We have lived in a townhouse for almost ten years. Time flies. This August, after all the fun summer activities, I decided to look into selling it and slightly upgrading to a fixer ranch. With the new real estate boom here, it was now or never.
We sold the townhouse in four days and found the only house in our price range that was not a foreclosure. All was well. We would have a nice 15% down payment without dipping into checking or savings.
I failed to remember that I am strongly INFP with no paper work talent besides paying the bills on time. My father says that it is only half my fault, but I 100% forgot that we have 3 'silent' loans in addition to the big mortgage. 'Silent' means that you never get a bill and it doesn't even show up on your credit report! You just pay it when you sell the house. It took the month of August for the lender and escrow officer to figure this out...because I failed to mention it...because I forgot.
So, we are a bit under water. To buy the fixer ranch we would have had to liquidate all checking and savings to zero to make a 5% down payment with mortgage payments $1000 more per month. Um, no thank you. Praise God that the deals were contingent on everything working out. And yes, in California, all we talk about is traffic and real estate.
I sobbed for two days, mostly for disappointing my children who won't get to run around like both their parents did. I had ponies, chickens, a goat named Friday. Their dad had country grandparents 3 miles apart to choose from, spending summers picking plums, fishing, smoking cornsilk. But now is not then. After the escrow fell apart, the calls came, realtors who wanted to sell our house since the deal went south. So, I had to explain the situation- everything was great- except I forgot about $30,000+ of debt! Aren't I stupid! Thankfully, the calls have finally stopped.
God has made it clear that he wants us to be satisfied where we are. We can never upgrade here because when our townhouse grows in so-called value, all of the other properties do, too. Someday in the far-off future, we will be that annoying ex-California couple who cashes in their 'California dream' and moves to Oregon or Ohio and buys a nice place outright. It won't happen here. And I am staying away from pretty blogs like soulemama and small things where the kids have room to roam and be creative. I know they only show the pretty- but how pretty it is!
So- we ripped up the carpet last week. When we bought this townhouse 9 years ago (for more than what we were offered with the failed sale), it was a mess. There was literal fresh dog vomit upstairs...so we ripped up the 35 year old forest green carpet and put laminate downstairs and carpet upstairs. Carpet is cheaper than laminate. Who knew? But the new/old carpet is making me sick; I wake up with sneezes and puffy eyes. So it has got to go. We slowly replaced just about everything- appliances, windows, doors, floors, ceilings...It takes a long time to do-it-yourself without credit cards, but I would rather have laminate counter tops with cash than solid surfacing with a credit card I can't pay off.
So, I have finished my pity party. I am grateful for what we have. I'm trying to make it prettier. I will have aquaponics even if it is just a kitchen counter system. I'm getting a little worm composter for my kitchen scraps. All will be well. "Enough is as good (or maybe better than) as a feast." Someday, my children will have room to run whenever the mood strikes.
In the meantime, I'll see you at park day.