As of Saturday, my husband and I have answered my question of whether we stay in our current house or move.
I suppose not all of the details are cast in stone yet, but we signed a contract on a new house in St. Charles County. Yes, that makes us contributors the St. Louis metro area suburban sprawl. But, we weren't exactly in the city, or even the inner-most ring of suburbs. And the move just makes sense for our family.
Well, it makes sense until I think about the fact that we made a non-contingent offer and haven't yet sold our current house. Details, details. Yes, it's a financial risk, but a calculated one. We think we are getting a tremendous value in the new house and, at first glance, it may even appraise higher than the sell price, based on the comparables in the neighborhood. This risk has been calculated and re-calculated in spreadsheet after spreadsheet after calculator app after spreadsheet.
The house is beautiful and had just about everything on our wishlist. Three bedrooms for the family, one for a dedicated guest bedroom, an office for me, another for my husband, a big kitchen with granite, gas stove, and stainless double ovens, a three car garage, and a Flat Back Yard! The basement is unfinished, so we can spend some time mulling over arrangements of rec rooms or media rooms or craft rooms or whatever (and in the mean time, have a ton of wide-open storage space to help us sort through our junk after the move). It was a builder's spec house and has a lot more bells and whistles than we had hoped to get. I am sure we will find projects as time goes on, but a lot of it is already done.
Now comes the hard part. The packing and moving while simultaneously making our house appear perfect and glowing for potential buyers. Oh, and do all that with two kids, two cats, and a work deadline conveniently timed around the week we should have movers showing up at our door.
The kids are spending the week with one of their grandmothers, happily going to the zoo and fireworks, museums and pools. My husband and I are spending the week painting and painting and painting some more. Plus as much packing and sorting as we can manage to squeeze in. Done so far are two formerly-purple bathrooms and the formerly-navy-blue-and-"cavelike" basement stairwell. The upstairs hallway has sported builders-bare-minimum-off-white until now (it is halfway to a creamy-but-neutral color). The ceilings of nearly the entire first floor will get a refresh too, due to spills on them from the floor above (one our fault, one from leaving the kids alone in the bath too long where they discovered the joys of water fights).
Outside, our shutters are getting a bright coat of paint to even out their color as they have faded over 11 years of south-western sun exposure, and the front porch gets a coat of fresh white paint. Also in the list are a new sealer on the garage floor, mulch all around our assortment of garden beds, and powerwashing of the rest of the house and deck.
Oh yeah, and we will be replacing a fair amount of carpet in the house (a task that is just due after 11 years of wear and tear).
We are exhausted already. But this should be worthwhile.
Did I mention that the new house is already painted in neutrals and spice colors that will coordinate well with our furniture? That means no painting. For a while anyway.