As of this morning, we had one picked out. It had pretty much everything we were looking for, and we felt it was a little overpriced but were willing to pay it because it seemed like it would require very little fixing to make it exactly what we wanted.
Boy, that was wrong. I went through with the home inspector today, and that really opened my eyes. Just about everything that could be done wrong with the electrical systems was. The Inspector pointed out at least a dozen building code violations in the wiring.
Building code aside, some of the stuff in this place was just plain dangerous. They had exposed wiring touching insulation in the attic at multiple places. It was the newspaper-based insulation in the attic too. Yeah--the whole attic was essentially a well made camp fire with a lighter sitting right in the kindling. All that takes is a single jolt of power when you turn on your lights to set your roof on fire within minutes!
The Coup De Grace with this house, however, was the ventilation systems. They were done completely wrong! They let some of the vent pipes dip down--and it had caused a Carbon Monoxide backdraft! So, essentially, if we had used hot water in that house, we could've been killed.
Despite all this, we felt like it could all be fixed. So, we withdrew our offer, and told him we were still interested, but that we'd only buy it at a slightly inflated market price (rather than the largely inflated market price he was asking). Long story short, we still offered him well above what the home is worth, and he wouldn't talk to us. I don't know what the housing market is going to do, but I do wager it'll take a significant hit when the 8000 tax stimulus passes its deadline. So, we've moved on.
I'm not that picky with the home we'd live in. All I want is a safe environment, a fiber-optic line ran to my house, a place for my computers, and four bedrooms so our growing family can fit comfortably. Really, is a LAN too much to ask for? I've wanted one since I was a kid. Now that I have the beginnings of one, I'm starting to realize that I don't have friends to populate one should I build it. Oh well, maybe I can get a calling in young mens? Maybe I should just get a new hobby, and only do computer networking for my job.
In retrospect, I'm glad we withdrew our offer. If we're still looking in six months, then I might revisit that house and see if the price has come down to a fair market value. If it hasn't, then, oh well, the guy who tried to flip it can pay the mortgage on it.
In the mean time, some new prospects have opened up, and I'm really quite excited about them. I hope it lasts long enough. I really hate shopping, so we'll see how long I last.