Tony and I Moved and it’s Been the Nightmare of our Lives Almost Leaving Us Homeless
I don’t usually post that many personal things about our lives mostly because I don’t think they’re all that interesting. I’ve posted about us buying a small condo in Palm Springs, and I’ve posted about our marriage in Vermont that was actually part of the documentary, The State of Marriage. And of course, I’m always posting about our dogs on social media. But everything else seems kind of dull to post, so I just don’t. I’m not a famous author. I haven’t sold millions of books. I’ve only sold thousands of books.
But this is something that wasn’t dull, and it wasn’t a whole lot of fun. We bought our home in New Hope in 2002, almost 18 years ago to the day on November 15, 2002, and it was one of the most wonderful times of our lives. We celebrated in that house, we nursed the sick in that house, and I wrote over 150 novels in that house. I’m keeping this short, but you get my point. Never a bad moment…ever. We loved our home. From the first day, it was always home.
With that said, it wasn’t always an easy house. This time of year alone could be difficult with leaves and clean up. We had several acres of land and we did all the landscaping ourselves, without complaint. And of course, we could have continued to do it all right now, but we started to worry about the future and if we’d be able to do all this ourselves. We don’t have kids to come and help us out like we’ve done for our parents. In other words, we thought we were doing the smart, responsible thing by selling our home.
So we found a buyer and we reluctantly went under contract with our home. Reluctantly, because it was our home and we weren’t sure about selling it. After we went under contract, we immediately purchased a house in Palm Springs, CA that we loved. We had seen the house on a trip out to Palm Springs last year and we never dreamed we would be able to live there. We just never thought it would be for sale again.
Everything started to move along quickly. We started packing and planning for a cross country move and even though we were still reluctant about leaving our home of 18 years, we felt good about this new place. It felt like home to us. There were no bad feelings.
I’m going to keep this next part short. About 3 weeks ago…only 2 weeks before settlement on our home in New Hope…we received notice from the seller in Palm Springs that he was canceling our contract and that he wasn’t selling us his home any longer. We asked our realtor in Palm Springs if there was anything we could do, and he told us there was nothing. Because of COVID, it was taking our buyers in New Hope longer to get a mortgage appraisal and our seller in PS was getting impatient. So he pulled the contract. (Of course, we got the appraisal without any issues a few days later, but it was too late by then.)
We went into panic mode. We weren’t sleeping or eating, and we couldn’t find any peace. Our wonderful home that we’ve loved for 18 years was packed up and ready to be sold, and we had nowhere to live. So we phoned our realtor here in New Hope…someone I’m not all that fond of…and told him we wanted to get out of our deal. We said we didn’t want to sell our home because we had nowhere to go and we wanted to take our home off the market completely. We figured it’s our home and no one can take it from us. It’s the place we’ve loved and cherished for the last 18 years. We truly and honestly figured no one could take that away from us…just like the guy in Palm Springs did to us.
Well, guess what? We figured wrong. Our realtor here in New Hope…someone I truly can’t stand…informed us that if we tried to back out of the deal and not sell our home we could face a lawsuit. We had no choice. We were forced to sell our wonderful home of 18 years and move. And we had to find a place fast otherwise we would wind up homeless. And I am not joking about that.
I’m not going into any great detail now, but I will write a book about all this in the near future, and I will go into more detail then. I want people to know what can happen to them if they aren’t protected and if they aren’t working with a good realtor who has their back. Our realtor in Palm Springs, Dale, always has our back and we love him dearly for this. I would trust Dale with my life. But not every realtor is that protective of his/her clients and I wouldn’t trust my former realtor in New Hope with anything.
We ultimately wound up being forced and pushed out of our home against our wishes. I know we thought we wanted to sell, and we thought we had a place to go in Palm Springs. I know we made that choice early on and I’m not making excuses. But when our deal fell through in PS and we had no place to go at all, we changed our minds and didn’t want to lose our home. It was our home of 18 years, that we loved and cared about. There should be some kind of law protecting people against that happening. After all, the guy in Palm Springs did this to us and nothing happened to him. But the circumstances were slightly different, which I will get into in more detail eventually.
Ultimately, we found a home to buy in Lambertville, NJ, which is only about a mile across the Delaware River from New Hope. And we were lucky to get it. It’s not a terrible place We’re literally only 4 miles away from our wonderful old home where we lived for 18 years, but we could be a million miles away. We did find a nice place, and it’s going to be fine temporarily. Now that everything is settling we’re both seeing that we made our choices based on serious duress and we won’t be living in this place for long. It was a terrible situation to be in, I would not wish that on anyone, and there are people I will never forgive.
However, I will get a book out of this, and I will go into a lot more detail. The focus of the book won’t be negative. We’ll be fine and we’ll get through this like troopers. Even though this was pretty bad, Tony and I have been through much worse. The book will be about our experiences of owning our wonderful home in New Hope, and all the love and joy and happiness that we shared there. Writing about all this is one thing I know how to do well and NO ONE can ever take that away from me like they took my home. Pay attention realtors: writers will always get the last word. And hopefully, maybe a few people can learn a few things from our mistakes as well.