Jun 4, 2012
You placed on an offer on your dream house. The last week, every night, your mind raced with thoughts of future bbq's, re-painting the kitchen with your spouse, arranging your prized furniture collection in the spacious living room, and then, today, your agent told you the Seller accepted another contract. Or the Bank, who owns the property, will not consider your offer due to your financing, or the property has been taken off the market.
Your Dream House is no longer yours to dream about.
Assuming you haven't limited yourself to a town with less than 2,000 people (if so, just close the browser and begin crying), in a matter of hours, or maybe days, but probably not weeks, another dream house will appear. This is true in Chicago, and I know it's true elsewhere. Everywhere.
It won't have the same granite kitchen as the last place or the stunning master bathroom, or those cute little stained glass panels over the front door, or the 3 car brick horse stable turned garage. But you know what, this new place, this casa you couldn't even fathom before, during your brief tryst with the house that was stolen from you, well, this new place has an enormous front porch, and a guest bedroom downstairs, and a corner lot with tons of sunshine. All upgrades your previous love lacked.
For those who didn't marry their high school sweetie, and have endured relationship breakup, you will understand what happens in home buying. But having far quicker turn around, with less chocolate and meaningless dinners discussing your favorite movies. Because there are generally far more homes (condos, multi-units, ranches, whatever) than available buyers, the odds are always in your favor that a more delicious piece of Home will come available.
Now if you're picky, you know, the partner who kept looking for a mate who did everything, looked like a supermodel, barked on command and embodied the perfection of a Hallmark Card. Well, you are are going to have to wait longer. Much longer! But the person who simply wanted somebody to love them and appreciate them, had a mutual attraction and shared interests... well, there are more options for you. And luckily, since most of us tend to be more tolerant in our housing choices than in our future spouse, it's even easier than the Match.com of today.
I have spent the last several years as a buyer's real estate agent in Chicago, watching this cycle of disappointment turn into joy (and sometimes repeated multiple times) over and over again. Buyers are convinced that they will never see their lost home again, and that they should just keep on renting cause buying a house is useless. No place could ever possibly compare to the home they lost.
But it's not true.
Without fail, dozens of clients, Buyers, experienced this firsthand. And each of them ended up in a house that they can tell you was the right fit, a home they couldn't have even imagined during their short fling with The Offer that Never Came to Be.
Are there exceptions to this rule? Sure. There are those who are looking to buy a mountainside in a town with only one mountain. There are those who only want one color bathroom, one living room layout, one type of tree on the property, one particular block, one style of roof. Yeah, you're screwed.
And then unfortunately, there are those who get impatient with waiting, have lost a couple of deals and just 'want to get it over with' and settle for something less than they originally wanted, even though they could afford the more idyllic home. Don't be that person.
There are times when the market conspires against you, and other buyers keep beating you out, or you see a property too late, or the Bank makes closing difficult. Absolutely, without a doubt, do NOT give up. This is your home. Not a fast food dinner. It's the one thing, the indisputable one thing that you will use every day of your life. There is no material object more important. Yes, even more important than your Blankie. If you aren't prepared to be patient, and simultaneously aggressive when a new property comes on the market, then stop wasting everybody's time (yours, your agent, the sellers, etc) and stay where you are.
American Housing is the greatest market that modern man (and yes, woman and extra terrestrial too) has at his disposal. Greater than the biggest markets of the Silk Road or Africa. Better than the grand flea markets of County Fairs, or even, EBAY. The nature of our culture to constantly be in flux, always looking for the next best thing, or having to adapt to new circumstances, produces and has produced unrivaled housing development over the last 125 years, and created a market that guarantees, in every budget, that your home, a place with just enough light and space and location for you, that you can personalize into that dream home, exists. It's why those HGTV shows never repeat homes. Cause there are too many to choose from.
IT will happen. With patience, humor, and an IKEA catalog at the ready, everybody (well, not exactly), in the United States at least, will eventually find a home that works for them. Or your money back!