Trying to get a loan to install a new boiler in this house ought to be easy. I’ve been paying off as many debts as quickly as anyone on social security can, but apparently not fast enough. Never mind that the money has almost entirely been spent trying to keep the house from falling apart. What I don’t “get” is that this is a zero percent loan. They aren’t even paying out the money. National Grid is paying the money.

Also, It’s not a huge number. At zero percent, it’s easy to pay off. But they have a computer. When it dings, you’re donged.

So I have a choice: find a lender with a soul, or not pay my mortgage until I have saved up enough money, and then pray that the the bank will make a deal. Or we wind up on the street. I’m hoping we won’t wind up in the street because I don’t think we would last long. We’re a little old for that. It’s ironic. We make too much money to get housing assistance, but NOT enough to really afford housing. Once more, we have fallen between the chairs.

There turned out to be a third solution. Refinancing the house. This got a little complicated because we are on a H.A.R.P. program which was one of Obama’s programs to get mortgage rates down and under control. To do that, our existing bank refinanced us at a substantially lower rate (4.8%) and HUD took over $80,000 of the mortgage. It dropped our mortgage payment by almost $1000. This was good because I had cancer at the time and being on the street didn’t seem a practical solution for us.

One wet daylily

In the meantime, thanks to Trump’s astounding management of our economy, mortgage rates have dropped to the lowest they have ever been, at least in my lifetime. We locked in at 3%. That gives us a slightly lower payment even though the new mortgage INCLUDES the $80,000 HUD was holding and gives us enough cash back to pay for the boiler, fix the back door, and maybe replace the toilet in my bathroom. And if we are very lucky, maybe we will have enough to put some cabinets in the kitchen. A girl can dream.


We still have to get through the appraisal, get a couple of pounds of paperwork to Missouri — which is interesting because Missouri just went back into lockdown and everyone is working from home. I hope the appraiser “gets” that we are a home “in progress.” That’s why we need the loan. Meanwhile, we have a tentative go. We couldn’t get a $7000 zero percent loan, but we CAN get a $262,000 mortgage? Does this make any sense to anyone? This is a standard 30-year fixed rate mortgage. If any of you are looking to refinance, this is a good time to do it. We are working with Mutual of Omaha. I decided to go with someone I’ve heard of this time. People who know how to manage a mortgage? At least they’ve been in the mortgage business for 111 years. Some of the people who called us have been in the mortgage business for about as long as a week. Been there. Done that. I didn’t feel like doing it again. They give you a mortgage, then they sell you to someone else in a matter of days and then you get sold again and again until you are dizzy and have no idea to whom to send your payment.

The daylilies and roses are blooming. Now that the feeders are back up, we have flocks of goldfinches and red finches … and very young squirrels.

Categories: Blackstone Valley, Flowers, Money, Photography

Tags: , , , ,

14 replies

  1. I’m on the floor ‘between the chairs’ right along with you. I make about $100 too much to qualify for medical insurance assistance. Yet they still hound me to death about applying for it. I just mentally roll my eyes and toss the notice in my trash bin. I’m $100 too rich. So why does it feel like I’m ten million too poor? I wish I had some of that ten million. I’d share and all.. Take care Marilyn. Something WILL turn up.


    • Because you ARE millions of dollars too poor. I keep wondering if one of those super rich people (none of whom we personally know) will take pity on us and drop a few mill our way. We could help ourselves AND so many others!


  2. I clicked “like” on this post, but I don’t like the content. I’m sorry that your financial situation is the way it is, but as you’ve said, you’ve somehow always found a way to survive, and I hope that will be the case once again.


  3. It shouldn’t be this hard but no, you can’t be homeless, especially not now. Mortgage first and somehow the rest will get worked out.


    • I also called the contractor to see if there was some way to repair the boiler, keep it running a few more years. It depends on how corroded it is. We are in a COVID 19 setup right now. We have six months where we don’t have to pay the mortgage and at the end of the six months (November), we can get another six months … after which “we work something out.” Frankly, the only people who have been nice to us IS the mortgage bank.

      I suspect they really don’t want to start evicting people. SO many people are out of work, if they throw people out, they’d have millions of empty houses that will just sit there and rot, so mortgage banks are trying really hard to find ways to keep people housed. A massive wave of empty houses won’t help anyone, not even the banks.

      Liked by 1 person

      • No, it’s not like they can sell the houses off even cheaply. They are better off keeping people in their homes. That’s not just being nice, its’ just facts. In some ways Covid 19 has been a good thing financially. There are so many newly unemployed that things have to be done differently. My income has doubled since it started. It will go back to previous level in September so I’m trying to get a few jobs done too.


  4. The 0% is just for the banks Marilyn. Here you will be paying quite a bit above that to get a loan of any kind.


  5. Oh, so sorry to hear this. I’d pay the mortgage and figure out another way for the boiler. You cannot afford to lose your house. Protect that by all means. Can AARP be of any help in making suggestions for companies that are kinder to us seniors?


  6. There are far too many who fall between those particular chairs. Here too.


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