How a Dallas area family found a house where they could immediately feel at home.

Three years after starting a life in their first home, Alyson and Derek were ready to move on from their small Texas town of less than 5,000 people to a more desirable location for them near better work opportunities, dream schools, and lots of fun family activities. First, the couple felt like being closer to Dallas-Fort Worth would broaden their career horizons. But there were other deciding factors too. “There was not very much to do before. It was… boring. We wanted to be closer to family and wanted to have stuff to do.” And with two kids and a dog to come home to, a short commute — and as much time together as possible — was perhaps their biggest motivator of all. 

Alyson and Derek weren’t just looking for the right location, though. They needed the right location, the right price, and most importantly, the right home.

The right home looks different to everyone.

Top item on their wishlist? Derek’s dad had recently passed down the ultimate family heirloom: his high school car  — a 1974 Z28 Camaro. But Derek knew the one condition for hanging on to this prized classic ride. “For a house we were going to buy, we had to have a garage,” says Derek. “He wouldn’t let me have [the Camaro] if we didn’t have a garage, so that was very important.” Alyson wanted a big yard for the kiddos and the dog, and a renovated master suite with a walk-in closet and standalone bathtub to relax in after a busy day of teaching high school Spanish. Other priorities were separate bedrooms for the kids so they could have their own space, and a home office where mom and dad could get some work done (working in technology, Derek needed way faster internet then they had in the country). 

When fixer uppers and cookie cutters just don’t cut it.

Alyson and Derek kicked off their home search by looking at some new construction houses with their realtor. But with cramped backyards and “cookie-cutter” stylings, none of these houses felt like the one. “I was looking for a house that I could see myself and my family living in,” says Alyson. “I imagined where we would put all of our furniture, how we would arrange different rooms and bedrooms, and how it would be to host parties and family get-togethers there. Sometimes, based on this alone, I would rule out a house.”

We didn’t want to move in and have to redo the house and fix things. 

Finding a pre-owned home that checked off all Alyson and Derek’s boxes proved to be a not-so-easy task itself. Especially since they wanted something within their budget that didn’t need ANY work done. “We didn’t want to move in and have to redo the house and fix things,” says Derek. “It was important for us to have a house that was as complete as possible.” After nearly four months of searching, the couple eventually made an offer on a house, but the inspection uncovered a lot of issues. “It was a terrible experience. They had original air conditioning units that were on the verge of death,” says Derek. “It needed a ton of work.” Having watched her fair share of home renovation shows, Alyson was just as weary of taking on a fixer upper. “I personally am not the type of person who can live in a construction zone. I can’t live in clutter, I can’t live in disorganization.”

A move-in ready home too good NOT to be true.

When it was time to tour their Bungalo home, Alyson and Derek knew almost immediately. “The moment for me when I realized that I wanted to make an offer on this house was… as soon as we unlocked the door and came in,” says Alyson.

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They especially loved the modern light fixtures, and the charm of the penny tile in the half bath. “The homes within our budget that we were seeing… they still had like carpet from the 1970s or the popcorn ceilings. And then we came in here, and everything was shiny and new,” says Alyson. They almost couldn’t believe what they were seeing. “It was like, there has to be something wrong with this house,” says Derek. But Bungalo made sure everything was pre-inspected from the smallest details to the big ticket items. “We don’t have to worry about the A/C going out,” says Derek. “We don’t have to worry about the brand new water heater… the roof… everything is DONE.” The couple was pleasantly surprised, and ready to make the home theirs. “It’s a testament to the way Bungalo works,” says Alyson. “You pick a place that has good bones and good structure, and you make sure it’s going to last for years like a new house would.”

The moment for me when I realized that I wanted to make an offer on this house was… as soon as we unlocked the door and came in.

And just like that, a house becomes a home.

As soon as Alyson and Derek got their financing in order with their bank, they made an online offer, and boom, closing time. “It was emailed, it was signed, everything’s official,” says Derek. “Everything from start to finish was so smooth and easy and comforting,” says Alison. “There was not one moment of regret or uncertainty once we chose this house.” From there, pretty much all they had left to do was move in — which was about as stress-free as you’d expect. “We didn’t have to do anything,” says Alyson. “Our Bungalo home was a really great find for us because we were able to just come in, bring in the boxes, unpack, and really turn this place into a home.” 

There was not one moment of regret or uncertainty once we chose this house.

Now, being at home in their Bungalo means there’s a perfect place for everyone and everything that matters. Derek’s classic Camaro rests easy in its garage. Alyson can breeze home from work and get that bubble bath up and running in no time. The kids each have their own bedrooms with space for all their toys. And the family dog, Leisl, even has a spacious backyard where she can comfortably run and play. 

Want to start your own Bungalo homeowner story? Easy.

Find and tour certified homes, get connected to fast and stress-free financing, and make an online offer, all through Bungalo. Browse homes.

This article is meant for informational purposes only and is not intended to be construed as financial, tax, legal, real estate, insurance, or investment advice. Bungalo always encourages you to reach out to an advisor regarding your own situation.

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