When we decided to move from Louisiana to Ohio, we obviously had some very big decisions to make in regards to housing. We had started looking at online listings in November 2021, and things were wild with the housing market. Every house we liked, showed as pending the very next or even same day. There were no houses available for rent in a price range we were comfortable with that was big enough for our family. We also knew that we didn’t want my daughter to go to three different schools in a one-year time, so we wanted to find something in the school district we ultimately wanted to live in. It seemed like we were chasing a unicorn.
Our prior house-shopping experience had taught us that houses can look amazing in photographs, and then not quite so amazing in person. So we knew that we needed to get to Ohio to house-shop in person.
Only one little problem. The kids were still in school, which meant that only one of us would get to see the houses in person before we put in an offer.
It was an easy decision for me: it should be my husband.
And immediately, my friends let me know how INSANE this was. “I would NEVER trust my husband enough to house-shop without me!” and “I guess I have control issues because there is NO WAY.” And there were lots of these comments. I was clearly in the minority.
It did make me question – am I crazy? Is this some sort of wild trust exercise? Am I making a HUGE mistake?
But I wasn’t.
My husband is the most meticulous person I know. Before he left town, we sat down together and came up with a list of about 25 things that we really wanted in a house. The housing market being what it was, we knew we probably weren’t going to get all of them. So then we ranked them – 4’s were non-negotiables to 1’s being nice to have, but not totally necessary. Then we went through about 20 house listings together and rated them together. If a house had say, the fenced-in backyard, it got the four points. And we added up the total scores. The higher the score, the more desirable the house.
By the time we had spent several hours at the table doing this, I was fully confident that my husband knew exactly what I wanted, and I sent him off to look at the houses in person.
As we expected, half of those houses went under contract before he had a chance to look at them, and the other half had multiple offers that were well above asking price. So he looked at houses that we hadn’t looked at and discussed together. And soon he found one that he was certain would be “the one.” But it didn’t have many good pictures online.
I would have to trust him.
He told me he plugged it in with the rankings, and it got the highest score of all of the houses. And it was under budget (by some miracle).
So I trusted his good judgment, we made an offer, which was accepted, and we signed the papers. The first time I laid eyes on the house was for the final walk through. And I loved it.
I realize that this would not be something every couple would feel comfortable doing, and I can totally understand. There’s plenty of people who can’t see the gallon of milk in front of them in the fridge, and I probably wouldn’t trust them to house-shop for me either. But this was an important life lesson for me in trusting my partner, and it came with a great reward for doing so. Ultimately, I knew that my husband would be more level-headed about the process than I would be, so this was an easy choice, and the right decision for me.