Friday, October 9, 2009

In the Beginning...

I'm not much of a writer but I have a lot to say, as my friends will confirm! Welcome to my blog. This is my attempt to answer the question, "Anything new with your house?" Okay, I'll start from the beginning.

Back in May my husband Gary and I had the "spring" discussion about selling our house. It seems every spring we spend about a month looking at houses only to decide we just can't afford to buy a large piece of property yet. Our plan for a long time has been to buy a property with a few acres and get some chickens. Well, with the housing market taking a plunge we thought if there was any time we would be able to buy this would be it. The real question was could we sell? So I started looking for properties with 1-3 acres in the Prior Lake area since our kids attend a charter school there. I found a realtor and she took through 10 houses that were in our price range just to give us an idea of what we could buy before we decided to sell. She made me promise not to fall in love with anything because it could take us months to sell our house. Of course I didn't listen and fell head over heals for the last house we looked at. 10 acres! More than we ever thought possible. The property is so picturesque. The perfect balance of woods and pasture. The house is a rambler with a walk out basement. Built in 1976, meticulously maintained and still occupied by the original owner. We gave her the go ahead to list our house on the MLS.

Our house was listed on a Friday morning. By the afternoon we had our first showing. Saturday brought more of the same. We spent most of the day driving around with our kids and two giant dogs in the car. It was awful. I wasn't sure this was going to be worth it. Then Saturday evening came with the good news, we had someone making an offer. WHAT??? That was too easy. Now it was time to make our offer.

It took a few days to hash out the details of the purchase agreement and the following Friday we went to look at the house again and sign our purchase agreement. When we got there we were met by our realtor Sue Jacobs, Kubes realty. She looked worried. Then she told us the was a "short sale". (short sale=homeowner has had financial hardship and can no longer afford to make their house payment but also can't sell the house for they owe to the bank. They petition their bank to allow the sale of their home at a lesser price instead of having to go into foreclosure.) The dreaded shortsale. We have heard nightmares of people waiting for months to hear if the bank has accepted their offer. But we really loved this house and decided it was worth the risk. It wasn't long before we relized it was going to be really difficult to find someone willing to rent to us with 2 dogs and 2 cats. It took two months and we were less than a week from having to be out of our house when we finally found a place to rent. We've been in the rental since September 1st.

We had begun to give up hope of ever hearing from the bank about our offer. Bank of America owns the loan and we have been told that the worst case scenario was to get stuck with this bank. We waited for almost three months before we heard anything. The house was scheduled to go to Sheriff's auction on September 22. Finally a few days before the auction we found out they had taken the house off the auction block to consider our offer. The next step was to get a BPO (broker price opinion). Basically that's just an independent realtor who comps the house with other similar properties. Good news for us since large land parcels really aren't selling in this economy but there are some going into foreclosure. Oh, I forgot to mention when we made our offer it was originally 40K less than what the house was listed for because we were told he was a very motivated seller. Then we found out it was a short sale and offered 20K less than that! Wow, if we get this house it was going to be for a steal. We had the inspection and the inspector said the house and been beautifully maintained and couldn't find a thing wrong with it.

So here we are heading into month 4 and we finally got the news earlier this week that they would be scheduling the BPO. Sue called yesterday to let us know they would be doing it this afternoon. Finally after all these months of waiting and doubting some progress! So that's it in a nutshell.

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