Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Update (Not Foster Related)

Sorry I haven't been around in so long. The financing fell through on the house I was hoping to buy, so I've been spending every spare moment looking for a new place to live. Here are some things I've learned in the past month:

- Mobile homes are not like regular homes. They are more difficult to get financing on, among other things.
- Private lenders will not give a conventional loan on a mobile home that is not on a foundation.
- Homes that have been foreclosed on and are owned by a bank will only accept conventional loans or cash.
- Having excellent credit does not matter, if a house has a problem with mold, or structural issues.

The first home I hoped to buy was a manufactured home not on a foundation, and a foreclosure, so I couldn't get financing. The second home I hoped to buy turned out to have a major problem with mold, so I couldn't get financing. The third home I hoped to buy turned out to have structural issues. And the fourth home also had mold and a few other issues, so I found out this afternoon, that once again, no financing will be available. I'm very fortunate to have both a wonderful realtor and mortgage broker that are helping me with my search.  They are definitely earning their money with all the work I'm putting them through in finding just the right place.  I don't care how big it is or how new it is, I just want it to be a place I can have foster dogs without bothering anyone. 

So far I have viewed listings on 496 homes through an online listing service. Basically I've looked at information on every home that is within one hour of my work and is being sold at a price I can afford. I've ruled out most of those homes because they're in cities or subdivisions with pet restrictions. I've driven by the rest of them, and ruled out another 25 or 30 because they were in very bad areas, or in homes that wouldn't work for fostering (no yard, etc). That has left me with very few choices. I did come across one home that is my dream house, but wouldn't work for fostering. I seriously considered giving up fostering and moving in with just me and Merlin. Okay not really. But I wanted to consider it - especially when I got home and found the dogs had entertained themselves while I was gone by eating my new (used) couch. A tiny cabin in the woods with just me and my cat didn't sound so bad right about then.

It has been an adventure, shopping for houses. I've seen a lot of wildlife. I've picked up a stray dog. I've driven through rainstorms and across flooded roads. I've walked through woods and fields, and acquired over 200 bug bites in one night. I missed an entire weekend, including a big adoption event, due to a much-needed overdose of Benadryl to survive the bug bites. I now carry bug spray in my car, along with a flashlight, for my evening house hunting trips. I have driven most of the major roads in Lincoln County and am starting to learn my way around Warren County as well (I live in St. Charles County).

I am having a rough month, and with five dogs at home, I dread every time the doorbell rings that it is the Animal Control unit coming back because the neighbors have complained again. I check the house listings constantly, just waiting for that next house to come on the market and hoping it will be the perfect fit. I'm going back out again tonight to drive around and look at a few more possibilities. So please don't give up on me - I miss you guys and will write more about my fostering adventures as soon as life improves a bit! 


Frankie Furter said...

Holy Cow you have had a bad time of it. I KNOW that there is a house out there that will meet your needs.. you just have to stick with your guns and ... not answer the doorbell.. for a while.

Kea said...

Oh, I'm so, so sorry you are having such a difficult time finding the right home. I lurk more than comment, had thought it was all a done deal. :-(

I am sending tons of Light that you find the perfect place for you SOON! VERY soon!

Lots of (((hugs))); please hang in! All fingers (and paws) are crossed in this house, for luck!

Lola said...

I am so sorry that you're having such a tough time just trying to to a good thing for animals. Don't worry about us. We'll be here when you have time for blogging. I just wish there was a way we could help.

lotsa licks, Lola

Life with 5 dogs said...

Searching for a house and be a pain! We hope you are able to find something soon. Sorry we can't help you out, if we could we would.

JackDaddy said...

Wow! You should call one of those people on HGTV. They always seem to find a house!

I'm glad you found out about the mold BEFORE you bought the house though!

Amy and The House of Cats said...

That sucks about the financing falling through - we had a hard time when we were looking and that was before all the loan shakeups happened. I am sure there are a lot more restrictions now, and that just stinks. Also the bug bites stink - that would have made me think about giving up (I really hate bug bites), but of course for the animals we do a lot we wouldn't normally do.

We will be crossing our fingers and paws that you find the right place - don't worry it will happen. We hope it happens soon though!

Anonymous said...

Wow.That is a lot of houses to be looking at and not finding a single one that meets all your dreams/needs (and that means it should indeed be your dream house on top of everything),sucks.Still, I believe all your efforts will be rewarded and you will find the purrfect,pawsitively awesome house very soon indeed!You will! You will! In the meantime, I'll cross my fingers that you find that house soon.

Casey Jones' Mom said...

Saying a prayer to St. Francis of Assisi to help you in your quest for a home for you and your animals. He is the parton Saint of animals. Hang in there.

Casey has his paws crossed for you.

Pibble said...

We will NEVER give up on you! Hang in there. Things will work out. Our paws are crossed for you that things fall into place for you soon!

Kari in WeHo said...

I am sure it will all work out! Take the time away from blogging to find the perfect house.

Don't forget, we've move to dogisgodinreverse.com

Anonymous said...

We miss you, too! But we know what you're doing is really, really important and we're patient enough to wait til you get back. I'm sorry you're having such a hard time with all this. I never imagined it would be this difficult for you. Mayzie and I both think you're an incredible person and we have everything crossed that can be crossed that you'll find the perfect place soon.

Sending you lots of hugs from me and wiggles and wags from Mayzie!


Cupcake said...

We feel so bad that you have to go through all this. That you are doing all this just so you can continue to help animals shows what a wonderful, loving person you are. (We already knew that though). We are sending good thoughts and wishes for the perfect house to come on the market, and it will be yours!

Love, Cupcake and Mommy

Ying and Yang said...

You do so much good for so many homeless kitties and doggies that we are sure the good you've sent out just has to come back at you very soon. We have our paws crossed for you in your search for a foster friendly place to live. And Mom is still ticked off about your crappy neighbors!

Grins and Kisses,
Ying and Yang

The Two Country Poodles & Uncle Puppy said...

OH MY DOG you have been through quite alot...Its an amusing tail in itself! BOL Thanks fur sharin' Hope you find the perfect home and foster halfway house soon!

Wags and Licks,
Mollie Jo & Bobo

Lorenza said...

Be patient!
You will find the perfect house soon!
Take care
Kisses and hugs

Amanda said...

Bless you Laurie! That is all I can say!!! Wish I had words of wisdom or encouragement, I am sure at moments it seems hopeless and overwhelming. Just know someone in MN is thinking of you and hoping for that perfect--or close enough to perfect--situation and home to present itself. A person who has put as much good into the world and her community as you deserves no less. =)

Erika said...

Oh Laurie I admire you so much, so many others would have just given up fostering and perhaps a pet. You have a passion for saving animals and you are clearly dedicated I wish more people were out in the world like you. I'm sure the perfect house is out there for you!

ps. If Ziggy is getting to be too much just tell me what time we are sneaking him across the border!

Bobby said...

I hope you do find the right place, have you got atv programe there that helps find the right place. We have in the uk and they have a big reserch team, just a thought.

meowmeowmans said...

Sorry it's been such a cruddy month. We hope and pray that things get better soon.

Don't worry ... we'll still be here whenever you can blog!