Sunday, July 19, 2009

Are We Home, Yet?


People keep asking about the house situation, and we're no closer than we were however many weeks ago it was when the seller accepted our offer. We're getting a federally-backed mortgage, but that means there are all sorts of hurdles to be leaped over and flaming hoops to be jumped through. And strangely, we're not required to do most of the jumping. So we wait, and send the occasional email to our super fantastic awesome realtor, and our amazingly wonderful mortgage broker, to be sure that everyone still understands that we still hope to buy this little house.

There was a big hullabaloo over the appraisal of the house, but that seems mostly settled, now. Basically, the Federal Housing Administration (who will be backing our loan) wants to be certain that the house is actually worth the selling price, so they send out an inspector to look things over, and to compare the home to similar homes that have sold recently in the same part of town. The person who did our appraisal checked every inch of the house, took a ton of photos, and then wrote a lengthy report, praising the adorableness of the house, and agreeing that the house was worth the amount we were hoping to borrow. All fine and good. But then, the next step in this process is to have another appraiser read over the first appraiser's report, and do some more comparisons, and give their opinion, HAVING NEVER SET FOOT IN OR NEAR THE ACTUAL HOUSE.

As you can probably guess by my emphasis, we had trouble with the second appraisal. All of this second appraiser's "comparable" houses were BAD HOUSES. Houses that Robb and I would never consider buying. Houses with problems. Houses that had sat on the market for ages, because NOBODY WANTED THEM. Because of this, the second appraiser said that our cute little house was not worth the money that we wanted to borrow, and in fact, it was worth much much much less. This is a mortgage-killing deal-breaker.

The first appraiser then had to write a rebuttal stating why the second appraiser had gotten it all wrong. (This whole process seems very backwards to us.)

During all of this, we could do nothing more productive than fret, and wait. And now, it seems that the sale is ALMOST ready to go through. We've got one more gigantic flaming hoop to jump through, or at least one that we know of. Things keep popping up.

Of course, until it is all settled, we really can't pack. Robb has been organizing our possessions, and I'm reading every home-renovation blog that I can find. What I'm realizing is that while our little house needs some serious work, it can't possibly compare to what other people have had to deal with. If those people can keep their senses of humor, whilst being banned from the local dump, and when mummified rats are falling on their heads as they tear apart their ceilings, Robb and I will do just fine with our adventures in home ownership.

We hope.


Anonymous said...

When Gary and I were cleaning out the old part of our stone walled basement, where the wall meets the ceiling, and in among the floor joists and ceiling beams, there are many, many hidey holes for creepy crawly things. At least we wore gloves when we cleaned these places out. We did this in 2007. We found the mummified corspe of my sister Bernice's pet gerbil "Fluffy" which she got on Christmas day in 1966, and promptly lost about an hour later. Let me tell you, mummified gerbils weigh nothing at all. It went right in the compost.

Also, in 1966 we lost a cat that got lost in the walls some where and never got out again. That was a bad year for pets. Eventually the yowling stopped. This house was rumored to be part of the undergound railroad, so it does indeed have lots of old weird crawl spaces. Also, in the old days, it was considered good luck to wall up a live chicken in a new house, this was to ensure you would always have "food" in the home.

I suppose for you vegetarians, you could wall up a bit of tofu in a ziplock as soon as you get your house!


Music Woman said...

I can totally relate with your problems with the appraisors. We are selling a condo here in CT and have to put it on the market much lower than it would normally sell for, since the appraisal will most likely not go through at the normal price. Evidentally, new, good quality mechanicals and windows, all with great warranties, don't do much for the appraisal.

Sigh.... I feel your pain!
Music Woman

ellen said...

I wish you luck and joy in your home purchase.

I read your unburdening post this morning, and congratulate you for getting it out. You can't really move forward dragging a secret behind you. I don't know what it is that makes us so ashamed of what others have done to us, but I think you'll find that it no longer has that power over you.

just4bees said...

Reminds me of my Mom and step-dad's remodel of a 150+ year old stone house in northern NY. Stone = snakes, of which my mother holds a phobia. Meaning once she was stuck on the kitchen counter for hours until step-dad got home from work due to a pencil sized garden snake playing under the fridge.

Another lovely discovery was what was behind the strange piece of plexiglass screwed into the livingroom ceiling... there was a leaky bathroom above, the plexi kept the maggots from falling on your head as you watched TV.



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