On my way home today, I needed a pick-me-up. I needed to feel a little better. I put on my Smokey Robinson and the Miracles Pandora channel and drove home. Motown always makes me feel better. But the last song I heard before arriving in my driveway was Just My Imagination by The Temptations.
I have been househunting for about a month now. My mom’s cousin is a realtor and has been graciously helping me view houses. When I started the process, I had talked to a mortgage broker who told me I had approximately $110,000 in buying power. He recommended I pay off a few of my student loans in full to increase my buying power. I did. I paid off a $1,500 loan and a $6,500 loan. It felt good and I got excited. I set up several viewings for houses under $150,000 to get a sense of what I could buy. None of them really made the grade, but it was a start. A week later, I viewed 9 more with my parents. Two seemed good. But I didn’t think I could afford them.
So, I called the mortgage guy to rerun my numbers with the loans I paid off no longer on my credit report. He told me earlier that that would get me to $150,000. I was incredibly proud. But when I talked to him, he told me I was not yet to $160,000, but that I was in a good position. And I had 9 more to view with John. They were a little more expensive but they seemed in the realm of possibility. I had about $4500 that I could spend on another loan to push me even higher.
We got to the first house that was listed at $169,000. It was great. I was excited, John was excited, and it seemed like I could move out of my parents’ house. The second one was not so great. None of us liked it. We were in and out in a few minutes. When we got back into the car, my realtor told me he talked to the mortgage guy and he told my realtor that I was about $300 per month short of being able to afford a house listed at $140,000. My heart dropped. We went to several more houses but all I could think about was how I couldn’t afford any of this and I don’t know if I could ever afford it.
John picked up my spirits a little. And we completed the rest of the tour. We ended up seeing three places we really liked. But I was still heart broken. I have been working really hard to pay off my student loans. In the last five years, I have lowered my debt by over $60,000. I have saved and stopped buying lots of things. I don’t buy expensive clothes or shoes. I don’t pay rent since I live at home and my parents don’t ask for rent. I watch my budget very closely and have even dropped my comic book haul by about half in the past few months to help prepare me for a mortgage. But as we sat at Boston Market and reviewed the houses, all I could think about was how none of this was going to happen anytime soon. It was just my imagination running away with me.
The next day, my realtor had contacted the mortgage guy who gave me the exact details. I could afford a house at $140,000 with $5,000 per year in taxes. If I cut my monthly debt by $128, I could afford a $160K house with $5,000 per year in taxes. I lit back up. The house we liked the best was $140,000. Back to being a reality.
Today, I was scheduling a second viewing of that house to look more closely and if it all looked good, we would put in an offer. I emailed my realtor and he was going to schedule me for a time on Wednesday. I was excited, but heading to lunch, so I didn’t respond. I had a nice lunch but got back to my desk to see a new email from my realtor entitled “great…”
The house was under contract as of that morning. Just my imagination once again…
I’m not doing well. It is not easy for a depressive to have these ups and downs all in three days. I started with an up on Friday, a down on Saturday, an up on Sunday and back down on Monday. I emailed my realtor and told him that I need a break. I don’t know if that is the best idea, but I physically cannot take anymore right now.
I’m fatigued and sad. Each day, I began thinking what my life could be becoming. I saw the beginning of a life. I saw happiness and joy. I saw excitement and new adventures. I would close my eyes and see how things are going to be.
“But in reality…she doesn’t even know me.”