Archive | September 2011

Inspections Galore

Yesterday we had the inspections on both the home we are trying to sell and the home we are trying to buy. Jon and my dad were able to attend the inspection and get information on the home we are purchasing. Now we are negotiating over the fixes that need to be completed on the home. Our agent will present our offer in the morning, so now we are back to waiting…

On the home we are selling, we haven’t heard yet on what her inspection found, but I imagine that we will hear tomorrow. I hope nothing major was found, but I guess we will see. I’ve maintained the home over the years, so I would be kind of surprised if much came out it…

On the non-home front (or the home front, depending on your perspective), Oliver has a cold. The poor guy is sneezing, and his eye is watery. Two nights ago he kept both Jon and I awake, but he slept a little better last night.  And so did we.  I feel really bad for him because I can imagine how awful that tickle in your nose could be if you couldn’t blow your nose.

The Waiting Game…

Well, things have been moving very quickly. We put our home on the market a week ago, and got a full price offer on day six (with us paying their closing costs). Fantastic! That was much more quickly than I expected things to move. I guess that means that we priced the house right. Next we move into the inspection, and hopefully that goes well. I have fixed, maintained and updated a lot of things on my home over the years, so anything the inspector finds should be relatively minor, splitting hairs really. Cross your fingers now please.

So, today we also made an offer on a home that we have seen and loved. The owner had indicated before that she didn’t want to accept a contingent offer, but said she would be willing to look at our offer once we had an offer on our home. I doubt that she expected an offer on our home to come so quickly either.  We hope that she will accept – although we fully expect her to counter.  Cross your toes for that one.

And if you are of the praying persuasion, please say a little prayer to Jesus, or St. Christopher or St. Francis or St. Stanislaus Kostka, if you are Polish like me.  Now that I have sold my home, it makes finding a new one that much more time sensitive…

I have also been talking to the mortgage broker. Pondering decisions like how much to put down (20% or more), and whether to buy the rate down with points. The only thing we know for sure right now is that we don’t want an escrow account. One decision down, 17 more to go!

This continues to be a very emotional process for me, as I have a lot of wonderful memories in my first home.  And now we wait.

A Little Whine with my Wine

Things have been a bit crazy around here lately.  We listed our house for sale on Monday, with just a few things left to fix.  Now we are in a waiting game.  Waiting for buyers to come look at our house.  Waiting for the agent for the woman whose house we are interested in to come to look at our house to see if it is saleable… ie. if she is willing to accept a contingent offer.  Waiting to see if there is something else we love out there.  Waiting is hard for me – I’m very impatient.  Jon is even worse.  We waffle back and forth each day, worrying about whether we made the right decision.  We agonize over whether anybody who has visited will put in an offer…  Clearly I’m not cut out for the real estate biz…  This is so stressful!

Today we went to look at four houses, and almost saw a fifth.  One we had seen before, and is our favorite – the one that doesn’t want to accept a contingent offer.  The other 3 were all no’s.  Looking at houses is tiring – it’s been eight years for me, and I had forgotten how tiring the whole process is.

And on top of all this, I wonder if I have a cold coming on.  I’m sure it is a result of all the stress over the last several weeks.  But this is not the time that I want a cold.  I have too much going on.  I have a conference next week and I want to be able to enjoy myself!  Of course, other things seems to be going well.  Biz is doing well, and his teeth are holding steady.  He was running around like a young man last night, enjoying himself.  Sometimes he really doesn’t seem like a 24 year old horse.  He is fat and sassy and his coat looks great.  You can only tell when he tries to get up from a roll.  And my kitties are all adjusting well to this whole home selling gig.  Martini is just happy snuggling under the covers with me. I guess that will have to be enough.

The Worst Kind of Insanity Workout

I think I have lost my mind. Jon and I decided that we ought to take a run at purchasing a larger home. Back when I was single, I purchased a 1200 square foot, 3 bedroom, 1 bath home. It was great for me. Enough space, great location near a nice trail in town, I could walk to lots of places, and it had been well taken care of over the years. And then I met Jon, and his stuff and my stuff collided. And now the little house that we love just doesn’t have quite enough space. Jon and I have been married for a little over a year, so it seemed time to upgrade. And that’s where the insanity strikes.

After we decided to try to purchase a new home, we started talking about the “how.” Our new home down-payment is wrapped up in the old home, so we have to sell our home first, or at the very least, have our home on the market. There is no longer any “we can buy a new home and sell ours quickly afterwards.” The climate in the real estate market has changed. So, we made the decision to throw caution to the wind, and put ours on the market. The big risk is that we would sell our home, and not have anything that we love to buy. This is hugely scary for me, because I have lived in my home for more than 8 years, and if it weren’t for the space issue, I wouldn’t be selling it, because I love it. If we sell our house first, and we don’t have one we like, where will we live? I don’t want to have to settle for a house I don’t love, just because I’m now homeless. It is a big dilemma….

