House Shopping From Abroad

The house hunting continues from abroad through the miracle of the internet and the combined resources of three adults. In this previous post, I talk about putting a lowball bid (our first bid ever) on a condo in the La Mancha complex in Mission Viejo. Well, the offer was rejected, which is not surprising, because we bid $50,000 less than the asking price. We did, however, uncover some interesting information: the owner of the house owes more to the bank than we bid, he owes back property taxes, and he is behind on the association dues. Sounds like a lot of financial hot water; exactly the kind that Chad, Ian, and I never intend to get cooked in. So, our realtor (who is putting a lot of hours into this – but now I know why – realtors make 3% of the transaction, so she stands to make $15,000!) recommends waiting, because it looks like the house will go into foreclosure soon. If the bank gets the house, then the bank has to decide whether to accept our offer and it is called a “short deal.” We will remain firm on the lowball offer, because we really don’t want to have to do all the “TLC” that place requires: one bathroom needs to be completely redone.

In the meantime, another property in the same complex has come up. It is the exact same floorplan, which includes a bedroom and full bath on the main floor, and the patio opens out onto a green belt. $524,000 for 2,000 square feet is really a pretty deal in the south OC real estate world. It also needs a little “TLC,” but not nearly as much as the other condo we bid on. This one needs paint, carpet, and baseboards… It has been on the market for only 8 days. (DOM=Days On the Market)

This is pretty exciting! Although, if we don’t buy a house and end up renting, maybe Chad, Bella and I could come back to Thailand this summer.

[update: Our realtor recommends putting in a bid at $500,000; so we are!]

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