Sunday, while our open house was happening, we went to our last "class" to prepare for the baby, Newborn Essentials. It was good, but I am quite happy to be done with the classes, as they are rather long. Then, we headed out to Westford and Chelmsford to look at some open houses, but they weren't very compelling. We did drop in on an advertised open house just to see what $455K gets you in Westford, and were rather unimpressed.
Today, since Pam had the day off, I took the afternoon off and we went out with the realtor again. We saw one house which Pam really loved, another house which was identical in floor plan to another one we had already seen (they sure do love that split-level ranch layout up here), and a house which had a 2 ft wide staircase coming off the master bedroom (converted from a living room) to the second floor, where the landing had a 7 ft clearance, but the two doors into the "bedrooms" were only about 4 ft high. Also, we visited one house which was nice, except that I briefly thought it was haunted. I was looking around the basement on my own, while Pam was upstairs with the realtor, when I heard a child laugh. This was odd, because I knew the house was empty, so I stopped and listened for the sound again, and sure enough, a minute later, I could make out a child saying something. It sounded like it was coming from the storage part of the basement, so I wandered over there. Turns out, it was an electronic doll buried somewhere in a box of toys, which was randomly "saying" things like "Come play with me!" and "Are you my mommy?". A little creepy. :)
After looking at a ton of houses, Pam and I sat down with the realtor and narrowed it down to our top 4 choices. The realtor pulled comps for each of them, and we were able to narrow it down to 3. After we left, we talked over dinner @ Applebee's, and wrote down pros/cons for each of the 3 houses. When we got home, Pam turned it into a color coded spreadsheet. I went online and looked up the important details we didn't know: Does the town permit homeowners to keep chickens? (Westford: Yes, Tyngsborough: Probably yes, but not clear, Chelmsford: Not unless you have 40,000 sq. ft of empty yard, which means No.) Is that house able to get FIOS? (Two could, one couldn't.)
It is a bit frustrating to be at this point, because we really can't make an offer or even choose because we haven't gotten any offers on our current place yet. We're watching the market to see what comes on this week, and we're going to try to look at new open houses this coming Sunday. Pam is due in 27 days, and even though we hadn't planned to move until after the baby arrives, we're both freaking out a little bit.