House SOLD…The Clock’s Ticking

I had mentioned in an earlier post that we are moving to Gig Harbor, Washington. We are now in the seemingly interminable period between the initial flurry of activity (house hunting, offer making, and inspection) and the final closing coming at the beginning of next month.

A parallel activity has been underway – one that hasn’t involved writing big checks, only a lot of effort – and that has been to prepare and sell our current house. We had worked the last month to get it ready as I had noted in a previous post (read here).

Last week we signed the contract with our realtors and the game was afoot. The house was turned into a display case with new bed coverings in the bedrooms and color coordinated towels in the bathrooms. Dirty clothes and wet towels were stuffed into empty drawers and everything else was ready. The dogs, which typically have free run of the house, were kept sequestered in the family room in the basement to avoid spreading dirt and hair throughout.

Last weekend we held a two-day open house, which – by accounts from realtors and neighbors – was a success. We didn’t see it ourselves. We had spent the two days as gypsies: driving around town, at dog parks, beaches, and fast food locations.

Sunday night we got a call from the agent from one of the prospective buyers. She wanted to do a pre-inspection early Monday – all offers would be reviewed that evening. Monday morning, the house was still in in display-case mode, the dogs were loaded into the car, and another day was spent away with the inspection and other potential buyers coming by.

Our realtors came Monday evening. We were expecting three to four offers; we received five. That was very good.

Even nicer was the surprise that of the five offers, four were over the asking price. The offer selected was the high bid, and it came from the people who had done the pre-inspection. And that they wanted the house as-is. So no additional maintenance by us is required.

The bid was even higher by several thousand dollars higher than I thought we could get if the Seattle market was as hot as reported in the newspaper. At least from our experience it is.

Whether a hot housing market is good thing in the long run, time will tell.

For right now, I will say it worked out well for everyone in this parallel activity of buying and selling. We’re moving to the place we want to be. The family buying our house gets to move out of a cramped townhouse to a bigger house, and their children will go to good schools.

Now if all our remaining stuff would just appear in our Gig Harbor house without us having to pack and move it all; that would just about make me believe in magic.