Me, last summer, when we were seriously discussing leaving Connecticut to live somewhere in the west:
"Yes! In three years. That would give me a few more seasons to see my gardens mature here, and we can research our move in a leisurely and thoughtful way, and check out possible locations. By 2019 maybe, or 2020."

Me, last fall, once we had discussed settling in New Mexico:
"Look at the homes for sale on I like this one, and I could live in that one, here are other possibilities. Let's look around, and maybe move in the next 18 months. We should have an idea by spring of 2018."

Me, after an exploratory trip to Santa Fe in January, where we spent a day with a realtor touring homes:
"We could make this happen this year. Start cleaning out the basement, let's get our kitchen upgraded, the shower door needs fixing. Let's get the house ready to sell by the end of 2017."

Me, this spring:
"The house is listed, the price is set, it's…

Let the Bidding Begin

We are listed.


The photos are not great, but they're okay and look like most other photographed homes online.

The description has minor typos in it, but not serious, and it just makes the wording look normal -- all realtor listings are slapdash.

The realtor asked me twice to supply my own garden photos showing different seasons (they lost the first set and asked me to re-send all). They told me they would use most, if not all of them. Oh well. It was a nice offer.

There is no lockbox on the door. The realtor said it would be installed Saturday* but I am learning realtor's schedules as well as verbal assurances are mostly aspirational. They're not actual commitments.

I'm being a little picky.

I need to chill, let this happen as it will.

Homes do get sold, and ours may take a long time. Showings aren't going to materialize right away, and the lockbox will appear at some point.

And no one cares about garden photos, as long as the word "granite" …

MLS Description

Would you buy this house, described this way?

Move right into this free-standing three bedroom three bath home that has been impeccably maintained.  Features include a wonderful open floor plan, kitchen with brand new stainless steel appliances installed in 2017, hardwood floors, a first floor master suite and a sun porch.  The second floor loft has a bedroom suite with full bath and extra family room.  Den has a closet and could be a fourth bedroom. Wonderful lot end of cul de sac with great privacy.  Over a half acre of beautifully landscaped yard with spectacular gardens. Solar panels are fully owned (no lease) and generate zero electric usage bills!!  A MUST SEE!

Would you go look at it at least?

This is the write up that will appear on Monday in MLS for our house.

I edited what the realtor had originally written -- things like granite countertops (we don't have them, ours are Corian, it's dismaying that no house will sell without granite) and I wanted to stress that we hav…

House on Waking Sky Road

I like the Sunflower model on Waking Sky Road, and the price is really right. It backs up to open land and views, and has a nice small fenced back yard with a simple concrete pad for a patio. It's territorial style, which I don't like as well as the pueblo style, but it's okay. It has all Saltillo tiles, no carpets.

However, if we bought the house on Waking Sky, there are two things I'd immediately want upgraded:
add a portal in backreplace fireplace surrounds The back of the house looks like this now:

It needs to look like this, although there are no gridlines in the windows (interior wood slat blinds can alleviate that look somewhat):

I'd want the rounded trunk vigas, wood ceiling, and simple posts just like this model. The model is the same one as Waking Sky, but it is pueblo style, not territorial, so the exterior shape is more rounded with accents, rather than starkly square.

Even so, the portal positioned in the recessed area where the patio is would add a lot…


Here is a preview of the photos that will be used on MLS to sell our house. It won't be live on the system until May 15. Click the link for the still shots and a slideshow.

Our Home - listing photos

I don't think they'll use all of them, or maybe they will. I think they are a bit color over-processed, or maybe it's just my monitor. I don't care for the wide angle shots, they always look distorted, but all in all the photos are okay (except the label on the master bedroom is wrong, that's the guest room in the loft. . . oh well.)

On Tuesday May 16 we will have a broker's open house. Then we will wait for very high multiple offers to come pouring in.

Or we will wait for a single looker to wander by in the next months. I have no scenario in my imagination that is is the middle of those two possibilities.

Pricing Process - Sloppy Work

I spent all winter looking up houses that sold in our neighborhood and doing "comparables" to see where our house should be priced. I did not do a strict CMA (Competitive Market Analysis) the way a realtor would do it -- I looked beyond our zip code and used very wide criteria to compare homes. I truly spent months doing this over and over.

Then I put it aside.

When we signed the listing contract last week, I was disappointed with the process used in the formal CMA that was presented.

There were glitches, like they sloppily counted one sold property twice, skewing all the stats. Their comparables included a foreclosure but not other non-foreclosed sales in the neighborhood in the same time period.

Not counting the duplicate or the foreclosure, they showed us five 2-bedroom, 2-bath, 2,100 sq. ft. models in our development and presented those as comparable to our 3-bedroom, 3-bath 2,500 sq. ft. model with loft, solar panels and larger lot. I was not impressed with the work th…

We Signed Papers

Today we signed a contract to sell our home.

We did the disclosures about everything to do with our property, we signed disclaimers, we set a date for the photographer to come and take photos of our home. He's coming Monday morning.

And we set a price.

It's not as high as I had hoped, it's not anywhere near what we paid for this house in 2004, but it's probably realistic.

$409,900 for a beautiful, large, open, newer 3 bedroom house with gorgeous gardens and solar panels and separate guest quarters and a loft upstairs. All new kitchen appliances. Big basement. Lovely private yard setting.

The way it is priced, there are two possible scenarios in my mind for how it will sell:

it's priced too low and will sell in a week and we'll be homeless by summer, having not yet found anything in Santa's priced too high for this area and will linger with few showings until next fall or winter. That has happened with homes in our neighborhood.
The house will go live i…