Househunters Hollywood Episode #1

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And so it begins. Because as if we don't have enough on our plate with Hal starting a new job and us starting two new babies, we must throw a new house in the mix just to keep life excruciatingly interesting!

We have nine eight months to get out of here, sure. But nothing makes a family feel more unwanted than knowing they're, well, unwanted...

It's like hearing from a boyfriend that he's going to break up with you in nine months. Would you want to stay with said boyfriend? Um, no. You'd be like, "FUCK YOU, BOYFRIEND! I'm going to sleep with your best friend, Steve, you asshole!"

So that's where we are. Looking for our house's equivalent of "his best friend Steve"... except Steve is currently nowhere to be found.

Last week we went to look at our first house. And yes we will be renting again. In order to purchase a house in our neck of the woods with three or more bedrooms we would need (at least) 200k in cash to put down as our 20%. We do not have these monies. And even though renting is risky (Ahem) and some would argue, "throwing money away!" this is where we are. We'd rather rent a place we love in a neighborhood that makes us happy than buy somewhere we can afford in a neighborhood we hate. Living miserably is never the smart move in our opinion. And it isn't "throwing money away" if it makes you happy. Even if it means getting booted out by landlords.

The problem? We got an incredible deal on our house. (We have three bedrooms plus an office which is kind of UNHEARD of in West Hollywood. With our budget and requirements, anyway.) SO. Operation find-a-house-without-overspending-past-our-budget begins.

Unfortunately (fortunately?) I am extremely picky and would like only to live somewhere excruciatingly beautiful. Spoiled after living here in a house I never thought I would be able to afford let alone pull off. Now, I refuse to settle on anything other than fabulous. So for every fifty listings Hal sends me, I approve one.

So, as of today, after three weeks of searching hundreds of listings, we've gone to see one house. From the outside it was almost perfect. The bars on the windows were a little too paranoia-chic for my taste but the bougenvilla was TO DIE for and the vines that wrapped around the house were divine...s.
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If I could build my fantasy doorway it would look identical to this:
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Gorge, no?

I was so thrilled I took sixty-one pictures and said, "Omg" forty-seven times.

"I could SO come home to this doorway every day."

Except the inside was another story. We pushed open the door to a dismal and dark interior, stained and smelly, its linoleum kitchen depressing and bathroom dated and sad. The master bedroom was decent but the rest of the house was reminiscent of some of my early LA apartments and not in a good way. If the house was a thousand dollars less a month? It might be worth it. But for the asking price? (You don't want to know.) SO not.

The backyard was lovely as well but the "guest house/office space" out back was more like a haunted shed. Hal and I both agreed it was more "American Horror" than Home Sweet Home and left the house feeling a little low and slightly defeated. Here was a house $700 more a month than ours and not nearly as nice.

"This is just the first house, Bec! We'll find something just as amazing!"

And of course he's right. Still. Every night I scan Craigslist in the nook of the kitchen of the house I adore hoping to fall in love or at least like with our future home ... but alas, sigh, alas...

So this is me putting a call out to "Steve."

Steve, if you're out there? Please heed our call. We're looking for you, Steve. We want to sleep with in you, Steve! STEVE!

Seriously, Steve?

Steve.

GGC

81 comments:

My Bottle's Up! | 5:07 AM

i hear you, woman. i hear you loud and clear. you know we just moved last month, because apparently we didn't have enough going on with my current pregnancy and a new job, LET'S THROW IN A CROSS-COUNTRY MOVE! hal is right though, you will find what you're looking for. be picky. do not settle. you will find your nest. (and if you don't, come visit my little east coast bungalow.) xoxoxox!

kerewin | 5:15 AM

I'm glad I don't know where you live. Otherwise, i'd spend DAYs looking at listings for you. I love looking at houses i'd love to live in but have no plans or need to move. I know, I have issues.

Red Stethoscope | 5:17 AM

I'll be sending good vibes your way! Good luck! (I hate moving, and live in DC--another metropolitan, bleed you dry with rent, kind of place--so I get it.) I REALLY, REALLY want Steve to show up!

