Sunday, November 20, 2011

"...In A Way That Was Only GOD!"

Early last spring I saw a link that said..."You may qualify for a home loan." I've seen these ads all my life so I just passed it up. I've been a single parent since the age of 21 to beautiful girl who, now, is 21.we've lived in apartments all our lives. I've always wanted a home for us. I know a home is determined by the love within the walls and not the structure it's self. I've always wanted to own the structure to go with the love within.
I passed up that advertisement as I always do and it kept nagging at me. So I applied for a pre authorization. Next thing I know I'm on the phone with a bank referring me to a local Realtor. My friend Dani had just purchases a home and a good friend of hers is a Realtor, so I decided to go through her friend. Long story short, I spent most of the summer searching for a house to buy. I submitted a total of about 3 offers this summer. The first one was accepted and 2 days later the seller decided to move back into the property. Because she broke the contract she had to give me $1000. Which came in handy because I spent that much on car repairs for the next 6 weeks that followed. The 2ND offer came in as a back up offer. I had seen multiple properties that I loved and hated.
During the process I learned that I had certain unrealistic expectations and limitation. I learned to prioritize and bargain with myself on what was really important in the home I wanted. If I found a property I liked online, my Realtor advised me to drive by it and check out the condition of the neighborhood to see if it was some place I really wanted to live. I spent a great deal of the summer doing "drive by's." Toward the end of the summer I was discouraged. I mentioned a couple of properties to my Realtor and she suggested I do a drive by and if I was happy with the location we'd try and get in to view them sometimes in the next couple of days.
I drove by the properties and was not happy with the neighborhood they were in. "That's IT!" I told myself I was done house hunting. I gave it a great run for 6 month, I'm tried and frustrated and just not meant to own a house. I headed back toward my apartment on the east side of town. I was tired and hungry and it was going on 7pm. I forgot I needed to go to the store so I turned town a street to make a U turn and found myself U-turning into a hidden complex which looked to have apartments and Condo. I went toward the back of the property to turn around and thought "where did this place even come from, It's hidden and tucked in a corner." I pulled into the parking lot and noticed a couple of "For Sale" signs. I sort of drove around the property and thought it was a little odd: there were open parking spaces, covered parking space and parking garages. And a big locked garage attached to the middle building. Surrounded by the middle building was more open parking and across the parking is several apartment complexes. The center building was the only building with for sale signs. The whole complex looked fairly new. I kind of scoffed at the for sale signs. What an interesting development I thought. May as well look into it.
When I finally did get home about 7:30 I made some dinner, opened up my laptop and popped in the address of the complex. I found 3 condos for sale. The one that caught my eye: "3 bedroom, 3 full baths, balcony D/W W/D hookups all black appliances. foreclosure. All offers must be in my 9 AM Tuesday." It was 8pm Monday night. I called my Realtor gave her the info and told her I'd like to try and see this property however all bids must be in my tomorrow morning by 9 am and it's 7:30 at night. Oh well, at least I made an effort even if it is last ditch. My Realtor is an extremely busy person so I doubt she'd even get the info before morning. I went on about my night.

