Building Nests

I spent the weekend in Auckland. My daughter and her fiancé have bought a house and I was more than just a little curious to see it ..

(Incidentally, you know that you’ve grown up when your own children are all either married or engaged. I know it’s a cliche, but where did the time go?)

But back to my daughter’s new home. I know the blood, sweat and tears that went into them finding and purchasing a house. At the time they started looking, a few months ago, the Auckland house market had hit its low and was starting to move, particularly for first home buyers. This movement hadn’t yet shown up in the statistics, and had implications for the couple. The bank required a valuation from a registered valuer and they couldn’t make an offer above this. Every time they found a suitable house, paid for a builder’s report and valuation, they were out-bid or out-tendered by around ten per cent. Imagine this: you spend months looking through hundreds of homes til you find the ideal place. You spend mega bucks on builder’s reports and valuations. Then you have to start all over again because someone else is able and willing to pay thirty or forty thousand dollars above what a registered valuer says a place is worth. The frustration, disappointment, disillusionment takes a physical and psychological toll, and hope begins to fade.

Then their luck takes a turn for the better. The valuer they had been using introduces them to a vendor whose house she has valued for a private sale. Everybody is happy!

The couple’s new home is lovely. Fabulous layout, good condition (after a few very last minute alterations required before the sale can proceed and that threaten the sale), great location, and a good investment, but mostly an ideal home. A little tired in places, but that gives them an opportunity to add some value. It’s sunny and warm and private with a fabulous outdoor area that will give them enormous pleasure in the summer. (And a great play area for any little additions!)

They’ve shown persistence, determination, flexibility, and an intelligent approach to what is undoubtedly one of the most stressful things we ever do – buying a first home.

I enjoyed my stay in this lovely home. Thanks! And congratulations.

I’m very proud of them.

Speaking of pride, my visit was a timely opportunity to take with me the recently published list of top scholars at Victoria University for 2010, among them my daughter! Good job on both counts!


2 thoughts on “Building Nests

  1. Thanks, Deborah. I’ve been blessed with three great kids. Thinking of them puts a silly happy smile on my face. And I have to say that the stories of your daughters are absolutely delightful!

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