On Monday, we found out that someone had put a low offer in on the house that we wanted. The house that we had claimed as OURS. When I got the e-mail from our realtor, I was just heartsick. I told Adam, "I can't believe it...they're going to sell our house out from under us!" This led into a long conversation about the merits of emotional investment inside our home in comparison with the weight it holds in the rest of the world.
Adam had to pick me up from work on Monday night because I was feeling sick. I had a headache, blurred vision, and I was really dizzy. After ruling out a brain aneurysm and a stroke, I feel pretty confident that it was a combination of low blood sugar, high blood pressure, and STRESS. I talked to a friend on Monday night, telling her about a loan program through the USDA and saying it was "a long shot." (Fortunately, for us, we are long shot kind of people.)
Tuesday pretty much had us both just wandering around the house, moping and being stressed out. This whole situation just felt so IMPOSSIBLE. At this point, we couldn't even fight for this house. This house that we KNEW was OURS.
Wednesday morning we met with yet another banker (our third, at this point). And he was the first one with GOOD NEWS! So, apparently, because the house we want is out in the middle of nowhere, we DO qualify for a USDA Rural Development Loan. The cool thing about these kinds of loans is that they are actually a better financing deal than the FHA loans that we had been pursuing. They require 0% down, which would mean that we would be able to use our savings for repairs, equipment, and maybe some grown-up furniture. And, you know, that ADOPTION thing we're doing!
The only downside is that you have to be UNDER a certain income...ack! So frustrating to have so many different requirements. For some loans, we need more money--for some, we need less. Fortunately, we were just under the the income limit. I have never been so happy to not have more money! I had to leave the meeting early and go to work, so the plan was to have Adam bring any papers to my office, I would sign them, and then he would take them back to the banker.
Adam showed up at my office during one of my breaks on Wednesday afternoon. When I got back from the bathroom, our realtor is on the phone, talking about how Adam dropped off a pre-approval letter and telling us about putting an offer on this house! At this point, my head was SPINNING, and I felt like I was about 2.5 steps behind everyone else in this story. As I was getting caught up, we found out that the sellers of the house were going to make a counter offer to the low offer. This was bad. This was really really bad. Because, basically, if the other people accepted the offer, we were done. Game over for the Millers.
At this point, our realtor says, "I hope I haven't overstepped my bounds, but..." Basically, he asked the seller to withdraw the counter offer, IF he could get us to commit to a certain purchase price. The seller agreed. Now, the offer was a little bit more than what I think we would have offered (which is totally risky and aggressive, but totally the right thing), but it got us in the game and caught the seller's attention. We submitted the offer and gave them 48 hours to accept. They came back the next day and had ACCEPTED!
Thursday night, we sat on the couch, facing each other, basically going, "Oh my goodness...what. have. we. done?" We had been afraid they wouldn't accept our offer, but we hadn't really considered the implications of an acceptance. Holy. crap.
We had our inspection done Saturday and all went well. I absolutely adore our inspector. Both our realtor and our inspector used to be home builders, so the two of them together were an awesome team. The house has some...interesting...features, and it was helpful to have two brains working together to figure out what the heck some of this stuff was and how it works. Obviously, there are some things that need to be fixed. The house was built in 1920, and (we think) has been vacant for almost a year, but there was nothing that was a deal breaker. Our inspector actually said he had seen homes that were ten years old that have more wrong with them than this house. Whew! What a relief!
So, now, we're waiting on final approval from the bank. Then, the loan has to go to the USDA to get signed and approved, which could take about three weeks. Say a prayer that none of this is affected by the whole "government shut-down/sequestration" thing, which ultimately could slow things down and even significantly reduce funding to the USDA for home loans.
So, if you're keeping track at home, we have a long list of blessings that have all come together to pave the way for this moment:
1. Financial blessings that have allowed us to pay off debt, save for a house, and save for adoption
2. The provision of a dream house within our budget
3. Awesome teamwork between Adam and I to get everything done as quickly as possible
4. Qualification of a loan that requires us to have a lower income and zero down payment
5. An amazing trifecta of realtor, inspector, and mortgage broker
Things still left to pray for:
1. Final approval on our loan
2. Timely approval of our loan from the USDA
3. Low cost estimates on repairs that need made
4. Financial provision for said repairs (and all the other "house stuff" that we need)
If all goes well, we are set to close by April 13! (Yikes.)