June 13th, 2019 arrives and we decided to go back to the Century community again (community name is being kept private) and talk to the sales lady that we were working with and to also follow up on if she knew when a LOT was possibly going to be released.
Unfortunately, still nothing, but what she decided to do was contact her manager to see if there was any way possible if they could release a LOT for us. She left a voicemail and the next step was waiting to see if they would release one or not. So after leaving the community we ended up grabbing a bite to eat and headed back home. The moment we walked into the door, my husband received a call from an unknown number. Because we get so many spam callers, we no longer answer calls to numbers we don’t know anymore. So then, I ended up receiving a phone call and of course I didn’t answer, but then she left a voicemail for me. All I hear on the voicemail was “CHRISTINE!!! I was able to get a LOT released!!! CALL ME ASAP!!!!” and I mean she was screaming with excitement on that voicemail! I immediately called her and she asked for us to go back to the office ASAP. Bobby and I were so freaking excited, BUT at the same time a ton of bricks kind of hit us too! LOL
It was that moment when we were like “shit this is really happening…. this is a REALLY big commitment. Are we ready for this? Babe are we making the right decision? Do we have the money? Are we going to be able to pay for the mortgage? Should we do this?” Seriously all the questions and all the doubt (LOL)!
So we got to the office.. celebrated with excitement for a moment and then went straight to talking home building! LOL She was able to get us 3 LOTS to choose from in the area that we wanted, which was amazing. I mean we were happy with just at least 1 of the LOTS being released to us, but for them to be able to release 3, which we were able to choose from… was awesome! So, we picked our LOT and signed the papers to “remove” the LOT from being available. I quoted remove because it technically wasn’t yet available, which is the reason why she wanted us to go back to the office ASAP that day. We ended up signing a check to her for our LOT premium, which was $5,000. Also just an FYI, the money for the LOT premium gets added to your loan, unless you decide to pay for it upfront. Lot premium amounts depend on the builder, the size of the land, and the home which it will be facing. Many of the houses in our community had $0 to $3,000 LOT premiums, but for these particular LOTS and with no direct neighbors being behind us, the LOTS costed more. Which we were totally fine with. Again paying $5,000 for more privacy and less neighbors being able to see in our backyard is worth it to us.
So afterwards, she ended up giving us a packet of upgrades and designs that we needed to go over and choose. This was mostly for the foundation of the home.
June 14th, the day after, we went into contract! The night before Bobby and I spent our time going over the packet on things we wanted in our home and needed. We definitely had a budget (which was $10,000), and really wanted to make sure we didn’t go over our budget with the upgrades. There was so much paperwork that needed to be signed, but it sure was a damn good feeling! We were told that our home would be done in about 6-8 months.
Did you know that when you are in process of buying a home, you aren’t actually approved for it and you won’t be until 1 month before you close on it? CRAZY HUH, and talk about stressful! So, of course we got pre-qualified for the home back in March, which basically means that the bank is willing to give you the loan, and we actually had to do another one because it was now June, and obviously things can change for the better or worse within 3 months. Then after going into contract, you have to get pre-approved for the home… which still means there could be a chance that it falls through and you don’t get it. Talk about more added stress! I believe it wasn’t until about 1 month later, is when we got the letter that we got pre-approved for our home. We were also told that it was imperative that we DO NOT spend money, and when I mean spend money, we are talking about buying appliances, a new car, or anything on our credit card UNTIL we close on the home… so basically for 6-8 months no big purchases!
