Monthly Archives: April 2015

The House The Hope

We have a house under contract. It is downtown. It is a fixer-upper.

A pious Catholic woman, a regular latin mass attendee, died of old age and now her home needs new occupants. Our realtor informed of us of the property before it even went to market. We walked into the cluttered 3 bedroom 2 bath decadent with both dust and old Catholic artifacts, including over 100 rosaries, statues, and paintings of Jesus and Mary. A baby grand piano welcomes visitors in the front parlor room—although it is devastatingly out of tune.

The property needs a new foundation, new electrical work, new appliances, new kitchen cabinets, a new heating and cooling system, new flooring, new gas pipes, new sinks, and a whole lot of paint.

Banks won’t do conventional loans on crappy houses like the one we’re determined to buy. They only want to lend money for “average or better” properties—whatever that means. So for fixer uppers of a profound nature one must either pay all cash or do what we’re doing: a 203(k) loan.

Our loan is very rare—because its a pain in the bunz.

We have to do two miles of paperwork. Then we have to get bids from a contractor. Then we have to pay a HUD consultant mega bucks to mediate. Then we have to have to wait. Then we have to do more paperwork. Then we have to convince our contractor to finance all his own work. Then he has to bill the government. Then we have to do more paperwork. Then maybe like 10 years from now we’ll have a decent house to live in.

But it’s downtown. The husband can bike to work. We can walk the kids the ONE BLOCK to school. And sit on our huge southern front porch as the fat rain drops and contemplate about life and God and listen to swamp pop on our record player in the parlor.

Closing date is May 20-something. Wish us luck.