Finally beyond the McMansion financial drama

posted by Jeff | Monday, April 2, 2018, 10:30 PM | comments: 0

We finally closed on the house sale today. That was more drama than I would have liked. We closed on the new house at the start of November, and had a buyer one month later. They strung us along through late February before the deal fell apart. Actually, it wasn't so much that the buyer was being a pain as much as the lender. I figured since they were putting half down, it was a slam dunk, but they had a bunch of debt in whatever country they were from, and the American lender is the one that was playing games. Fortunately we had them put up some non-refundable money to help us out, but time is money in this case. We had another buyer soon after, and the deal was pretty solid. Would have liked a few grand more, but overall it was fair.

Now the challenge is to execute a series of financial gymnastics moves with the proceeds from the house. First thing is to get solar on the roof, which will reduce our electric bills and add value to the house. Next, we sell the Model S and buy a Model 3, because a less expensive car means a smaller car payment. That was never a very rational purchase, and I'm tired of paying for it now that there's something cheaper (I won't deny that it sure has been fun to drive though). Once the car transaction is done, we can roll the rest into the house loan to get that payment under control. I was always trying to figure out how to get more space without major decreases to our monthly cash flow, so much of the anxiety I had was in the ability to realize all of that. Every month that passed caused doubt in my master plan.

This process caused a lot of self-inflicted stress. We didn't have to move, but the opportunities weren't going to get cheaper, and the walls were really closing in on me in my office (occupational hazard of remote work). I feel like I'm just now having the chance to enjoy the space, because the process is essentially finished. I'd be OK with not having to move again for a solid decade. Next move will hopefully be to a smaller place with a view, after Simon is out in the world.

Now, it's time to be more in the moment and enjoy life. This neighborhood has been awesome so far, with kids constantly knocking on the door and dragging Simon out to play. We quite literally see and talk to almost all of our neighbors, all of the time. The development is small enough that frankly we're getting to know a ton of people (and their kids), and that's very cool. I do miss some of our old neighbors, but they're only a mile away.

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