Monday, March 31, 2008

Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200, Go Straight to Jail

OK, so I have had some days that were weird, but this one's starting to take the cake. Started out innocently enough, just yet another busy Monday trying to juggle my job and a system update. Nothing I can't handle, despite my body feeling like it's been hit by a train (that's another story, which involves chasing a rabbit for 5 hours!)

Oh but wait, I'm trying to buy a house, too!

My innocent Monday was knocked off track by an email from Becky at my mortgage broker's office that stated "The appraiser noted a couple of things about the property that need to be taken care of before purchase. Since this is a HUD home I know they will not make any repairs. A toilet must be placed in the master bath and ceiling light fixtures set in the gameroom and bedrooms. Let me know if you can get these done, I'll have to send the appraiser back out to inspect after they are done."

I told Becky I was aware of the problems and they were first on my list of things to take care of upon closing. Because, let's face it, this isn't the 18th century, and you can't really live in a house without a toilet. Kind of makes things desperate. And the whole missing toilet thing leads to more questions like: "why on earth would someone take a toilet with them when the move out??" They also stripped out all the ceiling fans in the bedrooms. No sweat, at least not until summer.

Becky's email back to me wasn't that encouraging: "Yes, sorry the lender is very cautious about the condition of HUD homes, its a pain but they protect you and the investment into the property. The title company requires that I have the loan docs there about 5 days before closing and I won't be able to get those docs until I get the approval which is affected by the repairs.....yuck! Let me know so I can send him back out for inspection."

Okay. Sounds simple enough, right? Repairs=Funding. All I need to do is get HUD to allow me access to the property in order to make these few minor repairs and then my funding will be released and the sale can go through. Evidently my broker has actually encountered this type of thing before and had no problem being able to resolve it.

But wait, this is me we're talking about. I got on the phone with my agent, told them what was happening, and let Connie make the call to HUD and arrange all this. In the meantime, I got on the phone with my dad and asked him to help me take care of these things this weekend. Well, he's not really available because he's going turkey hunting (yet another story), but he could come "sometime" in the afternoon. Never mind that I need to schedule an exact time for my agent to meet us there in order to let us in.

Well, Dad gets to go turkey hunting after all and take as long as he wants to do it. Connie called me back after she spoke with someone at HUD, and left me a message because I was in yet another conference call regarding the system upgrade (yes, I still have to work despite trying to buy a house). Her voicemail had me laughing out loud based on the sheer madness of the information she relayed. To paraphrase: there is no way we can do that, because HUD does not make repairs, it is still government property and to attempt it would mean the loss of earnest money and property and prosecution for trespassing. If someone had ever told me that trying to purchase a home would offer me my first threat at jail time, I would have laughed in their face. Hell, I'm laughing right now!

Honestly, can nothing work smoothly in this lifetime? HUD did suggest that the money for the repairs be placed in escrow and a time limit of 30 days be given for the repairs to be made after closing. Well, seeing as how this sounds pretty reasonable to me (because hey, so did the first suggestion!) there's no way it will work out.

So here I sit, in the midst of a Catch-22: No repairs+no funding=no sale for HUD, who won't allow the repairs that will get me the funding. You'd think they'd bend a little in order to ensure the sale. I mean, there's no way I'm backing out once I've got money invested in the property. At this point in the day, Becky has a call in to the underwriter to see what they think about HUD's suggestion, so I likely won't hear an answer before tomorrow. I am resolving myself to letting them settle the matter.

Days like this are why God gave us Xanax.

1 comment:

  1. Hey...where is the blogging? It's halfway through April and nothing. Don't tell me you've been busy with way, no how!