Home is Where the Heart Is: Our House Sale Saga/Drama


House buying and selling here in the UK is not for the fainthearted.  About two years ago, we put our house up for sale and after only  a few viewings, received our first serious offer. They were a young couple, about to be married.  She was a teacher in a secondary school in the area and he also had a regular job (don’t remember what it was).  They were really keen to buy our house, but sadly, they weren’t very truthful about their financial situation and the mortgage company wouldn’t lend them enough money to buy our house.  To be fair to them, they did all they can and applied to different mortgage companies to no avail.  If only they had their finances ready first before making the offer.  That would’ve saved us money and disappointment.

Disappointed, but Not Heart Broken

The house we were about to buy was a practical house.  It had the extra bedroom we needed to make into an office.  It had a huge garage, which wasn’t even on our list of must-haves when looking for a house.  It had a bigger garden, but it didn’t tug in our heartstrings.  We went for that house, because we thought at that time, that it was the right house for us.  It was a practical house that ticked off our list and more.

After doing something thinking, we decided to stay put and have a major renovation instead. We hired an architect to design our attic conversion. After sketches and meetings and quotes, we decided to put the house back in the market again.  The amount of money we were going to spend seemed too much and our architect warned us that if we decide to sell in the future, we wouldn’t be getting our money back.

Second time around, we didn’t have much scheduled viewings. The months went by and we thought, maybe we should just put an office shed in the garden?  We started planning again and got in touch with Howdens to do our kitchen for us.  We said we’d go on holiday first and then when we came back, we’d take our house off the market again, and start with the renovations.  A dream-kitchen, new flooring and an office shed.

But while away, we received a serious offer.  It was from a woman who has always loved this part of Cornwall and dreamed of having a second home here.  We met them.  She seemed lovely, the husband seemed okay and they had a lovely three-year-old daughter.

While away, we spotted a house online that looked promising.  When we came back, we visited the house and as soon as I walked in, my heart sank.

Love at First Sight

The house was a typical English cottage, full of character and is roughly about a hundred years old.  There was an open fire in the lounge, a wood burning stove in the dining room.  And another wood burning stove in one of the rooms upstairs.  The kitchen though was small, but had a belfast sink which I love.  There was a front garden, and a very private back garden, and a bit of a side-garden.  And a huge porch.

My heart sank because I knew that if we lost this house my heart would be broken.

We made an offer as soon as we came home.  It was a cheeky offer, so I wasn’t surprised that it wasn’t accepted.  But when we learned that someone else was interested, I told my husband to offer the full asking price.  I didn’t want to go on a bidding war, I’m not made for that.  To our relief, the owners accepted.

I remember the day the house sale fell through the second time, as if it just happened yesterday. I’ve just put little T to bed and my husband was on our bed with his laptop on.  He looked at me and I instantly knew something was wrong.  He received an email from our solicitor saying our buyer’s husband has instructed his solicitor to pull out from the sale.

I burst into tears, even my husband was teary-eyed.  He looked dejected.  We both felt defeated.

The next day we found out that the woman’s husband walked out on her and their three-year-old daughter.  While we were devastated, we couldn’t begin to imagine what she was feeling, what she was going through at that time.

Our estate agent tried to hold the chain together and quickly lined up another buyer who seemed interested.  She came on a Friday, offered on a Saturday and then back out on a Monday.

A few weeks before the Christmas break, we had another viewing.  She turned out to be a mum who we used to know from T’s school.  Her kids have moved on to secondary school.  She was viewing for her friend.  We didn’t think anything could happen, especially since it was almost the Christmas break, but on the last day of T’s school, we got an offer from the mum’s friend.  And I’m happy to share that we are moving house on the 22nd of this month!

Yes, the house we fell in love with is now ours.

Have you ever been disappointed in a house sale/move?

Do share.

Filed under Little Musings

I'm a part-time writer, full-time mother and dog-walker living in a small English village by the sea with my husband, daughter and a dog named Doc.


    • It was like a never-ending nightmare. Yes, so glad it’s over now. Surrounded by boxes as I type this and will probably go back to packing once I’m done here 🙂 x

  1. Brilliant news! I can’t wait to see your dream house 🙂
    About 18 months ago we lost our dream house after a damning structural survey forced us to pull out. We were devastated but a month or two after we found the house we have now. We’ve been in almost a year and I think it was fate that we lost the first house. Good luck with the move x

    • Thanks Louisa. I think I remember reading something about that in your blog. Haven’t visited in awhile, so I’m not sure if you’ve posted an update on your bedroom renovation. Can’t wait to see it too 🙂

  2. Ahh! Phew! I’m glad this post had a happy ending. I was worried for a second then….What a drama.
    Good lick with the move. I hope you will be happy in your new home.

