We first came out to Denver to house hunt in April. We found a home that we wanted, but it sold two weeks before our Austin house went under contract and we lost it. We had 3 homes that were possibilities on our list, and each of them sold before our home did. We had some travel scheduled after our house did go under contract and decided to wait to look again until we actually moved to Denver. We stayed with friends when we arrived in Colorado and were so blessed to have several people welcome us into their home. We laughed yesterday when we realized that we've had 7 different house keys over the course of this summer!
My mom came across the listing for "our" house on the morning of the first day we were scheduled to house hunt after getting into Denver, within minutes of it going back on the market. We later found out that it had originally gone on the market the month before and sold in 24 hours, but the buyers financing fell through. It went back on the market the first day that we were looking. I saw my mom's e-mail with the listing for the house 30 minutes before we met our realtor, and immediately e-mailed and asked her to add it to our list for that day. We looked at 14 houses that first day, and the minute we walked in to this house we thought it was the one we had been looking for.
(This is what we saw when we walked in the front door. Sorry the photo is blurry! I was just taking quick snapshots to help us remember all the homes we looked at that day. The furniture is staging, not ours.)
Nearly all of the other houses we had seen in the area we were hoping to live in, and that were within our budget, needed a lot of work and updating. Think 50's bathrooms, green or gold shag carpet, scary wallpaper, and orange and yellow appliances. All cosmetic things that could have been changed over time, but definitely not "move-in ready." We were short on time and while we would have loved to put some work into a home, it wasn't a practical choice for us with the constraints we were working within. This home was a 1950's house, but had been totally re-done; refinished original hardwoods, a brand new kitchen, fresh paint, new carpet, tons of space and within walking distance to a fabulous outdoor shopping area with stores, restaurants and coffee shops in a desired area. We immediately asked if the listing price was correct. It was.
After checking out 2 more houses, our agent called the listing agent to let him know we wanted to make an offer. We found out that another couple who had wanted the house the first time it was listed (and had planned to make a back up offer but never got around to it) were still interested and were scheduled to walk through the house again at 5:00 pm. We got busy writing our offer and sent it in just hours later with lots of prayer. It was accepted and we had a house after our first day of hunting! Had we looked the weekend before, like we had originally planned, it wouldn't have been back on the market yet. God already had just the right house picked out for us.
Some unexpected challenges came up in the closing process that caused us more than a little stress. Our lender was being audited and our file was randomly selected for review which pushed our closing date back and forced us to close while we were out of town at a national ministry conference. We had planned to paint the weekend before we left town, but were then unable to. Tears of stress followed, but God wasn't surprised and He had a plan of blessing in store for us.
A sweet friend of ours who was in my bible study when I lived in Denver 2 years ago, came to help us paint our bedroom the day we closed. We had just that afternoon to work in the house before heading back to our conference. She offered to paint our living room and kitchen for us while we were gone and even had her dad come and install the water line for our refrigerator! Another friend brought her vacuum over and they swept all the carpet and dusted the wood floors for us. When we returned from our conference, our house looked like this:
We were so incredibly amazed and blessed by their willingness to serve us and work so hard to get our house ready to move into! We have just a few finishing touches to get ready for the movers to come later this week! I am SO excited for our things to arrive, to sleep in my own comfy bed, and to nest in our new home. My mom flies in on Wednesday to help us unpack and we have one week to settle in before the busy schedule of our fall semester on campus kicks off!
Seeing God's hand in so many of the details has been such an affirmation and encouragement to us in this transition. We feel extremely blessed to have a wonderful home to begin this next chapter of our life in Denver in and we pray that we can bless others for years to come in our new home.