Kt | 5:17 AM

Steve? Or Alan?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fk3RahPkOPw

Either way - good luck with the hunt. I'm sure you'll find you man... er... house.

bluejeanamy | 5:37 AM

Sending you many happy Steve-o vibes! Our first (rented) house in Denver seemed perfect till I found uncovered asbestos in the basement and we had to leave (and cry)...

but then I found our current place, randomly one night at midnight on C'list (after much, unfruitful searching) and it's my most favorite place ever -- and 900 dollars cheaper a month!

Of course I'm messing it all up by moving AGAIN, out to the East Coast, but still! Steve lives! :)

divrchk | 6:21 AM

Good luck! I assume you are using Trulia.com as well? I hope that you find something soon.

Caitlin | 6:35 AM

you've got 8 MONTHS (the amount of time it took to make bo and rev)! that is a lot of time. if you continue searching rigorously, something WILL come up.... my husband and i had three weeks to find a decent apartment in sherman oaks and were completely discouraged with what was in our price range. out of nowhere something wonderful (and underpriced) came up, and i was the first to look at it (a place we now call home). anyways, keep on checking craigslist on the reg.... and i'll send some good home searchin' vibes!

Not Quite What I Expected | 6:59 AM

Even in the height of the storm, you come up with hilarious analogies. If I hear of any "Steves" (unlikely, as Seattle is more of a "Mike" town), I will send them your way, for sure.

Amber | 7:02 AM

I totally agree that you shouldn't settle. You've got time!

My sweet hubby decided to put our house on the market after Katrina b/c the housing in our area was at a premium. Of course, at 9 mos pregnant, our house sold. We signed the papers with a 2 wk old baby in tow. We moved out and into his parents 2 bedroom apartment for two weeks before we settled on something. 7 people in a 2 bedroom apartment sucked, but it was worth it. We've since moved and are happy as clams to be renting a house now. :o)

You guys will find something that will work and I can't wait to see how you make it your own!

benandsherie | 7:32 AM

The weird thing about the LA rental market is that there is no real consistency across price ranges. You could look at 10 places all priced $3000/month and there is no minimum guarantee of quality. One would look like a 1970s Howard Johnsons and the next a great craftsman bungalow. We found we just had to look at EVERYthing out there and be ready to pounce when we saw the one. Of course, I was not toting any babies around last time I had to do this --- and now that I have 3 of my own and moved this year, I feel your pain and send you good luck vibes. Keep at it!

Jessica | 7:50 AM

OK, owning a house is not all it's cracked up to be...I PROMISE...I have a million friends who could say "I told you so" to us right now!
I would rather go back to "throwing" my money away every month than trying to keep up with a house that always needs something done to it...Sure we got a good deal, and sure the house is darling..But that doesn't always mean happiness! The money it costs to own a house is far more than what your mortgage is...
So here is me telling you DON"T BUY A HOUSE!!!

Clandestine Road | 7:55 AM

Your humor in these situations is magical. I'm sending you Steve vibes, too!

silverfinofhope | 7:58 AM

I want to run my hands across the tile on those front steps. Goodness. Just think, though. You'll have a new place with memories of only the six of you together. It will be all yours. Metaphorically if not actually yours to be technical, which even when you BUY a house it's never really yours unless you pay cash, you know? We rent, too. For the same reasons you all do. We have a lovely little home in a lovely little neighborhood. We couldn't afford to buy here!

Cave Momma | 7:59 AM

I feel your pain. Although for different reasons and only half the kids we are looking for a rental and hate most of what we find in our price range. It's not LA but it isn't far out of that area. And it sucks. *sigh*

Anonymous | 8:00 AM

You'll find something. I cannot believe the landpeeps are doing this. But I guess everything happens for a reason. Maybe Steve will be totally more kick ass. You never know.

