21w3d ~ Lost and Confused

Isn’t that just life to throw you a curve ball when you think everything is finally falling into place?  Before I say more though, let me assure you, nothing too terrible is happening.  I’m just really confused regarding how the next year of my life is going to play out, and I find myself needing to make some decisions quite quickly.  If I wasn’t so much of a planner, of a perfectionist, perhaps I could allow myself to breathe and let be what will be, but that’s just not me.

I’m not sure if I’ve specifically mentioned this on here yet or not, but the closing for our lot/construction loan is scheduled for next Friday morning, January 30th.  I was stoked to finally get a date set, to know we were moving ahead, getting closer to our goal, so to speak.  Then, last night my loan officer called with a bit of bad news…  The appraisal of our floor plans came back low, over $100,000 low.  To give you the jest without boring you, and this is my understanding, we’re basically building a house above the average price-point in Cedar Falls.  That said, there aren’t a lot of comparable properties in this price range, and thus the appraiser probably picked, I’m assuming here since I haven’t seen the actual appraisal, properties worth less than what we hope to build, and because of that, our value is being pulled down.  It’s very possible that once the house is complete and reappraised, the value will come in higher, hopefully closer to the actual cost, but there are no guarantees of this.  The larger issue though, is that the bank will only loan us 90% of the appraised value.  So if the final appraiser still comes back $100,000 under what the house actually cost to build, then we need to come up with that $100,000 or so in cash, in addition to our 10% down-payment.  So in a nutshell, we need to win the lottery to afford this house.  Our main issue isn’t really affording the house though, it’s having enough cash upfront, as we’re certainly fine on monthly payments.

So last night in my panic I was trying to rationalize building this gorgeous home.  I mean, it’s just a house, right?  And I know this is true, but it was the one thing I was looking forward to in our move, being this city was not my choice, and frankly doesn’t offer much in the realm of entertainment, restaurants, shopping, etc.  I guess I was telling myself that having a nice house would make up for the city’s other downfalls, and keeping in mind Eric wouldn’t be around much due to his assumed busy schedule.

There is more though.  Baby is due June 1st, at which point I stop working, at least for the time being.  Eric is finished with residency June 30th, at which point he stops working, as his contract doesn’t begin until August 1st.  He was looking forward to the month of July off, partly to  help me with the baby, but mostly to study for and take his board exams.  Then, yesterday the top guy in his physician group asked if he’d be willing to work the month of July, on-call, paid at an excellent daily rate.  I, of course, told him to go for it, as it solves one of our issues, neither of us working in July, and how does a family raise a new baby with no income.  So, one issue solved, I think.

But this brings up another issue…  I was originally thinking we could stay in our current home through July and I could stay here with the baby even longer, until our house was finished, which might be as late as December, as I really didn’t want to move twice with a new baby.  Being that Eric would now need to be there starting July 1st, well, doesn’t it make more sense that we all move right away?  I highly doubt I’m going to want to be here without him for six months, even though it’s only a two hour drive.

Back to winning the lottery though, how do we move forward building a house without enough cash?  The bank assures me we will make it work, that with Eric’s income starting in July now we can certainly save enough before the house is complete, as the cash isn’t needed until closing, which is December, or even later.  But that seems like a huge gamble to me.  Not knowing what the house will appraise for and therefore how much cash we’ll need, until the very end.  I can guess at Eric’s paychecks each month, but still, all estimates.  And me being the planner hates estimates, the not knowing.

So do we go ahead with building as planned and pray all works out?  Or do we close on just the lot for now and wait to start building until we have enough cash saved?  Do I stay here and have Eric get an apartment there for the first several months?  Or do we look for a rental and plan to be settled there together by July 1st?  What if baby comes early?  Or if she comes on time, and then I expect us to move into a rental with a two-week-old baby?  Can I handle that much stress?

16 thoughts on “21w3d ~ Lost and Confused

  1. I’m currently living apart from my husband during the week as he accepted a job 5 hours away and it looks like it’ll be this way til mid-March when our house sells. It’s only been 3 weeks and I can say that it’s been hard and the babies are not here yet. Between loneliness and just needing his help for things around the house I would advise you to follow him. You’re going to be so overwhelmed and exhausted those first few months as you get adjusted to life with your little girl that you’re going to need the help, however irregular his hours allow him to be there. Just knowing he’s a phone call away and a few minutes driver versus two hours will be so helpful. Unless you have a lot of family and friends around where you live now that you can trust to help you out?

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    1. Yes, being without him does scare me. Granted, I see him so seldom now, and we have lived apart for part of his residency, but regardless, the closer his is, the better I think I will feel, I assume. Thank you for sharing your experience, I do appreciate it. And best of luck to you. Hopefully March gets here soon for you!

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  2. tough decision to make. something else you might want to also consider if you haven’t already is how much your taxes will go up when your husband starts making a real salary. it was a bit of a shock to us and we had to pay penalties when i transitioned from residency, because i wasn’t withholding enough.

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  3. Ugh. I am sorry about these new worries. Speaking from personal experience I would recommend not planning to move with a brand new baby. I woukd also want to be close to my spouse even if he would be at work a great deal. Those first few months are not easy for most of us. On the lending front i would be very nervous about biting off more than I could chew but that is me.

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    1. I know, I really didn’t want to move with a newborn. To be with Eric though, I’m not sure what other options I have. And as for biting off more than we can chew, I do get it. There are lots of risks. I guess I just wanted something for me in this move, something I was excited for. As without a house to call a home, there isn’t much for me there 😦

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  4. A couple of thoughts from someone who moved from one city to another 2.5 hours with an 18 day old baby:

    You aren’t going to want to do it alone. Even if he’s not around much because he’s on call and working a lot, there will come a time during the first few months when you don’t want to be alone in the house with a baby. Having another adult around, even if that adult is sleeping, can be a life-saver.

    If you move with a very young baby, make sure you know which boxes are the ones that have the baby paraphernalia that you need: And then don’t worry about anything else. Everything else can wait to be unpacked/organized. Taking care of your baby is more important.

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  5. Unfortunately, as with most of our difficult adult decisions to make, you’re going to have to answer these. But, even though I’ve only followed your blog for a short time, I know you and your hubby will make the right decisions for you and you’re family. It’s hard to feel unrooted, especially with a baby coming, but you’ll look back on this time and be proud of how far you’ve come. And it will make a great story! Hugs til then!

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