Sunday, August 8, 2010

A year already?

It's amazing the way life can just overwhelm you. I can't believe it's been a year since my last post.
Last September I was finally able to locate and purchase a home. $110k for a cute little house outside of the grid housing developments. I quite like it, but it has come with its own series of issues. From a contractor who disappeared before finishing the job to the significant other moving back to the other side of the country it's been quite a ride.

The good news is that the job I have here is absolutely, unquestioningly, the best 'fit' I've ever had for employment. My one year review was quite positive and I got a solid raise. The flipside is that I am coming to really detest Vegas. I miss rain something fierce.

Financially this has been quite a trial. The house was at the upper end of my budget, and I've had other expenses pop up out of no where. Additionally I've become quite lazy budget wise, and the 'little things' that always eat me alive have been just out of control. Dining out, in particular, is just consuming my budget. Combine that with the market's gyrations and the fact I've now saved enough that the market can trivially overwhelm my contributions and I just haven't been happy with the slope of my networth.

It is time to refocus though. Get things back in line and start working on getting things back where they should be.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

This housing market is crazy. In the last month I have made over 2 dozen offers, mostly at list or above, and been turned down for all of them. My old home's sale is at the end of next week, so it looks like I'll have to use the tiny apartment I'm renting as a storage unit too. Ugh.
Financially I'm still in topsy turvy land due to the move. Spending too much on food and entertainment, but I'm trying to tighten up my belt.

More to come!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Down to 2

The house I made an offer on is rapidly closing on a decision -- the choice is between my offer and a cash offer, with mine being higher by "less than $200".

Just to cover my bases I went back out today to look at some more homes if they take the cash and saw a few possibilities; additionally I also stopped back by the home and double checked things which left me with good news! The new buyer of my previous home asked for appliances and I said they could take the washer/dryer but not the fridge. The fridge was a really nice luxury model I got with a combination sales-tax-free-weekend, discontinued/on-sale discount, then a display model/dings discount -- giving that up didn't make any sense. The washer is an el cheapo I bought in '05, the dryer is a hand-me-down from the mid-90s. Well, the house I made an offer on had their washer and dryer abandoned in the foreclosure so I won't even have to buy those from the looks!

Working two jobs is very stressful, I get home from the first and I'm tired and just want to sleep; and putting in the 20 hours/week I promised the second is being a challenge. I'm going to be spending the rest of my Saturday and all day Sunday playing catch up, but I hope to get into a better system where I'm at least spending 2 hours a night on weeknights, which would bring my weekend load to 10 hours or less.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Resold and Starting Work

And a few days later, the house looks to be resold. There was actually more interest in the house this time then when we originally put it on the market. In the last week I got about 10 'interested' buyers and 4 actual offers. After some negotiation it looks like I'll net about $104k from the house, albeit losing my washer and dryer in the sale (the washer was $400 4 years ago, the dryer is a hand me down that is something like 10 years or more old).

This also marks my first day of full time employment after moving to Nevada. I'll have to be trusting the significant other to deal with anything that comes up, but with luck the house offer made last Friday will come through. The market is really crazy; lots of houses are being priced 'under' to try and make bidding wars (Sorry, not playing that game) and it is also hard for me to get used to the idea of asking for closing costs, which everyone is recommending I do (To me an offer of, say '105k with 5k closing costs' is the same as an offer of 100k so why bother?)

My part time job is also putting my first check in the mail, though I will add that I feel somewhat guilty in that I have really stalled out on it when I ran into some issues I've never had to deal with before. Luckily, I have some friends who might know and I plan to abuse/ask them to help out so I can push through. After that: back to slightly more 'hardcore' financial happenings, but for the moment house hunting and new jobs are dominating my life both personally and financially.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Back on the Market, and On The Market

My house had 'sold' and everything was going well until -- on the very last day of my buyer's option period -- the buyer backed out. The reason, according to my realtor and the buyer's is that the buyer decided to "just wait for me to get foreclosed on". If you know anything about my finances, that's a pretty laughable scenario. So the home is back on the market.
On the up side, the house still has plenty of interest in it -- my realtor had a whole page of call back requests if that deal fell through, and I've gotten a number of showing requests in the last 24 hours.

Meanwhile I am house hunting in Nevada. The market for safe, inexpensive 'blue collar' type homes here is crowded thanks to the housing bubble, but investors are buying these cheaper properties up by the dozen. Homes are often sold after less than a day on the market; and I'm having trouble finding a solid home because of it. There is also the sub issue of wanting to get into the home in the first week of July since that is when the movers will be arriving. This was originally scheduled because of the June 30th closing date on my home, but perhaps I can call them and delay while my house is on the market again which would give me more time.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Greetings from Arizona!

So I have officially left Texas and started the move to Nevada.

I will say that it is very strange, and I already miss my home. It wasn't really real until I was preparing to lock the place up and head out.

After 16+ hours in the car I'm very sore and plan to enjoy my cheap hotel room bed as I can tonight. Once I settle in, back to my finances -- probably starting with a discussion of trying to find a new home!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A bunch of offers!

So after showing the house for a week I have:
$1000 over asking price, but cover $4000 of closing costs
$6000 over asking price, but cover $5000 of closing costs
At least 1 other incoming purchase offer
Or to rent it out for $1200/mth + utilities (+300 cashflow, plus or minus)

The first is less than I want, obviously. The second is very nice but I'm worried the house might not appraise that high. Renting it has all the concerns of my previous posts.

Ironically, while it is probably better to have lots of 'good' options like I do here, it seems like it's easier to deal with having no choice -- or even deciding among bad options!