Friday, May 13, 2016

A Mountain is Moving Part III: The Move

Health and life has delayed me finishing this post.  It is August and we have been living here for 4 months now.  However, I want to finish the story as it is a reminder to me that this is where we are meant to be.

Mr. F.'s new employers wanted him to start within a month--the beginning of March.  I wanted him to start in two or three months.  I didn't want to try to sell our house, pack, and drive across the country in such a short time (or manage all of this by myself while he started work).  In the end, Mr. F. asked for a slight extension of a month and a half--March 21st.  We were going to move together even if it killed us.

We started the process of seeing what our options were for selling our house.  It turns out they weren't awesome.  The real-estate in our little corner of the woods was/is still incredibly stunted. We were trapped in a small neighborhood with 15+ foreclosures which made it impossible for us to sell.  We were left with two options: short-selling or renting.  We chose to rent it.  We also chose to work with the realtor who left us with hope rather the dementor-like one who sucked all hope and faith out of our life and ate it for breakfast.  

Next on the agenda was to find a place to rent in our new location.  Unlike in Maryland, Washington was/is experiencing a real-estate boom.  In fact, there was a bit of a housing crisis.  Demand is much greater than the supply.  Places to rent are posted and have three applications (or more) in that same day.  Most of the property management companies also would not allow you to fill out an application unless you had (or had someone for you) view the property.  I was calling perfect strangers (in whichever church ward boundary housed the property) and asking them to view properties for me. However, by the time I could arrange it with all the pertinent people, multiple applications would be in and the property was no longer available for viewing.  Everyday, I scoured Zillow and other sites, hoping something new would show up that I could act on right away.  Time was running out.

Or was time running out?  Our move date also kept changing during this time.  As I was desperately trying to find a rental, Mr. F. called me one day with bad news.  With the job offer, Mr. F. was offered a set sum of money to help with moving expenses.  It wasn't enough to cover all moving expenses (i.e. having movers pack and move across country), but it was enough to cover the loading and moving if we did the packing.   (A lot of the more cost-effective methods like pods, etc, were not available to us due to either starting or ending location.)  However, there was a glitch in the paperwork and suddenly the moving stipend was no longer available.  Would Mr. F. still take the job even without the stipend?  Mr. F. called to ask me what he should do.  Would we still take the job if we had to pay for the move all by ourselves?  

When he asked me, I couldn't even answer.  I just burst into tears and started sobbing.  My thought was, "Really Heavenly Father?  Is this some sort of sign that we aren't supposed to leave?  Because, you need to throw me a bone here.  I can no longer jump through any more spiritual hoops."  Mr. F. then called back Human Resources and told them, no, we would not be able to make the move without the stipend--a huge act of faith on his part because we REALLY wanted to move.  Amazingly, that was the correct answer.  The HR representative had an alternative scenario available involving resubmitting correct paperwork, however, she was not able to offer it unless Mr. F. declined the job.  (I know, messed up.)  This was great!  Except it changed our move date indefinitely until HR completed the paperwork.  So, we placed a temporary hold on our moving plans.

For a week or two, we lived in moving limbo.  Mr. F. sort of had a job, but we didn't know when that job would start.  We could pack some things, but not others.  I went a little crazy.  Then we heard back from HR again.  "Oh hey!  The paperwork is finished, and can you still start work on March 21st?" they asked.  At this point, March 21st was ridiculously close.  The feasibility of us packing and driving across the country by then was virtually non-existent.  We told them no. We would need that extra week or two that it took them to re-do the paperwork for us to pack and move.  But problem!  The new work location was switching over to a new pay framework.  Basically, there was a hiring freeze between March 21st and April 18th.  Either Mr. F. had to start on the 21st or wait until the 18th of April to start, Mr. F could choose.  Ultimately, we chose April 18th.

And so, the paperwork snafu was in fact a blessing in disguise.  Instead of frantically packing and traveling, we were able to get things done at a more relaxed pace.  We also had time to visit family while we drove across country.  Mr. F. also had a week to help us get settled before he started work.  This was awesome!  Especially as I had a thyroid set-back a few days before we moved and also after.

But wait!  We still don't have a place to live yet!  During all of this work crisis, I continued to frantically contact rental properties and perfect strangers.  One property manager, bless her!, took pity on me and said, "send me all the details of what you are looking for in a property: rent, location, size, etc. and I will pass it around the office.  If we have something come up that fits, we will notify you before we post it online."  I sent her the following:

  • Rent maximum of $ Z.  Ideally, it would be in the $X -$Y range.
  • Location in A or B School Districts.  If A, any elementary schools except Woodlands is fine.  Anywhere in the B County school district is fine.
  • No more than a 30 minute commute to Work.  
  • 3 bedroom ideal (number of baths not important.)  However could be 2 if 1) living space was large enough (i.e. approximately 1500 sq ft) and one bedroom was large enough to fit 2 beds.
  • No previous cats or 1) mostly wood/laminate floors 2) carpets professionally cleaned afterwards.
  • No water damage with potential unresolved mold/mildew issues
  • Nice but not a deal breaker:  Nice yard for kids to play in.    
I didn't hear back for a while, but then while we were at the aquarium, we got notification of a property that would soon be available.  People, I am not kidding, it met every single criteria plus my bonus:
  • A rent $50 less than our given range.
  • Location in B school district (so great schools).
  • A 15 minute commute to work AND bike-able.
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • No cats previously (although there was a dog and the carpet smells funny, but I can live.)
  • No water damage, etc.
  • A nice, large fenced in backyard.
The property was not available until April 9th, which initially we worried about (because we were still unsure of start date), but in the end was perfect (all due to the crazy paperwork saga.)  Before and after hearing about the property, which (spoiler!) we took, I kept looking for other properties and nothing even remotely feasible was being posted.  NOTHING. If this isn't evidence for Divine Intervention, I don't know what is.  

So, I think that is it.  Sort of.  Our house in Maryland has not rented in the 4 months that we have been here, and we are at a bit of a financial crisis.  But!  I look back at this amazing story, and I have no doubt that this is where we are supposed to be.  So, yes, the mountain is still moving.  Perhaps in a few months/years, I will have another update on more divine interventions.

No comments:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...