We signed for a house yesterday! Next up, bringing a heap o' papers to the lawyer for vetting. We have a while to bring back objections to the contract. The current expected completion date is mid-September; a few weeks more delay wouldn't surprise me.
Lest folks think that this has been a two-week decision, permit me to assure you that we have in fact been thinking about it for several months, and we looked at a fair number of listings and developments. This place is, as best we can tell, a good mix of affordability, location, timing, size, layout, features, and quality. The base price is in the $270K range for a 3-storey row unit of about 1550 square feet with 3 bedrooms and 2.5 baths, garage, and driveway, for those of you looking to compare. (If you're really diligent, you can probably figure out from this what model we bought from what builder in what development!)
Some of you expressed concern about living in Kanata being isolating, and I should address that here. We aren't alone in Kanata; several very good and close friends live out that way, most particularly ilanikhan, and we look forward to living closer to them. We aren't totally off the transit grid, with bidirectional rush-hour service to and from downtown and 7-day local service until around midnight. We have a car, which lets us get around quite conveniently. An increasing number of our other friends have cars too, and most of us are willing to coordinate rides without any major fuss. Yes, some folks are less likely to come out to games days, or to socialize with us in other contexts, but I think we'll still succeed in getting together with the folks who are closest to us.
The biggest logistical trick, I expect, will be getting to aikido; my work schedule will likely have to shift a bit to accommodate car swaps with soul_diaspora.
Yes, there is a heap of stuff to do, and to buy, yet. Just the extras we're going to pile onto the house will cost a few kilobucks: stuff like air conditioning, better carpets and underpadding, extra kitchen cabinets, and whatever else the nice folks at the design center show us that we really like and decide to plough money into. Then there's curtains, appliances, and furniture... our vacation this summer in the Okanagan will probably be our last big-ticket vacation for a little while.
It's a bit scary, but we're confident that we can pull it off, and maybe even enjoy at least parts of the process, to say nothing of the final result!