I dream of replacement flooring

By Mir
June 2, 2007

Otto and I thought it would be really fun to spend the the last week playing “let’s pretend the housing market makes any sense at all.”

I could tell you the rules, but it’s pretty complicated and involves a lot of invective about Otto’s realtor, who has become—unfairly or not—the main target of all of my angst about our current situation. It doesn’t help that she is very! enthusiastic! all the time! even though half of what she says never actually, you know, HAPPENS.

After spending the week playing our delightful new game (or just, you know, freaking out and crying a lot about how we’re going to be broke and homeless) (yeah, that was me, not Otto), we made an offer on a house. This house, actually.

They turned us down.

Which we expected.

And for the first time in a week (or several months, but who’s counting?), I felt very calm and centered. We’d been watching that house since the beginning of the year, and for various reasons we knew it was probably not where we’d end up, but we kept coming back to it. Going through the process of figuring out an offer and not being accepted allowed me to close that chapter. Not the house for us, clearly. Moving on.

We had a second choice house, which happened to be right next door to that one. We would make an offer there, instead. The universe had spoken.

My zen lasted for approximately twelve hours.

When we looked at this house back in March, it carried an offer of a generous flooring allowance on account of the entire upstairs is swathed in the ugliest carpet known to mankind. They have since removed that clause and upped the price. Which would be a logical thing to do if they’d changed out that carpet, of course.

But they didn’t. They bought new kitchen appliances.

That TOTALLY compensates for the green shag, dude.

So. We basically made an offer that accounts for the cost of replacing the carpet, and they countered in a way that makes it clear they want to recoup the cost of their shiny new kitchen appliances, which is nice, but stainless steel kitchen appliances are not going to keep Sneezy McAllergy Monkeyboy from suffocating in his sleep.

The owners are now taking a day to consider our final offer, and supposedly BOTH realtors have offered to cut into their commissions to make this happen, although—as I told Otto—at this point I believe his realtor would claim to be busy rescuing kittens from burning buildings if she thought it would impress us, so who knows.

Normally I am too superstitious to discuss things like this while they are in process. Don’t want to jinx it, you know. But at this point I am just ALL DONE, and sadly the place I’m in is within spitting distance of hopeless. It’s not THERE, but I can totally wave to it over the fence.

If we get this house, the scramble is on to close before the end of the month, replace the carpet, and get moved as scheduled. And the small matter of selling the two houses we already own that no one wants to buy.

If we don’t get this house, I probably need to delay my move.

You know, when Otto and I got engaged back in October, we thought we’d have to deal with the logistics of a move, the acclimation to a new family, the kids’ adjustment. I don’t think either of us had any idea that we’d be clinging to hopes of ugly carpet as our best shot of actually getting to live together sometime this summer, as planned.

Third mortgage? Hell, I’d take on a FOURTH if it meant I could get a night’s sleep where I don’t wake up in the wee hours convinced that it’s to be the cruelest joke of all, that after all of this we still don’t get our happy ending.


  1. Heidi

    The happy ending is coming. I promise!

  2. shannon

    Heidi is right, it’s coming.

  3. Anna

    A FORTH mortgage?? You really *do* love that Otto! ;-)

  4. bob

    That’s me you’re waving at on the other side of the fence.

    I was replacing a window-unit air conditioner today and found that it had been leaking into the wall for the past 10 years. I’ve got to rebuild that entire wall – all of the framing down to the sill has rotted.

    Okay. maybe it isn’t as bad as houses not selling and delayed happy endings. But I’m feeling for ya’ right now.

  5. Judy.

    The happy ending is already there. You and Otto ARE married, the kids are happy about it, and there are just the details now. Things will work out and we’ll have you in Georgia in no time.

  6. I0naFiona

    What happens if you all move into otto’s bachelor pad???

  7. Brigitte

    Maybe the second-house people luuurve their revolting green shag carpet, and (being insane) don’t understand why anyone else wouldn’t. They only reluctantly agreed to the floor allowance thing, on their realtor’s recommendation, but decided that the realtor was wrong (rather than that the price was still too high) when the house didn’t sell immediately.

