Monday, October 31, 2011

The House Hunting Saga Continues...And It Isn't Good News

This morning we met with our realtor to make an offer on house #6.  The fact that we had needed to make offers on six houses should have been a sign that we probably weren't supposed to buy a house right now.  Anyway, because she couldn't get a hold of our lender and get a pre-approval letter which needed to be submitted with the offer, our realtor suggested that we talk to their in-house lender and see if he could give us a pre-approval letter.
After wading through our documents and crunching numbers and running a credit check he said he had good news and bad news.  The good news is that we are pre-qualified for "however much we want" according to him (around $250,000 based on our income) but the bad news is that we had a late payment on our mortgage in February and won't be able to get a mortgage loan until twelve months after that late payment.  That means we can't even make an offer on a house until MARCH!  Hubby is not happy. I'm not happy with the previous lender who should have known this.
We figured out that the mortgage payment on our previous house showed up as late because it was due on February 1st but we thought that since the house was sold then and would close on the 9th, we didn't need to send the payment as the loan would be paid in full just a week later.  Wrong thinking however, as this showed up on our credit report as a late payment. Ayayay
So hubby is irked as he is really tired of traveling and wants to buy a place and settle down immediately and I just feel sorry for our realtor who has shown us dozens of houses all for naught.  Surprisingly I am not angry or disappointed about having to wait.  Although I am not religious, I am pretty spiritual and figure that God puts us where we are supposed to be so if we aren't supposed to be in our own house until early summer then that's that.
Now our options are wide open for four months.  We may choose to rent a place in Las Vegas or hubby's cousin said we can continue to stay with her as long as we want (free of charge which is a good price but I would feel like we are imposing if we end up staying there for seven months!) or we can go back to Atlanta for a few months or we can visit the family in Connecticut (that idea got a big fat NO from hubby who is decidedly averse to snow and cold) or we can go back to the Philippines for a few months (technically a cheap place to live however with a huge extended family there it can get downright expensive)...or? I guess we will need to decide something soon.  Ideally hubby would win a big poker tournament and we would be able to pay cash for a place but I'm not holding my breath on that one...
I am also a bit relieved, however, that we are in a holding pattern.  With each house that we had made an offer on, the price kept rising as we were coming under the "bigger is better" and "gotta have it now" spell.  You may have experienced this as well...if a two bedroom, 1000 square foot home is good, then a three bedroom, 1400 square foot is better and it is "just five thousand dollars more."  Unfortunately I have done this with cars a number of times (your basic $15,000 new car is nice but for $20,000 I can get this much better car) so before we know it we have exceeded our budget and bought something much bigger and more expensive than we wanted when we started out.  In fact, we had started our house buying journey with a $50,000 offer on a condo and were up to $90,000 on the last house. Yikes. 
And even though we would qualify for a much bigger home loan, our goal when we started this process was to have a tiny house (so we wouldn't have to go back and buy all of the stuff we had sold at the beginning of the year to furnish it) and a tiny house payment (we are aiming for around $500 a month total, less than 20% of our income).  We have done the "house payment takes nearly 60% of our income" thing and that was stressful, stupid, and irresponsible...but I can see how people can easily fall into that trap if they keep seeing bigger and better houses.
So now...we wait.
Sorry about the long rant, I do feel much better now after writing all of this.
Also, Happy Halloween!!!!  Be safe out there with your kids.
Also (to prove that my luck isn't horrible horrible) just before I got to the library where I am writing this post there was a huge head on accident two cars ahead of me on the road.  This has happened to me a couple of times before and it is totally freaky.  I hope the people in the wreck are OK.  Life is very unpredictable.


  1. I've been looking into RVs and for 50K, you can get a really awesome one. Ever thought of going that route? For two people who love to travel, it seems like it may be a good alternative to renting. You can take it with you wherever you go and you wouldn't have to buy furniture! :)

  2. Doesn't a mortgage payment have a grace period? Usually it's 10 to 15 days. So, how could you have a late payment on your mortgage. I don't understand. This doesn't make any sense. All you have to do is explain and prove to the new lender that the house was sold and in contract with a closing date in February.

    I think your broker is giving you the run around. Go find another lender. This is such stupidity and why are you giving up so fast. You mean to tell me there is only one lender in Las Vegas???? NOT! Go find another lender, tell them your story and see what happens. You need a mortgage broker with a brain. Start making calls immediately and get yourself a new house!!!!


  3. Anon-you are right. I will try to contact the mortgage company and see if they can change that on our credit report (the VA underwriter only goes with what is on the credit report even if we give them our explanation). Thanks for the motivation!
    Lorraine--we had an RV before and we enjoyed it but hubby wants to settle in a house. My friend just bought a 34 foot RV (after having a 24 footer for about a year) and she said she will probably retire in her RV she loves it so much!

  4. I'm with you, I believe in things happening for a reason. Can't wait to hear what you guys decide to do next (and, fingers crossed on that poker tournament!) :-) My husband does the occasional craps tournament, and I already have the winnings planned in my head should he ever win. :-)