February 14, 2021

Exit Right

Sorry I missed last weekend. Really no excuse as we weren’t doing much.

So after the last entry was posted the Agent called on Sunday night to ask if we could move the listing of the house up from February 10th to February 4th. Melanie and I had jumped through our ears getting the house ready for photos, so it was in pretty good shape, mostly.

I told the Realtor that there were a couple of little things to attend to, but the house looked pretty good. He relayed that the level of interest in the house was tremendous and he was wanting not to miss it, so we agreed.

The photographer showed up early on Wednesday, February 3. He was none to customer friendly and we told him he would have to wait until the Realtor showed up as they wanted to walk through the house and perhaps rearrange some furniture. He kinda growled at us, but went and sat in his car.

Doris and Jackie showed up at 2 as expected. A walk around the house indicated that no furniture movement was needed. Some personal items were hidden from view, and we then departed as the photographer said we couldn’t stay. That was disappointing as I was going to follow him around and take pictures where he did. Oh well.

With the number of showings scheduled over the next 4 days, we decided to spend the weekend at Meghan’s house. She and Rob were in Oklahoma so we had their place to ourselves, at least until Saturday. So we packed up and I left for work on Thursday with a suitcase in hand to go to Meghan’s on my way from work. Melanie was to leave the house midmorning as the first showing was scheduled at 11:00.

The next 3+ days were a blur, only interrupted by a crazy snowfall Sunday morning which started about 7 o’clock. There was an open house scheduled on Sunday at 11 and we had told the Realtor that we would come out and clear the walks if necessary. It’s snowed really big flakes for about 3 hours, but interestingly it didn’t accumulate on the hardscapes. The Realtor said the snow made a beautiful accent to the house.

We departed Meghan’s Sunday afternoon with an appointment to see a townhouse for rent in Merrifield. After twice turning the wrong way on the Interstates (thanks Google Maps) we managed to get to our showing on time. The place was okay, but old and tired. The carpet on the top floor looked like it had died long before.

There was a showing scheduled after the opening house, so we drug our feet a bit and then got back home about 5. As there were a couple of showings scheduled on Monday, Melanie decided just to go back to Meghan’s for the day.

We reconvened back at the house on Monday evening about 5 when we got an e-mail from the Realtor that more offers had come in so he needed a bit of time to get them organized. Then he dropped the bombshell, over the preceding 4 days, there were 56 showings and 27 offers had been tendered. 27. Holy moly.

After dinner, the Realtor called as he had sent a spreadsheet with the summary. When Melanie and I opened it, we didn’t understand it, so we called and asked him to explain the summary. The gist was all 27 offers provided for some sort of “escalation” which ran the final price up to slightly less than 15% over asking. The highest offer waived all the contingencies and had the strongest financial backup of any of them. We are also allowed to remain in the house until March 31 (some 3 weeks after closing) at no cost. The Realtor indicated the buyer had spoken to him and really wanted the house. So he got it. We signed all the papers on our end and then the 3 day waiting period was to begin after delivery of the Reston HOA documents. The waiting period closed on Friday so the buyer cannot back out now without forfeiting the earnest monies.

Once done, the next challenge was finding a place to move to. It’s a tight rental market and what we were looking for was going to be a bit pricey. Off to MLSBright we go in search of listings. Three were identified, and appointments made for last Friday. We did a bit more looking around, bumping the max price up a bit and also found something in Fairfax City that was very nice, but more expensive. It was listed by the Realtor’s parent company, so I sent him an e-mail asking him if we could see the townhouse.

Melanie and I had an appointment with the Lawyer in Leesburg on Friday to update our wills. We had set up a trust fund some time back so that Melanie’s family property could be transferred into it, thus eliminating probate upon her demise. Problem is, the documentation of the property ownership is exceedingly convoluted, and we couldn’t find a lawyer to do the transfer. As this would then inflict two probates, we decided to reconfigure her will. So we were scheduled to go sign the paperwork at 10 on Friday.

After that, I did my standard grocery run first to Sam’s and then Wegman’s. We unloaded the groceries, ate lunch and headed out to our first appointment. The townhouse was not bad, but that’s the nicest thing that could be said about it. The rear deck was a bit worrisome from a stability point of view, but all in all, it was okay. We gave it a C grade.

Unfortunately, that townhouse was the highpoint of the day. The less said about the other two the better. Needless to say, we were a bit discouraged by our efforts. Between the 2nd and 3rd visit, we did drive by the Townhouse in Fairfax City and decided we wanted to see it as well.

After dinner the Realtor e-mailed us with an appointment at 8:15 a.m. Hoo boy. I was okay with that, but Melanie is not an early bird so we asked for something later. The Realtor said there was already someone in line for the townhouse and if we were interested he needed to know early the next day, so we were set.

Getting up early (at least for us) we got there a few minutes early. Jackie from the Realtor’s office shows up and lets us in. Immediate reaction to the ground floor tells us we are going to like this one more. We walked around for about 1/2 and hour and said yes we will take it. So we write two checks for the agent, 1 for a deposit and 1 for the first months rent. It took the rest of the day for all the paperwork to go through and we signed the lease at 9:00 last night. Whew! We can move in March 1st which gives us plenty of time. We hope to vacate this house mid-month or so the buyer can have some time to do whatever prep he wants before moving in.

So now comes the fun (?) part, packing up and getting out. Yesterday, we emptied out the stuff in the kitchen cabinets that doesn’t get used much and started putting it in boxes. The big challenge will be the workshop as the townhouse has a spacious garage, but no place else to squirrel way the tools from the shop. We’ll work it out.

That’s all for now. All the uncertainty is done with and we need to get our rears in gear. Amusingly enough about 20 flyers have come in the mail for moving services, so I’ll have to chose one, as we are WAY to old to do this ourselves anymore. We will get everything boxed up, so the movers would be just loading, transporting and unloading.

Until next time,