We spent the last several weeks “decluttering.” Going through things we don’t need, getting rid of clothes that don’t fit me (at least they are too big!), doing several Goodwill trips and one to the dump, and packing up things for storage so the home looks spacious and minimalist. Because minimalist is what sells houses. But minimalist is not how I live my life. It has been exhausting, and I have not been so tired since I was in graduate school and frequently pulling all nighters. Days of heavy labor, non-stop stress and action, more trips to Lowe’s than I care to count, and then going to bed at night and not being able to sleep because I worry about what could go wrong. I go to work feeling like a zombie, but I can’t call out because that’s where I’m getting my only rest!

The other exhausting part about selling a house is that no buyer will tolerate the little quirks and idiosyncrasies of the home that you have put up with and not minded. You know the stuff – you all have it around your house too. The 43 year old dishwasher that still works great, but looks like a rusted out Buick in the kitchen, and has a heavy metal door that frequently takes skin off your husband’s shins because the spring in the door no longer works. Or the vertical blinds in the living room that are fuzzy at the bottom because you love your kitties, and they love looking out the window. Said vertical blinds don’t wash up because the slats are fabric. So, after a couple of weekends of sprucing and updating, it looks like a brand new home! Thanks mom and dad – we couldn’t have done it without you! And those people who are looking at it have no idea that you put your shoulder out while lying on the kitchen floor trying to plug two tiny three prong plugs together with one hand stuck under the dishwasher, not being able to see what you are doing because the f@#&ing electrical box is in the way. Or that you just about got a divorce because you almost lost your mind when your husband wanted to go play tennis while you were still spackling and painting the window sill where the vertical blinds left holes (sorry Jon…).

So, now that’s done…. My whole life is completely upended, I haven’t shaved my legs in two weeks, I have no idea where the tweezers are, and I really hope nobody wants to look in the third drawer down that contains dishtowels, a spackle knife, some miscellaneous screws, and who the heck knows what else. The upside is that I had a few minutes to watch the baby squirrels playing while I watered the plants after work…  Maybe now that it is on the market, with a little Rx assistance, I can finally get some sleep! And hopefully I won’t set off my own car alarm again tomorrow morning!

Gold Beach and a Monster!

After we had an opportunity to settle down and relax, we did a bit of wandering around Gold Beach. On the internet, they advertise that Gold Beach has several art galleries and antique shops. We could only found 3 art galleries – one was part of a bookstore, one was the walls of a coffee shop and one was closed. So, that took up about 45 minutes. We didn’t find any antique stores – although the bookstore had a collection of antique and first edition books. So shopping didn’t quite work out as planned.

We did find the original cemetery for Gold Beach, with graves from the mid to late 1800s and early 1900s. It has been well maintained, and a lot of the headstones are in very good condition for having been exposed so long to the salty air. I enjoy walking around cemeteries; I find them to be quite peaceful, but Jon thinks it is weird. He wouldn’t let me stay as long as I wanted to…  We also found the Mary D. Hume, a ship that had a 97 (yes 97!) year career.  She was built in 1881, served as an ocean tug and as an Arctic Whaler, and was finally retired in 1978.  Pretty cool if you ask me, and I’m sure my father in law would appreciate it.

Gold Beach Whaler

Gold Beach Whaler

Next we hit the beach. It was a beautiful sunny day but the winds were very strong that day. My hair looked like a rat’s nest by the time we got back to the hotel. We walked for a long distance, talking about travel plans and future trips, fine wines, and careers. I took a lot of photos and even got Jon to pose for some. That is a rare occurrence. I thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon and got a lot of nice shots. We even managed to find the Gold Beach Monster. I know some of you will say this is simply a photograph of a fish head, but no really, it’s the Gold Beach Monster!

Gold Beach Monster

Gold Beach Monster

I also tried my hand at finding one of the painted glass balls that are supposed to be planted on the beaches of Gold Beach. I didn’t find any; but I did find three rocks that had been painted and left there. I suppose those are the consolation prizes for people who don’t find a glass ball. I took one and left the others for other glass ball hunters.

After dinner (which was snacks from the grocery store), we went back down to the beach and watched the sunset. It was a very enjoyable relaxing evening. The wind had died down by then, so it was actually warmer than it had been earlier in the day.

Gold Beach Sunset

Gold Beach Sunset

It was a relaxing end to a fun, but not always predictable vacation. But as always too short! The following morning, we were on the road at 5 am so we could get home at a reasonable time. Until next time!