Monday, September 28, 2009

Packing, Packing, Packing

This weekend flew by, but we got a lot accomplished with packing Saturday... all the china, pictures, nick nacks, some of the dishes- all boxed. I can't use my dining room b/c we've turned it into the box stacking center... we are definately making progress! Next weekend Adam will go through our storage & take some stuff to the dump, and I'll be going through my stuff in the bedroom & master bath...

Friday, September 25, 2009

Chapter 1: Basement - Early Preliminary Planning

Sure it will probably be at least another year before we are able to fully finish the basement... But I'm already spawning idea after idea on how to really liven the place up. First off, the "ceiling" is very low- it's not even a finished ceiling by any means, it's the boards & floor up above. So we can't do a dropped ceiling, it's already dropped enough... We thought about drywalling it, or some kind of board and then painting the board, but then after reading a blog post in "Finish your basement in (ENTER # HERE) easy steps" they had the issue of they'd had plumbing problems, and it would not be even remotely easy to access the pipes if they did this... which was a great point, I hadn't thought of. But here is how they solved it: they didn't add a "real ceiling" persay, instead they painted what was already there, which is a great idea, and solves our little delima perfectly. So that's plan ceiling... I'm thinking a light, cool color. Not 100% white... sometime like Valspar's Bistro White(7006-4):

I also liked the ideas for painting the stairs, and how they did their little bar area in "Finish your basement in (ENTER # HERE) easy steps." I think this home renovator's blog & ideas will help us out a lot.

As for flooring, we're going to go with a natural color, inexpensive 12x12 ceramic tile.

Please come Rate My Space (and rate it poorly, because it is poor, and the lower the rating, the better the chance of a complete makeover from HGTV!)

Officially Approved! But not "finally"...

Well, today we made more headway. We were preapproved on the loan we needed, and I knew I hadn't lied about any info (LOL) so it was no shock yesterday, just happy we're moving along, that we got our approval on the loan. Just a short little update!

EDIT: Apparently this wasn't our FINAL approval... we were "conditionally approved" but not finally approved- they still needed MORE documentation.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Counting Down... Excitement & Ideas Building

I'm counting down the days until we offically have our house. Just emailed the lender to see how things are going there, waiting for the gift from my dad for the down payment to arrive, gotta order the carpet by Oct 8 to get it on time, and need to schedule the movers, but I don't want to do too much before closing... Sitting still is boring... time is going too slow! We would have closed sooner, but I'm also waiting on my vacation leave payout from my old job on September 30th. So we're just waiting... waiting... waiting...

I have so many ideas for the house, I just can't wait to get started! I think the first project I'm most excited about is Andrew's new room. His old room at our house now is cars, and he's outgrown it and is all about superheroes now. I didn't want to do anything too "kiddish" b/c I don't want him to outgrow everything too soon. But the walls are already blue, so we don't have to paint that room other than touch up. I'm just going to put up wall stickers so when he does want something else, it won't be a difficult task to change it up. But we are going with Iron Man, 2 Transformers (Optimus & BumbleBee), Spiderman, & Batman. I was trying to figure out how to pull everything together, and I knew I didn't want to get just one character on his comforter, so we're going with a blue comforter, and multiple sheet sets with the different characters. The wall stickers are approximately 3 ft tall each, and they are massive. I think it's going to look really awesome!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Our New Home Shopping List

Andrew's New Room:  

  1. Comforter for his new twin bed & bed skirt (Thanks to Grandmother for the twin bed frame!)
  2. Twin Size Mattress & Box Springs (Thanks to my father in law for getting us these items.)
  3. Giant Wall Stickers: Iron Man (got it), SpiderMan (got it), Transformers Optimus Prime (got it),  Batman (got it)
  4. Twin Size Sheets: Iron Man, Spiderman, Transformers, Batman (we got batman &  transformers)
  5. Curtains
  6. Storage Organizer
Ella's New Room

  1. Curtains  (pink or purple)
  2. Paint - Home Depot Behr (done)
  3. Closet hardware

Living Room:

  1. Sofa SlipCover
  2. Curtains (Taupe) w/ matching scarf (Ivory) & Curtain Rods
Dining Room

  1.  Dining Room Set (2 chairs, table, china hutch-- matches the chairs to our current set)
Master Bathroom:

  1. Bath decor Collection
  2. Showerhead (got it)
Master Bedroom:

  1. Comforter Set
  2. Curtains
  3. Closet Organizer
Kid's/Guest Bathroom:

  1. Bath Decor Collection
  2. Bath Rug
  3. Bath tub mat
  4. Showerhead (got it)
  5. Fish Clock

  1. Pantry (ordered it!)
  2. Kitchen Nook
  3. Range Hood
Family Room:

1. Curtains (got it)
2. Matching Throw Pillows (got it)
3. Area Rug

  1. Shopvac
  2. Patio Furniture & Umbrella for back deck
  3. Gas Grill
  4. Rocking Chairs (2) for Rocking Chair front porch
  5. Wood Patio Table for front porch
  6. Fence
  7. Swingset & Baby Swing

  1. Door Stops (8 or 9) (got it)
  2. Carpet (Thanks to my mom and stepdad for this!)
  3. Stick/Hand Vac
  4. Vaccuum (ordered it)
  5. Carpet Cleaner
  6. Steam Mop (ordered it)
  7. Shelf for laundry area (got it)
  8. Laundry Sorter (got it)
  9. Programmable Thermostat (got it)
  10. Hope Chest - Set of 4

We Close Oct 15th!

Filled with mixed emotions: excited, happy, annoyed... There is just sooo much involved in buying a house! This is our second home, and I swear it wasn't this big of a pain in the butt on the first one... maybe it's just me, or it could be the lender... So we are scheduled to close on October the 15th - yeay! Our appraisal was due yesterday, so hopefully the lender has that now, because as of the day before it was due, they didn't...