    • I think so too! 🙂 Yes, it was indeed a never-ending drama. So glad it’s over now. xx

  3. I completely agree househunting has really turned out to be a trauma for us! it’s so gut wrenching when you fall in love but don’t get it! it’s great that you got your dream house now… we are not so lucky yet! but we wont give up hope!

    • Oh don’t give up! I didn’t. When our house sale fell through the second time, my husband just gave up, but I told him that as long as the house we want is still up for sale, we should never give up. And I’m glad we didn’t. Yes, there is hope and keep looking! It will happen 🙂 x

  4. Oh wow poor woman sorry to hear that their husband walked out on her and her kid. But you have your house now finally you must be so pleased!

    • I know. I felt awful for her! I hope she’s okay now, despite what happened. On the brighter note, yes we did get our house in the end 🙂 Thanks Ana. x

  5. Oh my goodness, I can’t believe after all this time it has worked out!! Will Little T have to change schools or is it in the same area? What about Doc, will you be by the coast? I know you took pictures when you walked through the new house – you need to SHARE!!!!

    • I’ve been meaning to email you actually … But to answer your questions: Yes, it’s still in the same area. Just outside the village actually which means T will still be going to the same school and yes, it’s still by the coast, but not walking distance like our current house. Although to be fair, we can probably walk it too, but not planning to do that 😉

  6. Oh wow, reading this made me feel as if I was experiencing this with you. I can not even imagine he disappointment you must have felt the second time round but glad 3rd time was a charm. Congratulations on your new dream home

    • Thank you Miranda! You’re right, 3rd time around is a charm 😉 x

    • Thank you! Two years of being in limbo. I’m so glad it has finally ended 🙂 x

  7. Moving house most stressful thing we’ve done as a family. There are so many variables and relaying on other people I’m so pleased we were able to buy the house we’d been renting for 4 years and now it’s our perfect home. Good luck with your move x

    • Thank you! And nice to know too that you and your family ended up owning the house you’ve been renting for four years. x

  8. Its such a stressful process, when we moved last time we were not part of a chain so although we offered at asking the day the house went onto the market it was still nerve racking! We have another move left in us and I know its going to stress me big time. Congratulations on finding your dream home look forward to the updates x

    • Thank you! Hope your next move won’t be anything stressful like this one 🙂 x

  9. Sorry to hear of the wait and heartache it has caused you, but I am so glad you now have your own little dream place! I hope you and your family have many many happy years together! I’m saving with my partner for our first home fingers crossed we don’t have the same stress… Highly doubtful I know! Xxx

    • Thank you so much for your kind words Sassy 🙂 I will cross my fingers for you and your partner that it won’t be nothing like what we went through. xx

  10. Fi Ni Neachtain

    That cottage sounds like a dream house, ever since I was a little girl I’ve always wanted to live in a cottage. Good luck with the move 🙂

    • Thank you. It’s a lovely cottage 🙂 The rooms are a bit small, but I love it 🙂 x

  11. It does sound like such a drama but I am so jealous that you own. I have worked my whole life. My husband has too but we will never be able to own. We rent privately so any chance of saving is taken by the rent. I wish you the best of luck in your new place. X

    • Thank you. I’m going to cross my fingers for you and your husband, that you hopefully, will be able to climb up the property ladder soon. Goodness knows you guys deserve it! x

  12. Moving is the single most stressful thing, from start to finish it is just a nightmare, or always have been for me x

  13. We have always rented, so I’ve never been in this situation, but I can imagine how heartbreaking it must feel to lose the house of your dreams. I’m glad things worked out for you!

    • Yes, I”m just glad it’s over now. Two years of being in limbo was just too much!

  14. You must be thrilled! I was so pleased when I read that you managed to buy the house of your dreams. Nothing better than moving into a house that seems made for you – despite the short term nightmare of a move.

    • Thanks so much Kriss! 🙂 We are thrilled, even though the rooms are a bit smaller, but we will finally have that much needed third bedroom for a study and a bigger garden for T 🙂 x

  15. Congratulations on finally getting your dream home xx My folks have thought about moving but the area is really handy so maybe they might renovate instead x

    • We like the area too, where we live, so not really moving far. Renovation isn’t really a bad idea, as long as you have space. Thank you!

  16. So glad you got your dream home in the end! We have had similar experiences when buying and selling and it’s so stressful. We even rented an old home to allow us to move and that ended up being even more stressful! It’s good to read a happy ending! 🙂

    • At one point, we did think of renting. But I’m just glad though that in spite the heartache, we stuck it out and got what we wanted in the end. Thank you! 🙂 x

  17. Michelle Murray

    so glad this had a happy ending. Sounds like a nightmare but glad you got the dream house you wanted

  18. Oh Dean, I’m so happy to hear after reading your post that you’ll finally move to the house that you fell in love with. I know how stressful it can be selling and buying house, we’ve done that stage 3 yrs. ago. But at the end, it was all worth it when you’re already settled in your new home. Good luck to your move and looking forward to read your posts about it.

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