One of my greatest fears of owning a home is coming to fruition. A downturn in the housing market. When I bought my house back in late ’04/early ’05 there was a defined period of time we knew we’d be in the house. We did a fancy pants loan that people are getting creamed for now, because I didn’t see the need to pay a higher rate on a house I knew we’d be out of in 4 years. The driving force was Angie’s residency choice. Even if we stay up here in the great frozen state of MN, we knew we’d probably move because she would be earning a salary and house was/is too small for a growing family.
Long story short, the house has a 90% chance of going on the market about this time next year. While I hope that I have done enough to the house to maintain its market value, I can’t help but worry I will lose, and I mean substantially, money on the house. I know we will be fine in the long run, but its the short term crunches that hurt. I mean, in the long run, the market crash of 1929 eventually came back, but that didn’t keep people from jumping out of windows.
Now as I work on the house I am slightly consumed with wondering if a buyer will think what I am doing is weird or stupid. Usually saying is, make the house work for you and it will generally increase the value, however I believe there are so many choices now for the buyer that they can stand to be as picky as they want. All the little things that I ignored when I bought the house could be the one thing that turns buyer off. This leads me to thinking that I may never get the house sold in a timely manner, then what? Unfortunately, it is too hard to say. The market could come roaring back by the end of the year due to incredibly low rates and a huge supply. The flip side is we could just be seeing the tip of the ice berg in the water.
Just Bring in the Ship
My friend Joe often quotes “The world isn’t interested in the storms you encountered, but whether or not you brought in the ship.” While on the surface, it seems insensitive, to the right person it is good motivation. Although people at work try not to affirm such thinking, it is the nature of business. Wall Street does not reward effort. Extending that thinking to the house, one would say, just get everything done that you can and not worry about the uncontrollable. It is time then, that I list the tasks and start going through them. Last night, I started thinking again about the fence, and then I my mind jumped around about 20 other things I had to do, like get the oil changed in the truck and the oxygen sensor fixed, and suddenly (again) I had spent about 40 minutes doing nothing. So for the sake of arguement, lets say the basement stairs need to be completed before the end of the week.
- Trim out wall side gap
- Texture wall
- Paint walls
- Trim out top step
- Build stairwell cabinets
Lets see how that goes…