…our baseball field…
You’re familiar with the Kevin Costner movie Field of Dreams, right? You know the one where he hears a voice in his corn field that tells him to build a baseball field and the (dead) legends of the game will come and play on it. Build it and they will come…
Well Hubby and I just had our Field of Dreams moment. We bought a house. In another town. Another town 2800 kilometers away. Another town where we don’t have jobs. Another town where we won’t get jobs that pay as much as where we are now. We bought a house.
…I’ll let you decide if that’s a good arm flail or bad arm flail…
We bought a house and now we’re hoping the jobs will come.
I’m guessing you want me to back the truck up and start at the beginning now don’t you? For those of you that have been following along at home you’ll know that I wrote a blog post not too long ago expelling the virtues of buying a house in Canberra. Now I can read and I read it back and it makes perfect sense to me and I think it’s a stellar plan. Then I go home. I see my son with his grandparents, great grandparent, aunts and uncles and I think to myself “what a wonderful world”.
I spend time in the city I grew up in and I see my husband spend time with my father and it warms the cockles of my heart. I look at the job ads and I know that finding a job that pays the same as here would be like winning the lotto, but there’s a few rare jobs out there that pay close to what we get here and would see us living a good life and I think to myself “it’s doable”.
I see us spending $1,000 for 3 months worth of gas over winter and I think it’s just nuts. Now I know that we’ll be spending money on air-conditioning and alike, but with solar panels that’s not going to be too much – I can’t mine my own gas. I know that the access to the cultural centers aren’t the same up there, but they’re different and I hope that we’ll be able to still get him access to the cultural centers here, it’ll just be on holidays.
But really, my heart knew what it wanted the minute it saw my parents hold our son.
My heart is a fickle beast at times, but there’s some things that are constant in it and one of those things is family. Even now as I sit here thinking about it I tear up. I adore my parents, they’re my best friends and to be able to live in a place where I will have my 3 best friends with me that’s worth more than any paycheck.
For a long (long) time I worried that the only reason Hubby wanted to move up to Townsville was to keep me happy and that he really didn’t want to do it. And for a long time he says that’s exactly how he felt but since the little man arrived on the scene his opinion on the move has changed and now it’s something that he wants to do. I’ll be honest I doubted him for a long time, but now I really believe it is something he wants to do. He’s actually been the one pushing to make this happen where normally I’m the one doing the pushing.
So as much as we make decisions and stick to them, we made a decision to try and see if we could pull off a move.
A couple of weeks ago we met with an agent to talk about selling our house. Hubby put feelers out to see about getting a job up there and I started surfing the real estate listings in another town. (Any excuse to shop!)
The Agent is confident that we’ll be able to sell the house and get what we want for it. Which is great, but we’re in a lucky position of not really needing to sell the house for at least 12 months, so if he can’t sell it we’ll rent it out. But, I for one would like it sold because while I think it would be swell to be a real estate mogul I don’t want to be carrying 2 houses while looking for work, etc.
Hubby’s job searches have been promising. We’re hoping (like mad men!) that something will pan out in the next couple of weeks. In the meantime I’m also investigating what options are open to me as well. Maybe I go back to work full time and Hubby stays home with the little man.. who knows, we just need to pay the bills.
We decided to head up north to check things out and to see whether it really was something we wanted to do or whether it was just the winter weather (and gas bill) making us think it was something we wanted to do so we booked flights and headed to Townsville for a mini break.
We knew of a house, in the same street as my parents, that was for sale so we tee’d up a time to go look at that while we were there as well. Figured it couldn’t hurt to have a look, get a feel for the market. To be safe, I also organized a few other houses to look at so as to give us a better understanding of values, etc.
So we went house hunting… I could go into all the boring details of how we were like Goldilocks (too small, too old, too pricey… ) but the punchline is we found a house that met 99% of our criteria and that we both really liked and so we put an offer in on it.
(Somebody call the mental ward!)
It was the last day of our trip, it was a fluke finding the house listing and it was something we had to squeeze in. On the drive to the property I remember thinking “I bet this is the house”. And low and behold, it was. (I think I was a goner when Hubby commented on how he could see the little man +1 running around the backyard kicking a ball together…)
We put in an offer and after a few hours (and a couple of plane rides) it was ours. Of course, that’s a very loose ours. We still need to get finance approved which could be a sticking point. I feel like getting finance approval is akin to using my ATM card – I may know there’s money in the account but I still always hold my breath while it’s being processed. And really finance approval is the least of our worries if we can’t get jobs up there.
It’s like a house of cards in some ways. We need to get jobs so we can move up there and get all of our crap (and the dogs) out of our house here so we can prepare (and dress) it for sale to give us the best possible return. But if we get the house up there, move our gear out of here and sell our place but don’t have jobs we have to rent somewhere here while we continue to job hunt.
I swear I think we’re insane. INSANE! But I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to having a wee bit of a thrill at the fact that we’re planning such a hair brained scheme. If we pull this off it will be epic! Epic I tells ya!
Of course, if we don’t it could turn into a massive cluster fuck, but really what have we got to lose? If they don’t approve us for finance then we don’t buy the house, simple. Life stays the same, we’re out of pocket a couple hundred bucks for the solicitor but so what.
If we buy the house, but don’t get jobs up there we rent it out until we can move up there. We talked about the rental market and we’d get a good return on the house and it’s one of the reasons we decided to buy the one we did because we both agreed we’d be happy to see it rented if we had to. (Unlike if we bought a new home!)
If we buy the house, get the jobs and move up there and we don’t like it well we know that we can always move back. We’ve done it before we could do it again.
The bottom line – you’ve got to take a chance if you want to go after your dreams. And this little gnome dreams of Sunday family lunches. So, we bought a house.
*** If you’re the praying kind of person we could do with all the prayers and good vibrations you can muster that we pull this off. Although if you’re the kind of person that believes stupidity shouldn’t be rewarded then….