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The week of Thanksgiving was busy for David Cleveland, the house-hunter whose search for a house we’ve been following here in Survival.

David Cleveland sleeps on a boat and showers at the gym, and his wife and kids stay with family in Orange County, while they navigate the local housing market.

Here’s an update, in Cleveland’s words:

Late Wednesday we got calls from agents for 2 of the 4 properties that we put our latest offers on. One indicated we were one of a half dozen or more who have bids on the property in Rancho Bernardo and wanting our best offer (which we gave and are now among more than a dozen offers on the house which was pretty much trashed inside with water damage to boot) and the second had indicated that we were the sole offer outstanding but they wanted a specific number for us to move to and asked specifically whether we could close by the end of the year.

On Friday we gave them the number they were looking for (a stretch for us), confirmed that yes, we could close by the end of the year and asked specifically for a termite inspection since it is generally a requirement of the lender. This was one of the agents who required that we get pre-approved from his lender anyway (which we did) so it shouldn’t have been a big deal either way. Our agent had to call this agent back today to get a status, and it comes back to us that there is now a second offer in on the property apparently, that there is at least $1,000 of termite work that has been identified but not previously disclosed, and could we still close by the end of the year. 

Our agent indicated that we were very motivated (we are sooo motivated, but at the very top of our range which we were only able to expand with the recent drop in interest rates), and we’d drop the inspection request now that we know the apparent extent of current issues. The ball is back in his and his bank’s court. Who knows what the truth is in any of these bank owned homes, I’m not sure the bank’s agents are telling the truth withholding substantial information or just lying to get more out of us. At this point, if we lose it, we know it wasn’t to be.

The house is nice, has good square footage, but would require some extensive work on landscaping to make it work for us.  In addition it’s a bedroom short which means I lose my office which has historically been my room which certainly doesn’t thrill me, but I’d be willing to sacrifice in order for us all to be together again.  Hopefully we’ll have things resolved one way or the other this week, Oh, and it is the only property where there is a realistic chance of getting into by the end of the year.

Jill started looking at other areas today, namely San Marcos, but did not tell me of anything that [piqued] her interest. In addition, the selling agent for a 3rd house that we bid on last week wanted to see where we were as their primary offer fell through.  The house isn’t as nice as the one talked about above, but it could work.  We told the agent we were waiting for an answer on another property and would get back to them, hopefully, by the end of the week.  Also we followed up on some of the previous properties that we had offers or letters of intent on.  Nothing has come of that, though we did find that some homes are actually closing which is a good sign for the market as a whole.

If you’re interested to read more about the Clevelands’ house hunt, you can start here and then read Chapter II, Chapter III and Chapter IV.

KELLY BENNETT

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