- lots of natural light
- good size
- open plan LDK (living, dining, kitchen)
- sociable kitchen, i.e. not facing the wall/window, but into the house
- four bedrooms, one downstairs that can be used as a playroom/guestroom/classroom
- all south facing rooms
- parking space
- big bath
- balcony with a roof
- lots of storage space (including a storage room)
Now these are the boxes it DIDN'T tick, but that we decided were outweighed by everything else:
- BIG garden at the rear
- underfloor storage
- balcony running the length of the house
- living room with at least 3 solid walls (no doors)
- car port
Hmm, thought there were more than that! Nice surprise :) Another GREAT plus is that it is only a five minute walk to the primary school. This had been a big worry to me, as children often walk to and from school alone here, but from the land we were going to build on, it was a 1.5km walk, including a really busy big road :( I tell Y that I am going to take the children to school until they are ten anyway, but we will see. I definitely won't let them go alone at 6 years old, no matter how "safe" it is here. This is also a big plus if I eventually decide to teach primary school children.
So we looked at the house, considered the great location, quiet, and yet not isolated, other children around for ours to play with, and the price, and realised that we could buy it ourselves. MIL was reluctant to help out if we bought a used house. But Y called MIL to come and look at it herself. It was all a bit of a scramble, so we had little time to decide if we really wanted it, and to weigh up the pros and cons. There was another family interested, which didn't help, pressure wise. ARghhhh, so there I was trying to convince myself that if we didn't get it, it wouldn't be the end of the world, ha ha! MIL came, looked around, but the children were getting grizzly for their dinner, and it was getting late. So I decided to leave it in their hands and told Y that if he was sure, then I was sure.
Hours later, they managed to get a further discount of 800,000 yen (down to the MIL ;) ) and as they were desperate to sell, there was also 1,000,000 yen to spend on furniture at a designer store. So exciting! But so nervewracking too! They were sorting it all out all night and Y didn't get back until midnight, by which time, I'd gone to bed! Before this, I was sitting all alone at home excited, arghhhh! So frustrating!
One of their conditions was for a quick move, so we are moving in at the end of this month, and we have this apartment until 8th November. Plenty of time to move, but I want to get as much packed as possible. I'm soooooo glad that I de-cluttered. Must have been fate :)