About 8:30 I received a call from my Realtor. She had sent her husband out to the property so I could have a look at it if I wanted to meet him there, he was on his way. I jumped in my car and drove over to the property where he was waiting. We entered the lobby of the property and found you need a key card to get passed the lobbie. A key card we did not have. BUMMER! Well at least we tried. But the realtor's husband decided to ask 2 young men who were out on their balcony if they wouldn't mind opening the door for us. They agreed and let us in stating, they enjoyed living here and it was a nice place. We stepped onto the elevator and went to the floor with the property I wanted to see. We unlocked the door and stepped in. My mouth dropped open. I looked at the Realtor's husband, he looked at me. We both said..."this place is huge!!" The living, dining area in this place was equal to the living, dining, kitchen and 1 bedroom of the current place. In total the Sq ft is 1614. My current apt was just over 800ft. We tour the rest of the condo, 2 of the 3 bathrooms are part of 2 master bedrooms with walk in closets. all in all there are 3 hall closets a huge pantry and a place for washer/dryer.
"well what do you think?" says Charli-Mac, the Realtor's husband? "if you like it c'mon over to my house an we'll have Jamie draw up some paper work."
I was shocked at the size of this place. I turned to Charli-Mac and said "Well, this is one of those instances where I would regret not trying."
So about 9pm I headed over to my Realtor's home and we spent 2 hours and a couple of prayers trying to determine a fair asking price. We each came up with the following numbers: 115, 115,500 and 116. After much discussion we decided on the middle number. I signed the needed documents and we sent in the offer just under the deadline of 9:am. Now comes the hard part: Waiting the 2-3 days to see if the offer is accepted. I prepared myself to be another back up offer and settled in for the 3 day wait. I got a call 3 hours later saying my offer was accepted. I was in shock. My realtor who could read me pretty well by this time was not convinced I really wanted the property and since she hadn't seen it she wanted to schedule a time to go back and do a sight inspection in case we needed to add repairs or amendments to the contract. We scheduled a time to see the place, however failed to get an access key. The person with the key was not working that day or the weekend. I was a little sick of taking vacation time off work for dead ends esp when I can be taking real vacations. We returned from the manager's office to where my car was at the condo parking lot. Just ahead of us a car pulled in and went into the parking garage. We basically followed in behind her, found a spot to park and walked in through the elevator as if we belonged. We unlocked the place and I let her walk in so she can see the place. I think she was amazed. She looked questioningly at me. I just kind of hunched my shoulders and let her look around, which she did.
She looked at me and said..."THIS PLACE IS HUGE! IT'S PERFECT FOR YOU!"
I felt the same way. "You don't look excited...!" I had to explain I had a few disappointments so I'm just remaining unemotional. She told we're only supposed to have access to look at the place M-F from 9-5. I've found a way, twice, to get in the place outside of those perimeters. It's close to work, it's pretty high security, easy access for anyone with physical ailments. It's spacious. I could have a roommate if I wanted and never see them.
Long story short, We were going for it. Each step along the way there were road blocks. I had to think: If a bunch of things have to fall in place for this to happen then it's probably not meant to be. It frustrated me. Stressed me out. Took away my appetite. In the process of it all I put in my 30 days notice at the apartment. I called myself "moving forward with faith." I was terrified of being homeless if it didn't work out. So I kept busy with packing up the apartment, and looking for a plan B while trying to maintain my mind at work. In the mean time my car kept breaking down every 2 weeks taking up any extra funds I was saving for new furniture or other expenditures for a new place. I paid for things in the previous month with an understanding of being reimbursed and that never happened. I was basically in a situation where I had to come up with the remainder of my down payment because I used it for other things.
We got to a point of an estimated closing date. although I was excited for it, i knew i wouldn't have all the down payment by that date. In the back of my mind I kept hearing the same thing: It will happen, It will take some work but it will happen the money will come. So I went with it. As the estimated closing date got closer I basically said to myself. If this is going to happen, it's going to happen in a way that I know it was only God. For that to happen I need to close ON the date of October 27Th and not a day before. The estimated closing date came and other stumbling blocks showed up pushing it back.
It was stressing me out and stressing out the people around me who realized I could be homeless by the end of the month. I simply smiled, ignored the fear in myself and said... "It's just GOD workin it out!" Finally we got everything in and to underwriting and they gave me the closing date of October 27Th. Up until the morning of closing, things continued to crop up including another car repair the weekend before. The best thing of all that cropped up was the estimated closing cost was a thousand dollars less than expected and my there was basically a 1 month credit for my HOA fees.
I'm typing this blog as a new property owner from inside MY HOME! And it, indeed, happened in a way that was only God. And he put together a PHENOMENAL team of people to work his plan.

Big Brother, Little Sister Moments

Big Brother, Little Sister Moments
Hand in Hand


I earned some temporary wings!