Houseaversary – Closing Time

Last post of Houseaversary week! In case you missed it, be sure to check out our posts on how we almost missed out on even seeing the house, the offer process and the inspection. Today is all about closing day.

We used a quick closing date as a negotiating tactic in the purchase of our house. We closed in 30 days. Originally we planned to give our rental landlord two months notice, and have a month overlap to do some painting and move in at our leisure.  Our landlord however rented our loft to the first people who viewed it, and they were able to move in a month early if we wanted out. We agreed as it saved us a months rent! The only problem was that we needed to move into our house on closing day. We were only moving two blocks south of where we were living, and we were moving ourselves using borrowed truck & trailer from Mom & Dad and the vehicles and muscles of friends, so we figured we were flexable enough to roll with it whenever we closed. Our lawyer and bank got us to pre-sign all the paper work a week before the closing, and we expected no issues. We loaded up the trailer the night before with all the boxes, and sat around drinking coffee waiting for the call from our lawyer.

A pic of the boxes piled up in our loft ready to move (man have cell phone cameras improved it the last two years or what?!)

The first sign that the day was not going to go as planned was when the furniture store called saying that they had delivered our new mattress set to the storefront. (We had requested the LAST delivery of the day, not the first.) The furniture store left the mattress on the front covered porch of the house (they were in big plastic bags). So not only was our brand new mattress sitting on the door of the house we didn’t have the keys for, but no one was there, and it was raining out. We couldn’t even take the trailer there and pick up the mattress, cause brilliant me had said to load the trailer TO THE BRIM the night before. We figured closing was right around the corner, so my Mom & Dad headed down there with the truck & trailer to park out front and make sure no crack heads took off with our new pillow top dream machine. Speaking of the new mattresses, the furniture company delivered them but not the new bed frame…so a very agitated Kristen spent several minutes bitching pleading her case to get them to pick up another frame from the warehouse in Brampton and deliver it that evening so that I would have a bed to sleep on (I was not going to put my brand new mattress on the floor thank you very much!)

Then I started to get antsy. I called and pestered our lawyer, who informed us that there was a problem with the sellers banking info. Apparently the seller wanted our bank to split up the money and send it to several different institutions. Our bank said hell no. If they needed that done, the money should have went to the lawyer in escrow and been split up by their lawyer. It wasn’t our banks job. So we waited, and waited, and waited some more… After lunch time rolled around I headed down to keep my parents company and keep watch while they stretched their legs and walked to a local coffee shop to get a cup of coffee and use the loo. Finally at about 4pm we got the call that we could pick up the keys. The problem now was that our lawyers office was smack dab downtown, and it was now RUSH HOUR. It took El Granto over an hour and a half to get down there, get the keys and get to the new house. Where it promptly started to really rain. Luckily we have amazing friends and family who lugged, and carried, and go soaked to the bone. We took a pizza break around 9pm, but didn’t make the final trip until almost midnight.

Holy Crap we have a lot of stuff

Then of course we needed a place to sleep…Exhausted and sweaty/rained on I insisted that we assemble the beds for both El Granto & I and my out of town parents who had come to help. So we allen wrenched and bolted, and eventually had beds built. At about that point in time we realized that we didnt have either a shower curtain rod not a bath tub stopper, so no one was even getting a nice hot shower that evening. We crawled into bed, and were promptly woken at the crack of dawn by the lack of curtains in the whole house.

So lessons learned kids: Dont move on the day you close. Hire movers.  Don’t get furniture delivered on closing day. Label each box with not only the room its headed to, but whats inside it. Buy copious amounts of liquor for drowning your stresses. Make sure you have window coverings, a shower curtain and remember where you packed the coffee maker. Those are the keys to a smooth move.

Houseaversary – Almost Didnt Happen

This week marks the anniversary of closing on our house. This week I will share with you with some of our house buying ups and downs. Today’s topic is about how we almost didn’t go see the house at all.

The Storefront you see was on the walking path to El Granto’s work. Every day he walked past the house and he knew exactly which one it was when I sent him the listing. He said. “NO, that place is a dump, we’re not going to see it”. I said “What?! Look how nice the photos look!” And he told me to look it up on google streetview.

The house we were looking at was the one on the left with the brown front

Eeek. That DID look pretty bad. Then El Granto dropped the bomb that for the last year or so it had been boarded up, and was covered in errant graffitti. Double Eeek.

But…this was the pic on the listing:

See…it didn’t look anything like a graffiti covered boarded up shack…

El Granto still insisted it was a dump, and we had been through a lot of dumps lately. This was just weeks after we had viewed a hoarder’s house and a moth ball laced home that we couldn’t even breathe in…

But I persisted. The house was right by the subway and we had to meet our agent at the subway anyways. Why not just schedule it as our first viewing and we would quickly pop in? El Granto grumbled about it being a waste of time, it only being 12.5′ wide, and on a main street etc. To get me off his back he gave in, and we had our agent schedule a viewing.

I got to the viewing late and I walked up to the front of the house to find it looking just as pretty as the listing pic. No graffiti, no boarded windows, no hobos.  I opened the front door to find a BEAMING El Granto. He looked like a cat who swallowed a canary. I quickly did a tour of the house to discover that holy crap, it was great! A brilliant use of space, the rooms were laid out just how we would have done it, and it had a nice new kitchen and bath. A garage, a yard for future dog, and a big basement for storage. It also didn’t appear to have any squatters, dead bodies nor did it appear to be hiding Jimmy Hoffa. This was the best house we’d seen in…months. BUT it was over budget. It was 5k over our max cap. Our recently (but reluctantly) raised cap. AND it was beautiful, so we figured it would go for over asking. So we didn’t get our hopes up, and moved off to our other scheduled listings that night (which were mostly hell holes BTW).

That night all we did was rave about the house, and debated putting in an offer, but the more we raved the more we worried that we’d hyped the house up too much, and that our memories were failing us, and it wasn’t as great as we thought it was. So first thing the next morning we emailed our agent and got her to schedule us another viewing that night.

We hustled to the showing right after work, and damned if the house wasn’t BETTER than we remembered it! We started freaking out, and decided right then and there that we needed the house…

Stay tuned! Later this week I will post about the buying process, inspection, closing & moving.