I think it is unbelievably SMART to rent when you know you can't afford to buy. We bought a townhouse because we would literally be paying DOUBLE in rent for a 2 bedroom apartment in our area. Our older daughter was already in school and we didn't want to move to a bad school district just to be able to rent cheaper. You have to do what works for your family. Thankfully you have 8 months! Instead of 2! or 2 weeks!

Anonymous | 8:09 AM

Why not borrow the money for a downpayment from your parents or Hal's parents (assuming he has them; you never mention them).

Little Gray Pixel | 8:36 AM

So, because I'm obsessed with L.A. real estate, I'm going to guess $3,000+ for that horror story house. We live in a South Bay beach city, which is somewhat more affordable, but in the six years we've lived here I've yet to be impressed with any place we've lived. (I guess that's what comes from growing up in the Midwest where spaces are huge and prices are small.) Good luck on your hunt, and I do hope you find something you love as much as your current space. Fingers crossed!

Nancy@ifevolutionworks.com | 8:47 AM

Wow, that house is great looking outside. Good luck with the househunting. It just may be worse than bathing suit shopping!

Anonymous | 8:54 AM

SO know the feeling. We are moving out of Brooklyn because we just desperately need a little outdoor space and room for a second babe...would love to buy somewhere, but CANNOT handle moving to the burbs. Luckily we have a small city back home in New England where there's lots of good culture/coffee shops/walkable-to-everything-neighborhoods and great places for pretty darn cheap, and that's where we're headed. There was no way we could ever move out to the suburbs, aka Land of Large Parking Lots and Exclusively Chain Crap-Restaurants and White People. NOOOO way. Not for all the grass in Ohio thank ya very much!

Good luck with your search! Definitely the worst part of living (or wanting to live in) the desirable nabes is finding a new suitable apartment/house with kids. And justifying renting to your (or at least, my own) parents who think you're certifiable, haha. They'll just never get it!

Veronica | 8:59 AM

This is why I live in the Valley. If you like those type of homes you should also check out Toluca Lake and Burbank. It's cheap compared to West Hollywood!!

steve shilstone | 8:59 AM

I've got the right name, but I'd need shapeshifting prowess to become a house.

McConnels | 9:00 AM

House hunting is so frustrating! At least you don't have the added frustration of a short time frame to find one. Good luck!
I love House Hunters - so keep us posted on your house finds!

Anonymous | 9:07 AM

Hmm, I'm honestly not sure I understand the renting. You don't have to buy a million dolla house, and you don't have to put 20% down. I recently bought a sub-500k 3br + guest house house in West LA with a 3.5% down FHA mortgage. It needed a decent amount of cosmetic work, but there's also plenty in our 'hood that are fully renovated for more cash, but still *well* under a million. I guess you want what you want but paying so much to rent a house, which you can get booted from at any moment, makes me cringe.

Anonymous | 9:28 AM

I live (RENT) in the neighborhood you're looking at, and will keep my eyes and ears open if I see anything ready to come to market.

Best neighborhhod ever, so I totally understand.

-J

Allie | 9:45 AM

Girl, can we commiserate? We moved after 6 years in the same shitty townhome in san francisco. Moved to a cute college town we love. We were here three months and our landlord decided to move back in. And she was not very gracious.

OK, so, Whatevs, we were bummed, but then we found the rental house we're in now, which we LOVE. Fruit trees, and more trees and space etc. So imagine our discontent when THIS owner decided they wanted to move back in as well, not even halfway through our lease.

So we are right there with you, in solidarity, searching for homes that don't rule nearly as much as the one we're in - feeling like we're in a bad dream in someone elses bed and we can't seem to wake up!! Twilight zone: When I google THIS landlord, I'm pretty sure I see she is pregnant with twins. So now, we're the assholes, right?

Fuck.

Good luck chica(s). You'll find your home.

