Just built a house, regretting the location

KateB22April 4, 2014

We just built a new house, it is not quite done, we don't live there yet- and now I am regretting the location we chose. I am having a hard time with it overall.

I love the house itself, but I don't really like the location anymore!!
The other thigns is it cost way more money than I had planned on. And it cost more money than I could resell it for- by a lot. Because the sitework ended up being way more expensive than I anticipated, plus so many other added costs I hadn't anticipated. And we are not even done. And I have to still keep paying to finish it. It is stressful.
Because if we had paid this much but then it was super it would b one thing. But we paid a lot and now the location is really feeling stressful to me. For one it is too far from husbands work(25 minute commute- we right now in our rental he has a 15 minute commute).

It feels a little too far from the main area of town with the stores- it is about an 11 or 12 minute drive ( right now we are 6- though we don't love our house or neighborhood, it is closer).

It is only about 6-7 minutes from our kids' school which is one reason I chose this location. Now I am not 100% I will keepthem at this school- I may very well, but when we bought the property I had been thinking 100% at this school for the next ten years and now I don't know.

When we bought it we had been looking for 2 years. Living in a crappy rental with kids, and we were trying to meet a few different needs. We had this nice house plan we wanted to build and finally we decided on this property that we thought was bout 5- minutes farther than we wanted to be, but it gave us a big lot and privacy and quiet and 6-7 minutes from kids school.
Now there are just many things about the area that feel unappealing to me, the drives feel too far, etc. I love the hosue but wish I could rewind and have built it somewhere easier- with less costly site work than we had to do, and closer to work and downtown. I am feeling kind of freaked out and overwhelmed. We move in soon., When I am in the house I love the house but the yard is overwhelming, too much to manage, there is an area across the street ( through the woods soyou can' fuly see it) that is kind of a marsh area - pretty big- that I am now worried wil cause it to be too buggy.Etc.
ssentially, I was trying to find a balance of being quiet and peaceful and private enough, but now I feel like we will be too isolated, out in the country feeling.

So what to do? My husband says well let's just move in and see how it goes. We know we will take a huge financial loss if/when we sell. And the thing is I love the hosue, but the location no so much. I suppose if our kids stay at this school the next ten years it may be okay - in good weather 6 minutes to school seems not too bad. I am just feeling afraid of my choice and kind of regretting it, and wishing I had not gone so overbudget because it makes me feel kind of trapped.
If I knew I could sell it and get reasonably back what I put into it I would feel less pressure and more just go with it kind of. But I feel like I messed up by putting so much into it and then not liking the location! I am not sure exactly where my ideal location even would be at this point--- just know there are some big downsides to the one I chose.

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Maybe you just need to "get to know" your new home and location. Give it time...

I wish you well. I hope in a year you'll think "How in the world could I NOT have loved it here."

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 1:25AM
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I hope so. I am seriously having a hard time with this! Part of it was there was not really much out there to choose from. So we said, well we have to compromise somewhere so let's get the hosue we want- because finding land was kind of limited. There were many things I was trying to avoid ( one side of town is close to a loud hiway and I wanted to be away from that- which our spot is, for evample, and I wanted to be close to the school). Since we built this another plot of land in another area that may have been nice came up but oh well- it actually has a few downsides that this property doesn't. And really the areas closer to my husbands office are busier with more cars and noise-- and I guess I was trying to find somewhere quiet. But I am just feeling like it is too isolated, kind of a country road thing, and I am worried about it!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 1:34AM
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It is a huge purchase and with this comes second guessing . Nearly everyone who builds owes more on the home than they could sell it for-- for quite a while. I think it would be a good time to focus on all of the reasons you will love being I that house and on that lot-- all the reasons that made you initially say yes to it despite the costs of a longer commute, etc. "What you focus on increases" and focusing on the drawbacks will only make you more and more miserable.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 5:10AM
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What I'm seeing is a classic case of "buyer's remorse". A LOT of people feel as you do when they first realize what they've done.

