A few months ago, two of our friends moved down to South Carolina. They moved mainly because his parents are down there, they have a young daughter, and it’s simply better for everyone if they live close together.  His parents used to live in Atco, NJ, which is also the town where I grew up.

Rewind about 6 years. It’s 2008. The market just turned to shit. It was at this point that the parents decided to put their house up for sale, because they wanted to move to SC permanently.

Couldn’t sell it.

When that didn’t work out, they decided to rent it out to tenants.

They got sick of it. It’s a single detached, and having tenants in a place like that is more of a pain in the ass than usual, because more stuff can go wrong, and having to fix stuff when you live 12 hours away sucks.

For a few months, our friends lived in this house, because Mike is very handy, and some minor repairs/renovations needed to be made.

Now, the house is empty.  It’s not rented out…it’s not on the market for sale…it’s just fuckin’ sitting there.

Just last week, these friends came up to visit, because they had a wedding to go to. Mike mentioned to me that he remembered how I always said that if the stars had aligned properly, I would have totally bought that house. And it’s true; after we bought our shitty house, and after they listed their place, I thought “goddamnit, if only things worked out a little bit differently.”

I kind of laughed it off and said “yeah, I remember…really was too bad.” But then, he went on to mention that his parents are REALLY looking to get rid of it. Basically, they are tired of dealing with it, and just want to live in SC, and not have to bother anymore. Then, he mentioned the price they’re willing to let it go for.

…Let’s just say that I couldn’t NOT at least consider it. I mentioned to him that the eventual goal was VA, and that I didn’t really want a second mortgage right now. He had no problem with that, because he was just mentioning it, after all. But then, I got to thinking…it might be almost DUMB to not at least think about it.

I told Elisa what the offer was. She also had her mind on VA, but agreed that we should at least take it under consideration. This past Saturday, we drove to the house, and just walked around the front yard, and checked out the backyard (nobody there, of course). We didn’t want to look too shady, so we left. We obviously couldn’t base a decision on that, and Elisa had never seen the entire place, so I asked Mike if they could send us a key so we could go in and look around.

He got back to me fairly quickly, and told me that there was one in a safe place on the premises.  So, the next day, we drove over there again; this time for a deeper dive. We opened the door (there is no deadbolt, by the way…..one isn’t needed in that neighborhood), took off our shoes, and toured the place. I won’t bore you with the details, but the basic “stats” are:

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 1.5 bathrooms
  • Living room
  • Family room
  • Dining room
  • Kitchen with all appliances
  • Washer/dryer
  • Garage
  • Basement; ½ is a finished area, ½ is a utility room
  • BIG backyard with nice wood deck
  • Central Air Conditioning

Walking through this house…I felt at peace…at home. I should hope so, because I’ve been hanging out at this place since 7th grade…playing Street Fighter II in the top left room…watching Mystery Science Theater 3000 in what I call the family room, etc.

After seeing the whole place, Elisa was on board, too. This made me very happy. There isn’t really anything that needs to be done to the place…it is move-in ready.  I might like to install actual fences one day (there is just a chain link there), but it’s not that important. 

And one more thing….people waved to us. While we were driving through the development…people waved. Like 3 of them. Not because they know us (because they don’t), but because they’re just being friendly.  You know….we don’t get that in our neighborhood. Everyone is on guard, there. I’ve waved to plenty of people, and gotten nothing back. No deadbolt…no security system…and people wave. I’m ready to move in yesterday.

We went home and texted Mike the good news…told him to give his dad my cell #, and we’ll talk. I am NOT letting my excitement levels shoot through the roof yet. We still have to confirm that the price mentioned is real, and after that, we would have to secure financing, which I THINK we’ll be okay with. I may end up taking a loan out of my retirement savings, but it should be well worth it.  We have to get our place ready to rent out, but that shouldn’t be a monumental effort at all.

I will be very happy if it all comes out the way we want it to, but either way, we are making moves towards getting out of this place no matter what, which still makes me happy.  Fingers crossed now!

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