Well, it’s been quite a while since I wrote my last blog entry, and A LOT has happened in the meantime. Bottom line…we made it through! To say that getting moved in three weeks was overwhelming would be a major understatement. Our first undertaking was to get moved into the condo. We spent the entire first weekend after we got the contract for the sale of the house moving over everything that we thought we would need to at least “function” in the new place. The girls spent the weekend with their grandparents, and by that Sunday afternoon their rooms were completely done (pictures hung, clothes in the closets, etc.). We wanted to make the transition as easy for them as possible, so we definitely thought seeing their rooms intact would be a big part of that. Now, our room was a different story! It was late Sunday night before we even had a bed put together to sleep in. In fact, we didn’t even have any of our clothes at the condo at that point. Fortunately, we had taken that Monday off, so we were able (to some degree) to finish things up. I say “to some degree” because we didn’t see the top of our kitchen table for the next two weeks!
Step two in the process was trying to sell all of the extra “stuff” we had accumulated over the years. As I’ve mentioned in this blog before, we determined that we were apparently hoarders that just happened to have the cabinet space to keep everything from spilling out into the common areas. We sent e-mails, put the sale on Facebook, etc… basically anything we could think of to get people to come by. I’ve got to say, it’s definitely a humbling experience to have people come to your house and go through all your stuff. After two days, we had raised a little over $7,000 and still had a fairly large amount of stuff that ended up being donated. I have to give special acknowledgment here to my mom, who served as chief negotiator. Amy and I would have definitely gotten far less on many of the items had she not been in charge of pricing. I also want to think my mother-in-law for taking the girls for a big part of that time. It would definitely have been a lot harder with them there.
With the sale behind us, we were down to getting the remaining items we going to keep from the house to the condo and getting things cleaned up for the hand off to the new buyer. Of course, throughout this entire time we were going through all the steps that have to happen from the time you accept an offer on your house to the time that you close. This, I have to say, is where God really showed up! The first step was the inspection. Since we had already had an inspection done for the first buyer whose financing fell through, we were able to provide that to the new buyer. We were hoping they would simply use that to determine what problems needed to be fixed (and we knew there wasn’t anything major). You can imagine, then, how my stomach dropped when I found out they were going to use the general inspection, but that the buyer was bringing in his own heating and air conditioning guy, his own pool inspector, and his remodeler to take a look at everything! I thought, here we go again! It was way too similar to what we went through with the first buyer who then came back saying that he wanted us to buy him two new air conditioners or he wouldn’t close. To try to get ahead of this, I was able to get our air conditioning people to come out and do the yearly tune up on the systems prior to his guy coming out. They came up with about $500 in various stuff they recommended be done (special thanks to my dad for spending half a day at our house while they did the job). We were then able to forward that report to the buyer’s agent prior to his people coming in. Basically, for the next three days we played the waiting game, not having any idea what they were going to potentially ask for. By the grace of God, everything was VERY minor. A switch on the spa, the basic work our people said needed to be done on the air conditioners and a leaking faucet were all they were wanting us to fix! We were incredibly relieved. Next came the appraisals.
Yes, I said appraisalS (plural). The first appraisal took place a couple of days before the sale of our stuff. I took off and spent the day pulling stuff out of cabinets and getting everything ready for the sale. The real reason I took off was to be there to make sure the appraiser took everything into account in terms of upgrades we had put into the house. The buyer was trying to get $10,000 extra to do some remodeling, so we not only needed the house to appraise for what we were selling it for, but we needed it to be at least $10k higher! We actually had prepared a list of everything that we’d done and what we’d spent that had been part of the package of info. that prospective buyers were able to pick up. I had a great conversation with the appraiser. He was appreciative to have the list of upgrades. And, before it was all said and done I had sold him $265 of our stuff! I left that day for an overnight business trip thinking what a “God thing” it was that I was able to be there and that it had gone so well. My heart sank, again, when I got to my hotel room that night in Greenville, SC and got another “showing notice” for a second appraisal the next day. It turns out that the buyer was getting both a first and second mortgage and the banks were each sending appraisers. It definitely concerned me that I was not going to be able to be there. I was concerned but had no choice but to let it go. I went about my trip and flew home that evening. The next morning, however, I get ANOTHER notice that an appraiser would be at our house from 12 to 2. Fortunately, I was able to work from home the 2nd half of that day, so that I could be there. It turns out that the appraiser who was supposed to have come the day before had apparently had to cancel, and the bank called this guy at the last minute to get him to do it. We had a great conversation. He took our list of upgrades as well as previous square footage appraisal we’d had done. He literally stopped measuring when he realized he knew the appraiser that done that one and knew he could trust his work! He actually thanked me for being there. He said that some realtors discourage their clients from being at the house when the appraiser is there but that he preferred for seller to be there. He flat out said that he would have given us credit for some of the upgrades but that he likely wouldn’t have noticed them all had I not been there to give him the list and point things out. Again, a total “God thing!” It took a few days, but the appraisals came in at exactly what we needed the home to appraise for! Again, thank you Lord!
The rest of the process went fairly smoothly. The close did get pushed by one day because some paper work wasn’t done in time, but it finally happened. As much as were happy to finally have this process behind us, it was bittersweet when Abby and Alex cried as they walked the house for the last time. Abby because she was sad, and Alex because she saw that Abby was getting attention for being sad! J
So, we’re officially settled. We have two garages at the new place still full of stuff that needs to be sorted through, but at least our living environment is finished. The question I’m left with is “now what.” Clearly, trusting God is about a lot more than trusting Him to sell our house. Now that the turmoil of the move is over, I’m left to settle back into everyday life. I find myself now worrying about what’s next. Where do we go from here? I feel like now that we’ve hit this giant life reset button things should change dramatically, but I’m quickly realizing that, although our circumstances have changed, life goes on in many ways exactly as it has before. I’m praying that I can have peace on a daily basis and let the future worry about itself. I’m trying to focus on Matthew 6:34…
New International Version (NIV)
34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Again, this is easier said than done, but having seen how God intervened in what we just went through I’m confident He’s going to be there to see us through whatever the future holds.