Kevin Hartnett | 10:03 AM

We battled through a thoroughly unpleasant move this summer: newborn baby boy, wife finishing her dissertation, trapped by Hurricane Irene for 3 days en route to our new home in Ann Arbor, all of which I wrote about here:

http://growingsideways.wordpress.com/tag/moving-with-kids/

The good news is the unpleasantness fades pretty quickly once you finally get where you're going. Not that that provides a lot of comfort for where you are right now. Good luck finding that house which is surely out there somewhere, even if it doesn't come ringed with bougenvilla.

lepisosteidae | 10:23 AM

I had a terrifically rough time finding a house when I had to move for grad school, and the prospect of doing it all again next year is depressing. So depressing.

But: have you checked out padmapper (google's house search) and hotpads.com? Sometimes these places have different rentals listed than good old CL. Might be worth checking out!

wonderchris | 10:36 AM

We want to sleep in you!!!

Best line ever...c'mon Steve answer the call, you will not be disappointed!

Thinkin' about you guys!

rebecca in oakland | 10:44 AM

I completely understand wanting to rent. I live in Oakland and, until June of 2011, rented totally adorable charming apartments in neighborhoods I could NEVER afford to buy in. We ended up buying a house in June. As renters, we had never even heard of this neighborhood. Houses here are 400-500, compared to $800k+ in the neighborhood we used to live in. I wonder if there are affordable, single family home neighborhoods near WeHo that you haven't yet discovered!

Lastly -- just so you know, we did an FHA loan and put only about 5% down.

Polly | 11:13 AM

Have ya'll found padmapper.com? It aggregates all the craigslist listings onto a map. I know this cuz we are looking, too. The rat that took up residence in our kitchen and then living room was the final straw with this ole Larchmont duplex. Love you.

Glenda | 11:14 AM

You'll get through this and fall in love with your next house, as you did with your current house.

In 8 mos you'll find something I'm sure of that. Good luck and can't wait to see more pictures.

LOVE that entry way...but went ewww when you described the interior.

Amanda M | 11:15 AM

oh man, how could a house like that not be nice on the inside? It looks like a fairy tale. What a crime! Best of luck on your search!!!

Anonymous | 11:19 AM

I'm totally with you on renting NOT being a waste of money, Rebecca. It's never a waste of money if renting lets you live in the neighborhood you couldn't afford to buy in. So rent on! And good luck. Steve is out there somewhere.

Katie of Cabbage Ranch | 11:24 AM

Seriously, try not to feel bad about not owning. Aside from the positives everyone focuses on, ownership is also filled with the realities of replacing appliances, increasing taxes, or spending $10k on a new A/C unit (all of which we've had to deal with in the last year). I hate that you have to move at a landlord's whim, but the good news is your financial responsibilities are minimized. Best of luck- you'll land in a soft spot!

MJ | 12:20 PM

I think you said you were looking in West Hollywood...ever thought of spreading out your search a bit? My brother and his two kiddos (11 and 2) live in a sweet little bungalow in Highland Park and have a wonderful community of friends and neighbors.

Anonymous | 12:22 PM

My only concern for you is that if you do find a house before the the 9 months is up, can you break your lease? Because it sounds like if you find a house that you like and is affordable, that your going to have to jump on it.

I wish you luck in finding the right house, your probably going to need to be really on top of things and be checking EVERY day because if a new house that is nice, good location, and good price comes on the renting market, then it will most likely go quick.

Kristyn | 12:34 PM

I can understand why you really don't want to leave that house. It is fabulous. I'm sorry. We rent...a tiny 2 bedroom for 5 people in an area we love for the same reasons as you....why move someplace you know you won't be happy? Something good will happen. I'll tell you that ...and myself that too....because I'm pretty sure my 2 year son doesn't want to occupy the corner of his parents' bedroom forever..........may the force be with us!

Anonymous | 12:41 PM

"Why not borrow the money for a downpayment from your parents or Hal's parents (assuming he has them; you never mention them)."

IM SURE SHES NEVER THOUGHT OF THIS. WHAT A GOOD SUGGESTION.

