Friday, January 05, 2007

Busy Start To 2007

The year has only just started and things have been happening here in gentle Buttonwood Bay.

We paid a visit to Miami yesterday and while stuck in a traffic jam due to a serious accident on SR-836 near the junction with SR-826, my thoughts drifted back to BB and how much it means to me now. Don't get me wrong - I'm not ready for my hot chocolate and slippers (although I like both) but the slow pace of life here and the friendliness of all the residents have helped me in so many ways. I may poke a little fun at some of the things I've seen here over the last 2 months but for stress reduction, it's hard to fault it.

So as we fumed in the hot truck (the temp on the rear view mirror display rose to 92F and it was 10pm), we all agreed that we wanted to be back 'home' where the only traffic jams tend to be when the players leave a game of bocce ball or shuffleboard and involve a few golf carts.

These feelings were quite relevant as we've been thinking of buying a permanent home here for a few weeks now. Life in the 5th wheel is fine up to a point but it's really only perfect for a couple. There is only one bedroom/bed and so I have to inflate an air bed every night and if Deb or Den get up early, I basically have to get up too - as the air bed is in the living area. There are other matters of privacy that I won't go into but lets just say, we could use more space !

On Tuesday we hooked up with the park realty agent who whizzed us around on her golf cart to view 11 homes up for sale. She'd taken our strict criteria onboard and these were the most appropriate of all the non-manufactured homes for sale in the park. I have to say most were very nice but after seeing the first 10, we were thinking that we were only going to get the place we wanted by combining the best features of the 10 !!

Then we came to one that had only been put on the market that very day and we loved it right away. It didn't have 2 bedrooms but then very few homes here have that anyway. It did have an awesome Florida room with the far end of it set up, via a sliding patio type door, as a private area for relaxing, reading, watching tv or whatever. By adding a futon, we'd have a 'private' room with somewhere to sleep, it's own door access to the bathroom and main living area and just as important, the extra person or persons wouldn't disturb or be disturbed by anyone in the rest of the unit. It was furnished and maintained to a very high level and we saw almost nothing that would need to be done prior to us moving in.

Wednesday, yesterday, was spent on our trip to Miami and so we picked up the discussions on a possible purchase this morning. We worked out the finances and decided to put in an initial offer by contacting the agent. She rang back about 20 mins later with a counter offer from the sellers which wasn't far from what we wanted. A good start. We raised our initial offer a little and that was passed to the sellers and a few minutes later, we had a deal ! Ok most things (and people) move very slowly here in BB as you'd expect - but the speed at which this purchase deal was completed astonished me.

I won't go into details to protect both sides as we mutually agreed that apart from paying a nominal deposit, the closure wouldn't take place until March 30th - so if the sellers decide to change their minds and not sell at all, we could be back to square one. I very much doubt that will happen and so we are, in all but the crossed t's and dotted i's, home owners in delightful Buttonwood Bay in sunny central Florida. Woooohoooo.

The plan is to keep the 5th wheel as it is still wanted for travelling to all those places either not visited before or liked so much, they deserve another visit. Live here in Florida for up to 7 months of the year, Houghton Lake for the other 5 and the 5th wheel for any road trips all year round.

Now THAT'S retirement !

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