Then they move in and everything's fine after about a week.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 7:04AM
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Are you really worried about work commute and stores being 5-10 minutes further away? Sounds like buyer's remorse to me along with sticker shock at how much more expensive it's all turning out to be. I bet once everything is done and you're in the new home you will be very happy - I would love to have that short of a commute and a big lot with privacy. Try to relax - easier said than done I know!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 8:18AM
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Weren't all these things you are now so worked up about there before you bought the lot? I'm sure if it was as bad as you are making them out to be, you would not have bought it. Building a home from the ground up is always more expensive then originally planned. 25 minute commute is not bad at all. Nor is the drive to town...12minutes?? You need to stop and take a breath. Stop being a "Debbie Downer" and look at all that is positive with your new home and location. What was good about it before you bought it and concentrate on that. Live in your home first and get to love it before you are never happy with it because of all the negativity. NancyLouise

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:06AM
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"So what to do? My husband says well let's just move in and see how it goes."

I agree. Everyone is anxious when moving to a new place. We were when we bought our house.

We had looked a long time and weren't 'feeling' the love about many of the houses we looked at, so we hired a Feng Shui consultant. She gave us tips about what to look for and what to avoid. Some houses have bad vibes for a reason. Those reasons can include: the year it was built, facing direction, negative sha (marsh across the street?) and things that might have occurred on the property or land before you took title.

It wouldn't hurt to look at a few feng shui sources to see if any of them ring a bell.

I know there are people out there who think that feng shui is pseudoscience, and that is their prerogative. But I feel it has some merit. At least it did for us. The lady who helped us find our house was trained by a man who has a feng shui business in CA. Master Larry Sang was chosen to consult on the Beijing Olympic sites

Feng Shui Tips for Moving into a New Home

Links that might be useful:



    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:43AM
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I could have written your post.

Well, almost anyway. I don't have kids, so I don't have the school concerns. And moving to my newly-built house cut my commute in half, so we're different there.

But what we do share (apparently?) is the God-awful habit of second-guessing ourselves to death. :)

Building a new house is one of the most stressful things I've ever done. It cost way more money than I'd hoped too. I KNEW that was going to happen going in, and yet I was still surprised at overages and unknowns that kept popping up.

So then you get close to the end - and you're looking at the house...and thinking, I spent THAT much money and it's not even PERFECT?!

That my friend is the path to crazy town. :)

Take a deep breath. Take a step back. And just keep going with the flow.

Give it some time. Once you are in, and settled, then you can reassess. Right now is not a good time to do that. Trust me. :)

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:48AM
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Thank everyone! Your kind advice really helps! And you are all right- it is the combo of the huge amount of money , and it still not being totally right--- and the huge stress of the millions of decisions in building- and still paying more money etcetera. Also right now ( it is a dirt road) in new England where we live is "mud season" so the roads out to the house are extra difficult which is adding to my concerns ( but that only lasts 3-4 weeks). I think you all are right that once the house is done and we move in we will settle into it and maybe even love it-! Also, we just had a bunch of trees cleared ( like over an acre of trees) and they are not stumped yet so the yard is a mess-- overwhelming! I look at it and think how much more money I still need to spend to get the lawn done. But yeah, at least the house itself is nice! Thanks again. I will try to focus more on the positives. I will post back in a couple of months with an update once we move in.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:53AM
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You are suffering from the very common "builder's remorse." It's a common complaint and goes along "what have I done?" I agree with your husband. Move in and see how it goes from there.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 10:02AM
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We bought 8 acres of raw land and will be in the same predicament you are in. However, we know and have heard over and over that the costs to clear land, excavate, bring in dirt, gravel, septic, well, and put up a fence will be higher than expected. We are doing it in piece meal so financially it wont be that much of a burden. But in the end, we will probably have thousands more into the property than it is worth.

Our current commute to work is 4 miles. Once we build, a grocery store is 15 miles away on windy roads in the mountains. A bigger city is 40 minutes away. It is what you get use to. Years ago when I worked in another city, my commute was 30 minutes and did not seem like a big deal. The 4 miles now is nothing compared to where I came from.