WTH

KateFitz | 12:47 PM

i second the fha loan idea...at least talking to your local hud people or non-profit that helps first time buyers. you might be surprised, i certainly was by what we qualified for in not nearly so expensive portland. good luck non the less.

also my toddler ripped my shift button off my laptop so thats why nothing is capitalized the way it should be.

Nanette | 1:06 PM

Lots of luck to ya! And I don't blame you for renting. After losing a ton of money selling our Santa Monica condo, my husband and I are suffering a bit of PTSD about buying another house anytime soon. I think we'll be happily renting for at least another 2 years.

Good luck with your search!

Anonymous | 1:07 PM

I feel you girl. I am in the same boat, still renting in LA and in no hurry to buy at this point. My husband, baby and I live in Carthay Square, very close to weho. All the homes are pre-war so you will find all those pretty details, some nice and some not so nice. Just a great neighborhood to check out too.
good luck!

The Beckster | 1:10 PM

I am a renter, and I have no interest in buying a home. My husband and I are moving back to my hometown, which was not planned. And it's so easy to move because we don't have to sell a house first. We just have to wait a few months until our lease is up. Few people talk about all the benefits of renting: portability, flexibility, the ability to downsize or upsize quickly, and the amount you save on taxes and home owner fees & expenses often allow you to save more money (readily available money) than equity -- which hardly even exists any more with this economy! I love, love, love being a renter!! And I do not consider it throwing away my money at all - I am able to save way more than my homeowner friends. Anyway, good luck!! Your current house is beautiful -- sending you good moving vibes that you can find it's match or even better!

Anonymous | 1:19 PM

*"Why not borrow the money for a downpayment from your parents or Hal's parents (assuming he has them; you never mention them)."

IM SURE SHES NEVER THOUGHT OF THIS. WHAT A GOOD SUGGESTION.

WTH*

Hahaha yes - WTF? I'm not sure what kind of parents just have $200k laying around waiting to lend to their children. Certainly not mine.

Sarah | 1:36 PM

I second the padmapper.com suggestion. It really cuts down on time going back and forth between craigslist and google maps.

Also, I think renting in LA can actually be MORE cost effective in the long run. Obviously it depends on the situation, but it seems to me that homeowners insurance is really "throwing money away" (omg so expensive, and it doesn't even cover everything.)

Him and Her | 2:10 PM

We too are renters and will be needing to move IMMEDIATELY due to the fact that we have SIX KIDS in a just barely three bedroom house. And one is now a 13 year old loudy, bigger than me....

And now I am hyperventilating a bit.

Yikes.

Good luck chica.

Anonymous | 3:18 PM

No need to be so harsh on the person that left the comment about the possibility of borrowing money from parents. Geesh...it was just a suggestion.

I doubt whoever left the comment meant anything by it, they were just trying to help. I don't know Rebecca personally, but I think that it is safe to say that she wouldn't take offense to people giving their opinions and suggestions being that she has a public blog that is open to comments.

I would encourage Rebecca and Hal to at least meet with a loan officer (assuming they haven't) just to be sure that home ownership definitely isn't an option. Whether it is through an FHA loan where the down payment isn't so much or through another option. There is something to be said for the happiness that the security of home ownership brings.

Good luck Rebecca with whatever you choose to do. ☺

Heidi | 3:50 PM

If you can rent for less than the taxes/insurance on a purchased house it is not throwing money away (since those are monies you don't get back anyway). Then you can take the money that would have gone toward the principle on the mortgage and invest it (if you like) into something with a much higher rate of return than a stupid g.d. mortgage.

Do not get suckered/guilted in to buying a house! My husband and I got our ass handed to us when the market crashed, had to take a $40,000 loss (which is not even the worst of stories out there, by far, I know), and are now firmly of the belief that owning a house is way over-hyped. (And who overhypes it? Banks and mortgage companies? Hmmm.)

Anonymous | 4:30 PM

What about Silver Lake? Ivanhoe School District....Or Franklin Hills (Los Feliz, right next door to Silver Lake) and Franklin Street School District....Everyone knows Eastside is where it's at, yo.

