We’re homeowners again! I am so tired of moving around and renting. I’ve really felt homeless since we left Michigan 17 months ago.
Of course, the last week has been hell.
Thursday: My agent reminds me that I need certified funds for closing. We use ETrade which does not have branches so that means a wire transfer. I get the instructions from the title company, print out the ETrade wire transfer form and fill it out. The cold that I’ve had since October 2 (not kidding!) takes a turn for the worse and I get a very sore throat. Meanwhile, Sam has diarrhea and is getting a bad cold sore.
Friday afternoon: I fax the wire transfer form to ETrade for a Monday transfer.
Friday night: We learn that ETrade is close to bankruptcy and worry all weekend about whether our money will be there on Monday.
Monday morning: I wake up 2 hours early because Sam had another nightmare. She’s been doing fine with the chaos while awake, but the stress comes out in her dreams. She fell back asleep but I didn’t. Later, I check my bank account and the money is still sitting there. I call ETrade to check and they tell me, “We do not do third party wire transfers.” I know it’s a lie but what can I do? After a few panicked phone calls, I find that our title company will accept a personal check. Again, kudos to our real estate agent, Sharon Chamberlin, for working with good people.
Monday afternoon: Seller doesn’t show up for settlement. Duh, he went to the wrong office. Yeah, right. Luckily, we were able to close via fax and the upside was that we never had to see his stinking face. We have a house, yea!
Later Monday afternoon: The wire transfer goes through. NO! If the title company has already put my check in the bank, I’m toast. More panicked phone calls. The wonderful woman who did our closing actually noticed that the funds were wired and hadn’t deposited the check. Still, I had to drive out to their office to pay a small balance due and get my first check back. But not before loading up my car with the first of the moving boxes, picking up Sam from day care (where she did not nap at all), meeting the handyman at the new house to get a quote on some small jobs, and finding that the extra set of keys the seller promised to leave under the mat were not there. The worst part of that day was that Sam was just miserable, falling asleep in the car just as we’d arrive somewhere and having to wake right back up. Not good for a borderline-sick child.
Tuesday: The plan was to move as much stuff to the new house as possible and monitor the installation of new carpet. The carpet got installed and we did move some things, but Adam also had to spend 6 hours on IV fluids after puking his guts out all morning. I’ve never seen him so sick. Definitely in the Top Ten Worst Days of My Life.
Tuesday night: My turn. I got a much milder case of it. Still, it kept me up until 2am because it takes much concentration to NOT vomit. Must never, ever vomit. Stay awake all night and focus, but do not vomit.
Wednesday: We moved more stuff and got our Internet and cable hooked up. Adam painted Sam’s room. It was Sam’s last day at her current day care and saying goodbye was very emotional for both of us. I don’t think anything horrendous happened. Oh, except that we were moving, which is one of the most horrendous things in life to begin with.
Thursday: More packing, painting, and moving. Brief Thanksgiving with friends which was the highlight of the week. Up until 2am packing boxes in preparation for the moving company’s arrival the next morning.
Friday: Official moving day. We hadn’t packed as much as we’d hoped due to all the illness, but we had done amazingly well, considering. We knew the movers could pack up the last of our stuff and we’d just have to pay a bit extra for the supplies they provided plus extra time. The biggest challenge seemed to be waking up at 7am. In the end, this moving company stole about $2,000 from us. I can’t describe it any other way. They wrapped a plastic toy mirror in bubble wrap and said it cost $19. I’m not kidding. They held our stuff hostage until we paid. We knew they had the power to do it – this happens with moving companies all the time (although I had done so much research on this one and I’ve moved so many times that I thought I was smart enough to avoid these problems). If they say, “Pay me or we’ll keep your stuff,” you pretty much have to pay whatever they ask. After an hour of phone calls trying to resolve it with a manager, we decided to pay but to note on the contract and credit card receipt that we were paying under protest. They would not accept this and demanded payment with NO changes on their documents before they would release our goods. We had to call the police out to our new home on our first night here to get these bastards to allow us to pay the extortion, but with a stinking note on the paperwork. After the officer made them allow it, I went with the mover into the kitchen to find a horizontal surface to use to sign. With no shame, with the officer in the next room, this slimebag tried to get me to sign a separate document which signed away all my rights to dispute the charges at a later date. I brought it to the officer, who forced the mover to call his supervisor to allow us to get our stuff without signing such a document. Of course, we had to pay the moving company for the 2.5 hours it took to resolve the whole dispute. Then, at the end, these immoral creatures kept a few boxes in the truck and made us pay another $150 before they’d release them. We were too tired to call the cops again, and what’s the difference between being reamed to the tune of $2,150 versus $2,000 anyway? THIS MOVING COMPANY IS CALLED METRO VAN LINES LLC OPERATED OUT OF ROCKVILLE MARYLAND DOT NUMBER 1496324. DO NOT USE THEM IF YOUR LIFE DEPENDS ON IT.
Friday night: Drinking champagne (finally!) and loving our new home. Thanks for listening to my rant.