    They’re probably moving to a lovely, up-to-date modern home, which will immediately be recarpeted in green shag – or maybe the multi-height, brown and yellow shag that my parents had for many years!

  8. Em

    Someday, you will sit around telling this to your grandchildren and laughing. Its probably too soon to imagine laughing over all of this trouble but I bet it will happen. Someday, it WILL be in the past.

    You probably already know this but just in case, when it comes to recarpeting, talk to the person doing it about using a remnant. They are often large enough to do a whole room and can be a huge savings.

  9. meritt

    Maybe…….. your offer won’t be accepted on the second house. And you will cry. And then you WILL get an offer on YOUR HOUSE. And then you will put an offer back in to the FIRST HOUSE that you really really like more anyway. And they will be happy to accept your offer this time.

    And you will get the house you want… in the end.


    Chin up my dear. It will all work out in the end… I swear. I pinky swear. I cross my heart.

  10. Kimberly

    You’re not getting a happy ending. You’re getting a wondrous beginning. Waaay better deal, dude.

  11. ChristieNY

    Ditto, ditto, ditto the others! :)

    Hang in there sweetie, everything will come together, I’m sure of it!!! :)

  12. Lucinda

    It will happen. It always does. You know that. Seldom the way we imagine and *never* (dear lord, NEVER) on our timeline. But when it does, it’s always better than we imagined and the timing is far more perfect than we knew at the time. So stick to this side of hopeless please. Sending up a little prayer for all of you.

  13. jenn2

    I’m praying that this is going to work out wondrously and in a month, you’ll be with your husband and children, busily unpacking boxes in the only house your family owns. I am speaking in faith that God loves you and has a blessing for you that is so much more perfect than you could ever have imagined. Beauty from ashes, my dear. Beauty from ashes.

  14. Jan

    Ack, this kind of ‘this depends on this which depends on that which depends on the other and oh, by-the-way, you have no control over any of it’ stress just bites the big one.

    Fingers crossed for you!

  15. Cele

    I am in agreements, a happy ending is coming your way. But I am like those two vultures where the one says, “Patience my ass, I’m going to kill something.”

  16. Tal

    Sending good thoughts your way Mir!

  17. JamieLee

    The things people do to their homes are amazing.
    We once looked at a place when we were in the midst of the horrible quest that is house shopping. I won’t even get into the disgusting details having to do with fly paper and kitty…um…well, let’s just say that although there wasn’t a cat in sight, you could tell they lived there.
    No – the best part about that house was that they’d whitewashed a beautiful hardwood floor in the upstairs hall. And, as if defacing the old wood wasn’t bad enough, they’d painted AROUND a small, braided, area rug. Seriously. They couldn’t manage to move a rug that was less than four feet in diameter, so they painted around it. Talk about demented!
    Good luck. Fingers crossed and all that.

  18. Loving Annie

    I have totally fallen in love with houses… I’m just grateful that there have been — and always will be — another one that I love –eventually…

    This housing market is cruel. If you price it accurately/to sell, it usually does very quickly, but then there goes your hope of a good profit. Or maybe any profit at all.

    Very disappointing on the carpet issue. Sounds like they felt like they needed to spruce things up a bit to get their house to sell, and couldn’t afford to do both.
    Can’t believe they raised the price. That just doesn’ work out here anymore…

    Fingers crossed for you that you find something you love, your offer gets accepted, and your other 2 homes sell quickly !

  19. Christina

    You are going to get your happy ending, and it will be the beginning of a bright new life! I have a good feeling about this :) Here are some more positive thoughts, headed your way.

  20. Krisco

    You will eventually. Stay calm. Sounds stupid, but as you make each right decision for you, eventually you will get to where it all worked out for the best in the end. Really! Please, calm.

  21. Aimee

    Oh, Mir… at the risk of sounding like a walking cliche, the truth is that it always seems like the world’s going to end right before a happy ending. Hang in there, pretty lady.

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