It’s been a brilliant summer so far. If I didn’t wander outside of this chilly (!) adobe, I’d never know it was almost ninety degrees outside. It never gets above seventy in here. Hell, it never gets to seventy, except in the winter when I have the wood stove cranking. Just thinking about that gives me the willies. We gotta get out of this place, you know. Winter. This place. Hoowee, chilluns! Thank God I have a new approach. (I do?)
Anyway, just look at what two seconds of wind accomplished. It was a fine breezy afternoon and then kaboom. It could have been a dust devil. It could have been a zephyr. Ha-ha, zephyr: “A soft gentle breeze.” I call them zephyrs, anyway, these out-of-nowhere blasts that blow the lawn chairs into the sagebrush. Just two seconds, mind you. A bunch of rakes and stuff fell over, too.
Meanwhile, I may have mentioned a perfect house we didn’t score. That was because after we decided to give it a shot, our buyer’s agent learned that we only had eighteen hours to submit a bid and that there were two other buyers ahead of us who would probably offer close to the asking price—which I was hoping to aim well south of. I had no idea Fannie Mae foreclosures worked like that and didn’t like being pushed. In any case, we couldn’t move that fast. I’ve kept my eye on it, though, and we’ve had fun pretending that we own it.
Then kaboom again. Yesterday morning it “fell out of contract,” and I got busy. Our buyer’s agent made some calls. I was figuring what we could pay. My wife was trying to pay attention, but one of her oldest friends had died in Maryland and you know how that goes. A little tension there, but in the end it didn’t matter. After lunch we learned that the property was still under contract after all, but to the second buyer who’d submitted a bid before the invisible deadline several weeks ago. Well, damn. Another swoosh and whoop and put the chairs back up the way they go.
I didn’t even have time to start worrying. Onward!
Find a lender first. Get pre-qualified. Then you can swoop in when something good turns up.
Yeah. We’ve only done this once before, and that worked differently. But don’t you mean pre-approved? I’m such a pedant. Ready to pounce, though. Yup.
I thought that was what we used to call it, but who knows. Probably the same thing. That was ages ago. They give you some numbers to plug into the contract that they believe will make it work, but I do seem to remember a few times a snafu (undisclosed student debt, for instance) occurred anyway. I found out early in my short career that finding a good lender was a challenge, so if buyers could do that at their leisure, the sale went smoother. The level of incompetence in that industry astounded me. I had only one banker I recommended. Credit unions were the worse, for some reason – their loans took forever to close.
Pre-qualify means someone or something—a mortgage broker or even an app—looks at income, assets, debts, and tells you what you can hypothetically afford. That’s the plug-the-numbers-in stage. (I use a Zillow mortgage app.) Pre-approval results from meeting with a loan officer for a deeper look with actual docs. This is the step resulting in a commitment from the lender to loan you up to a specific amount, and then you find a house and make your offer. The first one is preliminary, the second one the real deal. People tend to conflate the two.
One more thing. I encouraged people to get a contract and read it over a bunch until you understand everything before you are in the middle of pouncing and your brain is addled with house-lust.
Thanks, Rita. We have an excellent buyer’s agent, too. A master.
anywhere else, with anyone else, it’d be all “ah shit! the damn wind blew the damn chairs over again!! goddammit!!!” and immediately put them back, maybe even nail them down.
but you: “oh wow, the chairs got blown over again, gotta get the camera!” and then using that image as a metaphor to launch another story of Crazy Life In Crazy Taos.
that’s The Farr Difference! 😉