"Hi, my name is Dolores how may I help you?" I just hate perky women half my age. Dolores was all of that and she was a customer representative at the Home Credit Union with which the city was affiliated.
"I'm thinking about buying a house. You do make home loans?"
"Oh yes sir, we certainly do. Just a moment and I'll see if Mr. Smith has a moment."
She turned and walk down a short hall. I watched her cute little ass as she went. I noticed as she walked back that her top end was a little sad looking, compared to her cute little ass. Oh well, most women aren't perfect no matter what the advertisers would like us to think.
"Just a moment and Mr. Smith will be right with you."
Smith was and even softer chubbier guy than me. "He was also not so bubbly as Dolores for which I was thankful. "So you are interested in a home loan. Would that be a first mortgage, second mortgage, or line of credit?" he asked.
"It's going to be a first mortgage. I would like to be pre qualified so I will know what sized house to check out." Yes it was a lie, but Harvey had warned me that the banks would rather make big loans than small ones. "Get a loan commitment and then spring the smaller amount on them," he suggested.
"Come into the office and let's do the paperwork and see," he suggested. Smith asked me about a hundred questions. The only one that seemed to be even a little shaky was length at my present address. I had been in the rental house five years. I moved there right after the divorce. Previously I had lived in the house my wife and I were buy for ten years. That bit of information made him a lot happier. That and the over twenty years on the police force really brightened his day.
"Everything here is great. I do wish you had more recent credit but the house loan and the car should be more than enough, unless you were late on something."
"I was never late or the house or car. I did send in a credit card payment a week late once, because the statement got lost in the mail. Otherwise my record should be clear."
"Well you won't get the definitive word for a couple of weeks, but if everything is as you say, I would thing you would be safe looking at the 150 to 200 thousand range. But keep in mind with the market being what it is you will need at least ten percent down, even with a FHA or VA loan."
"What about payments?"
"Just a really rough estimate would be around half a percent of the loan per month. That is just a guess but it gives you an idea. If you escrow your insurance and taxes probably about 8/10s of a percent. That's at the current rate and it might be a bit more or less of course."
I decided to figure one percent to be safe. With all that in mind, I became more confident in my ability to make the plan work, even with a reduced retirement. On the drive, from the credit union to my rental house, I began thinking about having the duplex checked out.
When I called Harvey on his cell phone I got a out of the area message. I knew damn well he was at the fire house or on a call so I drove home. I figured I would call him later. Hell I needed a nap anyway. My body was still trying to heel itself.
At home I microwaved and egg, then turned it into a sandwich. That and the black coffee didn't seem like too many calories, so I slipped off to bed feeling pretty darn good about staying with my plan.
It was after five when I awoke from my nap. I felt pretty groggy for a while. After two cups of stale coffee it was better. I reached Harvey on the first try. "You been out on a call?" I asked.
"Yeah around noon, then again an hour ago. Why have you been trying to reach me?"
"Yeah do you know someone who can do an inspection on that duplex. Kind of give me an idea what kind of condition it is in."
"Did you get your loan guarantee this quick?"
"No but I didn't lie to him. He sorta told me it looked okay to start checking out places."
"The guy I know will charge you two hundred bucks for the inspection." Harvey sounded almost apologetic. "It's his minimum charge."
"That's a hell of a lot for an hours work." I remarked.
"Especially since there is no negotiations on the price with the bank. Still it's a decision to walk or buy. It might be worth the $200 to feel that you weren't being ripped off."
"Let me think about it overnight and I'll get back with you."