We will be paying in driving time and money for the beauty, solitude, peacefulness, and love of nature. It will all be ok in the long run.

Give it time.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 10:44AM
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Besides agreeing with others' comments about buyer's or builder's remorse -- I have to say you should be happy with those commute times. Compared to many of us, those commutes and distance from stores, etc. are great!

Also, it's very common to have to build or buy a bit further from town for economic reasons. I think as you have been living in rentals,once you get in there, and experience your own home with your own walls around you, you will be happier about it.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 11:34AM
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(Plus, with the long winter, maybe find yourself some Vitamin D... Frankly, you sound a little depressed. As spring and summer with SUN come back into your life, hopefully that will be enough of a mood enhancer your body/brain will snap out of their funk).

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 11:52AM
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We've just been through a wicked winter, and spring isn't even really here yet.

Again, I totally understand how you are feeling.

I remember my first spring. I'd drive home, past all these pretty houses. They had nice green lawns, nice landscaping, daffodils popping up...

And then I'd pull in my driveway - which was rutted to hell. Past my "yard", which was dirt with rocks and little bits of construction debris laying around. And I'd look at my house - or at least the parts I could see around the massive construction dumpster anyway - and think, WHAT HAVE I DONE?!

It got even worse, when a house 2 doors up from me went for sale. I kept thinking, why the hell didn't we buy a finished house? That house is nicer than mine, cheaper than mine...and it's DONE!

Like I said - it's the path to crazy town. :)

The road is lined with well meaning people, who tell you how lucky you are to be building a new house. And in the grand scheme of things, you ARE lucky. But isn't a lot of comfort when every blessed day some damn thing goes wrong, costs more, and looks worse than what you had dreamed.

You're at the ugly stage. The house isn't done, it's costing a fortune, you're starting to see that "perfect" doesn't exist, and we're all a little bit nuts from this winter anyway too.

It gets better! It may not ever be "perfect", but I promise you it gets better. :)

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 11:55AM
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Why did you remove so many trees if you do not want a lot of yard maintenance?
Also, do you realize that if you are financing the build that any amount that you owe the builder that is above and beyond the final appraisal is going to have to come from you in the form of cash.
Like others have said, relax and be thankful for the good things you have.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 1:25PM
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We had tow houses built in Florida. We used to live in a small town that I loved in New Jersey. The first house was in a desolate sparsely populated housing development in the country about 8 miles from town. I felt the same way you do. Creeped out and wanted to be closer to everything. I think you will enjoy it once you get used to it. 25 minutes really isn't that far of a commute for your hubby. Some people I know drive an hour a day to get to work. I enjoyed the peace and quiet of the first and second house. The second house was even farther from town, but it felt like heaven when I got home.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 1:37PM
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typical "buyers remorse". Everyone gets this feeling on their first house. After a year you will feel how blessed you are.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:46PM
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Change, even good change, like moving into your own home from a rental, can be hard. And stressful.

There's the Holmes and Rahe stress scale--I've linked to it below. It's a list of 43 of the most stressful life events that you can experience.

Getting a mortgage is on it. Moving to a new residence is on it. Also things most people think of as joyous occasions--having a baby, Christmas.

So some degree of stress about moving is normal. I really do think that you should live in the house for a year before deciding if you want to stay or not. Right now, you are focusing on the negatives. But there must be some positives--there's a reason you chose that lot, that house plan. Get the move over with, and see if you can find something to be pleased about in the new house.

Here is a link that might be useful: stress scale

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 7:16AM
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"...Also right now ( it is a dirt road) in new England where we live is "mud season" so the roads out to the house are extra difficult which is adding to my concerns ( but that only lasts 3-4 weeks)..."

I too live on a dirt road in New England. Vermont. Only 48% of the roads in Vermont are paved. Yeah, mud season is fun, but it's temporary. Because it's also maple syrup time.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 7:48AM
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Yep, what everyone else said. It comes with the territory of making any huge commitment - the ones you can't back out of are especially terrifying!

