸ™‚

While we were looking at this place though, we did some hunting on Zillow to see what else was available and closer to our range. We spotted several places that sort of fit our criteria but there were slight problems here and there. One place was on a flatter piece of property but not far past Peak to Peak on Rt 7. Another place had 25 acres but the views weren’t quite what we wanted either (and it was partly in a burn area). But this place really struck us.

Zillow Listing

Front looking up the hill. Note that the blue bits are 8″ Trombe Walls. A passive solar heating system:

And looking down the hill. There’s a 1 car garage at the top followed by a 2 car garage, and then the house. There’s a gazebo you can see to the left of the picture and below that is a fire pit.

Obviously the picture was stupendous and the pics of the interior were outstanding as well. Space wise it’s almost as big as my place (3,300 vs 3,500 sqft) but it’s in fewer rooms so there is spaciousness.

All the pictures from the Zillow site.

Awesome living room views:

And master bedroom. The blinds are controlled via remote:

Master bedroom deck πŸ˜€

Computers and guitars go into the blue room (under the master bedroom):

Guest bedroom and library go into the pink room (under the kitchen):

And the game shelves and table (and games) go into the center room (under the living room):

There are two mud rooms (the small brown and blue rooms with doors) that may hold shelves as well depending on space and where things will fit.

Check the rest of the pictures above for more pics of the interior, views, and exterior (and animals πŸ˜€ ).

We went up during some snowy weather which was awesome. We saw deer/elk and a pair of moose!

In checking out the “House Book”, we found the owners had done about $85,000 in work around the house and property over the past 2 years. I’m hoping the book remains as there’s an interesting article on what the house originally looked like. And there’s a HOA, which we’re not fond of, however the $19 a month fee is basically for snow plow work. Cool beans.

We did some wandering around the next time we visited in order to check out the site further and see if we wanted to bid.

We spoke to their real estate agent, Jackie, who gave us some additional information about the house and helped us poke around a bit. We found someone else had placed a bid on the house and were told we had until Monday noon to respond with a bid if we were interested.

We’d also been speaking with a lender who was requesting documentation from us. Portia gave us the thumbs up. Based on what she had, she felt we had no problem affording the house.

After discussing it over the weekend, reviewing finances, and reviewing what it would take to sell my place, we decided to place a bid.

We were a bit anxious Monday as we waited to see if the other family would counter and as 2pm rolled around (when the buyers would decide), we got a call from Parvin.

We got the house!

Friday we headed up to the house for the Inspection. Duane was our inspector and did Jeanne’s pre-inspection. We found:

o flashing on the roof was up
o hole in blue bedroom
o drain from water heater didn’t reach the floor drain
o garage door tension too high
o what looked like a hole in the siding from the MBR to the outside
o bird nest in the side of the garage (hole in the siding and bird poop on the wall and ground)
o damage to the siding of the house
o two wires into a single circuit in the electrical box

There were several other very minor recommendations. After some rewording, Parvin sent our objections and the buyers responded with they’ll correct the flashing, hole in the bedroom, water heater drain, and garage door tension. The rest were explained to our satisfaction.

Per the buyer, he’d purchased some special seed and dirt for gardening if we were interested and he’d worked the house up to be a “smart home”. He was willing to get with us to show us how things worked and I’d snag some items from the ‘net to get smarter as well. Oh and internet was tested at 20/7. Not the fastest but fast enough to work from home (I tested it).

Update: He will fix the flashing, the drain, and the garage doors.

The “hole” was a reflection of the insulation wrap. The hole was for another light. Apparently the original deck went around farther and this was for the light fixture. The problem in the bedroom (hole) was access to move some electrical wires around when he was redoing the bathroom. The bird nest, we thought was wooodpecker and we were concerned. Turns out it’s a swallow’s next and they eat the bugs that fly around. So we’re cool with that.

We spoke to him last week as well and he gave us a lot of information about living in the mountains and the things you need to do. From the trash/recycle drop off point to window washing service to the cistern to various other tidbits. Good stuff that.

We also brought up a handful of things we’d like to keep and he was pretty cool with most of it. We just needed to provide an offer and he’ll let us know.

We also got our assessment back. Very very good news. Value is 2k more than we offered. Excellent!

Still going forward. 26th of May is closing. Packing like crazy at my place. New roof ($12,000 bucks), finish with the wood floor redo, painting the colorful rooms, getting it ready to be shown. Cross fingers!

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