Happy 2021! We Moved!

Happy New Year! Let’s all hope the mess of 2020 stays in the past and we can move on and have a much happier and healthier 2021!

Our house has officially sold. We’ve moved into our temporary home for the next 6-ish months. We’re settling in nicely over here. After all the hustle and bustle and STRESS of packing and moving, I am looking forward to a month of doing nothing.

We ended up closing two weeks earlier than expected, after the buyers super shady agent basically forced it. At closing, the buyer had no idea it was his agent that changed the closing date, nor did he know anything about temporary occupancy. The forms that agent shoved down my agents throat to be signed ASAP, and she didn’t even have her client sign it! I refused to close until it was signed, the buyer was wonderful. However, his agent was 45 minutes late to closing and didn’t even sit in the conference room or acknowledge anyone until her commission check was ready.

Now we have a chunk of money sitting in the bank while we decide what to do next. DH bought a truck, identical to the one that was totaled in 2018. He’s very happy with that, and we got a deal through a friend. $15,000 – KBB/private sale value is about $26,000!

The rest of the money is to be left alone!! (We budgeted for the vehicle.). We did go check out a property about an hour away. Five acres of woods and pastures, at the end of a cul-de-sac. Very nice property, but the house was tiny, and needed a lot of repairs. It would have to be a cash purchase, I don’t think any lender would finance it in the condition it was in.

I’m still hoping to check out TN, but I can’t even get DH to start looking at jobs seriously. I think he’s unwinding from the chaos of the move. He’s had 10 days off of work and returns tomorrow. That stress is weighing heavily already. I try not to nag, but we can’t be here forever, and I’m Type A – a planner. Drives me nuts not knowing what we’re doing or where we’re going!

On another topic, I haven’t been feeling well lately, and tried to get a doctors appointment. They can see me February 26th – for a sick appointment. (No Covid lol.). Are you kidding me!? I know what’s wrong, and they agreed, but still won’t provide a prescription over the phone without me coming in. I’m trying out that CallOnDoc website instead, cheaper than my regular co-pay. Fill out a questionnaire, a doctor reviews it, and calls in the scripts. Hopefully this works out well. I can’t wait nearly two months for pain relief! Ugh.

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I Dislike Realtors

Selling our home has taught us some valuable lessons. The first being that your agent is looking out for their best interest. Not yours. I am saddened by our experience thus far, and honestly, quite angry.

For the last few weeks our agent has been trying to get ahold of the buyers agent to confirm the appraisal was received. No answers to texts, calls, or emails.

Out of nowhere last Thursday, at 9pm, the buyers agent sent us a message stating we need a termite certification letter. That’s the first we heard of this. The buyers chose not to do an inspection, their due diligence period is long gone, but apparently their lender requires it. Well our agent failed to send us the contract page with this information. As a result of this unexpected issue, we postponed our POD pick up from. No way were we packing up a POD if we could potentially lose this sale.

Basically sellers are solely responsible for having a termite inspection, certificate, and any treatment done. If any physical damage is noted, sellers are also responsible for having professional estimates done for repairs, and renegotiating with the buyers.

Now we’ve never had an issue with termites. The previous sellers had a small infestation, and it was treated, they also did the soil treatment around the entire house. We have the termite company out Friday morning and he failed us. He found a TINY piece of wood trim with maybe 1″ of termite damage. This trim is up against the basement exterior garage, directly attached to cement walls. No further damage was found. We still failed.

Because of that we had to pay $600 for termite treatment in order to get that stupid certification. And what ticked me off even more was when the guy handed me the certificate and it’s all marked “no signs of active infestation” throughout the entire paper. What a scam! You know they failed us just to get that extra money from us. Oh I was livid. I told my agent we’ll fix that tiny trim, I’m not paying a professional for something we can do for less than $5. And if they want to “renegotiate”, then we can also “renegotiate” the closing costs we’re paying for them! But it doesn’t end there!

Wednesday, at 9pm, the buyers agent texts our agent and says: closing documents are in, we’ll close this Friday. WHAT?! Our closing date is December 30th. I said absolutely not! We still live here. My agent informed them that the property is still occupied, and we cannot close this Friday, but the 28th at the earliest.

