8.04.2013

Refinance, part 2... wherein I want to strangle my loan originator.

This post, the first part of which I wrote last month, is on my ridiculous refinancing experience with a completely fucked up mortgage company -- and yes, I'll name them -- Platinum Home Mortgage:

Right now, it's been a little over 24 hours since I officially become the sole owner of the house that my ex-fiancĂ© and I bought together in February 2010.  I don't think I'm used to the thought yet that it's me, only me, on the title and mortgage for my (my!) house, making it mine, all mine. 

I was never good at sharing when I was a kid.

Anyway, the refinance process was fucking ridiculous.  The first 2.5 years after P. left, I couldn't find anyone who could give me a loan -- I went to three different banks and a credit union.  One of them actually told me that lending to a single woman makes banks "nervous," which I later learned is a totally illegal practice.

I then found a mortgage company in February that would take on my case.  I was so relieved and excited that I actually texted P., even though we don't really talk, to tell him I was finally going to be able to refinance.  Things moved very quickly after that -- I got pre-approved, an appraiser was sent over to the house, I generated copies of every document that I've touched since birth, etc.  I was getting five emails a day from the loan originator about a missing page 7, things I need to sign and send back, and what the appraiser will be looking for; by the end of the day, I usually never wanted to see or hear from my loan originator ever again, but I knew that this would all be worth it. 

When I got the appraisal, I was told that this:
...would be fine as long as the materials to finish the construction job were on the premises, and they were, so I didn't even worry about it. 

Two months later.  A week before I was supposed to close... I get an email from my loan originator, asking for more documents, plus, "Is construction done on that bedroom?  We can't close on the refinance without that bedroom being done."

Um, WHAT?  All I was supposed to do is get all the materials, but apparently not.  And could no one have fucking told me??

David and I tried to get the room done, at a feverish pace, but it was still not enough.  We even looked into hiring a contractor to do it, and we weren't expecting to have to pay that much because:
  • All they'd have to do is hang the drywall, mud it, and tape it.
  • The ceiling was already done.
  • They wouldn't have to mess with the carpet.
  • We had the drywall, the mud, and the drywall tape already.
  • I'd already removed all the nails from the studs and scraped off excess pray foam, and David had insulated the whole room.
We received quotes from three different contractors: $800, $950, and $1190.  All just to hang a few pieces of drywall.  Again, I say, WHAT?

So David did it.

Not completely finished, but still.  Was that so fucking hard?

So the appraiser had to come back to simply take a picture of the bedroom and leave -- a service that I later learned had cost me about $150 -- and I was go for refinance...

Except for one little thing.  And by "little," I mean it threw me into an unfettered and inexplicable rage.  The loan originator, who at this point must have just thought paperwork was "like, what are this?", couldn't manage to get her shit together long enough to generate an actual monetary figure that I'd be expected to bring to closing.  So like, pretty much the one thing I have to bring in order to close.

WHAT?!

Twenty minutes before closing:  Picture me at the bank, phone to my ear, screaming unladylike things, sweating bullets, face red.  Not much of a departure from my usual demeanor, but at the bank this time.  This usually just happens at the DMV.  Or the bathroom.

Anyway, so I got a cashier's check for an arbitrary amount, hoping it was enough, and got my ass downtown.  I took David with me, and when I tried to tell him about the mortgage company's most recent antics, he waved me off.  "If you tell me that they fucked up again, I'm gonna have to [expletive deleted] a [expletive deleted] with a [expletive deleted] until next Tuesday," he said.  Yeah, what he said was hardcore, even for me.

So I sat and signed things.



My cashier's check was more than enough.  And I officially closed on the house.  I'm now the sole owner of the property.

It's a little bittersweet, because although this is what I wanted (and probably what P. wanted), I no longer have anything to do with my ex ever again.  There's absolutely no reason for contact now.  He's completely out of my life -- nothing to talk to him about, no way I'd see him -- forever.  I haven't been in a state of "not 'knowing' P." in ten years.  I can't say I'm incredibly happy about that, but I'm going to have to get used to it.

In the meantime, I feel like I'm in a courtship with this house, where I'm getting to know it again, as a different person.  For the first time in three years, I can let myself get emotionally invested with home projects, and I can put in more sweat and blood (literally... there's thistle in the backyard).  Before this, I felt like I was in limbo -- I was afraid to make any improvements or adjustments, because it didn't exactly feel like it was "my" house.  Now it is.

