We were scheduled to close on a Friday, and it couldn’t come soon enough. The rental we were living in was put up for sale 3 days before our scheduled closing. So in the midst of trying to pack, clean and get ready to move, we had a steady stream of contractors in and out of the house, not to mention an extremely unlikeable realtor who demanded we leave the house for hours on end each day for showings with little to no notice.
The final straw came on that Tuesday, my birthday. My husband woke up a little under the weather so we planned to just spend a quiet day at home with a little respite from the craziness of the week. My phone started blowing up in the morning, and didn’t stop all day. Different contractors wanting to schedule repairs, and the realtor harassing me for more showings. “We are moving in THREE days. Can you give me a little leeway this week?” I begged, but she didn’t care and seemed to take pleasure in pushing the envelope to make us feel uncomfortable in our own home.
That day someone came to do an estimate on the roofing someone came to give an estimate on a window, all without prior notice. Mid afternoon my husband went to pick our daughter up from school and I noticed yet another vehicle in the driveway. I didn’t see anyone in or around the truck, so I assumed it was another contractor or adjuster looking at the roof. When my husband came home he found the occupants literally peeking in our windows. It turned out that a scammer had taken pictures and information from the MLS listing of the house and put it on Craigslist as a rental. They exaggerated the amenities and put a ridiculously low price for rent, ultimately hoping to scam people into sending them deposit money. We have several people knock on the door, sit in their cars on the street watching our house, and even walking around the property. This added another layer of stress to an already stressful situation.
Then on Thursday of that week I got a text from our realtor. “Can you call me right away?” I knew it wasn’t good news. Our closing was delayed and we had no idea how long it would be delayed for. Our realtor wasn’t even sure what the reason was from the paperwork she had received, but it was something to do with the title. I tried to call our banker but he was out of town in an all day meeting. I spent the day crying, and calling to cancel the moving truck and utility switches. At this point we didn’t know if we would be delayed for a few days, or a few weeks, and my nerves were shot.
That night our banker called me on his way home from the meeting. He assured me that he would look over the paperwork that night, and not to worry, that it WOULD get resolved at some point. He called me again a little later after he had gotten home and had time to look over the paperwork. It turned out that when the sellers had purchased the home almost 20 years ago there was a clerical error and it was submitted to the county twice, so it appeared like they had two mortgages. They only needed an acknowledgement from their bank that there was not a second mortgage, but hadn’t been able to get ahold of the right department. Our banker said his best friend happened to work at the bank so he would contact him and see if they could get the wheels turning. I hung up the phone with a little more hope.
The next day our banker called again and said he was having trouble contacting his friend, and likely nothing would be resolved until at least Monday. I was disappointed, but relieved that we would still be moving at some point. My husband and I resolved to spend a quiet weekend trying to relax and recoup after the stressful ups and downs the week had brought. At 4 that afternoon my phone rang. It was the banker. Surely not …
“Melissa, can you two come down right now? We got the paper, lets go close this house!”
The paperwork came through just in the nick of time for us to still be able to close that day! We rushed to the bank – I still had wet hair from a shower – and picked up our cashier’s check and headed to the closing company. Since our initial closing time had lapsed there was no one available to walk us through the paperwork, so our banker did the closing for us. The irony was that as soon as we signed the papers my husband and I both had rot rush off to work, so we didn’t even get to go look at the house!
It was a mad rush to find a moving truck for the next day and get the utilities switched back into our name, but it was with great relief we started moving things. We hit a snag when our box springs wouldn’t fit up the stairs, but miraculously remedied it because my sister and brother in law had a platform bed they were getting rid of. The house needed a good cleaning, but overall they left it in good shape and moving in was pretty seamless.
It has been a week since we moved and I have gotten almost everything put away, the carpets cleaned and curtains hung. Our washer and dryer were delivered a few days ago, and we got our first taste of home ownership when we had to call an electrician to fix a faulty dryer outlet.
Our house is a small 1 1/2 story that was built in 1925. It has plaster walls, original woodwork and doors, and 9 foot ceilings on the first floor. It has an unfinished basement that my husband is determined to turn into a man cave. There are definitely some things we would like to update, but we aren’t in a hurry. We will need to replace the furnace, and eventually most of the windows as well, but we were prepared for that coming into the purchase. Its a bit smaller than the house we were renting, so I definitely did some minimizing and downsizing before we moved. I think its really going to be perfect for us!
I have rented my entire adult life, and it never really bothered me. But over the past few years God put the desire in my heart to buy a house. I feel so incredibly blessed that we were able to realize that dream, and I can’t wait to share the process of making this house our home with you.