My House is For Sale. Or, Moving Forward Despite Nerves

Last Sunday my agent came over to give me feedback on the house and I signed the paper. Yesterday, around noon, my listing went live in the MLS. That afternoon I got a showing request for 3. Then another for 3:45, and another, and another… I didn’t get to go home until after 8. Then an agent knocked at 8:30, said they were running late and could they please see the house anyway? Today’s showing schedule isn’t as crazy (yet) but still pretty busy. Fortunately my youngest brother is going to be keeping the dogs out during showings today, I can’t afford to take that much time off of work.

When I signed the paperwork, I was nervous. My house isn’t as fancy as some of the fresh remodels nearby, although it does have some good points and is in move-in condition. But the back patio is still in progress, the sod guys didn’t come as scheduled because of some mix up (they should be there today), there’s still some debris from various projects on the side of the house, I never did clean the oven, and every other imperfection in the house stood out like they’d been highlighted in neon.

But I took a mental step back and a deep mental breath. The interior is clean, neat, and complete. So what if there are a couple of scuffs in the baseboard, most people won’t even notice or care. The backyard isn’t the neatest but the lawn is mowed and the unfinished patio is finished enough buyers can see what they’ll be getting. The front is tilled and clearly in progress as well. If buyers were put off I’d just keep working and later shoppers would see the finished product. I was still nervous but decided to push on.

Well, I don’t think buyers were put off. I already have word that one, possibly two offers are coming. Which doesn’t mean anything until I have them in hand and can see what they’re offering, but the feedback has been good.

So, I’m pretty much over my nerves about selling. I might have a contract this week, it might not happen until next, but I’m reasonably confident it will happen and soon.

But I’m still nervous about buying.

What if I can’t find what I want at the price I want? My main priority is the lot rather than the house, but I still want a house in solid condition. And if I do find something to buy I’ll have a higher mortgage. I’ve run the numbers a dozen times and I can afford it and still save, but… but… it’s more money to spend each month! The easy answer is to stay where I am but I’ve given this a lot of thought and I know the extra expense is worth it, but… but… it’s more money!

And what about the timing? I’m using my current house’s equity for the down payment so it has to close before my purchase’s closing. What if the contract falls through? Or what if I sell then the buyer withdraws and I’m stuck without a place to live. Which would be very difficult because I have 2 large dogs and although I have a few couches I could crash on they aren’t welcome in those homes and would have to stay at a kennel.

Just as with the selling process, my nerves will calm when I get going on the buying process.¬†Once I have a contract I’ll know about how much I’ll get from the sale and won’t be working on guess work as much. I’ll start looking at actual properties and my fears that there will be giant holes in the wall hiding behind the pictures will recede and I’ll focus on more likely concerns. Not that I’d turn a house down because of some simple drywall issues, I’d just want to make sure it’s included in the price. There are worst things than having to board my dogs for a few weeks and renting while house shopping is a viable option as well.

I’m also nervous about the move itself, but that’s only because I have no idea what I’m buying. Once I have a house picked out and under contract I’ll get excited again when I can start planning out what to do with each room.

I don’t always handle change well, or at least the anticipation of change, especially when the future is up in the air as it is now. I know this, and I know the nerves will calm as each step becomes more concrete and the number of what-ifs is reduced. It can be a bit of a fight, but I need to keep my rational brain in control because if I let my nerves take the reins I’d never do anything new.

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