We are at the cusp of Spring actually arriving here. We had a very dry, hot summer last year and our area had an official drought. This is something that has not happened in our area in a long time. We were depending on a lot of snow this winter to replenish last year’s deficit. We haven’t received enough snow to accomplish that this winter, having only gotten about 4 feet over the course of the whole winter. That being said, we are very tired of winter here. Yesterday we had winds gusting to 50 mph and the temps were only in the low 20’s with a wind chill of 2 degrees. This is on the official second day of spring. As I look out on the weather, we aren’t going to be out of the low 40’s for the next 10 days. That’s a long time for spring to arrive here. Usually by mid April we are able to work the soil enough to get potatoes and cold tolerant plantings in the ground. This year, that doesn’t seem very likely at all since the ground is still solid frozen.
Perhaps it’s just the weather sympathizing with our wait for our homestead. The seller bank needed to accomplish some repairs, which were finally done, then the oil tank went dry and the systems needed to be shut down so that the newly installed plumbing pipes would not burst again in the cold. It has taken the seller’s bank 6 days to get the oil delivered, then they had to have their plumber go back out and turn everything on. We then need to have our lender’s appraiser go back out to check everything that was not approved and had to be repaired the last time she went out. And we have the looming deadline of our rate lock expiring next Wed. It is incredibly stressful to purchase a bank owned property.
When you do this, you are not dealing with someone selling the home willing to meet you half way with things in a reasonable time frame. You are dealing with an entity that has no leader for your particular property, so talking them into having to do a few things for the buyer to get financing is incredibly difficult. Especially when you are dealing with their real estate agent only selling foreclosures. They don’t have any sense of urgency in anything because if they don’t sell it to you, then the next person is just waiting to purchase it. They much prefer cash buyers who are wanting to just purchase and get it off their plates. The majority of those buyers are flippers who will fix it up in 6 weeks and flip it for a lot more money. Someone trying to purchase a modest home for a place to finally have their homestead, and a good place for their family to land, are basically a pain in the butt for them. You need to go into the process of purchasing a foreclosure knowing that there will be major headaches if you need to finance. We would have loved nothing better then to walk in with cash and walk out with the deed in our names, but that’s not possible in our neck of the woods for a family on one average income in an area where modest home prices are in the $300,000+ range.
We considered moving away from New England entirely. And, we may still do this once our boys are out of high school. But they are in a very good school system right now, with some amazing opportunities for education (they have 302 courses offered at their high school!). We wanted to keep them in the system they have been in and give them the best opportunity for a quality education since private school is not in our budget. That meant trying to bloom where we are planted. We’ll be in good shape if we can ever just get this home purchased and be able to move on with our lives, accomplish some modest homestead goals and allow our boys the best shot at a wonderful education with which to start out their adult lives. Parenting is all about choices, and we’re just trying to make good ones.