For me it was buying my first house, a fixer upper house - after closing I moved some stuff in, sat down and sobbed inconsolably for hours. The next morning I lie on my mattress on the floor (with the chaos all around me) just watching how the sun came in the window through the trees and how the shadows of tree branches and leaves were playing on the walls. It was one small tiny thing that I could love and that gave me comfort. From there I was able to find other things over the weeks/months/ years. Yeah, there's things that are a PITA but overall it was a good move.

So - at this point what else can you do but move in., and be open to falling in love. If it doesn't work it doesn't work, but you don't know that yet.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 11:12AM
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I can't see how an added fifteen minute commute could be the deal breaker here. And,the six more minutes to town.

IMHO, i think your are stressed, understandably about the amount of money that is going into this house. There are some things that you can not change about this situation. Certain bills must be paid, end of story.

But, you can control how and what you spend on everything else. Set up a list of priorities. Many purchases can be made later rather than sooner.

I think once you are in and start the routine of daily life, you can better assess if this is the house for you.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 4:00PM
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I do really think this sounds like "building overload" as other people have mentioned. You're overwhelmed, you're still not done, and you start to want to just have it end.

Be cautious about the amounts things are going over. It's easy to get wrapped up in, "It's just a couple hundred extra"...after a few of those, you're suddenly into thousands of dollars. So, put the brakes on that. Evaluate if it's really REALLY going to make living in the house THAT much better. And even if it will, is it something that can be done later on down the road.

As for the distances for travel. Honestly, an extra 10 minute commute to work...that doesn't sound like much to me. Quite do-able in fact. Now, if you were talking about something that was the difference between being a minute walk away from public-transportation line and a 10 minute drive to one...that would be an entirely different story. But, long and short of it is that you have to get in the car to get places anyway...it's really not that much of a difference in time overall.

Hang in there. Try to keep things in perspective. You'll get through it and I'll even bet that you'll love the house in the end.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 4:11PM
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Thanks again. I am stll feeling super stressed. It is absolutely about the money- my budget went so far over that to sell the hosue would be a huge loss. If the amount I could sell it for were closer to what I put in I would not be so stressed.
right now I am wondering why I ever chose this spot--- But I do hear what you all are saying, I will get used to it. I just feel that I spent way more than I can afford and that is my main anxiety. And that right now I still have to finish the yard and so many things and I wish I had just put our house on a smaller simpler easier to get to lot! Instead I got a big drive up a muddy hill (right now) and a big yard to maintain (which I will have to let some of it just grow back in) and a big financial stress. And I just did this- by some bad choices. And now I feel stuck n the results and bummed out!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 4:27PM
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As you think of the new conditions you will need to deal with, imo it might help to brainstorm ways to ameliorate them.

For example, you could hardscape some patio areas and also make some raised veggie beds to decrease yardwork a bit.

For mosquitos, you could install lanterns or zappers that would draw them away from your house.

For longer commutes and shopping trips, you could combine trips to some extent, and have tapes or cds to listen to (music, educational, fiction, whatever). Maybe your DH will find someone to carpool with.

I had a 30 minute commute for years. My job was stressful, and the commute gave me time to unwind before interacting with my family. It worked out well. Fuel costs can be a concern, but the automotive industry is working on that one, too.