We also had to provide another check for our down payment, which I’m going to keep confidential on how much we put down. This part will be based on what your financial status is and what type of loan you are choosing. This builder also had an amazing incentive if you build with them. If you build a home from ground up with all your choices you get a $10,000 incentive, but if you choose a home that considered “quick move in” you get an even higher incentive of $15,000. Although $15,000 sounds so much better than $10,000, you have to be very careful and make sure things are still within your budget. So pretty much a quick move in is a home that is already chosen with specific upgrades, that you are mostly not able to change. I believe you are given the option to change flooring and a few other things, but most things that have already been chosen for the home, you cannot. So there are definitely pros and cons to it. We wanted a home that we got to fully choose what we wanted. So, we did get less of an incentive, but I’m not going to lie the $10,000 definitely helped! So basically what the $10,000 can do is go towards your upgrades and say for instance if you don’t use up the full amount in upgrades, like we didn’t, you can apply the rest of the amount towards your closing cost.
After signing all of the documents, we also had to see the design center within that week. Yes, it’s a very fast process, as it seems. Being at the design center, which is the place where you add all the interior upgrades, was such a fun process! However, this is where the temptations kick in and the money sign just cha ching (LOL)! As much as I wanted to get this, that, and the other we still stuck within our budget. Surprisingly, we actually only spent $6,000 on upgrades for exterior/interior needs/wants, so we were able to apply the remaining incentive amount to our closing cost! I’m not going to lie though, I seriously wanted white cabinets throughout the house!
Tip- when it comes to upgrades, I personally thing you need to be really smart about it. Unless you are paying for all your upgrades upfront, all of the needs/wants you want that is considered an upgrade will be applied to your loan. So, if you really think about it.. choosing something that cost $500 for instance (a garage door/opener) would initially cost you triple the amount over the course of your loan because of the interest! So, things that we were able to do ourselves or hire out ourselves, we did.
As far as our living situation, we did live in a townhome for about 5 years, and we did make the decision to break our lease (which we obviously paid the breaking lease fee) and move in with my parents, who opened their home for the 4 of us to move in. We did this so we could save as much money for our closing cost, moving, appliances, and new things that we needed for our home once we closed.
Construction started to begin! I honestly can still remember this feeling like it was yesterday! It was such an exciting feeling coming here every week to see the progress!
In August you can see the framing took place! Crazy to think in a matter or 2 weeks we went from concrete bring poured for the foundation to an actual home now! *mind blown*
September was working on the exterior of the home and also adding windows!
Now that the exterior was mainly done with the exception of landscaping, they focused on the interior this month. We finally got the cabinets in, railing, kitchen island, and tiling in the areas throughout the home.
Much wasn’t really done in the month of November. There was a delay in the carpet, so they couldn’t really do much. The only thing they worked on was the landscaping in the front yard.
Also, in November, which is within our 30 days of closing, is when the bank will contact you again and re-run your credit (to make sure nothing change and got bad) and check work stubs (to make sure you are still bringing in enough money). This is the final process and when you will know (in about 2 weeks once you’ve been contacted and signed even more papers) if you’ve been approved for your home. This waiting game was true torture! Truth be told, this waiting game from beginning to end was the worst and most stressful part of this whole process. Just think about it, you have fallen in love with a model home… signed your life away for it… choosing specific things you want in your home, watching your home be built and grow EVERY WEEK, and the worst part.. falling in love with it. So I’m sure you could imagine all the feels we had! I would say about a week to 2 later, we got the email that we’ve been APPROVED! Thank you Jesus!
In December is was crunch time for the workers because of the huge delay with the carpet, but we finally got appliances and the carpet, and then…
On December 12th is when we did our walk through (which was pre-scheduled months before). Any type of damages or things that needed to be re-painted we would mark with a blue tape. Our next step after our walk through was closing day, which was on December 16th. The day of closing was definitely exciting, however, a ginormous book of paperwork to be signed! This is when you give that last check/money order for your closing cost and say…. goodbye thousands (LOL)! After closing, they have 3 business days to give you the keys.
June 19th arrives….
WE GOT THE KEYS!!!!
OMG, guys I seriously cannot believe we accomplished this goal… not only for ourselves but for our girls too! For us to be able to FINALLY call a home OURS, feels SO DAMN GOOD! The memories to be made and have already been made in here are endless….
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