Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Learn Something

Every real estate transaction is a learning experience. My limited experience says no two are alike. What you choose to do with those experiences ranges from learning to take everything with a grain of salt to learning to take everything with four shots of tequila.

Yesterday, after dealing with a (literal) flood of problems from Trading Up, my broker opted for the Tres 80 proof dinner. Yesterday I was very happy to work in bomb disposal and not in real estate.

Today the waters have receded (again literal) and I can only hope the damage is minor enough to make it to close on Monday.

Who said this place didn't have a pool?!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Making Lists

I love making lists. Lists live in the future and in 2013 I am practicing living in the moment (this will take another whole post, but just go with it for now), so lists are somewhat counterproductive to my practice. Closing is in 10 days and so far I have gotten a loan; paid delinquent taxes...more on that later too; ordered surveys, home owner's insurance, power, water, cable, HVAC and sub estimates; and scheduled the movers, all without making a single list!   

I really deserve one, little list don't ya think?! I'm actually feeling a little guilty, like parents who take reels of pictures of their first kid and only a shoebox full of the second. Harbor Farm reno was rife with lists and Trading Up hasn't gotten a single one. Perhaps because I've only ever spent 30 minutes inside. Seriously, I deserve this...

Reno To-FREAKING-Do List:

  • Buy fridge
  • New windows
  • New flooring (laminate to tile)
  • Raise "condo kitchen" soffit
  • Replace kitchen sink
  • Replace stove and microwave
  • Replace kitchen countertops 
  • Reface guest bath shower
  • Expand master bath
  • Paint exterior
  • Add U-shaped, oyster shell driveway

Phew! I know I feel better.

1/27/13 Update...I spent 90 minutes at the house with the subcontractor this morning. The whole list is totally shot. Now I'm super glad I indulged, but it really proves the whole living-in-the-moment thing!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Getting to Close

I have at least 15 blog posts titled "Getting to Close." I actually hear those words in my sleep. 

By the way, that's 'close', as in, 'Close the front door!', not, 'Back up, you're way too close!'

Anyway---closING is February 4!!! This will be the first closing I've ever had that was actually on time, not to mention negotiated early! Getting to close early on a bank-owned property is not-so-common, so I am pretty thrilled all parties involved got on board with the 30-day window, and we WILL make the date.

Because all cute little vacation rentals need a campy name, the new house, located on Tradewinds Drive, is called 'Trading Up.' The pun perfectly fits the house...and what it took to get here!

Corner Lot

The house is big compared to my past homes, 1900 sqft., but another oversized corner lot makes it a lot like Harbor Farm (i.e., much yard to mow). It was built in 1957 with an addition, sometime in the 1980s, nearly doubling the size. 

Like any home buyer, I had a list of "must-haves" for purchasing vacation rental property in Central Florida. Must have charm, must have garage, must have screened lanai, etc. Trading Up has none of those things. What it does have is location, and location always wins.

She does have some charming little features though: 

Built-in Bookshelf

Big Bay Window

Slanted Counter and more Built-ins

Cute French Door

But that's pretty much where the charm ends. It's going to take some effort to take Trading Up from ranchette to retreat, but I could not be happier about Getting to Start!


Friday, January 4, 2013

Counter to Counter to Counter Offer

You know how the saying goes, "the three most important things in real estate are location, location, location." Real estate is also about money...and waiting.

Today there is much waiting, because it's Friday---and if you don't hear "anything" by close of business on a Friday, then all you do is try not to think your future all weekend.  Of course any other weekend would not be consumed by thoughts of one's future, except if you're waiting for the response to your final offer on a house you've been staring at for the past 5 months.

You can see yourself in this house. You can see the molding coming off and the crappy laminate coming up. You can see the wall that divides the master bath and the closet coming down. You can see the oyster shells for the new driveway being poured. You can feel the muscles of your back spasm-ing just trying to get out of bed after you removed all that laminate by hand.   

But today all you can do is wait.