For Sale – Part 3

SmallHouseThe third home that I sold was not one that I purchased. It was the place I was raised from the third grade into adulthood. Indeed, I continued living with my parents after I had my job with General Motors, through college, and saving for my first home. Here we move toward my emerging philanthropy.

I will talk of tending to your estate some other time. For now just accept that I got full legal and medical Power of Attorney right before my mother went into her final 3-month spiral. I had moved my mother into a gorgeous facility for the aged and it was time to get rid of the family house. This house was purchased in 1963 for 15k, peaked at 120k in about 2006, and then the housing bust hit.

While my wife Cathy and I were living in Thailand my mother became very frail. What I didn’t know was that the black families on either side of my white widowed mother were taking care of her, or what little my mother would cooperate with.

We had always lived under the assumption that black people moving into the neighborhood meant two things: crime and dropping property values. Actually the real estate companies created that myth to scare people into selling. Property values continued to skyrocket in spite of our white neighborhood turning black. White bankers and white Wall Street caused the the bubble to grow and then bust.

The family on one side that was bringing my relatively rich but feeble mother food was hurting financially. Their mortgage payment was $1,400 per month in a neighborhood where property values peaked at 120K. Talk about getting in at the wrong time and getting a bad deal on top of that. They were going to lose their house and in the meantime they were doing what they could, in my absence and without my knowing, to take care of my relatively rich white mother without any compensation whatsoever. I found out about all this after I moved my mother out and began the process of cleaning out her hoarding mess.

I’m stuck with a neglected house. To get a general price I called the “We Buy Ugly Houses” people for a quote over the phone and I didn’t mince words, roof in great shape, fifty-year-old house, newer windows, not really maintained. They gave me a ballpark figure of 12.5K without even coming out to look at it. I knew that I could easily get at least double whatever they quoted which is why I called them. I assume with some minimal fixing up I could have gotten 35-40K for it.

While Cathy and I were emptying the place out I started interacting with the neighbors. They were glad, for my mother’s sake, that I got her to a safer place. They told me what they had done and tried to do for my mother, and mom verified it all separately by my simply asking about the neighbors.

I know I can sell the place for 35K. These wonderful people are in a very bad place financially and want to stay right where they are because the school bus stops right in front of my mother’s house.

My previous record in selling a house was 15 minutes. This house I sold to the neighbors in zero minutes. They asked for a price and told me they wanted it before I put it on the market. I took a day, figured out how to handle things, and came back the next day with my offer to them.

We will do a promissory note, no land contract, you get the warranty deed up front, and we sign papers that I loaned you 25K at 4% interest. Over ten years that comes out to monthly payments of exactly $253.11. I am the bank you deal with, I hold the first lien, and you must insure the house at least for what you owe me and I get what is owed first if the house burns down.

Deal.

Last year they were able to make nine of the twelve monthly payments. I charged no penalty, I charged no interest as if no payment were missed and instead just pushed the timeline back. You can do that if you are the bank and profit is not your only motive.

The top 2% is the problem in this country and in the world. I feel I have imposed myself between them and this needy family. We are supposed to be helping each other through this life and I am trying to show one way how, by seizing an opportunity that landed in front of me.

My income is 36K per year. I buy computers, new cars, and homes for cash. I manage it by living below my means, never borrowing money, and I enjoy myself and am worry free financially. There is a system set up to keep people desperate and we don’t have to cooperate with it. Young people move out way too early, before they are financially prepared. It can be stopped. If you can afford to buy something on credit, paying extra by way of interest, then there is a way to save for it first and buy with cash. IT IS CHEAPER THAT WAY!

A lot cheaper.

2 thoughts on “For Sale – Part 3

    • It had that element of, “Look what a good thing I did”, as opposed to just quietly doing a good deed and moving on. I did try to dampen that attitude a little bit after reading your article mentioning pastors and politicians bragging about all the good things they did even though they may not have done them.

      Thanks, BTW.

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