erynn: Gaelic merman image (Eggplant)
[personal profile] erynn
I spent a fair bit of the day today too dizzy to sit up too much, but got things done anyway. I walked down to the mail outlet and posted the next-to-last box from all the folks who have bought books from me. I'm still waiting to hear back from Geordie, because he wants stuff shipped to Canada and it's going to cost damned near as much as the books did to ship it. I may just have to hang onto it until he gets back from Spain and comes to visit.

Yesterday was Irish class, and some further book shuffling, and I packed three more boxes of poetry books. I've got another shelf of poetry to go and then I start on the poetics and writing shelves. Today I put all the cds in boxes and stacked them, then cleared all the books off most of the surfaces here in the living room, stacking them on the floor in somewhat more orderly piles. I've got a few more piles to go but needed a break.

I wrote a couple of thousand words yesterday in my fic but nothing today because it was a little much for me, though I did a bunch of work on my Italian, both online and some basic grammar exercises.

Due to a bank thing (it worked out in my favor) I spent half an hour or so on hold and talking to people at BECU. All is well, but it was a bit of a surprise. I cancelled the dvd portion of my Netflix account and am sending the last dvd back to them. I just haven't had time to watch it and I don't want anything to get lost while I'm in the middle of all this; I sometimes watch things streaming, even if they don't have everything available at the moment. That bit is a little frustrating.

The contractor called about the water damage in the guest bathroom, and they are sending somebody out at 2pm on Friday to have a look and make an estimate for the condo association. I still have heard nothing back from the realtors (if nothing by Wednesday I'm doing a web search on people who specialize in short sales and getting someone on board for real). I called Mary and will be trying to get my books down to her in West Seattle. [livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor didn't have time today, won't tomorrow, and Wednesday through Friday are going to be busy for me. It's looking like I won't get this stuff out of here until next week sometime. [livejournal.com profile] ingvisson has still been driving Sol's car, and that broke down, so he can't help with this.

After everything else, I ordered an Italian dictionary of the not-pocket variety so that I can actually read the entries a little better, and so that I'll have somewhat more vocabulary to work with as I'm learning. I spoke briefly to an old fandom friend and will be giving him a bunch of X-Files/LGM stuff that I don't want to just let go off into the aether; I do have to get rid of it for space purposes but I'll feel better having it go to a fellow fan. I may end up doing the same with all the SGA stuff I collected.

So anyway, lots of tiny things done. I know I'm making progress but it feels like I'm moving in geological time. Glaciers move faster. I remind myself that I'm fighting this huge physical issue on top of all the other crap I usually deal with, so I'm really doing pretty well. Still, I'm way too easily depressed of late because of how stressful things are, and having to depend on everyone else's schedules and situations in order to accomplish things.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 05:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] man-of-snows.livejournal.com
Let me confirm your awesomeness! *throws glitter*

I just went through a similar process and I don't have major physical challenges. You rock.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 06:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] erynn999.livejournal.com
Thank you my dear. *hug*

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 07:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] varushka.livejournal.com
It's certainly a mentally and physically exhausting process to take care of all these details, even for people without any issues.

Good job on moving forward with the guest bathroom water damage repair stuff. Does the HOA actually absorb the cost for you, or is it just that they insist on arranging repairs with their own approved contractor and then they bill you for the work (and possibly, hopefully, bill a portion of the cost of repair to the other homeowner upstairs, since it was their unit that leaked)?

From my vantage point, I'm seeing a bigger picture and the series of events that have to happen before you can move to Italy, some of which are not guaranteed to come to pass, so those may turn out to be forks in the road where one (or more) option you are hoping to go is blocked.

The first potential roadblock is getting out of your home. I'm not super surprised you haven't heard back from the agency, since they stand to make very little money on the deal, and their hands are tied to move forward unless you have permission from your lender to do a short sale.

Have you contacted your lender to see if they will allow you to do a short sale?

To my mind, that is the Most Important Thing to be doing right now. Not studying Italian, not packing your things. (However, regardless of where you end up, I applaud ruthlessly getting rid of the things that aren't serving you, like the freezer and the large collection of chairs and the comic books. And making necessary repairs to things around the house.)

