August, 2012 The sheer number of decisions that needed to be made in short order were staggering. I had literally four legal pads of lists going at one time!
- Stuff to Sell
- Stuff to Store
- Stuff to Ship
- Things to Take
It got to the point that there were boxes all over the house with day-glo tags on them that said stuff like
Tons of boxes. Everywhere. Covering all flat spaces. Everything in our house had to be handled somehow, and I was starting to feel like it was gonna be an impossible task. But the decisions continued. The big one was – what about the house??
Are we gonna sell it? Rent it? Lease it? Leave it empty? Empty probably isn’t the best choice. Leasing it sounds like a good idea, but seems like it would involve someone else, a real estate agent or something. TBG has this *big* opposition to paying anyone to pretty much do nothing – and that’s how he thinks of leasing agents…. not that there’s anything wrong with being a leasing agent…. <seinfeld/off> Selling it in this market would definitely involve an agent, and the market is NOT in any shape to provide a sales price close to its value. Besides, we really like living in Dothan, we like the neighborhood we live in, and we like our house. The logical decision was to rent it out.
But we also considered the impact that rental property can have in neighborhoods where the majority of the homes are owner-occupied…. we didn’t want to cause any negative effects – after all, we plan on returning here. It came to me that we have dear friends that were looking to move but wanted to stay within the same general area and schools. Boom! This was a perfect solution! Candy and Donnie are the perfect choice, they’ll take care of our house like it was their own, Donnie’s really handy and can fix stuff, Candy’s just the same, so this is just perfect. They’ll fit into our neighborhood really nice and will not freak out the neighbors.
Wait – we’ve got to be adult and consider all aspects of this arrangement. What do we do about insurance? The security system? Will they use my raised bed gardens that have been nurtured and now produce great veggies? What if they paint the house pink? What if the dishwasher quits? How do we tell them not to have loud parties because we live in a pretty quiet neighborhood? Are all the young plants just put in gonna be taken care of? And the lawn, TBG’s lawn…. mercy. What if they skip town and take all the drapes with them and dig up the mailbox? Where would we go if we suddenly had to come back to the US? What if they hate the floorcoverings? What if they don’t pay rent and we have to evict dear friends, are we prepared to actually do that?? There were a brazillion different things that came up, most were silly, some were quite serious.
Ultimately, when TBG and I looked at each other and said “Let’s ask them”….. I had this sudden, sinking feeling and a really really bad thought.
What if they didn’t like our house and didn’t want to live here?