Good luck and enjoy your new home!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 4:50PM
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I feel for you. I really do. I built a custom home in 2007 - 2008. Yep, right at the beginning of the crash. It took almost a year and a half to complete a build scheduled for 7 months! The lender that had my construction loan went bankrupt halfway through the build and the bankruptcy courts put a hold on my draws! The building stopped and there was no one to call at the lender who gave a damn, because they were out of a job and could not do anything anyhow, until the bankruptcy process took its course. After a couple months, the loan was bought by another lender, and we got back on track. Or so I thought. A couple months later my builder went bankrupt! The home was about 85% finished. Not to a point that I could get a CO and close. And then the mechanics liens started being filed. You can not close if there are liens. We had to pay them off ourselves with cash even though the builder had already drawn the money. As soon as we would pay off one lien another would appear. I threatened the builder that he needed to get us to a point where the house could pass final inspection and get a CO. The day that it did, we paid off all of the additional liens and closed. But the home was not finished at all. The HW floors were not sanded or stained, no yard grading or landscaping, no final cleaning (it was a filthy mess), only some of the appliances were in, no alarm system, two broken windows, an outside wall that had to be torn down to the footer and built back, and a ton of other issues.
We moved in and were just relieved to be rid of the builder and the lender. On our first night there, the tankless water heater stopped working. We gave our baby boy a bath by heating up water on the stove. We took cold showers for a week. I had to fix the heater myself, because when I called the plumber that installed it to come out, he informed me that the builder still owed him $5000. That first night, it rained really hard. Our basement flooded with over two feet of water and did so every time for two years when we had a large rain, until I installed an interior French drain. It was not long after we moved in that we found out that he had not paid over $100,000 in outstanding bills on our home. Guess where the liens go? That's right, on our new home. But you know what? I was done letting the actions of others ruin my daily life with stress. They had done so for more than a year! I told every sub that came knocking on the door to file a lien and talk to the builder and to get the hell off my property! I paid for it once, I was not going to pay for it again! Most of them were actually very understanding. Believe me, I could tell you many, many more horror stories that we ran into for a long time after moving in.
One thing that saved my sanity was that in my business, at that time especially, I was running into people that really had it way worse than I did. Hell, I was living in a beautiful custom (unfinished) home, with my own fishing pond and creek, and in a county that we moved to for the schools. The thing that bugs me the most about it all today is the fact that I could not open up the door to a brand new, sparkling clean home and watch the expression on my wife's face. We never got to experience that feeling.
So, over the last 6 or 7 years, I have slowly been scratching items off the To Do (5 pages long, single spaced) list and if all goes according to plan, I am going to hire someone this summer to finish off everything else, and then some! My wife will be away from home for a little over a week, and when she gets home, I will meet her in the driveway and open up the door to her brand new home! Seven years later.
Kate, please sit down and start a new budget that is based on your new reality. And when you really get down on yourself, just remember that a lot of other folks took a big hit and have not really recovered over the last few years. It sounds as though you are in a position to handle your problems. Don't stress about the muddy driveway, the too large of a yard, the extra 5 minute drive, or other "silly" items that will go away no matter if you stress over them or not! Deal with the financial problems with a thought out, written plan. Once you do this, you will feel so much better. Everything else will fall into place over time.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 8:32PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Agree with the general consensus here. Agree with ncrealestateguy that once you put a financial plan in place you will feel a lot better.

I have never built, but have remodeled a kitchen that took a year out of my life and I remember for 3 months afterward, I was exhausted and couldn't even appreciate the kitchen until I felt better. Now I love the kitchen and don’t feel regret about any decision I made.

You have every right to feel stressed. Going over the budget was probably the one thing that has created a lot of anxiety for you and justifiably so. But from what you have said, some of the added expense had nothing to do with bad decisions you made. You couldn't have known that was going to happen.

You just have to accept where you are and let go of the rest. It just is what it is. There's nothing you can do at this point. You can't sell the house now. You need to move in and work with it, like your husband has suggested. Enjoy every good thing about it and ignore anything that makes you feel negative about it. You and your husband deserve a break. Don't punish yourselves over this. Once you've been there a month, you will feel more settled. Hopefully you will get some sleep and start to feel less anxious. It will definitely be better than living in what you described as a ‘crappy apartment’.

and ncrealestateguy…what a situation! I hope it all works out wonderful for you in the end. I hope you get every single item off that to do list done and celebrate!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 9:14PM
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Thank You!!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 10:25PM
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that is a terrible story ncrealestateguy. Hope you are able to give your wife that "look."

to the OP: I have built homes in my head my entire life, and will never get to actually build one. But I did buy a house -- my first, when in my mid-50s. I was very lucky, as the whole process was about as stress free as it can get. I'm still stressed when I think of the financial part of it.

One of the things that helped when I was looking for the house was accepting the fact that I would have buyer's remorse. The books I read said that was inevitable.

But you gotta live somewhere, right? And it sounds like your choices were not all that plentiful, so you made the best decision you could at the time.

