We're Buying our First House (and other happenings)! Exciting Times...

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Some of y'all remember that we got married in April 2020, right in the midst of that thing we don't mention around here. Went from having a LOT of people invited to the wedding (mostly by her parents - I think they invited the whole town, LOL), to 10 total... And instead of flying to Costa Rica (which was a recommendation by @Quattro Pete), we ended up doing a road trip through Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee, which actually turned out to be awesome.

Then she got pregnant almost right away, our son was born in Jan. 2021, then our daughter in Dec. 2021 (2 mos early, but she's fine now), and, now, she's expecting again, and we found out last night (through an early blood test) that everything looks normal, and we're having another daughter! She's due in March.

We have been in a 2BR, 2BA apartment (with attached garage and driveway) in a nice, gated complex, that was about $1100 when I moved in 9 years ago, had climbed to $1452 as of last renewal, but they decided to raise rent by a staggering $430 (to $1880/mo) if we chose to renew again, and it was the impetus that we needed to finally make the decision we've been needing to make anyway, and get in the market for a house.

I wasn't in a rush, but needed to make a decision semi-quickly, because I gave the required 60-day notice to our apartment complex management co. to avoid a penalty of 1 month's rent. So, we have until Oct. 21 to be out.

I found a house we liked on Thursday, went and looked at it that night, and made an offer Friday. They counter-offered Saturday, and we accepted.

Sucks that interest rates are so high. But it can't really be helped. We're blessed to have more than 20% to put down.

It's not huge by anyone's measure. 3BR, 2 full BA, 1450 sq. ft. It will be cozy for a family of 5. But that's OK. And it sits on a 1.1-acre corner lot, in a semi-rural area, but only 5 minutes from I-40, and a few minutes from Walmart, Kroger, etc. It's in ****son, TN. A little too far west of Nashville to be considered a suburb. About 15,000 people in the town. We drove around and did some exploring, and it's a nice town with a cool downtown area with nice little shops and restaurants, etc.

The house has a detached 2-car garage, detached carport, paved asphalt driveway, covered front and rear porches, and a fenced back yard. That detached garage even has a little storm shelter built into one corner. We're going to enjoy being able to let the kids loose in that backyard. And I'm going to enjoy that carport for vehicle detailing and maintenance!

Home inspection is tomorrow morning! Luckily I'm off work and will be able to show up at the tail end of the inspection to go over his findings and ask questions. Thankfully, from the appearance of the home, the owner was conscientious. And it's not that old - built in 2015. So I'm hoping for no major issues. What I'm concerned with is the bones of the house - the foundation, frame, roof, plumbing, and electrical.

Lots of things I'm going to have to think about. And buy! I'm going to need a riding mower, weed eater, and blower, for starters! Wondering what brands of lawnmowers are decent (I'll probably go used), and whether to go gas or electric on weed eater and blower. I know that the lithium-ion electric stuff has come a LONG way in the last few years. And the car detail guys are big on the electric blowers.

Also wondering how often to have pest control come out.

Anyway, just excited, and wanted to share with you guys.

Any tips, advice, etc. is welcome and appreciated!
 
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john_pifer

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Jackson?

Thats a great area in TN, and its nice being out from bustling Nashville.
 
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Congratulations on the new home!
The newer battery powered stuff is pretty good for the weed eaters and blowers. It all depends on your usage. Stick with a name brand mower, especially if used. It's much easier to find spare parts such as belts, etc. for a Deere or Cub Cadet for example.

Good luck and also congrats on baby #3!
 
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Probably want a zero turn?
or get a nice used deere x300 or x500 series
Box store tractors are mostly junk.. which is fine if you know its disposable after 5-10 years and half the bolts and nuts fall off :LOL:
 

john_pifer

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Probably want a zero turn?
or get a nice used deere x300 or x500 series
Box store tractors are mostly junk.. which is fine if you know its disposable after 5-10 years and half the bolts and nuts fall off :LOL:
Probably need to look and see what used zero-turns go for.

What size would you think I'd want for an acre?

Need to see how wide the gate in the back yard is. Honestly not sure if there's a double-gate to get something wide in there.
 
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Probably need to look and see what used zero-turns go for.

What size would you think I'd want for an acre?

Need to see how wide the gate in the back yard is. Honestly not sure if there's a double-gate to get something wide in there.
On the other hand, lots of lower end zero turns have similar parts and longevity to big box store riding mowers. I wouldn’t sweat it too much. The regular rider will probably last fine as your yard isn’t crazy largr or rough.
 

4WD

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On the other hand, lots of lower end zero turns have similar parts and longevity to big box store riding mowers. I wouldn’t sweat it too much. The regular rider will probably last fine as your yard isn’t crazy largr or rough.
Yeah - Zero turns really save time if you don’t mind alternating the direction of discharge - but I always prefer to keep the discharge in a preferred direction (where I want the clippings to wind up) …
 
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Congrats on the home. You will now begin building equity and have tax deductions that were formerly unavailable to you. When all is said and done I suspect that it will be cheaper than renting. In just a few short years you will look back and say " I can't believe we got it for such a good price".
 
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Probably need to look and see what used zero-turns go for.

What size would you think I'd want for an acre?

Need to see how wide the gate in the back yard is. Honestly not sure if there's a double-gate to get something wide in there.
used zero turns can be a crapshoot. if they are neglected the hydro system can be worse than a money pit.

If you have a 4ft gate I'm sure you could find something with a 42" deck or whatever size is designed to fit through the gate.

How flat is it.. the more uneven the better a smaller deck is vs a 50" or 60"
obv. a larger deck leads to shorter mowing times.. because you have overlap so you arent cutting the full width every time..
which makes a larger deck even more efficient.

the x300 series is the basic homeowner riding mower but with good quality.

the x500 series is more full on garden tractor heavy duty.
 
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Home inspection is tomorrow morning! Luckily I'm off work and will be able to show up at the tail end of the inspection to go over his findings and ask questions. Thankfully, from the appearance of the home, the owner was conscientious. And it's not that old - built in 2015. So I'm hoping for no major issues. What I'm concerned with is the bones of the house - the foundation, frame, roof, plumbing, and electrical.

Any tips, advice, etc. is welcome and appreciated!
The only thing that really jumped out at me after being a realtor for over 15 years is that you're kinda skipping the home inspection. Being there and asking questions is basically why you're paying the big bucks. It's less effective afterwards as you won't be going through the entire house with him. Sometimes the inspectors that the buyers pick end up skipping some stuff so I point them out as I go. Like around here, they always take off the electrical panel cover to check for rust, double taps, etc. Some just skip that part because it looks fine, but you won't find double taps that way. And home inspectors tend to dispense maintenance advice as they go along, hard to get all that at the end of the inspection and that stuff won't be in the report. Pretty much 95%+ of the time the buyers were there during the entire inspection. As I said, sometimes they miss stuff and sometimes what you see is actually nothing, but if you're not there to ask the question, you're probably wasting half your money by not being there.
 
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