Monday through Sunday, September 1 – 7—A Time of Transition

We received an offer on our house on August 28, and accepted it on August 29, settling for significantly less than we priced it.  But, there’s a fair possibility that the buyers will also purchase the household furnishings and pontoon boat for fair prices, making the deal much more palatable. 

The young buyers for the house really like how it has been decorated and landscaped, and in this regard have offered to purchase the furniture and household goods; since our decor is all about fly fishing and trout, and we’d have to store it for several months, we readily agreed.  Now, we have to reach agreement on price.  Kay and I separately estimated the value, added and subtracted items, and then averaged the value.  When it comes right down to it, one’s material possessions aren’t worth much, and certainly not what was paid for them!  Much of our furniture is new, having been lived on for only 5 months, and several of the Persian rugs are irreplaceable.  Oh well, this would give us an opportunity to start over—in our mid-60s!  We spent a good portion of Sunday after church and Labor Day doing an item by item inventory to insure no misunderstanding on which items we would take; we have several pieces of art that are signed and numbered, and others done by friends and family, some of whom are deceased, and others who are no longer able to paint.  And then there are a few sentimental items that would make us look heartless to leave.  The young couple came by on Saturday evening (September 6) to go over the inventory.  They expected only a paragraph, and were quite surprised at it being 10 pages long.  They asked if we would sell only certain items and Kay quickly responded “No” as it’s almost as easy for us to move all of it as it is to move some of it.  We reviewed every item, taking almost 2 hours.  This is their 4th visit to the house, with 3 of the visits lasting about 2 hours each!  The buyers also want to purchase the 2006 Aloha 25-foot pontoon, docked at Quarry Marina.  We have provided a very fair price, and scheduled a test run for Wednesday evening (September 10).

We ordered boxes and packing materials online from U+Haul, mainly to pack hanging clothes, books, and tools; U+Haul is bit more expensive than some other sources, but the quality is supposed to be superior; since our belongings will be in storage for 6 months, we thought the difference was worth it, and U+Haul  offered free two-day shipping.  We have been hesitant to begin packing because of the possibility of the sale disintegrating (this happened to me in 1999, after the moving van pulled out).  But, all indications are that the buyers realize the superior quality, superior materials, and the many extras in the house and property, and that they are getting a heck of a deal to boot.  So, we’ll begin packing—power tools and other items we rarely use, fly fishing and tying materials, one-person float tubes and pontoons, etc.—and transport these items for storage in Hot Springs Village when we go in mid-September.  We’ve rented climate controlled storage space and non-climate controlled space.

Over the course of the last few months, we have looked at several houses, both existing and new, and discovered that there is no difference in price per square foot; consequently, we will likely ‘build new”.  In this regard, we have been impressed by a young builder, Brandon Tedder of Renaissance Homes in North Little Rock, and viewed the progress of one of his projects in the Village—excellent quality, attention to detail, and energy efficient.  L0827ba44 m0xd w400 h300 q80The plan we really liked was too expensive given all the extras we wanted, so using a smaller version of the plan, we backed off on square footage, added a sunroom, and other extras, and now have a design we really like.  The builder has been very patient, and we have come to basic agreement, and except for dotting the “i’s” and crossing the “t’s”, we’re about ready to execute a construction contract.  And, we have completed the paperwork—another Labor Day weekend chore—for a construction/permanent loan.

Thank goodness for the motorhome.  It will provide us a place to live for the days between the sale of the house and when we leave for Texas, for the time while in Texas, and for the time when we return to Arkansas if the house is not finished—about 6 months minimum.  Mechanically, I have to install a new potable water pump, inflate the tires to the proper pressure, and reinstall the windshield wipers (they were removed to keep from oxidizing in the sun this summer.)  We haven’t begun packing clothes and foodstuff, but that will occur towards the end of September.  Just before our clothes and personal belongings are moved, we’ll drive the motorhome to Quarry Park and stay there until our business and doctors’ appointments are completed, then spend a week in central Arkansas visiting grandkids and kids, and then drive to Texas.

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On to more important things.  This first week of September has brought a Baltimore Oriole to our place, sipping nectar from the hummingbird feeders.  This is the first time we’ve seen a Baltimore Oriole anytime except for late April.  Also, there have been far fewer butterflies than we’ve had in the past.  What’s up?

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