Our offer was accepted yesterday morning and we are under contract! Today we will be meeting with our agent to turn over the earnest money and our pre-qualification paperwork. We’ll also be discussing the inspection schedule and other things that need to and can be done now.
The whole process is going to take a while though, and I will frankly be surprised if we can close before the end of the year. The seller has to get VA approval on the CPR designation for the two houses on the lot, which can take anywhere from 30 – 90 days, and we can’t actually apply for our mortgage until that is done (without approval the VA won’t lend, so why apply until you know for sure). I also have to wait for income verification paperwork from the state of Oregon and Social Security, and the earliest I can expect to get those is sometime in October.
We’re definitely excited, but that excitement is tempered with the knowledge that the whole business is going to take a while. From previous experience we know that along the way there will be lots of deep breaths and self-reminders to calm down. We are currently a little concerned about interest rates possibly bumping up a bit, and a property tax issue that might muddy the waters a bit. But, we should be able to sort everything out, and hopefully the process will keep moving along. We’ll keep you posted!
We learned some potentially upsetting news yesterday: We may not be able to get a VA mortgage for The Prince. We don’t know if this is a permanent removal from the VA’s list, or just a temporary situation. Whatever it is, The Prince’s condominium complex is no longer on the approved list.
The VA has very strict requirements for approving a condominium purchase, and while they might have approved a particular condominium in the past, things like as a percentage of residents in the community falling behind on HOA payments, or the percentage of owner occupancy dropping, can change whether the VA will currently approve a mortgage on a condo.
We definitely want to get a VA mortgage; it’s one of the best benefits we earned from our time in the service. VA mortgages have lower interest rates, require no money down and require no PMI with the loan. The VA also has a higher debt-to-income ratio, meaning you can get more house than you might be able to with a conventional mortgage.
We are going to do some more research this week and see if we can find out what is going on. On Saturday our agent told us that another agent from their office sold a unit with a VA mortgage just last year, so who knows? The complex is currently finishing a capital project (connecting to sewer), so maybe approval will be reinstated once that is done. We’re confident it’s not a problem with vacation rentals versus owner occupancy vacation rentals are not allowed.
Brett and I crunched numbers this weekend just to make ourselves sure again of what we can afford because we just may have to expand our search and start looking at houses as well. If it turns out that we can’t purchase The Prince we’ll be genuinely very sad because it’s exactly what we were hoping to buy. Nothing else currently available has such a good location as well the amenities we are looking for.