The agent ignored that and went ahead and sent an addendum. They put the 18th as closing day, and allowed us a “10 day temporary occupancy” at a daily rate of $150! LOL!!! They’re expecting us to pay $1500 because they want to push up the closing date? Hell no. I shut that down real quick.

Today the buyers agent informs my agent that the reason they want to close early, is because the buyers wife has COVID, and he’s afraid he’ll have it by the 30th. WTF! After some back and forth we agreed to close early, but with a 10 day occupancy at NO ADDITIONAL COST, because we’re paying their damn $15,000 in closing costs!!! Ridiculous people. Well then I’m informed they want to do a final walk through. Ummmm you just told us you’ve been directly exposed to COVID and now you want to enter my property? Absolutely not. I have a high risk child. The agent said she could do a video walk-through for them. Fine, whatever.

So now we’re waiting for a response from the buyers agent. She’s amazing at disappearing and never to be heard from until the last minute. Between her crappy communication and my agent leaving out VERY important information, I’m irritated. I think if your agent screws up, and it costs you money, they should have to forfeit .5% of their commission each time. That’s $3,000 and she sure as shit has cost us a lot more than that.

It’s going to end up costing up just over $50,000 to sell this house between realtor fees, closing costs, and all the repairs we’ve done. I am over it. I am bitter and angry. We clearly got the short end of the stick and our realtor failed to keep our best interests at the forefront of this process. The other three homes in our neighborhood sold for asking price, were conventional loans, and buyers paid closing costs. I knew we shouldn’t have had to pay. At first we thought, well it’s a small price to pay, but now? The demands and entitlement have us thinking the complete opposite.

It makes me sad was a greedy, selfish world we live in.

Waiting Game…and Crazy People

Living in limbo is exhausting. I need to sell our big furniture, but don’t want to sell it too soon. Always afraid something may go wrong, because if you’ve followed this blog long enough, you’d know luck is never on our side in life. I’m being cautiously optimistic!

With that said the buyers decided to forgo a home inspection. Who does that?! On a $500k house, why would you not want an inspection? I know I would! Then there’s the 14 day financing contingency. Today is the 14th day. They should have everything approved and ready to roll today. But…

The appraiser came late last week (finally) and told us he’d submit it within 10 business days. That’s way past the finance contingency date. Very frustrating, considering these people wanted a quick close, and want us out immediately. Meanwhile I have a household full of large furniture to sell off before we leave. They’re leaving me very little time to do that, especially with the holidays fast approaching. My agent is reaching out tomorrow to see if they’re expediting the appraisal.

The selling situation is strange. No inspection. Delayed appraisal. Their realtor is also their lender, and she is terrible with communication. It took over a week to be provided proof of earnest money, and even then they only had $2,000 and not $5,000. They were suppose to have 1% of the sales price in earnest money. If they do not back out today, we are entitled to collect that money if this deal falls through. I’m still amazed at how much real estate dealings have changed in just 5-7 years since we last bought our previous homes.

While I have been holding off on selling our larger furniture (sofa, dining set, etc), I have been listing small stuff every day. It’s too cold to do a yard sale now. Facebook Marketplace has been my go to, but I swear it’s 99% crazy people! I was selling two coat racks for $25. The title and description said both for $25. This woman hounds me for a week over every little detail. Measurements (asked four times), if it’s $25 for both – YES (asked three times), are they strong, etc etc. Nonstop! Finally she wants to pick up Friday night, but we weren’t home. I told her I would be available Saturday between 3 and 5.

Then she asked me to deliver them to her, 45 minutes away! LOL! No! At 9am on Saturday she begins messaging me for an address, she can come now. Well I didn’t get up until noon. By then I had eight messages from her. At 1:30 she again said “give me your address so I can be on my way” – I reminded her I’m not available until 3pm. At 3:03pm she’s like “WHERE DO I GO?” I gave her the address. That crazy woman showed up in 5 minutes flat.

I sent DH to the garage to deal with her. That’s our deal, I handle online, and he handles the in-person. Compromise lol. DH said she was extremely rude to him. “YOU live here?” Wow. She starting knocking around the pieces, asking a million questions, saying they aren’t worth $50 (?!) overall her attitude was nasty. Said she didn’t want them. Fine.

