Saturday, February 13, 2010

Living in America

Don’t get your hopes up about me moving back to the U.S. That’s all I can say.

It’s an old house, a very old house. On the walk through, though I noted that the floors were solid hardwood, that aside from cobwebs there was nothing really wrong with the place, and that it was smallish, but actually cozy with a tone of potential. So I kept all that in mind. The second place I walked through was definitely bigger, but the carpet was covering floors that were not hardwood, the walls were all paneled with big sheets of wood, there was sag in a floor over a ceiling, and it seems like it has mildew. It lacked the cobwebs.

I said to get the first house, the older one, but somehow to my mind the better one.

That is when the real-estate storm really picked up. It was a long hard process that had apparently been started in December. My input was basically on whether or not to continue to go for the older smaller house, or to try to get the larger house that might be easier to acquire. The older smaller ran into problems when the title agent ran the title to discover that there was a third owner listed. And that owner had died. And had eight children, all of whom now had a stack in an old house near lake Michigan in Chicago, but an hour from the city. The eight children were all over the country. The confusion being behind getting them all to sign over the rights to the property so it could be sold. The hold up being the time it was taking.

After walking through the house was I encouraged following an additional extension, which in the end is what happened.

Time passed during the week, more snow fell. Waiting occurred. Finally an agent called to say that it was still not resolved and he asked for just a few more days. At this point I consulted a friend of mine who was in real estate and explained the situation. From good friend I was armed with the words that I needed to help encourage the real-estate agent to get their ducks in a row or they were going to be out the attorney fees and all other monies because the bid would be allowed to expire. The agent listened. One last extension and then on a cloudy, going to snow Thursday night a meeting took place in the Chicago title office, papers were signed, and a house changed hands.

That night I traveled back to the house with the proud owner, and lovely boy, and together we entered, and looked around. In the back of the boy’s truck were twelve gallons of paint, brushes, gloves, drop clothes, and the other odds and ends that you would need to refinish a newly acquired old house. That night cobwebs started to come down while the heater poured in and cozied the place up. I took one room and decided to finish it first just so a sleeping place would be had. The ceilings were incredibly high but the telescoping handle on the paint roller was able to hand it. An hour and a half of painting later, and the room was lovely. Together with the Boy we pulled out the carpet, inserted an inflatable mattress, and promptly crashed out on the floor, entirely worn out by the process of starting to refinish what will eventually become home base central in America.

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