Here's our family blog.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Shhh, We're Hunting a Wascally House...

Well, we're offically looking to buy our first home!  We've got a realtor and we're signing papers with a mortgage broker on Saturday to get our pre-approval letter so we can start putting down serious offers.  In fact we looked at our first house yesterday however the house was not in an ideal condition for us to buy.  The roof had started leaking and created water damage, and the landlord seemed like the type who wasn't caring enough about the condition enough to ask the tenants to not smoke in the house.  It was going into forclosure, which is why we went to look.  We were interested in another house but since we couldn't go see inside yet, we did decide to at least drive by it to see the outside of it.  And good thing we did beacuse there was a busted out window so who knows how long that was broken, and there was a couch upside down on the front lawn and there was someone driving across the front lawn in their pickup truck.  Needless to say, we're not going to see that house.  We're going to see a few houses tomorrow; hopefully one of them is in great shape!  They are all within our price range, so hopefully one of them is the one!  One looks promising; it's alot of house -over 2,000 square feet- and their asking only $150,000.  It's in a very good neighborhood, so I'm sure there's probably already bids on it, so hopefully we can get in and put a bid in as well.

One thing though we've been tossing around is if we should apply for the $7,500 tax credit that's for first time home buyers.  Basically it's more like a interest free loan you can apply for by filling out a form with your taxes and in addition to your regular federal and state return, you will also recieve an additional $7,500.  And you pay it back by the IRS witholding $500 from your federal tax return for 15 years.  There's of course alot of stipulations involved such as income limitations, you have to have bought your house within a specific time period, and if you sell your house within a certain time and you make a profit, they can legally claim the money back out of your profit... a whole bunch of stuff but for most people, it's actually worth it.  I'm not going to get into the nitty gritty details here because I'm not a financial guru or whatever and I don't actually blog for a living, but here's a link directly that gives all the information about it

The biggest hurdle for us is that we NEED our tax return so we can use it as a down payment on our house, so we can't really wait around for the papers to be signed to get the money because the form does require you to give the address of the home you're buying or have bought.  We could file our taxes, and then amend it later, but unless our house needs work we don't plan on doing it.  The house we looked at yesterday would have been an ideal home for it; however between the water damage and the roof and the fact the family that lives in the house are all heavy smokers, it's too much work and Jeff's not handy around the house so it would have been a money sink and not an investment.

I'm not saying that everyone who reads this should go for it; however if you feel that in your personal situation that it will reduce stress and improve your house overall, go for it.  But be sure to talk to a financial person or an accountant before you do it because on the surface it may seem like a good idea but when you put it on paper it won't work out.

Anyway, wish us luck on our house hunting!

Friday, January 16, 2009

New Year Reminisce

Got this off of Monica's blog. I wasn't tagged specifically but I wanted to do it anyway to reminisce. I figured it would be a great way to kick off the year even though we're 16 days into it as my first entry.

20 Years Ago…
1. I was three and a half.
2. I had just acquired a new sister who I apparently enjoyed tying to the crib. Thank goodness Zoe never did this to Ruthie.
3. I liked sharing ice cream cones with dogs.

10 Years Ago…
1. I was thirteen.
2. I moved in with my mom at the end of my 8th grade year.
3. I was growing out of my tomboy stage.

5 years ago…
1. I had just turned eighteen.
2. I had just moved away from Virginia and here in Utah after meeting Jeff on the internet.
3. I was coping with and being an adult away from home for the first time. Wasn't easy I tell ya!

3 years ago…
1. I was twenty.
2. Jeff and I had moved out of his parent's basement and we were in our first apartment.
3. We became parents for the first time thanks to Zoe's arrival.

1 year ago…
1. I was twenty two.
2. I just gave birth to our second baby.
3. We were in a horrible apartment and wanting out of it.

This year so far…
1. We're in a new apartment that we love!
2. Zoe has learned how to sass back and causing me enormous frustration.
3. We've started the process of buying our first home!

1. I went to Robert's and spent money on scrapbooking supplies.
2. I fixed the camera after Zoe dropped it funny, by dropping it funny myself.
3. I completed 2 scrapbooking layouts and nearly finished Ruthie's birthday card invitations.

1. I finished two more scrapbooking layouts.
2. I did a load of laundry, cooked dinner and got sassed at by Zoe.
3. Ruthie took some steps pushing her (Zoe's old) hippo toy for the first time on her own. Of course she was grumpy the whole time.

1. We're going to eat lunch at Souper Salad.
2. Go by Jeff's parents' house to figure out what happened to the web-hosting server computer.
3. Get back Twilight from Shayla and give her New Moon to read. Another Twilight addict in the world!

Next Year…
1. We'll hopefully be settled into a new house.
2. We'll have our car paid off.
3. Zoe stops sassing back.

I tag Linda and Valerie or whoever else wants to do this.