ALL your other preferred plans are depending upon you physically getting out of your condo, and if selling it is what you want to do, you need your lender's permission, not a Realtor, just yet. I think a Realtor willing to work with you this early in the game is going to advise you the exact same thing, that you need to get arrangements made with your lender before anything else can move forward.

You should also consider seeking the counsel of a real estate attorney who can advise you how the lender forgiving the difference in debt/sale price will affect your tax liability, because tax-wise, forgiving that debt is just like the bank is outright giving you that large sum of money. It's also possible you'll still be on the hook for the difference. The bank might not let you escape the difference, and then you could have $40K (or whatever) of loan you still are obliged to pay off. And that would suck, paying for a home loan when you don't have a home.

I think your change in medical status causing you not to be able to drive any longer is going to be the only thing can can trump the lender if they balk at allowing a short sale, and you should already be seeking some documentation of not being medically cleared to drive from the VA Hospital.

Even if you can jump through all the hoops and get permission, it is still MUCH harder and time-consuming to short sale.

So packing all your things up and pushing forward on learning Italian seems, to me, to be mixing up the order of the steps that need to be taken.

But again, proactively getting rid of the things you don't use or need wherever you live is a GREAT thing to do, no matter what plays out.

I know that you'd much rather prefer to live alone, and I totally get that because I live alone. But have you thought about what you can do instead, if you do not get permission to sell?

If you had a roommate, I'm guessing you could get $350-400 a month rent from them (assuming you keep the master bedroom and bath and they get the guest room and guest bath). Would that extra income, along with the savings from not having the expenses of your car any longer, allow you more transportation options for getting where you need to go? Could you take taxis to the grocery store? To and from the Sounder station when you need to keep an appointment at the VA in Seattle? As much of a hassle as it is to arrange to use, will ParaTransit serve you in Everett?

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 07:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] varushka.livejournal.com
~ this got long ~


The other thing I'm wondering about is renting out the place through the agency, despite the income they can get on it falling short of your mortgage payment plus the agency management fees, and just paying the difference, and finding a cheaper room share or getting a cheaper studio that's perhaps not on Capitol Hill, but still convenient to it and the VA via public transit. That's if the agency will allow you to do this, of course. Anything on Beacon Hill or in W Seattle on the Route 60 would seem to be a good location for you, as long as it is near a grocery and your other day-to-day essentials. It would be a less hip neighborhood, but it would be a lot cheaper, and you might be able to afford to rent out your entire condo and wait a bit longer for the market to improve. You'd definitely need to run the numbers on how low your new housing costs should be in order to break even (or get ahead, maybe) on the expense of renting out the condo. This way you could preserve your credit rating, which will be badly damaged in a short sale.

Another option is foreclosure, I guess. If it's less costly for the bank to foreclose your home than to short sell, that may be one motivation for them refusing to give you permission to short sell.

But yeah. You need to contact your lender. Expect to show tax returns to prove your assets (or lack thereof). If you have some money somewhere, you're going to be expected to make up the difference in sale price and money owed. (This maybe wouldn't be a bad thing, since your credit will end up less damaged.)

Anyway, I know it's a lot to think about and rather overwhelming, but you've got to sort out the condo before you can really move forward with anything else. I don't even see the point in packing up the things you're keeping if you're not even certain you can leave, unless your definite Plan B is to default on the home loan and just let the bank foreclose.

It just seems like with the limits on your physical and emotional energy, can you really afford not to prioritize the steps that need to be taken? I know there is a lot to do in the grand scheme of making your dream happen, but there is a sensible order in the steps that will need to be taken, and it seems to me like you're doing just a few of the steps out of order, maybe?

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 08:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] erynn999.livejournal.com
I haven't yet contacted my mortgage company. I guess I thought the realtor did that stuff. I will see if I can email them.

I do have a paper from the doctor saying I can't drive. The ER doc handed it to me back in March when all this started. I have it in the stack of papers for dealing with the condo sale.

