Our Great Quest

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, no doubt. But no truer words have ever been spoken: what a difference a couple of months can make!

When last I wrote, we had just flipped the calendar page over to 2017. We had several more showings of our house in January, but we had also had too much time to reflect on this huge step we were taking: selling our house in order to move closer to Missy M.

To refresh your memory, we had come to the conclusion last February that selling our house in High Point was the linchpin to making our "Retirement Transition Plan" work. To make that a reality, we worked to the point of exhaustion starting on Labor Day to prepare our "stuff" for a Downsizing Sale that was held by Blue Moon Estate Sales over the weekend of October 21-23 and to prep our house to go on the market the last Thursday in October (supposedly, the best day to list a house for sale is a Thursday...they have done studies that show it yields higher offers). And to show that we really are serious about selling this time, I buried St. Joseph* in my 'Herb Garden' container, along with sage, rosemary, thyme, and chives.

So, where are we in our great quest now, you ask? Well, we have been on some kind of real estate roller coaster ride since then. As our contract came up for renewal in late January, we decided we needed to take a step back from the tyranny of trying to keep the house ready to show at a moment's notice. Plus, we knew we would be dog-sitting for most of the month of February while Missy M traveled for 3 weeks, and having four dogs inside in Winter triples the effort required to ready a house for showing. So, let's take a break.

As luck would have it, we got not one but TWO full-price offers the day the contract expired. The first one was easy to say no to, since the lady insisted that we close in a few weeks...and if we couldn't close on that specific day, then there was no offer. We were supposed to be on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon (more on that in a mo) that exact day, so no...and she withdrew her offer.

The second offer was a little more difficult to reject. This couple had looked at our house back in December when we had our first Open House, and they had wanted to put in an offer, then and there. However, they had a house to sell...and they hadn't even put it on the market! So...it was easy to say "no." Wouldn't you know it? They got an agent, put their house on the market, and sold it in a week! Now, they were back...with a full-price offer...so, we had a more difficult time saying "no" this time. But we did...and thought that was The End of that.

Our (wonderful, marvelous, extra-special) realtor said she understood and worked the magic needed to get our listing out of MLS. And then we started thinking "maybe we can just stay here for 2-3 more years." We decided to replace the washer and dryer that had been sold in the Sale (because going to the laundromat was getting old)...and, in true Patricia-thinking logic: "before we install a new W/D, let's paint the laundry room a spectacular color...an aquamarine called 'Aloha!'"

Go ahead...roll your eyes. We certainly have since then.

Two days later, before the paint in the laundry was completely dry (and also in the pantry, which was on T's drawing board for a shelving unit redesign, too), our (wonderful, marvelous, extra-special) realtor texted to ask permission to say "no" yet again to the couple. What?!?

Apparently, they really, really, really wanted to buy our house. They were offering a "clean contract" (not asking for a thing...not even any repairs if their inspector found anything!) along with $10k more than the original listing price! And they had moved their closing date to the end of March from their original request for 3/14/17. 

Have you ever heard the British term "gobsmacked?" Means:  Flabbergasted, astounded, speechless. Yep, that pretty much describes how we felt. Somehow we had clear-enough heads to realize that we probably weren't going to get another offer like this any time soon (and maybe not in 2-3 years, even). So, instead of giving our (wonderful, marvelous, extra-special) realtor permission to say "no," we told her to say "yes!" 

And since that moment, we have been working nearly non-stop to reach the Finish Line of closing on 3/31/17. We postponed our trip to AZ (so, no standing on the South Rim in early March for us), and I cancelled my trip to W Homecoming (and no attending the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Rosettes, either 😥). We contracted with Two Men and a Truck to load and move our things to storage (more in a mo), and Mr. T and I got busy packing the rest of our belongings (the things that escaped being stored in the Pod or being sold at the Sale). Now, you might think "we couldn't be talking about too much stuff, could we?" Well, remarkably, yes we were! 






Then, we dug up and potted up masses of transplants that would make the trip from the Way Back with us to (?)...but in the meantime while we decide where their final destination (?) will be, we rented a 16' Budget truck to transport them (and a few other things) to Missy M's...which will be a temporary shelter for all of us (people, pups, and plants!) until...we are ready to make that next move. 

And last but certainly not least has been the cleaning. The dust has been banished, the fixtures are gleaming, and the floors are positively glowing! And neither of us can move without pain. How will we get where we are going if we can't move?!?

Remind us, where exactly are you moving to? Still don't have an answer to that. But I can reveal that there are at a minimum 4 possible solutions to that equation at present:
1) Somewhere in GA, near where Missy M currently lives (Lawrenceville). But, if she makes a job-related move (always a possibility...hey, she came by that tendency naturally!), that would mean...
2) Somewhere in (?), near where M goes next...if she goes anywhere.
3) Somewhere between GA and (?).
4) Somewhere near Tampa, FL, as T contemplates un-retirement (that will take a whole post in itself to explain!).

As we get closer to our closing date, and hopefully closer to knowing where we will be moving to, I am reminded of lines from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (I love that movie!):
Walter Donovan: As you can now see, Dr. Jones, we are on the verge of completing a quest that began almost two thousand years ago. We're just one step away. 

Indiana Jones: That's usually when the ground falls out from underneath your feet.


Continue to stay tuned! Another post will be coming along...hopefully sooner rather than later!

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*About "Burying St. Joseph": I've shared this before. An Ohio neighbor once advised me to bury a statue of St. Joseph in the backyard (she specified "head down") in order to facilitate a sale on our house there. You doubt? If you Google "burying St. Joseph to sell your house," you'll get over 25 million hits. Amazing.

Here's a link to an article that does a good job of explaining this one (note that it is from a business-oriented site, Bank Rate.com):

http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/real-estate/20040831a1.asp


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