Thursday, January 10, 2013

The move to CO is coming together

Jennifer, Karen, Alexandra(Alex), Finn and Teagan("T") flew in from Virginia on Christmas Day.  Besides enjoying the perfect weather and several trips to the beach, they sorted through tons of pictures, boxes of mementoes going back to their grammar school days, "treasures" and such. By the time they were finished, they needed to rent a 10' box truck from Budget to haul it all home. Although they already had plane tickets, Alex and Finn drove the truck back to Annandale, VA. 
While the kids were here, they took one last drive by their old schools; St. Anastasia Grammar School and John Carroll High School. Finn and T got to see where their mom and aunts went to school.
They left on Sunday, December 31. This will be their last trip "home".

I about got the house ready to list with a broker by New Years day.  A 50 year old house needs lots of maintenance.  I've been working on it since we got home from last years trip in October. Our neighbor ,Carolyn, works at one of the County offices in some capacity. She told a co-worker who told someone they knew who was looking for a house that ours was for sale. The news seem to spread by word-of-mouth and after showing the house to four prospects, the fourth lookers made a decent offer.  We signed the contract on January 8th with the closing scheduled for February 15.  Of course, as goes the saying, "The opera's not over 'til the fat lady sings".  The buyers are a very nice Hispanic couple with an eight year old daughter. They have friends that live nearby.  In December I had lunch with an appraiser friend to get a sense about values, marketing times, and such. We were thinking it would take a few months to sell the place. The quick sale was a pleasant surprise.

On January the 3rd, Palm City Auction Company hauled away most of the furniture, the "treasures" the kids didn't want, most of my gun collection, etc.  The auction took place on Wednesday the 9th.  The auction house gets a 35% sales commission. In return, they pick everything up, catalog it, conduct the auction then give a detailed report of what sold for how much.  We're happy.

Since we sold most of the big items of furniture, we're not using a standard moving company. I found  a company that will drop off "pods" in the driveway. We load the pods, they pick them up and haul them to CO, store them until we're ready ,then set them in the driveway of our new house. This is all set up including the labor to load the pods. A guy I worked with years ago, runs a local contract labor place. Jim's sending out two guys for $16/hour each to do the loading.  The total cost for all this will be about $3,000 versus  the $5,000 to $7,000 quotes I was getting from full service moving companies.

We're shipping the car as well. That turned out to be a pretty reasonable $977 door-to-door.  Since we won't get to Longmont until sometime in March, Suzanne will sign for the car when it gets there and keep it at her house until we arrive. (There is nothing like family when you need help)

That's the plan. After closing, we'll drift slowly along the Texas coast into New Mexico then to Longmont by mid-March. I want to be able to get a good look at our new house while it's being built. Right now, our Colorado Casita has an early April completion date. Suzanne takes a few pictures each week and e-mails them to us so we can keep track of the progress.

Last night we went out to dinner at our favorite restaurant to celebrate all this good news. We had things we almost never have because they are so unhealthy. Started with deep fried portabella mushrooms that are served with a wonderful dipping sauce. Carol had chicken fried steak and I had liver and onions served with lots of bacon and covered with gravy and served with garlic mashed potatoes. We were stuffed.

Today we continued packing things, throwing stuff out and making yet another run to the church thrift store.  I'm on a nodding acquaintance with the thrift store ladies.  

It was in September that we first started talking about moving to CO. Here it is about six months later and we're just getting real close to being there.