Bill and I started shopping for our Baltimore house in late January. We submitted a bid on a house in early February. Our close date was set for late March. Commence a tedious flurry of emails, scans, and faxes between me, Bill (who was in a different state most of the time), our realtor, our mortgage broker, and our insurance broker. We had a big party to celebrate Bill’s 50th birthday in which we showed a slideshow of our new house in a never-ending loop on the tv. I packed furiously anything that wasn’t currently in use and moved it to a storage facility in order to make more room to pack more boxes. Bill arranged to take leave from his out-of-town assignment on our appointed close date…
…that never happened. Three days before the scheduled date, our realtor called us to say that some paperwork had not been completed. It was all very confusing. But in the end, what we understood was that the seller had not yet submitted the proper paperwork to transfer the deed from the previous owner into their own name.
You see, we were buying home in foreclosure. And we knew it. In fact, we had been told that the purchase of a foreclosure should go very quickly, because foreclosures are sold as-is, and so there was no reason to wait for… I don’t know. Something.
Instead, we ran smack up against an unholy paperwork processing backlog generated by the recent mortgage scandals, foreclosure scandals, and subsequent cracking down on transactions thereof. Lovely.
So we waited for the General Equity Master to approve the paperwork. And we waited. We executed addenda to extend the duration of our purchasing contract. We submitted new financial data in order to retain our financing. And we waited some more.
Wednesday morning our realtor called to say that the bank that owns our house has opted not to sign another contract extension and instead will be taking the house off the market. Five months of waiting, down the drain. All our plans, poof!
What makes this so much worse: I quit my job. I had a plan. Move, then find a new job. Elegant in its simplicity, no? With my newly freed time, I’d be able to pack, oversee our move, get us settled in, and get the DC house fixed up and rented out. And once we were in Baltimore, I’d be able to immerse myself in city life, network locally, and find just the right job for me.
Packing? Check! Our storage space is filled to the ceiling with boxes of comics, books, DVDs, kitchen implements, and off-season clothes. Of course, while we were waiting for our house, some of those clothes came back on-season. So I am basically living in the only three season-appropriate items I can get my hands on at the moment. Also, the rent went up on the storage space, so denying myself shorts and sundresses is becoming somewhat spendy.
Moving house, settling in, fixing up, renting out, finding work? Not so much. A little applying for jobs here, a little writing there. To-Do lists galore. Lots of yoga, lots of cooking.
So now we’re back to square 1. Or 1.25, I suppose, if you count the packing. We’ve expanded our home search to include neighborhoods we hadn’t looked at before, and plan to see some tomorrow. I’m ramping up my job application efforts somewhat. And I’m writing more, starting with this blog. As I indicated in earlier posts, the wait has been discouraging (and that was before this latest blow), but now that we are letting go of this particular house, I hope things will go much faster and more smoothly.
And that is why we’re not in Baltimore (yet).