Friday, March 1, 2013

# 409 - Moving? Buyer Making Offer!

Well folks, looks like we've experienced a scenario similar to Goldilocks and The Three Bears. A family came to see our house late Wednesday evening, around 7:00pm, so Deputy Dave and I headed to Chick-fil-a to order a keep-the-kitchen-clean kind of dinner so the potential buyers could enjoy looking at our house. We took the dogs, made an errand, then headed through the drive-through and then headed back home.

However, before we left the house, we'd dashed around doing house preparations...turning on all the lights, putting great music on the built-in sound system and we were hoping the buyers would not come back with the same old line, "the house is much too big for us."

After getting our food and making another quick errand, we pulled up the block, about two houses down and we sat in the truck waiting for the crew in our house to finish looking around. We didn't want to eat in the truck with the dogs in the backseat, so we sat and waited for the people to leave our house. And we waited, and waited and waited some more, then Deputy Dave says, "I've really got to go to the restroom about right now, and I'd sure like it if they'd wrap this is a work-night."

We waited some more. Then, I finally became irritated and said, "Damn, are they moving in already?"

By now, it's 8:00pm. They've been there for an hour. I knew from my professional real estate days that this was actually a good sign, so I tried to take a deep breath. The group had two cars, one in our driveway and one parked in front of the house. Deputy Dave and I were waiting, or stalking our own house from about two houses down the block.

Finally, the Realtor came out with her clipboard and the family followed suit. A big family. Lots of kids. Well, that's a great sign! Yeah for big families!

We watched them all drive away and so we dragged our tired butts inside to eat our dinner that had almost grown cold and to dash around the house, upstairs and down, to turn off every light.

Well, I guess the family had their Goldilocks moment because they have decided that our house is "just right" and they appear to be very motivated to buy our house. I hear that the family is sending us an offer within the next 24 hours. We will look it over this weekend and make up our mind by Sunday as to whether we can accept it or make a counter-offer.

Even so, we have another showing scheduled for Saturday afternoon and those buyers are anxious because their agent knows we will be considering an incoming offer this weekend, so she politely asked me to just remember to consider the highest and best offer.

This is how it works folks...when you are having multiple offers submitted within the same time-frame, it is not about first-come-first-serve, it's about the best offer being the one to win out. A seller has all the power in this area to choose which offer is best and you have 48 hours to respond to a submitted offer. Up until the paperwork is actually signed by all parties to become more than mere become an actual contract, your house is still open for any incoming offers. Even once a contract is in place, you can continue to show your house and take back-up contracts...just in case.

Working in real estate, I found that a lot of first-time buyers were under the illusion that if they just submitted their paperwork first, then the sellers were obligated to accept that offer, even if a second and third offer followed and had better terms. It doesn't quite work like that. But, if these potential buyers make a solid offer or are receptive to a reasonable counter-offer, they will likely have a contract to buy our house by Monday.

So, we've gone from lack of offers to a possible bidding war. I guess we'll see how it goes; I'm confident the right family will end up filling this house with new memories.


For us, we are kind of NERVOUS. I think every seller goes through nervous remorse as they prepare to leave a house they've loved. Conversely, "Buyer's Remorse" is the worst phase to get through, especially for a first-time home-buyer.

The main goal is to move and to be out from under a home that is much too large for us and it being a two-story makes it more difficult to maintain. Have I mentioned that in 2009 I had a broken neck that caused spinal cord damage and required major double-sided cervical-spine reconstruction? That made having a two-story more challenging, but I manage. I think I take after my dad with his Superman genetics. I like to fondly refer to myself as the REAL "Bionic Woman." I have many spare parts, so many that it might gross you out or make you say, "COOL!" For me, I'm of the position that it is "COOL" because those spare parts keep me together, literally. But, our many steps to get to the second floor is not so cool. I can walk rather easily, but climbing is difficult and a step upward is a climb for me.

Back on track...all of you Blog-Buddies who have journeyed through this process with us --- I'm sure you can imagine the level of anxiety we are feeling about this move. Up to this point, I think it's great that neither Deputy Dave nor I have buried one or the other in the backyard as added compost.

Deputy Dave and I, in South Padre, over 20 years ago.
Us twenty years later, he has less hair and I have more weight.

This move has added stress, especially because, for the first time, we have no house to go directly to. And that's because we're building a custom home on our acreage. Normally, we are selling a house and buying a house, simultaneously. This time, our acreage is so far away that we cannot begin building until we get this house sold.

My stomach rumbles as I think about all of these big changes. But, I've been through bigger changes...several times in my life. So, this one is a positive change and very exciting for us.

I think Deputy Dave is getting too happy over being able to raise pigs and maybe a couple of cows. Originally, I pictured myself out there with all these goats and now that mental picture is being re-thought. My chickens will be a huge part of my life out there and my dogs, but I know the other animals will have to be introduced slowly. We'll have a lot of adjustments to make.

And a lot of fencing to install. I think it will be time for us to buy a small tractor with the right attachments, such as a post digger thingy.

