Pin It This week has been insane with the number of showings we’ve had for the house. They’re happening nearly everyday now. I never thought that we’d be able to keep the house spotless enough for a showing as often as we’ve had to, but we’ve gotten so much practice keeping the house in a constant state of perfection that I don’t think we’ll ever be too busy to pick up after ourselves completely again. As it is, I work fifty hours a week, typically about ten hours a day so there are a few nights that I don’t get very much winding-down time before I have to be in bed myself, much less get the family fed, homework done and the kids to sleep. Now, with having showings about twice a day - once while we’re all out of the house in the middle of the day and then usually again about an hour after we get home - we’re starting to feel like strangers in our own house. We rush home, make a mad dash around the house, tidying up every little detail, get the kids together, make sure Mary has a book to read and her homework to work on in case it’s late when we get back, and we have to be out of the house by the time the potential buyers arrive. It has been kind of nice getting things like light grocery shopping or short trips to pick up little extras at wal-mart out of the way in the middle of the week when we normally wouldn’t bother. But it’s been a major pain having to eat out as much as we’ve had to since the showings all happen around dinnertime and we can’t make a mess or clutter up the kitchen cooking when we’re trying to make our already small kitchen look as appealing as possible. Spencer and I are literally starting to feel the extra, unhealthy weight on us just from the past month or so of having to eat out three or four times a week. Mary’s had to start doing her daily reading aloud to us at restaurant tables while we’re all waiting on our meals to be served. Once in a while is fun, but that’s no way for a kid to have to get used to doing her homework.
We finally decided to put our foot down and start declining a few of the showings because they’re just becoming way too inconvenient. We literally don’t even have an evening routine anymore. Today Spencer called me to let me know that the last showing left the house with the door wide open. We decided then that we weren’t going to have anymore showings until at least Saturday afternoon when we’ll already be out of the house -- absolutely NO showing anymore that evening -- it was Friday night and we just wanted to relax in our own house…. Especially because Spencer got an extra run (FINALLY!) and would have to leave for work at 8 that night to work all night long. But of course, when someone inevitably decided to request a showing late that night we HAD to accept it because it was the same people from earlier that day. They were bringing their parents back with them to take a second look at the house before putting in an offer. Our relaxing Friday night turned into doing an even deeper clean than we normally would for a showing because these people were seriously interested in making an offer…. Then it was spent (somewhat embarrassingly) waiting out front of the house after the couple arrived to wait for Mary’s mom to pick her up a half-an-hour late, then going to the park with Matthew for a few minutes before picking up dinner at McDonald’s.
If this couple decides to buy the house, they’re requesting an October settlement and move-in date, which would mean that we’d have to aggressively begin looking for a new house.
Our moving options are pretty open right now. Our plan is to find a nice single-family house to rent from for a few years; probably two but possibly as many as four. Right now I make most of the money for our family and my credit isn’t in bad shape. The problem is that I get paid cash every week and until I can prove my income with tax returns, I can’t get a mortgage on my own. Spencer’s bankruptcy will be over in about three years. In the mean time, as soon as he finds dependable, full-time work then I’ll be able to afford to claim my income (plus make money on the side with a start-up business I’m creating) thus qualifying us for a decent mortgage in both of our names -- or possibly only mine depending on what’s more equitable for us. We looked into the option of claiming my income right away and trying to buy a house in only my name, which we found out from a lender that we could actually do in as little as six months - but neither one of us wants our first home-buying experience together to be a hurried, frazzled, obligatory experience -- so that’s why we’ve decided to try to find a house to rent from first. When we do buy a home together, I’m looking forward to it being the absolute happiest day of my life, and that’s something worth waiting for.
Right now our favorite option is actually in Wisconsin; Milwaukee Wisconsin. 850 miles away. Spencer has a guaranteed job there making at least $750.00 a week, with a constant potential for overtime, driving a tractor-trailer! This is a huge deal because driving a tractor-trailer has always been a dream of Spencer’s… It’s what he’d been planning to spend the next few years of his life working toward! This job would train him for his Class A CDL license and land him a job doing what he’s always wanted for an amazing amount of money. The best part is that the friend of his that’s going to give him the job also has his real estate license and is confident that he can get us into a rental house well within our price range up there. I did a little big of research and found that for the same amount of money that we’d spend on rent in Delaware for a three bedroom, we can afford a four bedroom in Milwaukee with an extra bath in a better neighborhood. We would start out renting, like we’d planned to here, but chances are, we’d probably wind up buying property there when the time came because we’d already be settled into the area. Of course, there’s also the issue of finding work for me, daycare for the kids and severing Mary from her mom. Plus, Spencer would be working nights. I’m trying to remember that I’m excited while being entirely petrified about how everything is going to come together. I think though, that if this is truly a guarantee and that if we are approved for a house that we like, that we’re going to make the leap. We’re planning to take a week without the kids to fly there and check out the area. Before we go I’m going to line up appointments to meet with a number of daycares, schools, landlords and potential employers so that we can spend the week seeing what opportunity Milwaukee has to offer us.
Upsides to a big move:
1. Job opportunity for Spencer
2. More money (plus more taxable income to help us buy a house sooner)
3. Nicer, more spacious houses available
4. Less fighting with Spencer’s ex-wife
5. I shouldn’t have trouble finding work
6. We would have the money/space to begin trying for another baby
Downsides to a big move:
2. Much more planning involved
3. Leaving my job
4. Taking Mary away from family & friends in Delaware
It’s still just an idea right now. We’ll just have to wait and see how everything pans out.