Anonymous | 4:31 PM

People are commenting on the parents and 200k downpayment because it sounds entitled, to assume that most parents are just going to lend their child 200k...I dont know anyone who would do that.

Rebecca, things will work out, they may not work out the way you would like them too, but at the end of 9 months you will either live in your same neighborhood or you will have discovered a new neighborhood that you will learn to like. Be grateful that you have a roof over your head and that you will be able to still continue to put a roof over your head. There are alot of children who are homeless due to this economy who dont even have food to feed their children, they are living out of cars etc...they are people who you would never guess are struggling. So be grateful and dont be entitled or so picky that you are above any "other" neighborhood. To be honest, you sound like a complete brat in this blog post.

Anonymous | 4:32 PM

People are commenting on the parents and 200k downpayment because it sounds entitled, to assume that most parents are just going to lend their child 200k...I dont know anyone who would do that.

Rebecca, things will work out, they may not work out the way you would like them too, but at the end of 9 months you will either live in your same neighborhood or you will have discovered a new neighborhood that you will learn to like. Be grateful that you have a roof over your head and that you will be able to still continue to put a roof over your head. There are alot of children who are homeless due to this economy who dont even have food to feed their children, they are living out of cars etc...they are people who you would never guess are struggling.

Anonymous | 4:32 PM

People are commenting on the parents and 200k downpayment because it sounds entitled, to assume that most parents are just going to lend their child 200k...I dont know anyone who would do that.

Rebecca, things will work out, they may not work out the way you would like them too, but at the end of 9 months you will either live in your same neighborhood or you will have discovered a new neighborhood that you will learn to like. Be grateful that you have a roof over your head and that you will be able to still continue to put a roof over your head. There are alot of children who are homeless due to this economy who dont even have food to feed their children, they are living out of cars etc...they are people who you would never guess are struggling.

Anonymous | 4:32 PM

People are commenting on the parents and 200k downpayment because it sounds entitled, to assume that most parents are just going to lend their child 200k...I dont know anyone who would do that.

Rebecca, things will work out, they may not work out the way you would like them too, but at the end of 9 months you will either live in your same neighborhood or you will have discovered a new neighborhood that you will learn to like. Be grateful that you have a roof over your head and that you will be able to still continue to put a roof over your head. There are alot of children who are homeless due to this economy who dont even have food to feed their children, they are living out of cars etc...they are people who you would never guess are struggling.

Anonymous | 4:33 PM

People are commenting on the parents and 200k downpayment because it sounds entitled, to assume that most parents are just going to lend their child 200k...I dont know anyone who would do that.

Rebecca, things will work out, they may not work out the way you would like them too, but at the end of 9 months you will either live in your same neighborhood or you will have discovered a new neighborhood that you will learn to like.

Anonymous | 4:34 PM

okay you can delete the duplicates of my post, the blog wasnt working. How annoying!

S i a c a l í n | 6:33 PM

Good luck, and I am sure you will find what you need, as well as what you love. I know you will. Archer doesn't look worried, and he always knows. :-)
*hugs all 'round"

oh, jenny mae | 6:44 PM

dude! i can't believe that house is a dump! it's totally gorgeous! good luck to you guys. we bought after renting for a year in an expensive part of phoenix & the rental price (while expensive) was the same as our current mortgage/insurance/taxes/upkeep. i alsmots wish we were still renting.

connieemeraldeyes | 8:12 PM

http://eligibility.sc.egov.usda.gov/eligibility/welcomeAction.doe
Check out USDA rural loans. Click on your state and it will tell you where the loans are in California. They finance a loan 100 percent. I am looking for a house where I live. THe usda just ran out of money but they are going to be refunded. It is worth looking into. You can buy a house with no down payment.

Sascha | 8:31 PM

I totally feel for you. I grew up in the Hollywood Hills when they were not cool yet and later my dad lived in West Hollywood in an area that seemed embarrassing at the time. He actually lived walking distance to Fred Segal and paid $650/month rent for a two bedroom house. I told him times have changed and he just laughed at me. We now live far away and far removed. I do miss that classic LA Spanish style that cannot be duplicated ANYWHERE no matter how hard people try.