Today, I stopped by the builders' sales office and told the sales agent who helped me over a year ago that I loved living there, and loved my house. And she said . . . no one had ever come back and said that before! Made me feel good, but obviously, there are a lot of people out there with regrets. Don't let yours eat you up. I hope it works out for you in the end and that you come to love your house when finished.

This post was edited by Violet.West on Sat, Apr 5, 14 at 23:48

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 11:47PM
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I am a worrier, too. Sometimes what helps is to think about what's the worst that could happen and how you'd handle/deal with it.
Your husband's commute is 10 minutes longer.
The drive to town is 5 minutes longer.
Those times really are not a big deal. You just leave 5 or 10 minutes earlier.
The yard is too big to maintain. You let some of it grow over. Your kids will like to play there no matter what.
There's a wetland across. You spray bug spray. (I live in a suburban area and have loads of mosquitoes)

The other things, like school switch or that you have to sell the house for less than it cost, are in the future and may or may not happen. You'll address them when the time comes.

At this point, make sure that you're not completely overextending yourself financially and try to look forward to your house, which you love. You can solve the problems once they arise.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 4:02PM
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This post was edited by KateB22 on Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 22:32

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 7:29PM
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Kate, you do know that any overage comes out of your pocket at closing? The bank will not just automatically bump up your loan amount just because you went over the original loan amount. To increase the amount of your loan to cover the overages, you have to do a refinance... which costs money.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 8:37PM
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ncrealestateguy, I feel for you. We built our house in 2006-2007 when real estate had already started tanking here. We were owner-builders, so fortunately didn't end up in the mess you did although we probably would have if we'd used a builder. We were the last new house most of our subs worked on. We also had a 5 page single spaced list of unfinished jobs, which we are almost finished with after 6-1/2 years, and have hired someone to help us with the last few.

Kate, we went way over budget, and are the most expensive house in our nice but average neighborhood, although half of us are on a river, which helps. I can't believe how much we spent on this house. We have a mortgage, which we didn't plan on, although we have enough money to pay it off if we choose to. DH is normally the most careful person with money, but the day before we were supposed to start our build, he was diagnosed with cancer. He spent 3 months going to doctors, winding down work, and was treated part way through our build. He's fine now--fortunately it is a slow-growing treatable but not curable cancer, and the doctor said something else would get him before the cancer would. But he was sort of maniacal during the build, impossible to talk to, let a lot of expenses get out of hand, and didn't do a good job of negotiating with the subs.

Although we both love the house (I designed it) and the lot, we wish we'd built closer to a nearby city. It's only a 20 minute drive, but we're retired and know we'd do more things there at night if we lived in town. I wanted a pretty, comfortable house, which ours is, and I have ordinary furniture. Whenever I think about how much the house cost, I feel like the house isn't that special. If I don't think about the cost, I like the house fine. If we didn't have invested money that we could pay off the mortgage with, I would REALLY be upset.

So everyone has given you a lot of good advice. I wish you well, and hope you soon get past this difficult time.


    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 11:21PM
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I want to add that aside from the money issue, it is not so much that 11 minutes to town is horrendous- it is just that we ended up on kind of a back dirt road with tricky driving, and it feels too isolated and this time of year super muddy to drive to where I don't even want to go on it. So it is 11 minutes in good driving conditions but more in bad. Our town is rural feeling-- the town is a proper town, but ten minutes from town can put you up a messy road in the middle of the woods, so it feels overwhelming.
Yes, I knew all this before I chose it. The thing is I have been trying to figure out, in all the time we were looking, if it felt better to be a little farther out and have more space and quiet and privacy, or to be closer in and have more traffic and noise and closer neighbors and other things. When I made the choice I guess the space and quiet was appealing - but now it feels a little much.

Anyway- the next thing is to try to get the yard in order, put up a fence, stump and grade, get some outside space a little more managed. Between that and the muddy season eventually ending, I may be okay. I hope so!

