It started last Saturday when our landlord called. She inquired if she could pick up the wash basin she had given me for the bathroom, and that I hadn’t used because it was very ugly. “Of course.” And then, out of the blue she said: “Ehrm, we also want to tell you that we decided we’re going to sell the house. Are you interested?”


This was exactly what I wanted. The house we’re renting is nicely located, in not too bad shape, and not completely renovated either (which usually means that all nice parts of the house are removed and replaced by their plastic equivalents), and above all, it’s a multiplex, so the tenants who live above us will help ease our mortgage a little but by paying us their monthly rent. Unfortunately the rents are really low because the landlady didn’t raise them every year, so if we can’t raise the rents, which is really hard in Québec, they won’t help us very much. But that same low rent also enabled us to save same money, so we can put down the hefty down-payment. But if we don’t/can’t buy it we will probably be kicked out very soon because the new owner wants to use our apartment himself or herself. And finding another apartment with garden and basement and such a nice kitchen and bathroom for the same amount of money will be impossible. Either way, our monthly spending on housing will go up. So if we can afford it we want to buy. But if they’ll ask an outrageous fortune we have to pass.

We made an appointment to meet Sunday morning and they revealed the price they were asking. It was a lot of money, but not completely out of our league. We agreed we got one week to see if we could get financing and make an offer. After that they would go with a real estate agent and put the house on the market. You know, with a sign saying “A Vendre” in the garden.

So we spend all week visiting banks, shopping for mortgages, and trying to get as much information about the process of buying a house as possible. This morning, after a week with a lot of sleepless nights when we were thinking about what could go wrong and if and how we’re going to afford this, we delivered our offer (25,000 dollars below the asking price) to the landlady’s mail box. She was probably hiding behind the curtains because she didn’t show , even though we had announced our visit. She is probably just as anxious as we are.

And now we’ve to wait if she’ll accept our offer. Or that she comes with a counter offer. Or, god forbid, that she’ll reject our offer completely and we’ll find that dreaded sign in the garden.

To be continued.