Just because our lives weren’t quite busy enough (the wedding is in TWO weeks), Stephen and I recently kicked off the process of buying a house. So last week the bank gave us a pre-approved home loan. We have a licence to hunt.
It’s a difficult time to be buying a house – there is uncertainty about the structural integrity of a lot of homes in Christchurch right now, and nowhere more so than the area we are hunting (Avonside/Dallington).
It is sad to drive around the area, seeing the busted-up streets and houses. But now we have new things to consider. Do we want to live in this street? Will it need complete repaving? Is there underlying liquefaction? Do we want to take all that on?
Luckily we are in no danger of inadvertently buying a house with structural damage that gives us problems later. All homes purchased in Canterbury require a structural engineering report. If there is damage, we can’t buy it. Pretty straightforward (for us anyway).
You might wonder why we are choosing to jump into the market right now, rather than wait until things settle. There are still a lot of unknowns about where the housing market is going in Canterbury, but the sector is forecast to boom once rebuilding gets underway in 2012-2013. We are hoping to jump on the home-ownership train before this happens. So exciting times for us!