You'll find Steve. I bet one of your readers will lead you to him.

bridgetstraub.com | 10:51 PM

I so don't envy yoiu the searching. We moved in May but finding the place we are in now was not easy.It's so hard to not get frustrated, especially when you find a place and it falls through. Just know that you will find the right place eventually.

Annika | 11:41 PM

I know there are many reasons to stay in your neighborhood (it sounds awesome, kids' school, probably Hal's commute), but there are a lot of other neat neighborhoods in the LA area. Might I suggest Pasadena/Altadena/Sierra Madre? There are lots of patches of loveliness in these parts, even if they are a bit less cool than WeHo/Los Feliz/Silver Lake. Good luck on the hunt! There is so much variability on quality/price in LA, it still boggles my mind.

Anonymous | 12:27 AM

I would love to live in the area that you live in, but I dont. You live where you can afford to live, and you buy what you can afford to buy. If you cant afford the area then you have no choice but to move. Be smart and dont go broke over renting a house. If you have to move to a different area for a couple of years then you do it and you save money until you can move back into the neighborhood you love. I personally would move into a different neighborhood in order to get a nice house to live in, rather then live in a dump in a desirable area. Best Wishes to you and ignore the people who are saying that things will fall into place, no they wont fall into place unless you do the work to search for that one of a kind gem that is hard to find in your area. Find out who the major rental management company is that is in your area, they most likely have a website, if I were you I would call them and have them send you rentals as soon as they come on the market.

Anonymous | 12:29 AM

Oh and I should clarify:

"Be smart and dont go broke over renting a house".

What I mean by this is dont go broke over renting an expensive house just because its in your desired neighborhood. Im not suggesting that you buy a home.

stephanie williams | 12:43 AM

I'm so sad that you have to move :( I love your house.

pve design | 3:15 AM

Surely you know the old saying that "God gives to those who can handle...Why'd he have to pick me?" I think it was from Erma Bombeck. Anyway as a Mom of twins now in college....enjoy the ride. Ugly insides can always be changed....but if a home has good bones, then I say jump on it!
Let me know where you land so I can sketch your home sweet home. In the mean time squeeze those sweet babies.
pve

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The Moms | 9:46 AM

We rented for such a long time. Seriously thought renting was cheaper than owning. Then I ran into an old friend from High School who was in the mortgage industry. I set up an appointment with her just to see and we qualified for a no money down loan. After looking for what seemed like forever (2 months) we found "The House" but it was over our budget by 15k. We put in an offer anyway and it was accepted. We now live in our dream home, our mortgage is less than we ever paid in rent and we are so happy that we don't have to move ever again!
Good Luck! You will find the one, just check into buying as well.

Anonymous | 1:30 PM

Hiya, I realise this might not be an option financially - but have you considered buying the house you're currently renting?

The landlord might even give you a better deal on the price given the circumstances. I have friends who bought the house they'd rented for years and they were thrilled because they knew exactly what to expect of the house and didn't have to move.

Just a thought, I realise you've probably already considered this. Good luck, you've got time on your side looking for Steve.

Lin | 1:40 PM

Phew... moving on top of two new babies... I can't imagine it! I'm thankful for the quiet house (we could actually afford) in a neighbourhood I adore. I hope you find just the right place... and soon!

Shana | 9:01 PM

Rebecca,

I'm sorry you're dealing with this, I'm sure it'll all work out just fine, and DEER JEEZ, I'M SORRY PEOPLE ARE SAYING SUCH JUDGMENTAL AND INSENSITIVE THINGS (anonymously! how nice) TO YOU, A WOMAN WHO JUST GAVE BIRTH TO TWINS.