As DH walks back into the house, she messages me: “Overpriced, wasted a drive, misleading.” LOL. I just replied “As stated multiple times, it was $25 for BOTH. SMH!” and blocked her. Five minutes later our doorbell rang. That crazy Karen was at our door!!

“I’ll take them for $25. There must have been a miscommunication.”

DH said no thanks and slammed the door shut. LOL!!! The look on her face! Clearly she hasn’t been told NO! enough in her lifetime. My Ring caught the entire thing, it was priceless. People are insane. If you want something, don’t be rude! It’s not hard.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you have at least some things to be thankful for during this crazy year. I know 2020 hasn’t been kind to many.

I am thankful that our family has not been directly affected by COVID. DH was an essential employee, while risky, at least a paycheck was never a concern. No one has been ill – knock on wood. And overall, things seem to be going well for us.

Third times a charm, right? Third showing, we were under contract. The people were in our house about five minutes when they had their agent call ours to discuss something before submitting an offer. They made a full asking price offer, but needed closing costs to the tune of $15,000. Originally we agreed there was no way we would pay closing costs. It’s a sellers market!! But things with MIL have steadily declined and we need to part ways as soon as possible.

The buyers are in a time crunch too. So the fact that we can accommodate a two week closing was very appealing to them. Our POD is ordered! Our rental accommodations are in place. We are good to go! And it happens while the kids are on school break, which will make things much easier. Plus we’ll be settled in before Christmas!

After all is said and done, we should have close to $400k cash in the bank. To sit on and wait and see what happens with the economy and real estate. All the agents we’ve spoken with are preparing for a 30% drop. Not good for them, or sellers, but as a buyer, this is very good. We’ll see what happens! When and where we permanently move is still unknown, but I’m 99% sure it will be out of state.

Enjoy your yummy food and family time!

“Needs Paint – Even Closets – Too Expensive!!”

That was the primary complaint, yet again, from the people who viewed our house for the second time. My goodness. Paint colors are a personal preference. They’re so hung up on the colors that they’re being snarky in responses to my agent.

The house was professionally painted in 2016. The entire interior and trim all throughout 5200 sqft, was less than $4000. If colors are a deal breaker, why would you come view the house in the first place? You see the pictures in the listing. LOL.

And yet again we caught them on video being quite rude about the owners. Their agent said “as you can tell, the owners must be young people with no taste” – WHAT! WOW! That was said about my office, which displays some Lego collections. I thought it was rude, but to each their own. Then one guy went off about gutters, the windows, the “outdated” kitchen. Wish I could share pictures here. None of their complaints stand.

That’s fine though. Bye! Then the next day their agent starts texting my agent, being very snarky in her responses. “My clients are not interested.” Okay, thanks! “Needs too much work. Need all new paint, even closets!!!!!” – Yes, that many exclamation marks. I mean, when we bought the house it was hideous and filthy. I had the painters paint everything. Even the closets. Didn’t know that was a big deal?!

The agent continued pestering mine, and mine just stopped responding. For not being interested, they sure want to keep complaining. Sounds like that ARE interested, they’re just trying to get us to make a deal before they submit an offer?! Very strange.

I can’t imagine how awful they would be after an inspection! Probably want us to bulldoze and rebuild new house haha. Selling is awful. I can’t wait to be done. Fingers crossed we get some reasonable showings scheduled this week!

Ha, People are Strange

After all the whining and complaining the guy and agent from the first showing did, they called today to schedule a second showing. Hmm, I guess this place isn’t so awful after all, LOL! I am fully prepared for a lowball offer, but at least then we have something to work with, and can negotiate.

The sooner we’re outta here, the sooner we are done with MIL. She’s lost her marbles lately. DH and her aren’t even on speaking terms at this point. I’m not surprised. I predicted she’d do everything in her power to sabotage selling, and sure enough…

I can’t wait for that to be behind us. We can rent locally for a few months, let the kids finish out school. Then load up a pod and roll out to our new town. Wherever that may be! I am rooting for Tennessee, but in the end, we’ll follow the jobs.

On an unrelated note, has anyone has issues with WordPress since they updated the platform? I run into so many problems trying to post now! I constantly get this error: “Scheduling failed. Sorry, you are not allowed to edit this post.” I often abandon my posts, because I cannot save entries or publish.

The Stress of Selling!!