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 10:34PM
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Hang in there. I've had a few homes built and can tell you that the muddy period is awful. It's enough for you to have second thoughts. I had to use a large size of an outdoor carpet on the patio in order for my dogs to go outside. I had long fur dogs so you can imagine.

At this point it seems logical that you give this house a chance. NO house is perfect, even if you design it yourself so don't go thinking that the next new build will be perfect.

You will not get your money back for a few years. If you sold it now, you would have a loss. If you live in it for a couple of years it will go down some more....When the market gets better, it will take a few years before you will get your money back, so may as well enjoy it. That's how new construction works.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 4:36PM
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Kate, thank you for posting. It's been very therapeutic for me to know I'm not alone! If it makes you feel any better, I'm in a similar funk about a house that I bought to remodel. We overpaid for it -- not terribly, but enough to be annoying -- but the real problem is that we grossly underestimated the amount it would cost to modify it. My daughter's bedroom is a glorified hallway, and the kitchen is tiny, so we figured we would build off the back to solve those problems. Now we are realizing that doing that is (a) brutally expensive per square foot; (b) requires much more renovation to the existing house than we anticipated -- otherwise, we will end up with a truly wacky, "what were they thinking" layout; (c) farther out of our financial reach than we anticipated, since my husband is self-employed, and one of his major accounts dried up. What seemed like a fun adventure when we bought it now feels like a trap -- live in this inconvenient space for several more years, or take the plunge to fix it and worry constantly about the cost. Selling it and moving isn't really viable, since as I said, we overpaid, and interest rates have gone up since we took out our loan. I keep reminding myself that these are very first-world problems -- we have a roof over our heads, our kids are safe and healthy -- many people would give anything to have what we have. It does help to remember that, a lot, but I still feel trapped by the choice we made. Ironically, I had been grumbling that it would have been smarter to find a lot and build new than to chain myself to this expensive pile of layout problems. So take heart -- you are not alone, and there is no perfect thing you should have done instead of what you did. Every situation has its tradeoffs.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 10:24AM
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Thank YOU for posting! Your post was therapeutic for me. We recently purchased a house that I violently hate-more with each passing day, and your story sounds a lot like mine- we overpaid just enough to be annoying, the cost of renovating the areas we planned is prohibitively expensive. Reselling right now is not an option so I feel trapped in a house I loathe. Occasionally I remind myself that I am moaning about 'first-world problems' but that does not make it any less painful! I empathize but am slightly comforted to know that I am not the only homeowner in the world feeling this way!

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 1:32PM
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I totally understand! I am renting in a great suburb. 5mins from city, 5mins from great restaurant and shopping strips in either suburb opposite me, 2 houses down from the city's main park and river. View of the city from my balcony. We had planned to buy an old house around this area, then we randomly went to see a builder one day, as you only needed 2% deposit to build through their scheme as opposed to what we thought was more elsewhere. Long story short, one day we were looking at estates, next day we had bought land, and signed contracts! WHAT possessed us to do this I don't know. Wed done little research and got it into our heads it would work out sheaper (NOT TRUE!). Soon after the house started being built I regretted what id done! the area is so far from all the activities I partake in regularly. I will be stuck in extreme traffic on a 100km freeway that sits at about 10km an hour. Theres no nearby shopping centres apart from supermarkets and small stores. No leisure centres like the great one a few minutes from me. I wake up with a sense of dread every day, wishing there was someway I didn't have to leave here and move into that damn house! I want to sell it, but the houses are selling at what we paid for it! We didn't pay stamp duty and got a $10,000 new home buyers grant from government which we wont get again, so would need to make 40,000 on it to cover what we've spent and selling fees. I agree with another poster who says you feel bad for thinking about this when theres real world problems, but when its such a big investment and you feel like such an idiot for stuffing up, and feel trapped. Its just horrible.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2014 at 8:43PM
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Oh and I don't even love the house! For one thing, I like houses with character. Wood floors etc. My partnet likes cold and clinical. We have white tiled floors, which not only are cold and uninviting, they will be a nightmare to clean, and witht he home loan scheme flooring had to be included so the builders put a massive mark up on them! because we didn't know we were building and hadn't much time to design the house when we were rushed into prestart, some of the choices, cupboards, pavers, roof colour and type, I HATE!!! God just thinking about this makes my nerves go. Doesn't help that im recently pregnant, out of a job, and my father died. I cant say that's the reason im feeling worse about the house though, cause ive felt horrible about it since the bricks started going up, and its got progressively worse...

