Moving in, with thanks to the team

Yesterday we closed on our new condo in downtown Raleigh.  Sal and I celebrated last night with a fine dinner at Solas, a place in our new neighborhood that has a distinctly L.A. vibe.  Our new home is filled with moving boxes and construction in progress, but it’s beautiful to me.   As of yesterday afternoon, we have internet connectivity.  I’m writing this in the dining room on the twelfth floor  looking west at the city skyline.

This project has been a long time coming.  We put our deposit on the condo in December 2006 — before construction on the building had begun.  We put our Cary house on the market in July 2008.  There wasn’t a single offer until May 14 (when we got two offers in a single day).  The selling process, spanning the worst financial crisis in many decades, was slow and frustrating, but the last five weeks have gone at hyperspeed.  

Downsizing from 3,100 feet to 1,800 feet, we needed to offload lots of furniture and other possessions.  Some we sold, some we gave to charity, and some we junked.  We needed to arrange for house repairs, cleaning and moving out.  We needed to arrange for improvements to the new place (bookshelves, closets, audio-video, furniture, paint, etc.).  We needed to get the mortgage arrangements in place.  And there were dozens or hundreds of subtasks.

We did it!   I say we,  but really, it was an extended group effort.  Sal was amazing in handling the logistics.  And as she said last night, we dealt with a large number of individuals with a remarkable variety of skill sets.  Amazingly, almost everyone was as good as their word.  The real estate professionals, mortgage bankers, appraisers, inspectors, various repair people, various cleaners, yard care, interior design, carpentry and audio-video contractors, lawyers and paralegals, buyers of used furniture, and the rest all did what they said they would do.  

It was gratifying to get to know some of these people a bit, and to find so many of these people seemed to get a kick out of their work.  One of our movers was a high school math teacher who did moving in the summer, and said that he loved moving.  Our carpentry contractor loves working with wood.  Our audio-video guy clearly loves great sound.  Our lawyer admitted that real estate closings were primarily to pay the bills, but he seemed to enjoy our closing.  Good folks all.

I have to note specially the contributions of a few individuals.  Ann-Cabell, our seller’s agent, made this deal happen, first by figuring out that this place would be perfect for us, and then by refusing to let the deal fall apart.  Lynn was the sweetest, canniest real estate professional imaginable.  Keith came through with great design ideas that will make this space fit us.  The two Steves came through on schedule and on budget with excellent carpentry and audio.  The movers did a great job; we haven’t seen a single furniture scratch or broken glass.  

We were really fortunate to have had this team and these rewarding human contacts.  It feels exciting to begin this new phase.