Tell Me Your Real Estate Story: Husband So Nervous He (Urp) Threw Up At Closing!

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‘Nother new thingee here on CandysDirt: Tell me Your Real Estate Story. Your home is your Castle, whether it’s $90K or $9 million. How did you find it? What’s the tale behind the sale? Inquiring minds at CD would LOVE to know!

Back in 1993, my soon-to-be husband and I bought a 1600 square-foot house in North Garland near Buckingham and Jupiter. After living in a basement in Queens, New York, living in a real house was thrilling to me. We both worked in the Telecom Corridor, and the home was about three miles to our respective offices. The house was on a cul-de-sac and had these great big trees. At around $84,000, our monthly payments were $880 a month. I was thrilled on every level – new house, new fiancé, new, bright life!

My husband, on the other hand, was terrified about paying the mortgage, even though it was less than we were currently paying in rent. He was so sick he nearly threw up at the closing and had to sit outside with his head down for a few minutes. This tells you what you need to know about us – Tom is the steady, reliable one. I’m the excitable entrepreneurial one.

We thought it was going to be our starter home (ok, I thought that) and that we’d be on to a bigger, better deal in five years. Life is never what you think. When Worldcom laid everyone off, Tom was unemployed/underemployed for two years. We were sure happy that our mortgage was only $880 a month. With the time on his hands, Tom remodeled part-time – including our house – and so we were happy to stay there. Once the Starbucks opened nearby, I had everything I needed.

We probably would never have left that house except — we adopted a teenager with special learning challenges. We found a great school for him in Dallas Academy, but the commute was horrible – one hour roundtrip to pick him up. So, when President Obama had that special housing incentive in 2010, we went for it. Despite the tough marketplace, we had a contract on our house before our first open house! I credit Tom’s incredible remodeling skills and our amazingly beautiful and functional garage. (That’s the photo – wish it was wider.)

We also found our new 1950’s mid-century modern in the Lake Highlands area serendipitously. It wasn’t on the market yet, either. They were having an open house just for the neighbors and I gate-crashed. The previous owners were an architect and graphic designer. They had opened up the house to the studs for their remodel and it was fantastic. In an interesting twist, they were moving because they had just adopted a daughter and the house was too small for three kids. I call our house the dollhouse because it is much smaller than our previous house (and only a one-car garage!), but we love it. East Dallas is fantastic. I’m in love with the trees and green spaces, the lake and the fact that our son can ride his bike to school. The roaming coyotes and occasional lost chicken make it interesting. My husband wasn’t even nervous when we signed this mortgage even though it was twice as much as before. I guess he had more faith in our ability to pay than last time – or else he was too tired from packing up 17 years of stuff.

Cynthia Stine, Publicist, Haley Brand Intelligence


Candy Evans

A real estate muckraker, Candy Evans is one of the nation’s leading real estate reporters. She is also the North Texas real estate editor for, CultureMap Dallas, Modern Luxury Dallas, & the Katy Trail Weekly. Candy has written for Joel Kotkin’s The New Geography, Inman Real Estate News, plus a host of national sites. Constantly breaking celebrity real estate news, she scooped former president George W. Bush's Dallas home in 2008. She is the founder and publisher of her signature, and, devoted to the vacation home market. Her verticals have won many awards, including Best Blog by the venerable National Association of Real Estate Editors, one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious journalism associations. Candy holds an active Texas real estate license but does not sell. She is on the Board of Directors of Braemar Hotels & Resorts (BHR).

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