For example, I actually exhaust myself with yardwork now.

Of course, the problems with my mortgage company have not stopped, despite all of this and everything they've put me through.  I got some emails from the loan originator, saying she needed more documents.  AND NOW, I'm having problems creating an account online in order to pay my own mortgage (due August 1... is now August 4), because it isn't "recognizing" who I am.  I tried the phone service, and the automated voices didn't recognize me either; naturally, I couldn't talk to a real human.  So I emailed my loan originator -- I was positive that she could help, or at least respond, because she was the queen of emails... I used to get 5-7 emails a day from her, asking about stupid things, and even got emails from her at night.

But no.  I haven't heard back.  what.


6.27.2013

Refinance, part one

Attention customers:

The Park Ave. Pub is now under sole ownership. All ex-fiancĂ©s and emotional baggage are no longer being served. 

Thank you,
The Management


6.14.2013

Sometimes, quesadillas aren't worth it.

That's right, I said it. 

For the last two weeks, I've been on a diet.  Well, a doctor might get technical and call Week #1 "influenza" or whatever, but did I eat?  No.  Did I lose weight?  Yes.  Was I miserable?  Fuck yes.  Sounds like a diet to me, Mister Medical Degree (pfft).

As part of my diet, I've simply just cut out a lot of sugars and carbs.  I'll still eat fruit occasionally, mostly berries or an apple when I'm at work, but for the most part, I try to stick to fewer than 30 grams of carbohydrates a day.  I'm not following Atkin's, keto, paleo, or any other "program" -- I just weaned myself off carbs.  It's easy to do when your throat hurts like hell and you can't stomach much more than water.  Also, I think my stomach shrank or something, because I still can't finish most of my meals.

(Related note:  I think the best way to start a diet or detox regimen is when you're already sick.  You don't want anything anyway, so you pass that first week with pretty much no craving for bad food, cigarettes, alcohol, prostitutes, etc.  Win win win.)

I snack on cheese, peanuts, beef jerky.  I eat omelettes for breakfast, fish and veggies for lunch, and some kind of meat with veggies for dinner.  I'll still make roasted potatoes for David, though, because he starts to lose his superpowers if he goes too long without a starch.

This was all well and good.  I'd lost 12 pounds in two weeks with no back-and-forth.  And then last night happened.

I'll preface this story by saying... I occasionally do dangerous things.  I've gone skydiving.  I put needles near my eyes to combat clumpy mascara.  I've been pulled over for traffic violations no fewer than 15 times (yeah, I've totally lost count).  I may have even gotten drunk once during a restaurant shift.*

Last night, I lived dangerously by eating a quesadilla. 

That fucking quesadilla.

All I remember is that we were supposed to get crazy, wicked storms, which were supposed to huff and puff and blow the Park Ave. Pub down, and then we'll all be dead, etc.  I was skeptical.  I told David, "I'll believe it when I see it," because storms never hit my town directly.  Yes, we'll get some rain, maybe some thunder here and there, but we have never had a storm actually make my city its bitch.

The same was true last night, and I knew not to get my hopes up, but it was impossible, considering David was breaking out the NOAA weather radio, looking at weather maps, turning on the news, jumping up and down with excitement... so I ended up on the front porch all night.  I missed dinner.  Forgot I was even hungry.  I just sat on the porch, watched the skies, waited for the storm to roll in.

Suddenly, it was midnight, and I was still waiting for Indiana to be wiped off the map when I realized two things:

(1)  That storm was the most heavily predicted drizzle I've ever seen.
(2)  I need food.  Fucking now.

I was too weak to cook anything, my carb-less snacks weren't going to cut it, David sees our kitchen as "the room before the room with Mr. Flatscreen in it," but I was ready to faint.  David put me in the car and drove to the closest place:  Taco Bell.

That fucking Taco Bell.

By the time we got there, my stomach was hurting from hunger so bad that I felt sick.  I studied the menu, trying to look for low carb options, but I didn't see any.  Not saying that they aren't there, but I was in such a woozy panic at the time that I didn't look for long.  And I said, "Just order me a steak quesadilla, please.  Tytyty."  (When I'm not feeling well, I tend to get super polite.  Unless you're my mom, and then I snap at you like a ginormous bitchface, because I'm a terrible person.) 

I had intended to just pick out the steak and cheese, maybe eat that with some hot sauce.  But by the time we got home, I was so sick that I knew that wouldn't satisfy me. 

