• Part Two of Incredibly tl;dr Update: Buying the Next House

    Oh, hello! Are you still here? You actually made it through PART ONE OF INCREDIBLY TL;DR UPDATE: SELL THAT HOUSE??

    You deserve a fucking medal. 

    Now, if you can get through this update, I might just owe you a beer.*

    If you haven't read PART ONE OF INCREDIBLY TL;DR UPDATE: SELL THAT HOUSE??, click here.

    If you're refusing to read Part One, fine. Here's the succinct version: We sold our house, got pizza for life, The End. That's all you get.


    By now, you know the Portland market is Cuckoo-Crazy-Bananas-Stop-Moving-Here-You-Californians-And-New-Yorkers. Right? Right. Houses were getting multiple offers within days of listing, all over asking. Once we got close to closing on our house sale, Rob and I were constantly combing through house listings in the area. We were ready to shop. We were ready to fight. We were--

    "That house sold for HOW MUCH??"

    Out of our league. 

    We already started out behind, as we didn't sell a house in California and have gobs and gobs of cash to throw around. We also didn't have a lot of time to spare- we had 60 days to find a house, go through all the inspection/repair/loan crap, and move. Not a lot of time to make an offer over list price, get rejected, move to the next house, make an offer over listing, get rejected, you get the idea. Plus, even if/when we finally had an accepted offer, we wouldn't have a lot of time when you have overworked appraisers making your sale period 45 days instead of 30.

    Rob and I had four things we needed for the next house:

    • In our price range.
    • At least three bedrooms, with either a fourth bedroom or a bonus space for my studio.
    • In a decent school district (the MAIN reason for us moving- had we been in a good school district, this would have never happened).
    • Not a craphole (translation: as move-in-ready as possible).

    As we scoured the listings, we kept getting pushed further and further out of Portland for what we needed. While we definitely benefitted from this stupid crazy real estate market when selling our house, it was now biting us in the ass as buyers. 

    It finally got to the point where we were looking so far beyond the outskirts of town that we wondered if Tri-Met buses even operate out there (for those who don't know, Rob currently commutes 2x/week to downtown Portland via bus, as we are dorks who only have one car).

    So we said, "Fuck it. If we have to move far out, let's move REALLY far out. And let's just go with our retirement plan already."

    The MarshMuellers are moving to...

    Wait, WHAT??

    I know, I know. It's way outta left field...or should I say, left coast?


    I'll let myself out.

    But- but- what about Rob's job?

    Rob has made arrangements to work remotely full-time. He is already working from home three days a week, and he still plans to come to the Portland office when necessary (so probably a few times a month). We already have an area of the house planned for his office.

    But- but- what about your free pizza?

    Believe it or not, this is the question that gets asked the most. Oh, don't worry, we're still going to come into town for pizza from DiNicola's. It's a short drive, anyway.

    Uh, how long is that drive? Isn't that awfully long?

    It's about a two-hour drive. We have made SO many day trips out to Astoria for house buying affairs, and every time we get back into Portland, we're like, "Oh. We're home already." When we go visit my folks in Eastern Washington, it's a 6-7 hour drive, so this is nothing. Besides, we have friends and family we can stay with when making trips "into town." Haha. 

    But- but- what about your Portland Timbers?

    Did you really think moving approximately two hours away would deter us from matches? Then you don't know us very well. Yes, we will miss some matches, but they are ones we already miss due to being on school nights.

    Um, Holly? Did you read that New Yorker article?

    I see your fearmongering earthquake article and raise you a more even-keel, less-panicked one. If you didn't know about the Juan de Fuca plate and the Cascadia Subduction Zone, and you've lived in the Northwest your entire life, GFTO! Seriously. Know your area. Know the risks. I would much rather die in an earthquake than in a hurricane. And yes, the coast will be toast. From a tsunami perspective, though, Astoria was the one town closest to Portland with the least risk to tsunamis. I didn't say there was no risk, just less risk than the towns right on the Oregon coast further South of Astoria. 

    So...why Astoria?

    Why NOT Astoria? It's a beautiful coastal town, a wonderful community with good schools, amazing breweries, and yes, they filmed The Goonies there. Plus, there is a thriving arts community and a regular Sunday Market where artisans can sell their wares. 

    Portland, while it is my version of "The Big City," has lately become so busy and overgrown that it is starting to feel a bit stifling. SO many people are moving to Portland. Rents are rising faster than the amount of breweries popping up. There are definitely good and bad parts to the mass of people drawn to this lovely city, but I know it's my cue to leave. Rob and I have felt the pull of moving elsewhere for a while; we just didn't know where it was going to take us, and when. I grew up in a TEENY town (smaller than Astoria!), and all my life I've been pulling away from the small town vibe, drawn to the hustle and change of a big city, only to move to a small town to raise my family. My dad was the first to call it,

    "You're going back to your roots, Holly."

    I guess I am. 

    But I'll be close to the mother effing ocean!! We are buying a house that is double the size of our current one, and we are ready to be part of a smaller community.

    And we will have a spare room for those who want to visit (seriously, who doesn't want to take a trip out to the Oregon coast?).**

    So yes, it is a tad bittersweet, as we were really looking forward to moving closer to some of our friends in outlying areas, it just wasn't in the cards this time. 

    Now if I can magically wrap up two humongous and exciting wholesale orders and pack the house in two weeks, life would be AMAZING!

    *Beer is offered to the first three people, who mention it, in person, at a future Timbers match. Sorry folks, I doubt three people will redeem the "TL;DR I Can't Believe I Read the Whole Thing Award," but I've seen the power of things going viral, so there.

    **Room is offered only to people who I have met in person previous to this post. We are dead serious on the offer, too! Bring your kid (but watch him/her), bring your dog (but pick up his/her poo), bring your booze (and share with us!). Even if you decide to camp and only need to come to our house to take a shower, that's cool, too.

    Holly Marsh
    Holly Marsh

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