Today we are going to talk about BANKS. And some of you may know that means discussing icky things like “payments” and “interest” and it involves numbers and math-y stuff. It’s all very upsetting.
Well. If you read my last blog then you already know that the perfect must-have-it-or-die condo has been found. Knowing that the perfect place is out there is kinda fun because you can go on fabulous shopping sprees in your mind and decorate the new place over and over in ever so many funky ways. But then the Adult! Stuff! smacks you in the face and screams, “details…take care of the details!” and you whimper your way back from your daydream and find yourself surrounded by scary number-y papers like tax returns and credit reports and payment books with waaaay too many coupons left in them. They have been living happily in a shoe box at the back of the closet and have now met the light of day because of some earlier phone calls….
*Cell phone bursts forth with Gwen Stefani’s If I Were a Rich Girl*
“Wendy! J here. Look, just wanted to let you know that we did the walkthrough of your house this morning. Our stager didn’t have any recommendations; he thought your place was beautifully arranged. The only suggestions we have are to finish the window trim in the kitchen and around the French doors on the lower level,” my realtor said.
“Oh. But that requires money…and I just gave my last penny to the condo developer on a contingency,” I protested. “J I don’t have a clue how to pay for that.”
“Well good luck! You’ll figure out something.”
Moments later the phone chirped the song again.
“Wendy! This is the over the top fake smiling big booming voice guy from the mortgage company!” (ok ok.) “Wendy! This is G! I’ve taken a look at the money you need for the new place and you are going to love love love me! We can do this! In fact all we need you to do is clean up a few of those payments you have. I recommend paying off the car and 2 of the 3 credit cards. The larger ones. The third only has 200 bucks on it. Chump change. No worries there. You’d get a better rate if the others were out of the way, though. Sound good kid?”
“Seriously? Do you honestly think I’d continue to pay the interest on those every month if I actually had the money to pay them off? I don’t have any money sitting around!” I protested.
“Oh don’t be so hard on yourself! You’re a smart girl. You’ll figure out something!” he exclaimed and then boomed a goodbye.
Were these people insane!? The Mazda still has 8 k to pay off! One of the credit cards has 2 k on it from when I fixed up the kitchen! The other card is one I took out to keep business expenses separate from personal stuff. It has 3k on it and my old company still hasn’t paid any of us for the expenses we reported before laying us off. Add to that a construction project and these people were expecting me to grab 15k out of the air! Don’t they realize that if I had that kind of money I’d be out shoe shopping?!?
Banks are big scary places with people who are trained to say mean things like, “No!” at you. In fact I can never walk into a bank without feeling like I’ve been called down to the principal’s office and I’m about to get into a world of trouble.
So I stomped on over to the skyway (smaller and less intimidating) location of my bank over the lunch hour and waited my turn in line. My turn finally came. I beamed my most radiant smile at the teller, she gave me the “I control all the money in the world” smile back and we proceeded from there.
“Hello! My name is Wendy and I bank here. Hi! So here’s the thing. I need 15 thousand dollars. Today if you don’t mind too much,” I explained.
“Mmm hmmm. Certainly ma’am. Which account will you be withdrawing from?” she asked me all tellerly.
“Oh! Well I don’t actually have the money. But I figured that you would? And I could just, you know, have it for a short time? I’m selling my house and then you can have it all back.”
So she stuck me in the lobby to talk with a REAL banker about a loan. I looked around at the other kids sitting in the lobby and wondered what they were in for…
So! It was ever so easy and lovely and fun! And why have I never done this before? I told her I wanted a bunch of money. She went all clickety clickety click on her keyboard and said, “A home equity loan would be perfect for you. Plus right now we’re having a sale so there will be zero closing costs involved.” Yay! I asked her if there might be a 2 for 1 sale coming up that I could just wait for…you know, 40k for the price of 20k? But she just looked at me all strangely and said that banking word, “No.”
After much clicking she said I qualified for 60k. My mind briefly filled with visions of DSW, Nordstrom’s and Coach shopping excursions, but then I snapped back to reality and said, “No, 20 will be fine.” HA! 20 will be fine! Oh how rich that made me feel! “Nahhhhhh. Just flip me 20 grand and we’ll call it a day.” Heee! All those years of struggling to pay the mortgage every month has finally paid off.
Cut to last week when I went in to close on the loan and sign eleventyseven forms. I stomped back through the skyway to the bank feeling very grown up and controlled. (Yes I know I’m 37. Why are you being mean to me?)
And then it happened. (What would a blog of mine be without an “and then it happened” situation?) I looked at the forms… I looked at the banker. I carefully set my pen down and sat back in my seat.
“Was my mother here?” I asked quietly.
“Excuse me?” lied the nasty mean evil banker.
“These forms are being mean to me!” I exclaimed. “Only my mother would have typed them up like this!” I glared at the banker and she pulled the forms towards her with a truly bewildered expression. And then. She had the nerve. To bust out laughing.
Every form was demanding a signature from me. And neatly typed on every damned form was the following, “Wendy XXXXX, an unmarried person.” Only one page deviated from the accusation, and that page had a signature line with, “Wendy XXXXX, a single person.”
We went through the whole sign here and here and herehereherehere process and then I sat there sulking while she finalized a few things on her keyboard. She looked up at one point and just lost it. “Oh! Oh my God! That pout! Oh…!” and she started laughing so hard that she flew into a coughing fit. She wheezed out the word “water” and left the office.
Oh yes. She left me ALONE. With a PEN. Muahahahahaaaaaaaa.
So then she came back and she said she’d send me copies after she put everything together and I made my way back through the skyway to my office.
A mere hour later I received the following in an email:
Dear Wendy, I can not call you because I still can’t talk. The whole bank has been laughing to the point of tears ever since you left and I found what you’d done. I hope you won’t mind, but I’ve posted a few of your loan pages in our lunch room and some of the girls are faxing them around. Don’t worry; we removed all your personal information first. Best of luck to you with your home buying experience, and please come back for a loan again soon. Really soon.
So I made a few amendments to the loan form…after she left the office I pulled the documents back to my side and added MY version:
Wendy XXXXX, an unmarried person…with fabulous potential
Wendy XXXXX, an unmarried person…who is working on it
Wendy XXXXX, a single person…with a double occupancy outlook.
Wendy XXXXX, an unmarried person…with a bank that is channeling her mother’s personality.
Y’all know. ;)