|image via pinterest|
A night's sleep puts everything into perspective and I'm feeling much better about things. Yesterday I spent the morning back and forth on the phone with the loan agency. I had already come up with some back-up plans for a later closing date and I completely understand the nonsense of the government (well, only to the extent that government procedures are nonsense), but I was not going to accept it without a fight.
The government requires all sorts of paperwork and certification for their appraisals. So when the put out a bid for my appraisal (and didn't put the closing date on it), only 1 or 2 people responded with proposals. They chose the cheapest option, of course. They allow 8 weeks to do the appraisal and 8 weeks to get the paperwork in. Which means that potentially my closing wouldn't be until August. They refused to give me the contracted appraiser's number so I could call to talk to him and they refused to set a date.
I told the loan office that I can't call and change the purchase contract (to buy the farm) without a new date, and they refused to give one to me, spouting on about how the rules of real estate don't fit into their loan process. But it's a real estate loan and there are expectations by the public. Like the current owners, for example, who need to sell this house in order to buy another home in Florida. The agency is also still expecting a full season of farming from me, but yet they don't want me to order anything until after the closing. They were unable to explain to me how I should plan to gross $25,000 beginning a farm in August without starting any seedlings or ordering any animals - because that's just impossible.
The state office did say that I was allowed to hire an appraiser that meets my deadlines, as long as they meet the qualifications and I pay for the amount in full. The bid the state accepted for the appraisal was over $4,000.00. I called around and found 2 people that can do it for less than $1,500. Me spending that money means going without a new roof this year. The state spending that money means saving $2,500. But they refuse to make any exceptions.
The only way around the process is if the appraiser I selected can get state-approved early this week AND if the appraisal comes back above the contract price (meaning the farm is worth more than I'm paying for it). If both those things fall into place, and the appraiser can get it done before April 16, then I can still close on time and the government will pay for the appraisal.
It's a long shot, but at least there's still hope.
I hate how hard I had to fight for that. And I hate how much nonsense there is. A half day spent on the phone and the government is only concerned about being the government and making things difficult. It's no wonder there has only been one other person to get this loan and it was several years ago. They make it WAY too difficult for everyone involved.
It's good that it's a holiday weekend, because I'm able to stall going to visit the current owners. They have a really nice lawnmower for sale that's not in my budget, but that I'm going to go look at anyway. Until we reach capacity in a few years, I'll have a lot of lawn to mow. And until I get a tractor, a mower would really help manage the pasture and cover cropping, so we'll see. But I don't want to see the owners until I can honestly say that I know when the closing is. I get major guilt-gut when I fib.
In other exciting news, I bought a truck yesterday! For those of you who don't know me, I've been truck shopping for about 2.5 years. My station wagon takes a beating lugging around farm supplies. Sure, it's mostly my commitment issues that hold me back, but it's also the scumbag-ish nature of car dealers. They're always jacking up the prices from the internet offers and spouting all sorts of nonsense. I've gotten good at walking away from offers, but the time had come to just get a truck. So (with a LOT of help from my dad), I did!
I'm picking it up later this week - pictures and details to come! :-)