I severely underestimated how stressful selling a house would be. Our listing went live several days ago and we immediately had several showings scheduled. One happened today and wow. Just wow! The nerve of some people. We have a Ring doorbell, and we were able to capture a good bit of the realtor/client conversation before they even unlocked the door.

Client was already asking realtor “how do we get this for a lower price? how low will the sellers go?” – before even walking into our home. “Are the sellers in a rush to get out? We can probably get it much lower.” HA! Take a tour first, damn people.

After their tour, the realtor submitted a “survey” thing to my realtor about their experience with the property. I was not prepared for this crap. They had a “fair” experience and think it is overpriced, because “all the windows need to be replaced due to seals, water stains all over ceilings throughout entire home, and mold growing all over ceiling in basement.” Wait. WHAT?!

Now before listing, our agent, her broker, and a photographer came through to inspect everything. No one had any such complaints. We also had to fill out a disclosure that listing any flaws, all the updates, listed everything staying, etc.

DH and I immediately began running around the house to find these supposed flaws. The only thing accurate is that the seals in the windows are visible. They are the older style – original to the 2005 house – double pane style. It’s a design flaw, where the seal between the panes expands and contracts with heat, and thus they droop. They were like this when we bought the house. Our inspector passed them all – it’s cosmetic, not a functionality issue. Nice try though!

The “water stains” they were referring to were the ceiling patches in MIL’s area in the basement, where the insulation company made holes to blow in insulation in between the floors, and patched them up. This is disclosed.

The “mold” – LOL. This is also in the disclosure. The previous owners were mechanics. They worked on engines, motorcycles, ATVS, etc. in the basement area. There are oil stains splattered around the walls and ceiling. It was the same way in MIL’s area, but we had it all painted when she moved in and we renovated it. We didn’t see a reason to paint a garage or storage room.

So we submit all that information back to other realtor, since she requested our disclosure agreement, and claimed we left things off. Her reply was “my client is interested in making an offer if sellers agree to replace all windows”. LOL! Make your offer and then negotiate! Don’t tell me to fix shit before you even place an offer. WOW! The nerve of some people. It’s unbelievable. Then the agent came back saying the entire house interior needs to be repainted and that “is expensive, sellers must give an allowance”. That’s also cosmetic, and a personal preference, and my paint colors are neutral and in great shape! I laughed. We got multiple paint quotes for the interior. I paid $3200 to have every room and all the trim painted when we bought it. Not very expensive considering the price range and size of this home!

And then there’s MIL and all the headaches she is causing. I cannot wait to be rid of the crazy! On the upside my house has never been so clean, and the kids are doing a fantastic job helping out. Even making their beds in the mornings! They’ve been such troopers during this chaotic time. Receiving student of the month awards and honor roll! Goodness knows I wouldn’t handle this craziness at their age that well.

I’m hoping this weekend we’ll have more showings and they’ll go a little easier! I mean if you want a brand new spanking house, go buy yourself a new build lol. I hope our next place is our forever home, because I never want to go through this again.

Septic Expense

Exactly as I predicted in my previous entry, the septic price we were quoted was doubled on service day. Frustrating!! This happens every damn time we get our tank serviced, no matter the company.

We called around to get a price on pumping our 1000 gallon septic tank. Routine maintenance. We’ve had no issues with it since the last pump service, in which they also fixed a filter. Since we’re SO CLOSE to listing the house, we wanted to have this done, with a receipt to show service.

The average price was $350, so we hired the company that could come out the day that worked best for us. We have a lot going on, so scheduling has been an issue. Anyway, they show up and complain that it’s completely full. Ok? That’s why we’ve hired you to pump. Oh no. This will cost $600 to pump. FINE, do it. (We fully expected this bs.). Then they told us our leach lines aren’t draining like they should be, and they will not sign off on an inspection letter unless we let them repair it. $3100!!! LOL

We’ve had NO issues, ever. The entire system cost less than that. We weren’t asking for an inspection letter! The guy just threw that out there when he found out we were selling. I told DH not to say that we were selling, but of course he did. Now if any potential buyers have a septic inspection done, we’ll just negotiate terms. I am not coming out of pocket another $3100 for something we’re 99.999% sure isn’t an issue. I think he was trying to take advantage. Companies love to find “problems” and inflate their pricing when you live in a nicer neighborhood. Another reason I cannot wait to move!!!

