I Thought Home Buying Was Supposed to Be Fun!
I have always wanted to be a homeowner. To be honest, I never thought it would happen for me. My narcolepsy has prevented me from working full time, and owning a home seemed impossible.
I was a renter until I turned the age of 49, and I became quite good at it. I had a folder where I kept all the important documents I needed for applications, and it was always the same. They needed references, proof of employment, and income. If my credit was worthy and my information checked out, it was generally an easy process.
Years of planning and sacrifice
It took a lot of sacrifice and a strict 5-year plan to start the steps of applying for a home loan. We felt like we were ready to submit the loan application, and I figured it would be relatively simple. If we have proof of income, employment, and good credit, this should happen seamlessly.
Boy, was I wrong! I was not prepared for what was ahead of us.
The beginning of the paperwork
After our lender and builder preapproved us, we thought it was the end of the paperwork. Unfortunately, this was just the beginning. I started to get overwhelmed with the requests and this would make me tired.
I would receive an email requesting documents to be signed and returned ASAP. I would complete the request, and it would be followed by another email requesting more paperwork to be completed. I eventually requested for my lender to send all documents in 1 email each day. I was lucky my lender was so understanding.
How I kept myself organized
I bought a corkboard to post what I had completed and my to-do list. I tacked up copies of everything I had submitted. I knew I had digital copies of what was sent, but it was easier to have them visually accessible.
When my lender needed information quickly, it was beneficial for me to have it in a folder or in a stack on my bookshelf. I would get too frazzled if I had to search where I filed it on my computer. Of course, getting anxious like this triggers a sleep attack.
I spent hours on the phone
They wanted proof of every debt settled and proof of zero balances. I was asked to call every creditor and have them provide a form showing proof we had a zero balance. I would be on the phone for hours and transferred to different departments for just 1 bill.
I would start getting confused in the middle of a conversation and forget who I was talking to in mid-sentence. I had to start writing down who I was calling and the reason for the call. This helped tremendously. I would try to make the calls at a time of day when I felt more awake.
Enough paperwork to fill a swimming pool!
We submitted over 60 documents and filled out enough papers to fill a swimming pool when all was said and done. I had to log what I did each day in case I forgot what I did or what I still needed to do. I think I had more triggers and sleep attacks during this home buying process than any other time in my adult life.
Being proactive is less stressful than playing catch-up
This experience has taught me to become even more organized than I was before. Now I have warranties, loans, taxes, and receipts I need to keep track of. I know it is redundant, but I copy and print everything I need. My new home office is riddled with reminders and way too many sticky notes, but it works for me!
If you find yourself having trouble with your paperwork organization, try a new technique. You can buy a corkboard to tack things on. