With school underway, I can feel the stress and pressure building back up to the level it was at last semester, only a bit worse as the courses I am taking are making no sense at all (at least one of them.) However, I've found something that gives me solace in a time of great stress: working in a university setting. Working at the ASSIST Center on NC State's campus is proving to generally be what I wanted. I'm happy with the work I am doing, overall, but I am mainly happy to be on campus having the interaction with brilliant minds, students and professors on a daily basis.
UpdatesI wish I could say I'm doing great on the GOALS that I set for myself in a previous posting. I severely cut down on the soda but I was unsuccessful in drinking none for the two month time frame I set for myself (which is still currently happening.) I will not be drinking any for the rest of the month! 16 days... That's got to be easy... right?
Next month, however, is going to prove much more difficult than I had originally thought... I've already cut out a lot of pasta (which I am very sad about..) but having absolutely no wheat products in my diet is going to be difficult. Many of the vegetarian protein sources that I eat have wheat products mixed in. I may have to modify the 2 month span from "no wheat" to no "added wheat products" such as pastas, breads, etc. I cannot cut out my sources of protein..
I've been attempting to track my macros, push myself as hard as I can at the gym and not focus on the scale but rather how I feel about myself. I don't see a lot of change happening yet, but I've started an Instagram for my fitness: sr_fit. Follow me to keep up with my progress!
BEST NEWS OF ALL
I've been waiting WEEKS to tell everyone and I just can't wait any longer. I'm so super stoked on the news (much more stoked than I've been in a long time.)
WE'RE BUYING A HOUSE
(aka: we've already bought it and we're waiting on the final appraisal for final loan approval.)
We are very, very excited. The house is brand new, slated to be finished next week. We are taking our first initial walk through next week and we're scheduled to close (as of now) on March 13th. HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY AND BIRTHDAYS TO US! Below are pictures of the outside of the house. Inside of the house is for only certain eyes until our housewarming party. :)
Initially we couldn't tell how large the lot was going to be, but turns out the front and back yards are both HUGE, along with a driveway that can fit at least 6 cars.
5 Tips I Wish I Had Know About Buying A HouseIt's hard. I'll give you that. As a first time homebuyers, there were a few things that we just didn't know to ask or know about loans. We found solid answers online and through my parents (my step-dad builds houses and my mom is in the home mortgage industry, convenient right?), but I thought I'd share a bit of our "knowledge bombs" with you (this is a blog posting, after all.)
1. Wait.The first house you like might not be the right one. Don't settle. My boyfriend and I almost did just that. We found a house and our Realtor told us we needed to move fast (see 5). I think we were both okay with settling where we were. The neighborhood was nice, but the more we began to think about it, the more we didn't want to live there. We talked it out over lunch and decided that putting an offer on the house (we thought we loved) just wasn't the right move. We talked to my parents and they recommend we look in their neighborhood. There were only a few lots left, it was the same distance to where we were looking previously, and the houses were brand new.
AND BADA'BING, we found it! Brand new house, in our budget and the size we wanted WITH room to fence in the back yard (to get a dog, big thing for my boyfriend and the other home did not have.)
2. Make sure you have everything, plus some.This tip comes from my mom, mainly. When you're applying for a home loan and going through the underwriting process, make sure you have everything you need (pay stubs, income records, etc etc.) and then throw some more on top of it. My boyfriend made the mistake to read underwriting horror stories (DON'T DO IT. There are some really nasty stories out there. :[), so we made sure to have over the top information to provide to our underwriter. So far, so good (knock on wood, "yet" and all the other terms to throw in for superstition.)
3. If it's new, be extremely picky.And this tip comes from my step-dad. He's built homes or worked in new home construction for most of his life. He's been the 'man behind the mask' on many different types of family home construction. His tip to us: be extremely picky when it comes to "flaws" in your home. You're paying good money for a brand new house and the home itself better be worth it. Down to the last small nick in the beam on your front porch. Write it all down, take notes and have them fix it before you close. You are, after all, their customer. They should be concerned with good customer satisfaction.
4. Get pre-approved / pre-qualified.A simple step that can make all the difference in the world. There are many benefits to getting pre-qualified.
- If you don't get pre-approved, you have the possibility to fall in love with a home that sadly you cannot afford (according to the bank.) That's dangerous and can be really damaging to the spirits.
- You have better leverage when putting in an offer because you already have pre-approval for financing. You're over those who do not have financing yet. You know what your upper-most limit is in order to judge if you can afford to wiggle with the purchase price. Negotiation will be easier.
- If it's your first time buying a house, getting pre-approved can shed some light on what to expect at closing and the fees associated with that... I know I was surprised.
5. Be prepared to move fast.. extremely fast.
From the time we started looking, found our home, put an offer in, negotiated and got our offer accepted, it was a total of 4 days - 5 days. 5 DAYS. That's very quick. We found 3 houses online that we wanted to look at before we found our house and 2 of them were already off the market (one within a DAY of being put on the market.) It's a large decision and to make it in 5 days is extremely hard, but in order to get the house that you want, you may have to move just that fast.
I'll keep you up to date on our home buying process, and then after we move in ALL THE DIY PROJECTS I'LL BE DOING. :)