Sunday, February 23, 2014

Home Inspection

Sorry I haven't updated before now, the week has been long and busy as Rob and I continued to dot the i's and cross the t's with all the information we needed to complete for the house sale.
First though, we did actually go out socially for the first time in a long time last Saturday. Rachael's birthday and mine are just 8 days apart, and although we didn't have any plans initially we decided to to go out for a meal with friends from the camera club. Instead of Wharf Wraps we tried Boon Docks just down the road. Having never eaten there before we weren't sure what to expect, but I have to say the fish was very nice as was the cheesecake...It's been a long time since I enjoyed some sweet desert! Talking calories I am down another 2lbs...Not much I know, could be better but at least it wasn't a gain.

Wednesday was our Home Inspection on the house, I hadn't planned on going along but in the end I decided to as it would be the last time I got to see it before we exchange in May. Our home inspector was excellent I must say, very thorough and spent 2.5 hrs poking around in every nook and cranny. At the end of it he didn't find anything major wrong, some minor things that we had already addressed in our initial offer which the owners are going to fix and just a couple of other things that we didn't already know about. The first being some moisture/water in the crawl space underneath the extension. Even though the work on the extension was tip top, with gravel laid in the this portion of the crawl space there was still water sitting there. He suggested that a sump pump be installed in that part to prevent it from lying around in there. The rest of the crawl space was fine with no issues. The other thing he found was a reverse polarity in the electrics which needs to be fixed. So after that was all done we then put in an amendment to our offer asking that these two issues be addressed and the owners have agreed to install the sump pump and fix the electric issue.
The status of the property has now officially changed from Condition/Pending to Sold. Our final walk through will be on the closing day which is May 1st and then we will start moving in. We shall be giving notice this week on our rental. I must say I will miss this old place when we leave it. It has after all been our home for 3 years (4 years by the time we move out). I will miss the deer and our neighbours and I am pretty sure the cats will miss not having stairs to run up and down! I on the other hand will not miss the stairs one bit!

Winter is still rumbling on here, I thought...nay hoped we were over the worst of it but yet more snow is predicted tonight and through the week. The sun is shining but it is terribly cold. Every week I will it to be over, this has been the worst winter in years here, and I believe the same it true of the UK. There isn't really much to choose between them, snow or rain...both crap! But at least we don't have the flooding.

One more thing...If you haven't heard me bang on enough about the vocal band Home Free...Here I go again! I downloaded their Album 'Crazy Life' from iTunes and I haven't stopped playing it since. Really, if you haven't checked out this album yet, you really should. You won't be disappointed!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

We're buying a house!

I have at long last some news to blog about! Yes we found our home! 
What a mad week it has been! Firstly let me say thank you to all of you that sent me birthday wishes via email and in the post, Much appreciated. On Sunday Rob and I went to view a bungalow we liked for the second time. Having given it the once over already we definitely liked the place, but wanted to see it again to make sure. On Sunday evening Pat, our realtor, Rob and I sat down and drafted an offer for the property, it was submitted Sunday evening and the offer time was extended to 8 pm on Monday evening (my birthday).
I was hoping to be able to tell you that we secured the sale on my birthday, but sadly that was not to be. The owners countered the offer and it was still to high for our liking. I can safely say I was pretty depressed on Monday. However, all was not lost, after a phone call between agents, we knew that if we met these people half way we would make a deal, so that's what we did on Tuesday and submitted a new offer. Yesterday we heard back that the offer and all our terms had been accepted, (pending inspection next week).

The offer will complete on Feb 19th if the inspection goes well and finance is secured, which should be okay as we have all our ducks in a row. The closing date is May 1st, and we should officially take up residence at the end of May when our rental lease expires, which gives us 4 weeks to do a couple of things in the house, a little bit of painting and move our stuff in.

So what's this bungalow like I hear you ask? Well it's old but beautifully renovated, with a large, new and rather gorgeous kitchen, it has 3 bedrooms, the master one being exceptionally large as the owners added a 12x12 extension., The hardwood floors throughout are all new, as are all the windows and the roof. There is a dining nook off the kitchen with French doors that open out to the back deck with is so cute as it runs along the entire length of the bungalow at the back. The living room is very cute and small, more of a formal seating area, and then adjacent to the living room, double doors take you through to the family room, a more casual area for TV and recreation, off the family room in a small passage is a double cupboard that accommodates the washer and dryer and opposite that a cupboard which currently houses a freezer and the cats litter box. :o) This is also where the back door is located. In all there are 3 access points at the back of the house, the third door being in the master bedroom which leads out to the deck also. There is one bathroom in the property next to the master bedroom. There are 2 sheds in the back garden, a smaller garden shed and a large...very large storage shed. The whole place is very cute and had loads of curb appeal. It's in an area of Dartmouth that we like very much and located on a quiet and pretty street full of mostly other bungalows. A well manicured box hedge frames the front of the property giving it even more of a cosy and cute appeal.

In our deal we negotiated all of the following: all curtains and blinds, stove, fridge, dishwasher and microwave, electric fireplace, lawn mower, hedge trimmer, bathrooms cabinets and mirror. As they say over here, everything is negotiable in real estate! It is very different from the UK where you tend to buy the bare bones and not a lot else. The owners also agreed to fix all guttering, weatherproof and fix all internal and external doors (which were ill fitting in some cases) and box in the electric meter on the side of the house. I can tell you these owners have great taste in colours and decor, so the great thing is hardly any painting to be done as I love it the way it is. Just their boys bedroom needs the once over.

So now it all systems go with papers to the lawyer, life insurance to sort out, and our down payment, which is currently being held in an RSP (retirement savings plan) over here. Exciting times and much to do in the coming months, I can't say I am looking forward to moving as I didn't much like it last time round :o) But at least we will be in before Summer. Just keep your fingers crossed for us that the home inspection doesn't throw any spanners in the works!

In other news we have just renewed our permanent residence cards, we had a few months left to run on the current ones, but wanted to make sure we renewed in plenty of time, not knowing how long it would take, a mountain of paper work and 7 weeks later they arrived. We will definitely go for citizenship within in the next year or so...whenever we have time to fit it in!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Groundhog Day...Again!

Oh dear I am late to the party again this week. Just a distinct lack of interest unfortunately.

Groundhog Day came and went on February 2nd.
Wiarton Willie, the albino Groundhog from Ontario spotted his shadow and therefore predicted another 6 weeks of Winter, once again this amused me no end as his eye sight cannot be the best surely?!!
As for Shubenacadie Sam in Nova Scotia, he didn't see his and predicted an early Spring...So I guess it came down to the big one, the decider....Punxsatawney Phil in Pennsylvania and he sadly also predicted 6 more weeks of Winter. So there you have it, the reliable, marmot weather predictors have spoken (metaphorically). I would rather hear the weather forecast from them than the actual weather forecasters on the TV any day!

Phil...looking a tad hacked off as he was woken
up and made to predict the weather :o)
I think they only said what we already knew. This Winter has been bad and will continue in the same vein.
As I am typing this update another 20 cm of snow is falling outside, it has become the trend that we get heavy snowfalls on Wednesdays and Sundays...And I for one am sick of it.

The house hunt continues with 2 more viewings last weekend....One of which is promising but slightly over priced. Our poor realtor will need a medal by the end of this, she has had more than one or two coffees with us and spent literally hours listening to Rob and I bickering. One thing for sure she will have earned that commission by the time we buy somewhere.

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