Tonight we signed the contract on our new land! It's not "official" yet, as we need to get a survey done, and get the title pulled - all those things to make sure there are no (bad) surprises, but if all is a go, we will close the end of this month. It's so hard to believe! When we first set out on our search for land, we decided we'd look for something that would be equal to or less than our current mortgage. Then, after hearing more testimonies of God moving heaven and earth for people so that they could get out of debt, we decided that we'd just believe God, that He'd help us to find a place that we could just buy with whatever cash we had. And that is exactly what He has done! It is something we could have never done for ourselves and above what we could have dreamed of.
When this house was first listed, we noticed that it had an old house on the property, but for 3 acres, the listing price was a steal! We had my sister, who lives close by, drive out to the property to see the neighborhood and help us determine if it was worth the look. After her favorable report, we scheduled an appointment with a realtor to go see the inside of the house. Wow. It was bad. We had seen lots of houses in disrepair, but this was beyond salvaging. The realtor just kind of pushed the door open - not daring to go inside - and no one else volunteered either. At that moment, my husband, who had been talking to the neighbor, yelled out "Don't go inside, or at least don't let the kids go inside!" There was insulation coming through the ceiling tiles, some black stuff on the walls which looked to be mold or plain old filth, lots of trash everywhere. The roof was caving in in places, and there were certainly leaks. After talking to the neighbor more, we found out that the bank had sent in a pest control company, and the man (you know - he does PEST CONTROL!) said he'd never seen a house that bad - millions of roaches everywhere. Then the bank sent out a cleaning service to clean up the house, and they refused to do the job. The neighbor (who is a pastor, by the way - I prayed for at least 1 Christian neighbor) also said that the septic was backed up into the house and would need to be replace with an aerobic septic system because of the clay soil (doesn't absorb fast enough). So, the house was a disappointment, but not a surprise, since the listing price was so cheap. The house wasn't the only issue - this land was FULL of trash (at least, the acre or 2 closest to the road)! BBQ grills, tackle boxes, old chairs, the remains of a demolished mobile home, and just about any other junk imaginable! A dumpster (or 2...or 3...or more) full. Lots of work ahead of us. At least we have utilities....
The neighbor also mentioned a pond at the back of the property, so my sister and I braved the high grass and walked all the way back there. ALL the way back there - this property was way bigger than 3 acres. There were all kinds of trees, tall ones and short ones, and trails through the trees, and of course, the little pond at the back. When I got back to Jeremy, the lady told us that the agent who listed the house thinks that it is more like 6 acres. I whispered to Jeremy, "It's beautiful. We HAVE to buy this!"
We placed a bid and had the real estate agent check into the title for us, to see how much acreage it really was. It turns out that it was TWO lots, both 3.44 acres, for a total of 6.88 acres. Wow! Much more than we could have ever dreamed we could buy, esp. with cash! Of course all this is subject to verification before closing, but the real estate agent is confident in his information.
I'm so blown away at what God has done. It's not like we are able to do this because we are wealthy, or have never made mistakes with money, or never splurge and buy things we later regret. It is not like we are real estate pros. or have insider tips on the house search. I like how Dave Ramsey says that when you start moving in the right direction, God just puts a moving sidewalk underneath you, and you accomplish things must faster than you thought you could. That is exactly what He did. Thank you, Lord! I think He likes to do amazing, unbelievable things because he wants us to have a story to tell, where people KNOW that it was God.
We're excited about getting to build a house, and maybe get a trailer in the meantime, but either way, having a house of our own, no matter how humble, with no debt. And of course, I'll keep you posted on our journey along the way. Since Jeremy works with computers for a living, I know I'll at least have internet access! :) We may have to dig an outhouse and sleep in a tent, but we'll have our internet connection. LOL!