    Bookmark   December 11, 2014 at 8:56PM
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Nine years ago we bought a house I did not love. Since then I have changed everything about it except the location :-) Seriously, we have redone every single bit of it, at a cost of three quarters of the purchase price. And it was in "move in ready" condition when we bought it. And I still do not love,the layout!

Had it been solely up to me I would have waited to find something more to my liking and we would have saved hundreds of thousands of dollars.....you are not the only person who has bought or built a house they don't like!

    Bookmark   December 27, 2014 at 10:27AM
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I think if I was in your situation, I would feel exactly the same way. I probably will feel that way when and if we do build a house, even if I thought the location was superb when we bought it. It sounds like you are having doubts and buyers' remorse, which I think is completely normal. I agree with your husband. Try to de-stress until it's all finished, move in, and give it a while to see if it grows on you. I imagine that it will and you will be OK with it a year from now. It may not be 100% perfect, but I don't think any home ever is. You are just in the throes of the hard part of the process right now. I think it will get better.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2015 at 4:53PM
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I just noticed after I replied that your original post was in April of last year. :) How did things go? Did you end up being happy with your house and location?

    Bookmark   February 3, 2015 at 5:00PM
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I can certainly appreciate all the frustration contained in this thread. While I could regurgitate my angst with building our custom home that took about 8 months longer than the builder noted in the contract, I'll just get to the point at the end of our story. We knew going in we were going to be stretching ourselves financially. We'd become accustomed to having a certain amount of discretionary $$ to do what we liked, when we liked. We knew that was going to change, gave ourselves a 5 year 'scrimp plan' as we didn't want to 'scrimp' on building. As noted above, nothing seems to work out like planned, spent quite a bit more than planned but still within the 'plan'. Now 2 years into it and the reality of it is settling in, scrimping isn't fun. I'm a car guy and can not indulge that 'want' right now, our trips are shorter and closer to home, we can't always join the crowd on evenings out. I sometimes loose sight of the plan and get frustrated we're in this situation even though our eyes were wide open going in. I just have to step back for a moment and appreciate what we have and know that sticking to the plan is critical to opening up more opportunities in the future. Heck, only 3 years to go right?? Yep, gotta look at it that way or just get depressed. I love my house, my DW my kids and I don't even mind my 55 mile, 1 way commute to work (been doing that for almost 20 years, actually used to be longer). We've got our dream home on 30 acres in the country, what's to complain about? It's really easy to get jaded, to see only what's wrong, to lose sight of what's important, to give in to doubt and self loathing (why did I ever do this?). It's all temporary, life moves so fast the things that kept us awake at night last year are hard to recall this year, was it really worth all the lost sleep? Most situations work themselves out if you just keep in mind what you want. It's easy to give in to the negative, too easy, it's easy to lose sight of what you believe in, it's easy to be distracted by all the things that pop up in everyday life. Once in a while it's important to step away, take stock in your life, revisit the things that motivate you and keep you looking forward, reinvest in your mental well being, fortify yourself for the challenges ahead. Sometimes we have to see the 'wrong' thing through just so we can get to what we believe is 'right'.
One thing I tell people is it's better to make a decision, be it right or wrong, than to procrastinate and worry something to the point your unable to do anything. If it's right you'll know it and move forward, if it's wrong, you'll learn why and make the necessary changes to make it work. I'm an electrical engineer, that sort of thinking keeps projects alive, promotes learning, and creates a feeling of accomplishment. Not everything is a home run but if you don't swing the bat you can't hit the ball.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2015 at 9:18AM
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It's now been about 11 months since you moved , so we were wondering if you feel better about the house now. Yes, it's winter again in New England, but are you happier with the home?

    Bookmark   February 4, 2015 at 4:33PM
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