This week we managed to finish the retaining wall, deck, window rot issues, paint touch ups, septic pumping, new gravel, and getting the dumpster picked up. Our listing pictures are scheduled for this weekend. Fingers crossed no more delays!!

Ready to ditch this house before the economy crashes thanks to this insane election! I won’t even get into that subject, ugh.

It’s Expensive to Sell a House

We’ve been working so hard the last few weeks trying to get our house ready to list. We’re actually a week behind right now due to unforeseen circumstances. The process of getting a house in this price range ready for market is far more costly that we expected.

Realtor Commission – 6% = $30,000! Wowza. Six percent doesn’t sound bad until you do the math lol. Our realtor did a walk through and pointed out some things we should do. Mostly little cosmetic things, dusting, etc. We already had a long list of repairs to tackle. Our realtor also said closing costs average 4% and to be prepared to help pay for them, as buyers will request sellers to pay. It’s a sellers market, so I’ll be damned if I’m paying $20,000 in closing costs for someone! My goodness. Maybe a few thousand, but certainly not twenty thousand!

We knew right off the bat we needed to replace the back deck boards. Hired a guy and as soon as he ripped them off, we saw the rotted beams. Everything looked fine from underneath (it’s a second story deck), but right under the boards was completely rotted. Ugh! Then we discover the way it was laid when the house was built, is no longer up to code. So we had to revise that. Factor in the outrageous cost of lumber right now, and our $1500 deck fix turned into a $4000 full replacement!

Then there’s the retaining wall that was suppose to be fixed five years ago by MIL. An agreement made before moving in with us. She never did it. So we’re having that done, another $4000.

Some random window and trim rot around the outside of the house – $1100.

Pressure washing the entire driveway, walk way, front steps, mailboxes (brick), back patio, and pool fence – $600. I had hoped to tackle this myself with our pressure washer, but time is money, and it would take me a solid week to do our long driveway!

All the miscellaneous crap we’ve had to buy from the hardware stores to fix little stuff – stain, paintbrushes, sandpaper, primer, caulk (lots and lots of caulk), baseboard, blinds, etc etc – easily $500 already.

Oh we have to get the septic tank pumped – that’ll be at least $300 – you know they always find something wrong and have to up-charge when they’re here.

After the deck was replaced, the pile of wood and nails from the old one stayed in the backyard. Apparently our quote didn’t cover disposal/removal fees. I didn’t even know I had to ask about that, we’ve always had the stuff removed. The fee cost almost as much as a damn dumpster, so we opted not to pay the guy a removal fee. So we’ll rent a dumpster for $375 to get rid of that wood and a ton of other junk and trash we planned on getting rid of anyway.

So all of that comes to $10,875. OUCH! It will likely be even more by the end of this week. Let’s hope the weather cooperates and there are no further delays in the work being done. We are ready to get this house on the market and get out of here!!

The Real Estate Market is HOT

Last week, on a whim, DH and I went to check out an open house. It was a beautiful home from the 60’s. It needed a lot of love. But it is our dream to downsize into a dated ranch. We were discussing this with a friend who is a realtor and she said the market is hot for sellers. She decided to check comps for our home.

What came back was shocking. A house 3 doors down, that we never once saw a for sale sign up for, is currently under contract for nearly half a mil. It was on the market for 2 days! This house has a much smaller lot, no pool, and the basement isn’t finished like ours. Our realtor friends broker came back and said we could list ours for even MORE!!

To put this in perspective, we bought this house four years ago for low $200s.

Last week we decided that’s it, we want to sell. I’ve been busting my butt selling things we don’t need, donating items, packing stuff up. We have a temporary living situation worked out, that will cost us a whopping $400/mo tops, and we can be there until the kids finish out the school year. That gives us plenty of time to a) save even more money b) DH transfer or find new job and c) figure out exactly where we want to be.

Realtor and broker come later this week to do a walk-through and give us an assessment of things to fix up before listing. I have a short list already, so I’m hoping there isn’t anything major to add to it. The house really does sell itself. We’ve had people interested in our home for years, so it should go quick!

I am looking forward to a fresh start and living minimally for awhile. Ultimately our goal is to buy a fixer upper under $200k and have cash in the bank to enjoy life. Wish us luck.