building new castles every day

We asked, and the universe answered!

In Doings on May 16, 2012 at 7:05 AM

You’ve been waiting patiently, we know. It’s been way over a week. Something must have happened.

We didn’t want to jinx it, guys. We just had to make absolute certain before we said anything publicly.

And now we’re certain: we have a home!

It happened the Saturday before last, May 5. The beginning of this Vancouver summer weather. Up until this day, we had viewed nearly 10 properties combined. We were weary. The Bill Good interview generated some interest and offers, though unfortunately for properties far afield. As for the landlords and homeowners we were meeting in person, well, they just weren’t biting.

Take the Kerrisdale homeowner of a very large four-bedroom with fenced yard who had actually talked past Phil and Jocelyn as they introduced themselves and explained our Modern Vancouver Family scenario.

“There’s six of you? And you all own the dog? You students? How much do you party?”

We left feeling judged again.

Then there was the property we collectively refer to as the “Let us never speak of this again” house, also in Kerrisdale. See, the interesting thing about looking for a house with a group of people is, sometimes there’s overlap. Sometimes houses get viewed twice, once by David and Matt, later by Natalie and Jocelyn. The group doesn’t realize the double viewing until you compare notes. That can be quite beneficial if it’s a house worth pursuing. But this wasn’t the ideal house to view twice. In fact, it wasn’t much of a ‘house’ at all, rather an entity even the property manager was ashamed to show. You can ask us for more details if you must but, we assure you, it’s not worth speaking of again.

Oh, but there was almost success in the very early days of May when we nearly got a house. In Cambie Village. Beautiful, heritage home. Balconies with plants, outside storage for Phil’s tools, even a bedroom in the loft for Matt! David and Natalie won the hearts of the homeowner on our behalf and we applied immediately. We were in the running! We were so hopeful! We sat every evening in our current living room and wondered out loud if she would call. Finally, she called.

You came in second place, she said. Second place? we asked. “You guys were great, but you were neck and neck with another family, and I just drew a name from a hat. You really were lovely. Second place for sure.”

Our lessons from childhood reminded us that second place is an achievement! But second place in a house hunt still means you’re homeless.

So we were cautiously hopeful as we piled into the car that fateful morning of May 5. This next property came to us through a personal referral, though indirect. Natalie’s father had sent our plea into his network, and it found its way to friends of his colleague’s parents who own a 4-br+ West Point Grey property. We were to meet the owners’ daughter, who manages the house on her parents behalf. All we knew was that she was only showing it twice: once to us and once to another family. Natalie, Jocelyn, Matt and Phil arrived nervous and excited, in our best dress and with blank cheque in hand.

Our hearts lifted when we shook hands with the affable daughter and she showed us around her childhood home. “My mom and I saw your blog,” she said. “Smart idea.”

We toured the beautiful character house and shared quick, wide-eyed glances at each other, knowing we were going to bid. The only issue was, she had just showed the house to the other family. We politely, graciously implored her to see that we were the better fit. She weighed it up. She liked us. She could see us in her house. We loved her.

In the end, the other family needed a larger kitchen. Totally understandable, we said. (If you’ve ever been to our current townhouse, you’ll know that any kitchen will be bigger than our current one.) Matt signed a deposit cheque. Phil chatted to the contractors putting in the new bathrooms. Natalie cried a little. We all laughed.

And we skipped our way back to the car to call Tyrel and David. WE HAVE A HOME!

  1. Congrats Lady! I can’t wait to see the new house in June!

  2. Congrats guys!!! I was nervously waiting to see when all of your fortunes were going to turn for the better and it finally did!! So good on ya’ll. I’ve been sharing your story with friends over here in Sweden and everyone has been getting a kick out of it. Glad to know I can tell them the story has a happy ending. Good luck on the move!

    • So that explains why this blog has been getting hits from Europe! Thanks for the support, Gardiner. Our story has certainly been resonating with a lot of people and the support is tremendous. Finding a home is a universal issue! We’re thrilled we can offer a happy ending. We may even keep the story going…

  3. […] – Thank you to my good friend Jocelyn and her five housemates for throwing an awesome Canada Day Party (and baking an awesome chocolate banana […]

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