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Movin' on Up

...to DC that is.  In the words of Forest Gump, "Our Nation's Cap-it-OL."  Several weeks ago, we finally got word that our days in Brazil are numbered, and as my husband's agency likes to say, we're being brought back "into the fold."  We'll stay here in Rio to have the baby, but as soon as she and I are medically cleared to fly, we'll pack up and head Stateside.

I'm still not sure how I feel about it all.  Our initial assignment to Brazil was for a three year post.  We chose to extend the additional two years because, despite being so far from family and friends, Brazil has become our home.   It's crazy and confounding in its Developing Nation way, but also incredibly rich and warm and welcoming.  The reverse culture shock we will experience moving to the rat race of DC is not lost on me, and we will try to soak up as much of Rio as we can over the next few months.

So, week before last, I trekked my big bump self up to the DC area to scout a housing situation.  Are ya'll familiar with the DC area housing market right now?  It's NUTS.  It's one of the few areas that has really recovered from the housing crash, and is booming.  Low inventory and high demand are again creating this perfect storm in real estate that has people doing things like waiving inspection and finance contingencies, and bidding tens of thousands OVER asking price to get the house they want. 

The last time we were in the market for a home, it was also a boom, but people seemed more genteel.  Now, in that area at least, it's pretty cut-throat, and I felt a bit like Country Mouse.

So, our agent took me house-hunting.  I saw maybe a dozen to fifteen homes that fell within our criteria.  Only one of which I would even CONSIDER living in.  I'm having to adjust to the fact that not only would I never give most of the homes a second glance were they in Texas, where we're from, but we're also going to pay out the wazoo for a home that's....less than inspiring.

*But*

I have craved the chance to DO THINGS in my own home for nearly five years, and now I'll most definitely have the chance to do that.  Might have to sell my soul or body to do them, but, we'll cross that bridge later...
We've put a contract on a house in the Virginia 'burbs of DC, so fingers crossed this one will pan out, and I can start sharing my brainstorming.

Here's to looking through rose-colored glasses.

9 comments:

Christine Dovey said...

I literally can't WAIT to see how you'll transform your new home- quite sure it will be completely inspiring!!!!

Elisa @ What the Vita said...

Love DC, love their homes, hate their prices. Happy for you and hope that place works out for y'all!

theanatomyofdesign.com said...

I just moved to the DC area (Maryland side) last year and was shocked by the housing prices...good luck! And, I can't wait to see your home...i'm sure whatever you choose will be great once you start your decorating magic!

spark! (Ada-Marie) said...

Congratulations, Alison! I grew up in McLean, Virginia, and my in-laws are realtors up there. The market HAS gotten crazy again. They are working 15 hour days to keep up with the "race to purchase". I can't wait to see where you end up and what you do with the place. Living up there is such a trade-off -- so many amazing resources and great schools in Virginia, but lots of people, traffic and "noise". Good luck with the home stretch, girl! xxoo

LindsB said...

if only you could move up North a few more hours to be close to meeee! Boo.

Anyway, I feel your paint about the housing situtation- I feel like the recession never really hit Boston, New York or DC. Where were all those great deals around here? I have yet to see any. In fact getting over asking price is quite normal. Ug, so frustrating for those newlywed first time buyers like my husband and me.

Anyway, you should email Emily from Perfectly Put Together. She moved from Boston down to the DC area a few years ago and loves it! She can give you more inside scoop :)

Nancy said...

Alison, you'll be near us!!! We are in Manassas, about an hour west of DC.. Where are you buying? Let us know! Good luck with all that's going on and your transition. I have loved your posts from Brazil!
xo Nancy
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Emily said...

Hi Alison! I'm the Emily that Lindsay above mentioned! I just started following your blog and moved to DC when my husbands job took us here. It's a terrific area but one that is definitely expensive! If you have any questions at all, I'd love to help! Wishing you the best with the new baby and the future move :)

Linenqueen said...

You need thick skin to live around Washington DC. I've been her 35 years. Don't forget Harry Truman's remark, "If you want a friend in Washington get a dog".

Good luck,
Ann

Susie @ Maddie's Nest said...

Alison, we live in Dallas now but lived in Northern VA for many years. The market here in Dallas is crazy as well......If you have any questions or need recs in Virginia drop me a line. It has its pros and cons over Texas but it is an exciting place to live.

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