Sunday, April 27, 2008

Loan Docs Signed !

Our buyer signed their loan docs last Friday! This is a great way to end the month!

We'll finally be out of this horrible mortgage by the end of next week!

The buyer is having their final walk-through today. I found out that the "appraisal" last week was for the buyer's lender to approve the deal. I guess it must have passed - we didn't get any feedback. Also the termite inspector company is coming out here on Monday to patch up a couple places on the door frames on the outside of our house. They didn't find any indication of termites but said that in two places our outside door frames should have been flush with the ground - I guess to prevent termites from entering from the bottom of the door frame - I didn't get a complete explanation.

But, hey, at least we've been blessed with an incredibly fast short sale.

I also completed my ten-week course in Crown Financial through my church. A lot of good things happened for us since I started learning more about how to be a good Financial Steward with money as per scripture in the Bible.

It amazes me that it took only four days after we first listed our house up for sale - with no outside signs on the front lawn - that we had a well-qualified buyer with a solid offer. And to have our short sale close in 57 days is truly a blessing. I thank God and family that I won't have to file bankruptcy or have a foreclosure on my record.

Of course, I'll continue to post here for as long as it takes me to get out of debt. That is my goal.

My daughter got a car!

We are very fortunate!

A very caring family member let us buy their car for my daughter. She's had her license for over a year and we've been sharing three cars among four driving adults all that time. It seemed that we were constantly shuffling our schedules around on a daily basis just so we could all make it to our appointments: my work customers, our school schedules and our work schedules. The blessing in all this is that we have all worked together to make it through these tough times.

It has also helped that my daughter's boyfriend who is a Marine stationed nearby has been staying with us off and on - we have a guest bedroom for him - so he has helped with the driving needs. He's a really good young man and very mature for his age. I feel bad for him sometimes because I dont think he had many options when he joined the Marines. He just turned 19 recently and says that he's in training for Afghanistan but I worry that he'll get sent to Iraq. He is proud to be a Marine. I wish our country were 100% united behind our young men and women in the service.

My son has talked of joing the service also. He almost joined with some of his friends right after HS graduation. But I steered him toward college so that if he does enter the service he could join as an officer. I am proud of my son and support him 100% no matter which direction he chooses to go in his life.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Fixed our car

Now that I have some extra money I can actually pay for car repairs. My wife's minivan has been blowing vapors into the car because the heater coil needed to be replaced. It got so bad that we couldn't turn the A/C or heater on in the car. We drove it like that for a couple months but it recently got worse. My wife drove her mother to lunch a couple weeks ago and my Mother-In-Law was practically gagging from the vapors. Well I spent $375 to fix that. It's nice now being able to pay for things such as car repairs. Of course I'm on a cash basis and paid cash for the repair because I basically dont have any credit anymore.

And I took my family out for dinner last Friday night. Something we haven't done in a long time. And that was cash too. I'm starting to feel better about things again. I hope all continues well.

Of course, my daughter recently broke a law - a misdemeanor. So now I have to deal with that and pray that she only has to do community service. We're now waiting for the D.A. to decide what to do. Papers were filed with the DA's office.

And my dog now has arthritis - I took her to the local Pet Groomer and they wouldn't take her because she cant stand on four legs long enough for them to groom her. They said I should take her to the vet and get Chrondroitin or something like it. She's about 14 years old and she has a tumor on her back the size of a small watermelon. She's been like that for the past two years. I can't pay for surgery for her. I just cant allocate money to take care of my ailing dog. All I can really do is buy her dog food and give her aspirin sparingly. She was really bad this morning and in pain so we gave her aspirin in peanut-butter and she got better during the day and was able to walk around. But she was immobile, shaking and crying earlier today. I felt really bad. Maybe if I get a bonus next month I can get her some arthritis medicine from the vet.

Getting closer to closing

My realtor called last Friday and said the bank approved our sale (price)!

So an appraiser is coming over on Monday 4/21 to do a full appraisal - about an hour's worth.

Not sure why that is needed if the bank has approved the sale (price). I emailed my realtor and asked him to explain why that is needed even though the bank has agreed to the short sale (price).

The brother and sister of the buyer and the sister's husband (brother-in-law) came over a week and a half ago to take pictures of the house inside and out. They were very nice. But it was kind of awkward when the B-I-L asked me what happened, why we had to sell, meaning why would a person like me who works for a Fortune 500 company end up upside down in his mortgage. I just said we had some financial trouble and left it at that.

We still dont have a rental lease agreement. I thought they were bringing over the agreement for us to sign but they said that the brother (future owner) was very laid back and that we could just get a generic lease agreement off the net. They agreed to lower the rental payment if we would take care of the yard work (mowing, edging, trimming, etc) and the pool maintenance. I checked the rental comps in our area and for the square footage I think that we're getting a good deal.

I also looked at house prices around here again. I saw a nice house - plus pool and spa and about 2650 sq.ft. - recently listed for $113 per square foot. We sold our house (pool and spa also) for about $140 per square foot (3224 sq.ft.) two months ago - at least we agreed on the sale price two months ago. So that shows me that house prices in our area are still dropping. In fact, there were three other houses for sale in our neghborhood - all less than 6 houses down from ours - that have recently been: auctioned, rented and the last one still up for sale. The auction included many many houses from this area and the auction was last Monday night - it was advertised in the local newspapers. I wonder if anyone bid on the house up for auction that was 3 doors down from us. Guess we'll find out later.

It's funny about the other house still up for sale: a neighbor who lives 2 doors down from that vacant house recently ran a garden hose across two driveways so that they could water the now dried out brown lawn of the vacant for sale house.

And, if you drive down our street about 20+ houses away the street curves and there are two houses with dried out brown lawns and lockboxes on the front doors - both vacant, one for at least three months, the other more recently about 2-3 weeks ago.

I heard on a CNN news program that if you're going to buy a foreclosed house on a street that has more than one foreclosed house then you should buy the last remaining foreclosed house on the block. That way your house will be the last lowest comp price on the block. As each foreclosed house sells it drives down the price of the next foreclosed house to sell on the same block until the very last one remains and would be the bottom for the neighborhood. Of course, you would just have to hope that no more foreclosures pop up after that.