We had been looking at a new place for a while. And it made sense to do so. See, while the Goose was off at school it was all well and good for me to be in that specific apartment. My days were pretty full.
Monday through Friday I typically went to the gym 3 – 4 times a week after work. I would do a half hour of weights and then 2 hours of racquetball. On the rare occasions I was home I was generally watching a Blazer game, Burn Notice or Psych. My interaction with neighbors was somewhere between non-existent and never.
But when she came back to Oregon things changed. She DID spend time in the apartment and the dark, closed-in nature of it was something that would negatively affect her. She wanted out of that place so had been looking.
The first three places we actually visited all did not work out for one reason or another. I say we….those are the ones we actually went into. We drove by several others and she looked at probably hundreds online.
We also looked at other apartments. It was a fine line; I was hard to drag out of our old apartment because it was large, cheap, and close to work. I did not want to add 50% to my housing bill for less space…worse location…and knowing we would most likely have to move again because she was on a dogged search for a house. An actual house.
At the same time, she hated the apartment so much that it was virtually guaranteed we were going to be out of there. That is part of the challenge of marriage…finding mutually agreeable compromises.
Well, we found a nice compromise. About 2 – 3 miles from the apartment, close to everything we wanted to be close to, decent size, cheap price, and everything she wanted except a garage. Well, okay, so it was not a cheap price…we thought it was about 5-10% high.
We put in an offer about 7% under what he was asking, he countered at 4% less…it was a workable deal. It was a price we were willing to pay IF the repairs came up to standard.
The problem is there were so many…siding, roof, electrical, plumbing, floors, other…and one that was a HUGE sticking point, the trip hazard dead concrete. He would not budge on it, we would not…it almost killed the deal. We actually had withdrawn our offer.
Then the Goose and I talked, decided we would offer more if he would repair the concrete. I planned to split the cost of it, but the "split" was going to be like 90-10 when we got done hammering it out, so instead we took it off the table if he would do all the other repairs including a couple he had been balking at. The deal was back on.
Well, the repair process dragged out. I do not know who he had do the first set of repairs but I know this; if that guy is licensed and bonded I would be shocked. He did such a poor job that I could have done better…and I am a self-admitted home repair incometent.
Example; the water heater is required BY LAW to drain the overflow valve to the outside of the house. In this house it is located dead center in the house. His guy ran the pipe about ¾ of the way down the water heater…and called it good. In other words, any water coming out of that pipe would go directly on the floor.
Sadly, that was one of the BEST jobs he did. Of the 3 sinks that previously leaked, now 4 did. No, I did not mis-type. More sinks were leaking than before he began doing repairs. It kind of makes the water heater thing look good in comparison, wouldn’t you agree?
Well, we were…unhappy with the quality of repairs. We said we would keep the offer on the table if he did the repairs but used the licensed, bonded contractors our realtor had do quotes. That would push the closing back by at least a week, maybe two.
By this time, pretty much everyone had enough of the seller and his antics and the thought of this thing dragging out another length of time had people scrambling for solutions. The seller’s representative suggested that instead he cut a check to us for the amount of the repairs left undone and we still close in the same time frame.
We came up with a total that was more than fair to the seller…we were not trying to gouge the guy, even though several other things had been revealed on reinspection that had previously escaped notice, we did not put those in the total, we took the lowest possible total off, completely took off the table stuff that legitimately we should have charged for but did not because we have plans anyway…so no point to charging him for stuff we thought had already been pulled off the repair list. We were really trying to do the "right" thing and not be vindictive or unreasonable. In retrospect, I think we were a little bit too fair and should have been another 2k or so…but in the end…we did it, life goes on.
Anyway, because of the hesitations it was unclear if we would close on Friday or not. It dragged on so late that as late as 2:30 we were still debating if we wanted to go through with it or walk away from the deal.
At 3:08 the loan funded, it was closed. I texted a few people that I had earlier told we were not looking like we would close in time and not sure if we would move that it was official, we had the house.
By 4:30 I met my realtor outside the racquetball court, got the key and started playing racquetball. (As an aside, I had a pretty good night…I lost the first game 15-14, won the next two games of singles and every game of cutthroat….)
I got home and started packing. Let me rephrase that slightly…I got home and thought about starting to pack. And kept sitting there thinking I needed to either get up and go to bed so I could get an early start or get up and start packing until 1:30 in the morning.
Ultimately we decided to put off moving for a week. I planned to get up and call my brothers and tell them we were going to try to move the following Saturday. This did not happen. Because…
My brother called before I got up…he was in Portland to help out. So we jumped up and started planning a swift move. We decided we would just move the furniture and then box everything up and move it ourselves in cars.
As a stalling tactic/thank you, we took him to breakfast. Did you know Tom’s Pancake House makes waffles with bacon mixed into the batter? Anyway, got done, the Goose went home to start packing and Fullur and I headed over to U-Haul to see if they had anything.
They had ONE vehicle left. I took it. We booked it. My other brother and his wife showed up, so did my cousin’s husband (they had lived with us for a time) and we started cracking out the furniture. Meanwhile, I started "speed packing".
Speed Packing; the process whereby an entire room can be packed in 10 minutes. Just throw stuff in a box until it is full with no regard for relationship to other stuff in the box, marking the box, or any other consideration other than if it fits. I packed the first room in about 10 minutes.
I packed the second room in about 8 minutes. I packed the third room in about 5 minutes. I was told to leave the other 2 rooms alone…
We got it moved. We got the bedroom set up. We got curtains hung. We would be able to spend the first night in the new place.
Much pizza was consumed, soda as well, grateful platitudes extended…
Now, mind you…the old place still had a fair amount of very valuable stuff in it* and it took us another week to get all that moved out and the place clean.
And even today, 2 weeks later we are not completely unpacked at the new place. Nor do we have all the repairs done.
But we are in the new place, we love it, and it happened.
Goose and Weasel, living in Beaverton since May 24th, 2013.