Donna and Byron: Finding More Space for Their Family in New Jersey
Donna and Byron knew it was a buyers’ market and decided to take advantage and give their family more room. The couple began searching for a suburban home in April 2009 to move from their Brooklyn apartment.
“We heard stories that it was a good time to buy, which motivated us,” said Donna. “We also knew it was time to become homeowners because we had been renting for so long.”
The couple wanted a move-in-ready colonial or Tudor home with a den, basement, attic, and big backyard. They looked for a home on Long Island first because they wanted something as close to their jobs in Manhattan as possible. After six weeks of house-hunting, they couldn’t find a home that they both liked, so Byron suggested they look in New Jersey.
“He told me that taxes are lower, home prices are more affordable, and some parts are closer to Manhattan than Long Island,” said Donna.
In early June, the couple called a REALTOR®, Jane, after finding her name in an online search and began to look at homes in Bergen County.
“We saw a photo of a home in Englewood in an online listing and liked it a lot,” Donna said. “Jane understood what we were looking for and showed us that home and other homes like it.” After visiting a home around the corner from the home in the photo, the couple felt that it was the right house for them.
“You know it when you see it,” said Donna. “It was like a wedding dress – it just fit. I could visualize us and our furniture in the house. It’s hard to describe the feeling we got. Bryon and I usually disagree, but we both agreed that we wanted this house.”
Donna and Byron had seen more than 50 houses before deciding on the one they liked best.
The couple bid on the house the day they saw it, and began the long process of waiting for closing. They waited for the sellers to accept their bid, for the inspection to take place, then for the mortgage company to approve them, and then for the sellers to decide whether they would fix some minor damages to the home.
The sellers decided not to repair those minor damages – fixing weather stripping and cleaning the soffits – and the couple decided that it wasn’t a deal-breaker. The couple closed in the beginning of September.
“I watch some house-hunting shows on television which make the whole process seem like it takes 30 minutes,” Donna said. “I had unrealistic expectations, so waiting was hard.”
Donna and Byron are now looking forward to moving into their new home and being able to entertain guests by grilling outside and making use of the large living room and den. They are also looking forward to their daughter enjoying her new room, which is double the size of her room in their Brooklyn apartment.
“The entire process was thrilling, nerve-wracking, scary and rewarding at the same time,” Donna said. “The waiting was hard, but we enjoyed seeing our house and picturing ourselves in it.” .
Are you a REALTOR® or a recent buyer/seller in New Jersey? Want to help others by sharing your story?
Submit your story today!