No, renting one of my rooms isn't going to give me enough money to deal with the transportation issues from Everett to the VA on a (sometimes more than) weekly basis. Having a roommate would add so much stress to my life that the extra $300-$400 a month would not make up for it.

Losing money on renting the condo while renting a place in Seattle isn't going to work. Damned near nothing in Seattle in a neighborhood where I can get to things I actually need is going to be so much cheaper than my mortgage here that I would easily be able to pay the difference. I need to be able to get out to do things in less than a couple of hours; I already know that if I am using public transit in Seattle, anything I do is essentially going to take all day; I lived there for twelve years with no car, so I have experienced that firsthand. A lot of neighborhoods in Seattle are nearly as inaccessible to public transit as Everett is.

The company I talked to about renting the place wanted me to have a million dollars in liability insurance on the place. And then there were several hundred dollars worth of fees and costs per month or per annum associated with renting that I will not have. I will also have to pay for any repairs for the tenants out of pocket. I honestly do not think it can be done.

Right now, learning Italian is something for me to do that keeps me marginally sane while I deal with all this stress. Even if I never get to Italy, it will have been time spent actually learning something useful for if I go to visit my brother again.

I will consult an attorney, thanks. I would need to anyway for the visa application. I have not filed tax returns in nearly ten years because none of my income is taxable. All of my disability income is untaxed. But yes, someone else mentioned the tax issue to me the other day and I know I have to deal with that.

This is the thing: it's not just accessibility for the VA that I need. It's not just a grocery store. It's everything else that makes a life that I have to be able to get to. I need to be able to get to restaurants and cafes and places where my friends congregate without having to take all day to do it and then having to spend the night because I can't get back to my own place in a reasonable amount of time on the bus, which would mean arranging for someone to take care of the dog as well.

Living with not just the physical issues but the PTSD and the anxiety and the depression means that a lot of things that seem reasonable or easy for other people may not be so for me. I'm dealing with this as best I can. I appreciate pointing out things I may not have thought about, but there are just some things that aren't going to fly, no matter how much it might look like they would be easier.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 08:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] varushka.livejournal.com
Okay, I see. It sounds like your only financially viable options for the condo would be short selling or getting foreclosed.

Totally agree that your quality of daily life would be much much better living in a dense neighborhood in Seattle with convenient, frequent transit, rather than staying in Everett.

Something you may want to keep in mind, too, is that the Link Light Rail stations on Capitol Hill and at Husky Stadium are going to be opening for service in a few years. If you do end up living in Seattle indefinitely, if you found a place to live in one of the south neighborhoods by a rail station, it's so much faster and convenient to get around via the light rail than by bus. Trains run every 7 minutes during rush hour, 10 minutes apart during most of the day, then 15 minutes apart at the odd hours. The actual transit time is much faster than by bus, too. For now it'll get you downtown or to the airport lickety-split, but once those new stations open for service, it's going to make living in the outlying neighborhoods like Rainier Valley or Columbia City and doing things in the U-District or Capitol Hill much more reasonable and manageable.

I understand the preference to live alone, too, as I've been living alone for years, with just a few short-term roommates here and there ~ and knowing they were short term is what made it manageable!

You're the expert on what to do to maintain your sanity through this.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 08:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] erynn999.livejournal.com
Thank you. That's it exactly; it's not about living in a cool neighborhood, it's about living where I can do the things that make me happy without putting myself through the wringer to do so.

I'm glad that the light rail is going in, absolutely, but until there are active stations in the U District and Capitol Hill, getting there from elsewhere would still mean taking a bus, so my best bet is to live there, even if it's more expensive.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-09 09:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] varushka.livejournal.com
If you end up in the U-District (which I think you said earlier is looking more affordable than Capitol Hill), at least there is frequent bus service to Capitol Hill for the things you may want to do there. The 43 and the 49 run frequently and it's a short ride, maybe ten minutes. You'd have to catch two buses to get to the VA, but the Route 60 runs about every 20 minutes during the day, which is not too bad. The University has lots of lectures and events and cultural things that may be of interest, too. It wouldn't be a bad place to end up in for however long.

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