2011 turned out to be a very interesting year, full of twists and turns and lots of changes. We started the year with our condo still on the market after about a year and a half. Showings had nearly dried up. Nothing was moving. We had been wanting to start a family, but were hoping to wait until after we moved on from Chicago. At this point, since it was hard to tell whether our house would sell anytime soon (and we weren’t getting any younger), we started to think maybe we should at least start trying.
We found out in April that Kristin was pregnant, right around the time showings started to pick up again. We had dropped the price yet again, just desperate to get out of Chicago. We finally got our first offer in early May and it was a bit of a kick in the teeth. But we started negotiation and eventually got to a contract we could live with. Unfortunately that was just the beginning of the process.
Our buyer wanted to do an FHA loan, as the majority of people are doing right now with credit so tight. Our building was not already approved, so we embarked on the process of getting that done. I’m not sure if this is the FHA in general or our contact in particular, but I’ve never seen such an incompetent bureaucracy in my life. We gave them an initial set of documents and it took them almost a month to get back to us and tell us half of the stuff was incomplete or wrong. By this time we were only a few weeks out from our scheduled closing on June 24th. We tried to get the documents completed, but we would give them one thing and then they needed something else. Don’t’ these people use any sort of workflow or checklist? It was ridiculous. It’s a wonder people don’t just give up. If the government wants to know why the real estate market isn’t recovering, the FHA would be a good start as part of the problem. Anyway, we missed our first closing date and eventually got everything worked out, but it took another 3 weeks. We were finally able to close on July 19th, almost a month later than originally scheduled. Fortunately the closing itself went smoothly and we were finally officially homeless (and debt-free).
This is a four part series, check out the other posts here: