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26 July 2010

No one told me that buying a house would be so frustrating.

Aside from finding the “perfect” house at the “perfect” price in the “perfect” neighborhood, you must prepare yourself for dealing with incompetent people.

Take our loan officer, for instance.  It is his job to do a large number of things, including providing a paper trail of our electronic transfers and deposits in our bank accounts.  But what does he do?  He asks us to cut out $2,000 worth of accounts (okay, I’m a bit* neurotic with my money** and have it divided up among a bunch of accounts to help keep savings, bill funds, and fun funds apart) from the money we plan to use for our down payment and for the funds that we’ll show as reserves because “it’s more difficult” to establish the paper trail.  What does that mean to me?  More work for him.  More work that’s part of his job.  It’s not like I’m asking him to go out and buy me a sundae with those funds.  I’m asking him to attribute the money I’ve saved toward my very large and important purchase.  Sheesh.

Also take our termite inspection people.  First they sent a report to our real estate agent saying that our potential home was free of termites.  Then they sent an amended report, about an hour later, saying that there was a presence of termites and that there may or may not be internal damage.  Wow, that’s helpful.  Thanks for your expert opinion.  Oh, and they had our house marked as a “townhouse”.  Good job.

And again, let’s come back to our loan officer.  He finds it entertaining? funny? exciting? to add oh, say, $1,000 every other day or so to the amount we’ll need at the settlement table.  Because, you know, we’re made of money.  A little tip to property virgins: ask your loan officer up front to be up front with you about the costs and to be thorough in explaining what costs are included in the Good Faith Estimate (even if they’re broken out with descriptors, ie: “Inspection”, “Hazard Insurance”, “Survey”, as they should be) that he may be quoting you separately as well.  I can’t tell you how many times we’ve thought a fee was included in a previous quote when it wasn’t and how many times we’ve thought a few wasn’t included in a previous quote when it actually was (which is actually a score!).

But this weekend J and I tried to put all that run-around behind us as we spent Saturday tackling a long list of new home to-dos:

{} called insurance company for homeowner’s quote, which was a bit high, but we have a back-up plan for some other quotes

{} went to the bank to get some joint accounts (so grown up!)

{} went to Sears to check out some lawnmowers.  I’m pushing for the riding mower, but I guess it doesn’t really matter since I won’t be doing it!  We also found a throw on clearance (our first “fun” purchase, the part of the homebuying that I get to drive) and a cooler – with wheels!

{} went home and prioritized, on our own rating scale, our projects, by floor, in a handy Excel spreadsheet that I dreamed up last week.  Who knew home renovation could look so good?

{} sifted through three color wheels and picked our paint for each room.  It felt a little too free-spirited for me at first, but then I embraced the idea of jumping in with both feet.  After all, you can always repaint, right?

Whew.  It feels good crossing some things off our list.  Add a quick count of the outlets and switches Sunday and two (count em, two) trips to Home Depot, and we had quick a productive home-oriented weekend.

The womp-womp came when a huge storm wiped out our power last night, which is still out.  A night of sleeping on the basement floor to keep cool wasn’t exactly ideal, but I slept more soundly knowing that we got a lot done this weekend.

And today we got our settlement date finalized: 10 AUG.  That’s only 15 days away.  Woooo.

*Substitute “a bit” for “extremely”, if you’re going for accuracy

** Among other things

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. 26 July 2010 2:17 pm

    Even with the setbacks of the loan officer and termite inspection, you guys are on a roll. I’m sure picking out the paint must have been fun! And you merged your finances?! Niiice! Now I’m just waiting for the engagement announcement!

    And August 10th is right around the corner!!! Woo hoo!

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