Ahem. Cheers! Babes (all four!) are beautiful and I'm sure your new home will be, too.

hbomb73 | 1:46 AM

Good luck in the house hunt - it will be fine, the perfect house will have a vibe and you'll know it right away - my piece of rental heaven here in the UK ended up being a pensioners bungalow with a great garden and loads of natural light - our things have mixed it up a bit with the interiors and everything is great and tickety boo! It's all about that positive attitude x

anie | 7:26 AM

Boy! Housing can really bring out the awful in folks, yes?
You are all lovely and you will bring the same to yourselves as you continue to look.
Screw the buying option for sure. We're in deep and I can't wait to rent again!!! Bay area/CA prices are too, too crazy to buy.
At any rate, talk this up at the coffee shops, school, etc where you live. Chances are someone knows someone who has a place to rent to an amazing family of 6!

Anonymous | 8:06 AM

8 months--something amazing is bound to show up, right? i had to find a new place quick because we rented a dump sight unseen. now, $500 more a month, we're poor but happy. moving twice in 3 months (and the first move was to another country), no fun. i thought i was screwed because people show up to the open house with checkbooks (for total dumps!). and then i found a listing on craigslist (no photos, 3 sentences), made an appointment, and two days later, it was ours. we were lucky. plus, constant vigilance and sleepless nights and early mornings means you see EVERY listing the second it goes up.

oh, my parents and i own back in boston, and it's a huge pain in the ass to be landlords because we can't sell without losing the down payment and then some. damn you interest-only ARM...talk about a bad idea that my parents shouldn't have convinced me to go along with!

--erica

No Drama Mama | 10:38 AM

Oh, damn, how I feel your pain. I live in DC, and saving up $200,000 for a down payment? Yep, that's where we are at too. (But chop that in half because we are willing to go for a two bedroom.) If you find Steve, please tell him to ask his DC cousin Albert to contact me!

mynewfavoriteday.com | 3:23 PM

I know it's a huge pain and with the new babes,and kiddos it's a lot to take on. I know it's weird that I am about to offer advice, but having just rented our house in Westwood, have you thought about getting an agent? As the lessor in this situation, we ended up paying the commission to the agent so they are motivated but not by your money per se. It is such a nice way to take a little pressure off of you guys as they will set up all the showings and connect with the lessor to do everything for you.

I know Craigslist is a good option too, but it might be a little less for you all to do and you don't have to pay for it! Just a thought but good luck to you anyway. It's amazing you had your place in West Hollywood, 3 beds + an office is unheard of.

Anonymous | 6:30 PM

Move to Culver City! Just kidding, your neighborhood is awesome.

We own, and I totally miss renting. It was so nice to not have the responsibility to fix plumbing, electrical issues, etc. Our landlord was also a doll and a friend. Especially in this market, I think renting is a smart choice.

Have all my fingers crossed for you and the gang.

Karma's Blog | 8:32 PM

Hahaha. I am laughing reading your post. I just stumbled upon your blog. I live in WEHO and feel your pain. I've had the same place for over 15 years and had a baby 20 months ago and moving is now on the horizon and well, lets just say that finding a house in the neighborhood remotely near my price range and aesthetic desire is close to impossible. Good luck on your search.

Anonymous | 12:28 PM

why not just move to portland like everyone else?

Ray | 11:27 PM

Steve BETTER respond when you call him! Lol. That house from the outside is gorgeous. Too bad it was such a bummer inside. I hope you find the best house for the six of you.

Me and my family have to move (next month) too.

Hopefully everything goes as planned for all of us. <3

Ray | 11:30 PM

Also: I love what you said about renting not being about throwing money away. Kind of rude to the people who simply cannot afford a house.

Anonymous | 1:02 AM

You are really dramatic! I'm house hunting also and I've toured that house and it has a lot of charm and potential, it's not perfect but certainly not a dump! If this is your version of awful, you've lead a very sheltered life. You sound like a spoiled teenager.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 1:32 AM

Dude, Anon. I respect your opinion for sure but for the price? That home was dump central. And I've lived in PLENTY worse, let me tell you. But not for 4400 bucks, hello.