Since returning from the Azores I don’t seem to have spent a great deal of time at home:
JAMIE: Jamie is soon to move out into an apartment near the railway station. He is taking advantage of a part buy/part rent initiative offered by a local Housing Association designed to give people an opportunity to get on to the housing ladder. Things didn’t go to plan as The Leeds Building Society valued the 2 bed apartment at £5k less than the asking price and wouldn’t stump up the required mortgage. However, when Jamie pointed this valuation out to the Housing Association, they dropped the price to accommodate.Then after putting many extra hours in at work to save up the deposit, he ran into another car and had to pay the money he had saved to the driver to have it repaired. Jamie didn’t want lose his no claims bonus as his own car would then be uninsurable (it could only happen to Jamie).However, he again has managed to save the deposit and it looks like he will be moving out in a week or two. He is busy worrying about cutlery/furniture/bedding etc. etc. etc. Luckily for him it is near Christmas and no doubt Santa will supply most of the things he will need.
CHARLOTTE: When we left for the Azores, the Newarks were negotiating with Persimmon Homes to part exchange with a new build in Desborough. The finances were agreed and the mortgage was in place. However, when their house in Newark was surveyed it was damned by the surveyor. The asking price was reduced by £15k and the major points itemised on the Survey had to be put right (within 2 weeks) if the deal was to go ahead. Drains, brickwork, electrics, heating, carpentry, damp-proofing and woodworm prevention all had to be made good. With Suraj working in Kettering/Wellingborough and living in Harborough during the week, and Charlotte having Lucas and Ellis to look after, there was no option but to travel north and try and tackle the issues. Nan provided the money to make good the house and Charlotte and I set about providing the labour. Suraj organised the various tradesmen that were necessary for the jobs we couldn’t do. Though promised not to, Persimmon put the house back onto the market and the following week it was sold. Very disappointing. There was another option of one of their other houses, but that too was soon sold. It was decided to complete the near renovation of the house and get it into tip-top state so that it could be sold quickly on the open market. Things did not go well. Anything that could go wrong, did go wrong. We had nails through central heating pipes (water through lounge ceiling), floor boards up to find electrical faults, cats throwing up on carpets, first Charlotte catching a sickness bug and spending a day in bed, than Suraj catching the same bug and doing the same. In the meantime, they found another part exchange new buiid with Bovis Homes in Rothwell. It is the Show home and comes with all fittings etc. It is a bedroom less, but a nicer house with a much better view. It is more expensive and is only affordable if we take a stake in the property as well, which we are prepared to do. The Newark house is now renovated and decorated and looks very good. It has all the guarantees needed and as the local estate agents have said ‘should sell quickly’. This week the surveyor from Bovis surveys the property and we await the result. If things are fine, they are contracted to move in to the new house on December 17th. Fingers crossed.
SARAH: Has been no trouble. She has been busy at school. She has started to revise for her exams. She has started to work as much as she is able to at ‘Savers’ to earn her Christmas and petrol money. The only hiccup is that Lee’s mother appears to have decided that Lee shouldn’t be seeing Sarah. Not sure as to why, but I expect she is under a lot of strain having to cope with a husband that requires so much care and is quite stressed out.
SUE: She has been busy covering the occasional day at Church Langton. She accepted a regular Thursday afternoon commitment to cover a class there and looks forward to going. As I have been mostly in Newark over the last 3 weeks I have not seen much of her, but last week she was in the loft and fell down the ladder, hurting her back quite considerably. Of course she said nothing about it, until I got home at the end of the week. She moves around quite delicately and carries a hot water bottle for her back where ever she goes. We had Brigitte and Jim around for a chat and a bottle of wine last night. Brigitte was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and last week went into hospital to have a lump removed. She looked remarkably well and chipper. Hopefully things will go well.
Joan and Phil (from Italy) flew over to a very chilly UK today. They are staying for just 1 week and I hope to meet up with them for lunch, if the weather permits. While I have been writing this I was listening to Liverpool v Tottenham and the Reds lost. They are huge Red fans and will probably fly back to Italy tonight now!