I ate the tortilla.  That fucking tortilla.

I then went to bed in a carb-coma, woke up at 3 a.m. with severe stomach cramps, and missed a couple hours of work the next morning.

Now, a survey:  Were the stomach cramps due to...

(1)  Eating carbs?
(2)  Anxiety about a severe thunderstorm?
(3)  The fact that I ate at Taco Bell?

Hmm.  Maybe I just live dangerously.

* I will not recall saying "drunk" if asked about this in the future.

5.23.2013

Some of today's events.

So we bought a new refrigerator and a new dishwasher.  They were both delivered today.

(1)  Appliance delivery guy is legally bound from installing the dishwasher because a previous owner did not move the stop valve to the main floor while renovating the kitchen.  We find it in the basement.

(2)  The faucet thingie to the stop valve is rusted shut.

(3)  We discover that the dishwasher was hard-wired to the house.  I stand in a corner while David swears a lot.

(4)  The stop valve finally shuts, or so we thought, and then David unhooks the dishwasher.  Water gushes out, all over a panel of live electrical stuff.  Kitchen starts flooding.  House loses electricity.

(5)  The dishwasher can't be removed, even after all the events above are resolved, because there is a copper water line running in front of the unit.  The line will have to be cut.

(6)  Plumbers arrive.  Two hours and $234 later, they cut the line and install the dishwasher...

(7)  ... incorrectly.  Dishwasher nearly falls out of its space when we're loading it with dishes.  We find it isn't fastened to the counter at the top.

David, trying to secure the dishwasher.  He'll have to do some tweaking later, but it's good for right now.
(8)  When the plumbers are leaving, we realize that we haven't seen Bellatrix in over an hour.  We remember that one of the plumbers left the door open, and the screen door doesn't latch.  We search the neighborhood for about an hour, by the end of which I'm hysterically sobbing.  David found her in a hole in a basement wall.  She was fine and is now napping at my feet.

My little bear is safe with Mommy.

(9)  Exhaustion.


Though after all that happened, we discovered a decent southern BBQ food truck in town.  yaaaaay.  

2.20.2013

I'll be back soon. I promise.

"Why are we forever weaving new ties to bind us to the earth..." -- Davy Jones

I was in a conversation over lunch a couple weeks ago when the group started to talk about politics... as that's apparently a pleasurable topic of discussion... and I said something about how some odd person I knew didn't like Obama.  Because, in my circle of friends and family, it's really weird and fascinating if someone votes Republican.

So, when the other person in the group said, "Well, no one here voted for Obama," it was a natural reaction when I nearly laughed lemonade out my nose.  Then he was like, "I'm serious.  No one here voted for Obama."  All I could say was, "Uh...[looking at everyone like they're lunatics]... and why?"

The basic answer was money.  Their short-sighted version of what should be happening with money.  Their I-just-hate-Obama-so-I-won't-pay-attention-to-anything-else-but-the-fact-that-I-hate-him stupidity.

All I could tell them was, "Well, I didn't vote based on my paycheck."

One man said, "But it's your life."

My response:  I laughed at him.  Then said, nearly verbatim, "My paycheck is not my life.  If money were my life, I would be a disappointing excuse of a person.  I voted based on human rights.  If you want to vote for someone that will maybe make you more money in the meantime, but make sure that no one else has any -- and for that matter, will make sure that you have no money by the time you're 65 -- then knock yourself out.  If you want to vote for someone that will make you more money in the meantime, but also make sure that women are sent back to the kitchen and gays are sent back to mental hospitals, then knock yourself out.  Really -- physically knock yourself out.  For the sake of humanity.  Please."

---

In other news, I slept wrong on my neck two nights ago, so I now have one of those hot pad thingies on my shoulders.  Doesn't help that I'm leaning over a laptop right now, though.

In another news, things have been dramatic lately, and I can't blog about it because it isn't exactly public knowledge for people in both my personal and professional realms.

I had so much more text, making that last sentence a paragraph.  However, because the universe hates me, there are apparently some peers within my professional world who read my blog.  (And, I seriously ask you:  Why?  What is so interesting about "girl with cats who cooks and swears a lot and knows way too much about The Monkees"?  Don't you guys have like, kids or something?)  This is the reason I haven't posted in nearly two months -- I don't know what the fuck I can say anymore.

But I'll be back soon.  I promise.