October 9, 2013: Day Three

My third day at the new job in Connecticut.  The weather is turning cooler already.   It is probably ten degrees colder today than it was when I arrived in Connecticut on Sunday.

The big news today is that our renters in Peekskill have declined our offer to allow them to stay in the house at the reduced rate that they have been paying and let me live in the basement long enough to establish residency and refinance the house – which would have been roughly a month.  This seems like an over-generous offer on our part as we’ve been allowing them to continue living there for a ridiculously long time at a fraction of the rent and without a rental agreement and to be able to continue affording that we had to refinance.  But they declined and said that it would be uncomfortable to live with their landlord so they are going to look for something else.  Strange that it wasn’t uncomfortable not to be able to pay the rent for a year.  And, surprise surprise, they suddenly have found work.  Uh huh.  So we are pretty suspicious that they have been working for a while and got addicted to paying the lower rent and wanted to see how long they could keep that up.

Even if that is what happened, it worked out in our favour.  Now we have our own house to move back into.  A house that is relatively close to work and is a house that we like.  The house where Liesl lived her first year.  We know the area, the restaurants and mostly how to get places from there.  We only lived there a year but at least now, for the first time ever, we will be returning to a home that we used to own and we can feel much better about the money that we have been pouring into it over the past five years.  It is still pretty far from having been an amazing investment, but it is no longer the financial disaster that it had been.  And if we manage to refinance it will be even better still as we will spend almost a full quarter of a million dollars less on the house over its lifetime than we are planning to spend today.

So we are starting to work out the timing for the renters to move out and for us to move in and for the refinancing process to get underway.  We are also planning on some extensive renovations of the house once we are back.  We want to remove all of the flooring on the main floor and move to high quality laminate or many some tile too.  We want to completely gut and redo the front of the house including the front closet, the powder room (even replacing the toilet and sink) and the kitchen including removing the one kitchen wall, replacing all of the cabinets, appliances, flooring, etc.  And lastly we want to turn the dining room area into an extension of the living room.  We will also get back to the project that we had previously of attempting to wire the entire house for Ethernet.  We had started that but never really got anywhere while we were there before.

There is a lot to do but not needing to house hunt completely changes everything.  That was a primary goal of my time here and this means that there is no reason for me to be spending any weekends or extra time in the area.  I can focus more on work and on hotel cost savings rather than on learning the area and trying to determine where it would make sense to live without enough time to get used to what work is going to be like and doing so without Dominica and the girls so the decisions would be completely mine and done in a very short period of time.  So this is very good for our long term housing planning as well.  Whether we live in Peekskill for a few months or several years we are not sure yet.  That we will find out later.  Does not really matter, this gives us the time to make better decisions and to really do good area scouting.  And having the chance to completely update the Peekskill house before renting it again, should we go down that path, is significant.  Unlike the last time where we had to leave the house empty for a long time and take the first renters that we were able to find this time, we think, that we will be able to live in the house indefinitely until such time that we find a renter who really is interested in the house and is willing to pay what we need to make the rental worth it for us.  And maybe that time will never come because we might easily be happy staying in the house, at least for quite a while.

In other news today, we’ve decided that the Windows Phone is just not cutting it for me for several reasons, the biggest one being that the maps simply are useless.  No matter how many times I attempt to use the mapping feature it is always wrong and the map software itself often fails and does ridiculous things.  The most basic mapping functions aren’t available and given that we are relocating there is just no way that we can be in a position of constantly needing to rely on the map and not having it be reliable.  There have also been some general radio reliability problems and rebooting issues but none have been horrible.  The lack of apps is an issue but not a critical one but some basic apps that I would like are certainly missing and the process of attempting to find apps that I need is horrendous but something that I can deal with when necessary.

So the plan is that I am going to head up to dad’s place upstate on Friday evening after work gets out.  This will give me a feel for what the traffic will be like doing this.  And I’ll spend two or three nights up there and save some money on being in the hotel down here in Norwalk and get to visit him and the Ralstons.  Then Saturday morning Danielle and I are running to Tmobile to switch my Windows phone out for the iPhone 5S that we managed to reserve for me.  Yes, I’m an early release iPhone user now!  Never thought that that would happen.  I might opt to get up super early and drive down to Connecticut overnight rather than staying in a hotel on Sunday night.  It saves a ton of money to go that route.

I also found out at work today that unofficially, because I live so far from the office, that I probably qualify for two nights a week in a hotel locally.  I am going to look into that one tomorrow but am very hopeful.  Even if I don’t end up using that once we live in Peekskill using it now would be a huge deal as I am homeless.

Work today was good.  This was my first day focused solely on my studies so I did nothing but that all day including eating lunch at my desk.  Lunch today was a tuna melt and a large ceasar salad.

After work, which got me to the hotel around seven, I did nothing but stay in the hotel all evening and mostly talk to Dominica over IM except for one quick stop over at the pharmacy next door.

More studying tomorrow.


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