You will probably notice that this is a revised repost of our posting on March 9th. Unfortunately we had to take down the original and postpone its release until after the house closed, because someone didn’t like us talking about the transactions. To me that is just an honest evaluation on how the house sale went. The house is now through Escrow and is on Record and we are finally DONE!!!, a new owner has taken possession, and we are so relieved and ready to move on. Once again we promised an honest account of our retired life and it’s ups and downs. So here it goes with the next installment.
After months of dealing with contractors and stagers, doing numerous disclosures and other paperwork and basically being on pins and needles since the house went on the market on February 21st, we got only 3 offers on March 7th when bids were due!! We were flabbergasted as this was not what we expected at all with as many people (over 250 groups) that went through in the two weekends (3 days/7 hours total) of open houses and the history of our neighborhood. It is crazy, there have been no houses in our neighborhood for sale for a year with tons of people looking and being bid out and then all of a sudden there are three just on our street, including ours within a 2 block area. And numerous ones a few blocks from us. Not good timing at all, but February was the earliest we could get the house on the market since we decided to pay the extra money to upgrade some areas, spruce up others and then stage it nicely. and that took some time.
To start, the highest offer we received was $1,130,000 and that was close to what we wanted and so we accepted it feeling very good about it indeed!!! The buyer was very excited to have us accept his bid since he had been trying to get into Temescal for quite a while, always losing to higher bids. So we felt very happy that someone was going to get his dream. BUT, people are fickle and he was supposed to sign the papers and get back to us that evening and when midnight came around and the paperwork had not come back we had a sinking feeling. The next morning we found out that he pulled the offer and decided the 1,500+ square foot house with an in-law apartment was too small. We wish they had sat down and figured that out before making an offer that we were very happy and excited with as it would really allow us the retired life we envisioned.
So we had to go back to square one. Last year houses in Temescal were selling easily for $200-300,000 over asking. Unfortunately it seems that that is not necessarily the case now and the market is all of a sudden slowing down. For our neighborhood, it also looks like people are putting an emphasis on parking rather than an in-law quarters, since parking is at a premium right now. We didn’t have parking but our added in-law was wonderful and the house charming, welcoming and in great shape even though it is 108 years old so we thought that would make up for it. We had two other offers but they are were substantially less than the first one we accepted. and that amount would not give us enough money in the end to fit our budget for our retirement years if we agreed to them. Our Better Homes and Gardens Realtor Cheryl is great though and she worked her butt off for us trying to get them to budge and bump up a bit. We are so happy that we chose her and can’t imagine a better agent as she is so good to work with. There was a fourth person who she brought in at the last minute and she went up a bit to $1,050,000 so we then we decided to try her offer. Midnight came and went again and, wait for it, yes she pulled out too!! I guess you just never know what will happen when it comes to selling a house and the people buying it. But this was a head trip! and one we did not expect. One last person stuck with their offer of $1,000,000 and we had to take it. It is very hard to take $130,000 less than the 1st offer you originally had less than 24 hours previously. We couldn’t really spend the time to put the house back on the market, since we had basically run out of our allocated funds for the wait time. Our savings has dwindled considerably as the contractors and staggers cost way more ($13,000 more) than we budgeted for. So keep that in mind if you are doing what we did. We now wish we hadn’t put in all the nice extras, but “se la vie” I guess. We really were pretty stuck if we didn’t take the last offer. We have put so much effort out into all of this plus the planned move over the last months that we were initially pretty deflated. Especially me since I react quite a bit harder than Glenn does. I actually made Cheryl cry when I did, as I was disappointed. And we know what hard work she did to try and make a great sale happen. God, I felt so bad about that. I don’t want to seem like a spoiled brat, $1,000,000 is still a very good offer and $111,000 over our asking so we are happy. It is just the adjustment of ideas. Glenn is my rock though and has pulled me together and we have gotten used to the idea of re-budgeting and having the major stress of the house over.
We took one last look at the house on Thursday and met our Realtor there to pass over the big bag of keys we had. We have no ideal how we got so many! Our pockets are a whole lot lighter now. And all we have left is the safety deposit key and the car key! Friday we got the call that the funds were in but holding and the final paperwork was to be done. We would hear in a few hours that the whole deal had just really closed and the house sale is ON RECORD and our funds are definitely in and available. We are now planning out how to invest for Mexico and the future. We are moving to Mexico sometime between the 9th-15th of April (YIPEE) after such a long time planning. I am going to end up in a puddle of exhaustion when we cross the threshold of our beautiful new house, as I need some major chill out and stress free time with my honey just kicking back on the patio watching hummingbirds and enjoying the morning.