Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Worry ends where faith begins.... (WARNING: LOOOOOONG POST AHEAD!)

Dave and I have been praying for a bigger house for quite some time. We currently live in a small 3 bedroom ranch home that we bought in October 1999. We have LOVED this house from the day we laid eyes on it. No, it's not perfect. It's not a "model" home by any means. But we have put so much love and work into it! We have done most of the major things, from the furnace to the roof! Most of the inside has been updated over the years and we have made it our own! The "smallness" of our house has bothered everybody else more than it has bothered us. We have really truly been happy living here. Usually we are all in the same room anyways, so space is only an issue when it comes to "stuff". I have always believed the motto..."Love grows best in little houses." But with adding Nolan and Nevin to our crew, and knowing that we would like to have more children someday, we knew that we would need to have more space. So we started searching. We came upon many houses, but didn't feel right financially about them. We also had put an offer in on a house, only to have the sellers back out at the last minute. We had also at one point, sold our house. Then right before signing, the buyer did not get the job transfer they were hoping for and had to back out on their offer. We knew that God had a plan, but could not figure out just what it was. So we decided to take the "sit back and pray" approach.

My mom had been "eyeballing" a house in Georgetown for a while. It was a big house that had been sitting empty for over a year. We tried to call the court house to get information on it, but there was no information on record. That was in March.

In June, I picked up a small local newspaper, which I read about once every six months. I opened it to the "houses for sale" section and happened to glance over on the opposite page at the Public Notice section. That is when I noticed an announcement for a "Sheriff's Sale" on that EXACT Georgetown house! For those of you who don't know, a Sheriff's Sale is an auction sale of a foreclosed property held by the sheriff to sell the property to pay a court-ordered judgement. You buy the property...sight unseen. AS IS. You must have 10% cash down at the time of the sale, and the remainder within 24 hours. It is a big risk, but also a way to get a really great bargain!

So I started making phone calls and scouring the internet for information. I hit all kinds of dead ends. The internet was no help because laws vary by county. Everyone that I called and talked to had no information on the house besides what the taxes were and who had last purchased the home. We really had no idea on what took place at a Sheriff's Sale. It left us feeling clueless! We prayed....

We decided to take matters into our own hands one day....we snuck through the window of the house and looked around for ourselves! The house was filthy. It stunk. It had garbage and junk left in it. It needed so much work. And I LOVED it! Dave was not convinced as easily as I was. I have always been the type to look at something rough and see potential. Dave said he had to think on this one. After discussing it for a few days, we decided to just think on it and see what happens. We prayed....

We moved forward to try to get financing. We have excellent credit, which helped us, but only one income! We got approved, but it was for about $10,000 less than what we thought we would like to buy the house for. Well, we needed to sign the loan papers in order to take the cash to the sale. So basically, if the auction went for HIGHER than what we could pay, then we would have to immediately take our cash back to the bank and pay off the loan. BUT we would have to pay all of the loan fees out of pocket, which ended up being about $500. So there was a chance that we would walk away with no house and also lose $500. Wow...not comfortable with that, but was it a chance we should just take? We prayed....

The sale was to take place at the courthouse on August 7th at 10:00 a.m. We had gone through with the loan paper work and the only thing left was to sign the papers. My dad came up and helped with the kids and my mom and I took the loan papers down to Dave's work to have him sign them. We were pushin' for time and I needed to get the papers back to the bank in order to get the money. The sale was going to start and at 9:45, we decided that $500 was too much to lose and we changed plans. We kept the loan papers on us and decided to take a chance and go to the auction with just the proof of the loan and no cash. We prayed...

We (my mom and I...Dave was at work) met with the sheriff and a few lawyers in the lobby and the sale began. We asked the Sheriff if it would be ok to just have the proof of funds. He said he wasn't sure because he did not usually do this. He happened to be filling in for someone who was normally in charge of Sheriff's Sales. He said that since we seemed trustworthy, he would let us slide by as long as we had the cash to him within the next couple hours.

When it came time to bid on our house, there was only one other bid....which was an absent bid from the bank that had owned it.....and all we had to do was bid $1 over that bid!!!! It was actually almost $10,000 less than what we were approved for! What an answer to prayer! The paperwork and process went really smooth and we knew God had a hand in it all along!

The house is twice the size that we have now. It's a beautiful older home with tons of character! It used to belong to a popular attorney that lived in town. Everyone in town seems to have a "story" about the house. My grandma even spent the night there quite a few times when she was a young girl! Another lady shared how she took piano lessons there and always thought the house looked like a mansion. It's a shame that someone let the house go, but it worked out great in our benefit! We had to redo all of the plumbing, but the electrical and the furnace were both in great shape! We were thrilled with that! We are in the process of doing some major things to the house and that will be in posts to come!

Our "hope" is to be able to add an addition onto the house. We would add 2 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. We have had the estimate done and we are waiting to see how the rest of the house goes..financially speaking. If it ends up that we can not do the addition, we are totally ok with that! It's just another aspect that we are leaving in God's hands! I can honestly say that I have not stressed out AT ALL! That is a work of God! My husband has not stressed much either....that is an even BIGGER work of God! (He is generally the one that worries!)

The kids have been a HUGE help (more on that to come) and so have my mom and dad! My mom has been so generous to watch the kiddos if we need her to and my dad is right there with us doing all the major remodeling! I am blessed with wonderful parents!

In the meantime, here are some pictures to update you. They are not the best quality, but will have to do for now. DON'T PROCEED IF YOU GET SCARED EASILY! HA!

1 comment:

Devin said...


What an amazing story that was. The place looks reminds me totally of how we found and bought our house. It was a way bigger wreck than we had planned on buying, but the TLC that we have put in has just made it completely ours, and I love it so much now.

I seriously can not WAIT to see the after pictures!

Praise the Lord for this blessing for you all.