However, I do believe that the two of us are living an American Dream Come True. We've held onto this land since our daughters were young girls and we've waited for this day. We've earned it. We've fretted about it. We can't believe it's really happening.

We are about to be living in FOREST. The Piney Woods of East Texas! The Big Thicket is our area.

So, I guess we'll know by Monday if our house will be under contract. If so, I will be thrown back into the world of packing, panicking, and preparing for the big moving day.

I can honestly say, I'm going to miss this house.

We lived through a hurricane in this house; we lived through two years of rebuilding; we continued to help put our daughters through college in this house;

we buried our favorite little 16 year old Chihuahua "Cinnamon" at this house; I began to raise my first flock of chickens at this house...and we still have them, well, except for the roosters; my dad lived in this house for a year after his house flooded and he was diagnosed with bladder cancer --- I helped him in this house --- not a good year for him; both my children officially left home to be more involved with their own budding lives from this house; since living here, my oldest daughter graduated from college, got married and is now expecting her first baby; and in this house that I moved to six months after my mom died, I've had the most awesome dreams of her.

This house has a few moments that I'd rather forget, but isn't that how all houses end up? The walls contain both the worst and the best of us. None of us are different from each other in that we all have a bit of both good and bad, sometimes one more than the other, depending on where we are in life and our circumstances.

And I can't even think about the increased distance between me and my sister and my youngest niece since we're all such a HUGE part of each other's lives. Right now, we live just a few miles apart. My sister and I are already desperately making plans to be able to see each other frequently and for Shaye to remain an integral part of our lives. My sister is wise enough to know that family relationships are very important for Shaye and for us, but my sister and I have always been connected in that way. For my sister, she doesn't have too many family members directly involved with her daughter, so she really treasures that her sister is so close to her daughter.

I love my sister. I will have to take extra steps to reassure Robin that I will still be a major part of her life. I adore my Sissy; she's my best-friend in the world.

Then again, I'm blessed to have multiple best-friends, but only ONE Sissy.

I'll save my boo-hoo session for when the papers are signed, we're in contract, and the buyer's Option Period (back-out clause) has passed. And I won't celebrate until we've closed the deal and the buyer's money is wired to pay for our home, making it theirs. THEN Deputy Dave and I will celebrate, in style, with hopefully an intimate ground-breaking ceremony for construction to begin on our acreage.

We might wear overalls for the occasion.

For now, I'm kind of trying to get accustomed to the idea of leaving this house that we've lived in for over seven years of pivotal life changes along with personal shrinkage and growth.

However, as the eternal optimist, I know that the future holds the BEST that is to come and the lifestyle we're about to start living, in the woods, on our acreage, will be a magical time for us.

Magical with blood, sweat and tears and an obsession to check for ticks.


Stephanie said...

Ohh, exciting and scary at the same time! Will be keeping you in prayer that whoever buys the house, the process goes smoothly

Vickie said...

At LAST! Lana, it's about to begin!!! Don't look back girl - look forward! These next few months are going to wonderful, scary, exciting, fulfilling and all that other stuff! Think I've been around for awhile now, and since I've been where you are, I am so excited to watch this journey of yours and David's and see your progress and your new lives on your land!

Hip HIp Hooray!

LindaG said...

This is great news, Lana. Congratulations!
You're lucky to be in such a good market.
The markets are not so good in NC, and likely to get worse with a stupid congress that can't do anything worth what they pay themselves.

God bless and have a wonderful week! Hope I get to read some good news for you all. You deserve it! said...

Stephanie --- you are exactly right! It's all those emotions combined. I'm finding that the realities of having buyers who love our house is difficult. I think we're a bit nuts for making this major change, but there's a time for everything. I hope the process goes smoothly, not always the case in real estate.

Vickie -- you've been a sweet Texas Blog Buddy that I am blessed to call a friend. This has been a very difficult year, so this change is definitely a move in a positive direction, but I do admit that I am encountering a massive dose of bad nerves. I look around at everything and feel so overwhelmed. But, I have to take it one day at a time and know "Everything's Gonna Be Alright," no matter WHAT happens!

Linda --- I feel very sad for so many people who are trapped in their mortgages and for those who found themselves wildly upside down in their loans because of the market dropping out from under them. As a former real estate professional, I can see why so many people were forced to walk away from their homes. So awful. And Congress...I am keeping a hawk-eye on who is really working for The People and who is simply trying to serve their own agenda that does not match our Constitution and our American heritage of being strong, free people. It's is terrifying prospect that some of these people can be in control of legislating our people. I am praying and hoping better times will be in store for our country and if I felt better about it, I might just stay in this house...but you know how I feel about that matter. I'd rather sell and have a safer cushion from economic instability that be burdened with a large home as things continue to deteriorate. So, I guess I need to remember to be happy as I'm packing all those boxes!!! :-)

The Kelly's Adventures in KY said...

Congrats! I am so excited for you!! Everything will work out, all in God's good timing. Let him shower you with His peace, and you will be able to get through anything! Can't wait to see the development of your land and read about the journey's you have instore.