Linux, musical road-dogging, and daily life by Paul W. Frields
You need nerves of steel.

You need nerves of steel.

What the realtors call “foot traffic” — visitors to our house, presumably with purchasing intent — has picked up significantly in the past few weeks. In the last two weeks, we’ve had about a half-dozen visits. The feedback from the agents, where they tell you everything about your house that sucks so you can feel ashamed every time someone new comes by, has actually been extremely positive. Most of the agents don’t have anything to say except, “Beautiful house!”, which makes me wonder why none of their clients seem willing to actually follow through with an actual offer.

To make matters a little more tense, the house we really like in New Hampshire, and which has been on the market for quite a while now, just dropped its price significantly, increasing the pressure for us to sell if we actually want to buy that one in particular. This part of the process is somewhat like playing chicken, and everyone just stepped on the gas pedal a little harder. I almost wish we hadn’t seen that house back in February, which would lower my stress level somewhat.

If you know anyone looking for a house in Virginia (commuting to DC from here is not a big deal), you’ll let me know, right? ?

After last week’s release I took the weekend mostly off from sitting in front of the computer. I finished a book (The Accidental Time Machine by Joe Haldemann), played some music, picked up a few new threads, got a shave and a haircut (two bits!), and tried not to retreat to the office in the face of deadly cute wielded by my two rugrats.

Eleya and I watched Hitchcock’s 1942 flick Saboteur last night. I didn’t think much of the actors but the story wasn’t bad. The screenplay was authored in part by Dorothy Parker, but from what I could hear, it could have used a little more of her touch. Despite the strikes against it, the movie turned out to be quite good and really tense in spots. I also finished watching Gangs of New York, which Eleya picked up a few weeks ago on super-huge sale somewhere. I’d seen it a few years ago, but was reminded how excellent it was in every respect. And the closing shot of the modern New York skyline in 2001 retained every bit of its power and melancholy.

OK, break’s over — onward!


  1. Josh Boyer

    Hang in there on the house thing. I’m in the middle of that myself. Close on the sale of my house soon, then close on a new house the next week. We had probably 40-50 visits before we got an offer. And the feedback was either positive or stuff we couldn’t change, like “the driveway is too steep”.

    Buyers have tons of houses to choose from and usually aren’t under any pressure to buy so they take forever. It’ll happen.

  2. jef spaleta

    We put an offer on a house just this Saturday, and it was accepted the next day. Our first house however, so I don’t have the complication of trying to off-load a house. The dynamics of first time home buying are somewhat different.

    Do you know if most of the people who have looked at your place are first time buyers or not? I bet there’s a big difference in attitude between people who have a house already and are looking to trade up, versus new buyers who are looking to stop throwing money away every month on rent.

    I’m a bit nervous about the commitment…especially with home heating oil prices like they are. Heating houses up here in the winter is like a car payment..a nice car..a car too nice to ever feel comfortable purchasing. My wife assures me we can afford the mortgage.

    And the best part, the day after we made the offer..the damn stores here FINALLY had a surplus of wii’s but I can’t drop the cash on one because we need to liquidity for closing costs. The Gods of irony are pleased.


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