When 2016 ended and 2017 started, I had grand plans for the year (as I usually do). I planned to write more - much more - and release multiple books this calendar year, of numerous lengths and in varying genres. The plan was bold, but I never felt like I made plans that were outside the realm of possibility. I just sometimes have a difficult time keeping focused. Especially lately.
While in the process of re-focusing my creative energy into fiction writing and podcasting, and really hunkering down to look into those two processes with new eyes and an excited attitude, I got a notice from my landlord that she would like to put the house we've been renting the last few years up on the market once more this late spring/early summer.
And my creative drive and desires to write and produce content was sucked down the toilet as the prospect of finding my family a place to live rushed suddenly to the forefront.
My wife wanted us to buy. She wants us to see what our options are with realtors and mortgages. I have never wanted to be a home-owner, a prospect made even more apparent the more I've learned that simply living in a house brings a number of costs and issues. Issues I'd much rather pass off to a landlord. But I appeased her and agreed to meet with a realtor friend of ours to see what our buying options were. I knew my credit was bad, so I didn't expect much.
The realtor did a lot to instill a hope in me about possibly owning a house within our neighborhood, about not having to move far or give up much of what we'd built over the last few years. I was now a bit more open to seeing what the prospect of purchasing could do for us.
But then we met with a lender, and discovered my credit was too low, and my wife's not established well enough, to get any sort of mortgage. We were to stick with rentals until we could get our credit up. I was okay with this, even though I knew finding a rental would be difficult.
And boy, has it been. A family of four finding a rental with at least 3 bedrooms inside our budget is hard enough, but doable. Finding a rental that will also accept pets is almost non-existent in our area. They're all either out of our price range or simply say no to pets. And the number of rental scams out there is insane. Any time we find something online that looks enticing, or that seems too good to be true, oftentimes ends up being someone trying to take advantage of folks like us. Luckily we've been wise enough to spot them before coming to any agreements, but it doesn't do much for overall morale.
And that's where I'm at now. I want to work. I want to write. I want to podcast. But the drive that used to push me to create has subsided significantly as we struggle to ensure our family has a place to stay. There are options out there still - we're meeting with a realtor this weekend who deals with a lot of rentals, and we have heard about some lenders in our area who will work to make poor credit mortgages work (though I still am hesitant to look into that). But as the days go by my fear and anxiety grows surrounding this subject. And as such I've made a soft promise to myself that I wouldn't devote much more than a few hours a week to creative projects until we have a place to live.
Boy, 2017 is off to a great start.