We had a few bumps on the way to agreeing on the terms of this house... we offered the asking price, b/c they are asking $16,000 less than their original price, which is less than the value of the house itself... they bought it as a forclosure for like $86,000 (gotta love tax records) so they are still making a killing. All we asked them to do was have it cleaned & the cobwebs removed from the basement before we close. Then we had the inspection. All in all it went well- there wasn't anything major we needed them to fix, accept one pretty big deal: Termites.

The inspector we hired did thermal imaging and said there didn't appear to be any damage... and they were just in one corner of the living room/garage wall so it appeared to be a recent infestation- they hadn't been there long enough to do any irrepriable damage. So we ask the sellers to take care of the infestation & put the house under termite bond for a year... They got a quote for $1000, said they'd take care of it, however they wanted to take it out of the $3000 they originally agreed to pay at closing. Um, no... They were basically just trying to see how much we'd give... we told them it wasn't in our budget to cover their termite problem, and we need the original closing amount agreed upon, and they agreed to take care of all of it... which behooved them to do anyways...

There's so much going on and so much to be done. We've started packing officially last weekend (September 18, 2009). We are ordering new carpet before we move in, and it has to be ordered 10 days before we want it delivered in order for it to arrive on time. Home Depot is having a great deal on Stainmaster where they will install the whole house for $39. Can't beat it, and my mom & stepdad are footing the bill, because they are the awesomest parents ever. We have 4 rooms  to carpet: the living room & 3 bedrooms. The carpet in the house currently is as old as the house (10 years) and has been steam cleaned, however there are very large, dark pet stains that did not come up, and there is at least one in each carpeted room...

So, back to the lender... they want everything under the sun. It's an FHA loan (government loan, low down payment option) and why does the government have to be so nosey? Here's what I mean... we're getting a gift from my dad for part of the down payment. They need him to fill out a form, and they need a copy of the check & his bank statement... so dad says "why don't I just get you a cashier's check"-- that's like handing them cash, the bank will not issue a cashier's check unless the funds are in the account, and we're thinking they shouldn't need to see his bank statement... make sence to me. But apparently not to them... it's backwards; they need to see proof he has the funds, but the cashier's check is proof... So he's sending the check, form, and statement in the mail.

Another thing that yanks my chain is they have to see proof that we are selling our current home, even though this loan is noncontingent on the sale of our current home... however, yet again, being an FHA loan, they have to have proof of non owner occupancy... Whatever, so I send them our contract... so far so good.

I can't wait to move in, I'm so excited, but why does the process have to be frustrating? So we have a big to do list before we move in. Painting, carpet, new showerheads, door stops, etc... apparently the back deck is not attached to the house - it's a raised deck... so no parties until we get it attached. With the house being 10 years old, apparently it was built before they passed the building regulation that decks need to be attached...

Our realtor said she didn't want to read in the paper about the Ryle family & friends dieing just after they moved in by the deck falling over at the house warming party... HA HA. It just needs a few lag bolts underneath.

We will also be fencing in the yard. That is the #1 big thing on my list... do not want to walk Miss Bubbles on a leash every morning before work, or go outside and watch her while she does her business, and want a good, safe place for the kids to play. Bubbles is our 4 year old miniature daschund (our fur baby).

So moving... is not going to be easy. For one, we just bought all new kitchen appliances less than a year ago. And our washer and dryer were new when we bought our current home 2 1/2 years ago. The house comes with all the appliances, however they are also as old as the house. So I'm not about to leave my brand new appliances behind. So we're swapping them, so the guy buying our house will have some appliances. We swapping everything, including the dishwasher... We're hiring movers, but swapping a large refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, clothes washer, & dryer will not be a simple task for anyone.

We've already started packing... we told our buyer we'd be out by November 1st, so we're doing as much as we can before closing, b/c once we close we'll have to do all our fixing up we are planning on doing before moving day (Currently October 24th, but we'll see...) We've packed up the pictures, movies, books, some of the kids toys... I have two boxes for a yard sale so far, and some stuff on craigslist.

I had given some of my son's old baby clothes to my sister in law to give to her friend who was having a baby, but apparently she changed her mind on that. So I'm going to be adding them to my sale soon... 4-5 large bins full! We had saved all his stuff for baby #2, but since we had a girl the second time around... you get the picture.

So we've got paint, carpet, minor fixings, fence, yard sale, moving day... And then there's the point that I don't know what I'm going to do with over 2900 square foot of house. We didn't have enough furniture to even fill the place until my mom told me we could have two recliners they just replaced, and Adam's uncle said we could have the end tables & coffee table they had over in grandmother's basement.
So we're pretty much covered now... accept the kitchen. Eventually we'll get a new dining room set and put the small dining table we have now in the kitchen, but until then, it's going to be kind of naked in there. But at least the living room won't be empty! Two living spaces... plus the basement once we finish it. In about a year, we plan to completely finish the basement. It's already about 50% complete.  They've already ran the duct work, put in most of the studs for the walls, and have already put up some sheet rock- though it's not a very good job, and we're thinking paneling instead of sheetrock... So basically all we'll have to do is finish studding a few areas, add walls, and put in the flooring (sounds easy right?) ;-)

And it looks like a good, sturdy, dry basement. We just had a lot of rain and flooding here in Middle GA, so Adam drove by yesterday to check on the house, and said there was no sign of water getting in--good drainage. But this was the best time to check, b/c there were several areas of flooding in the area, and all the creeks, rivers, and lakes are very high right now... and there is a lake in the neighborhood.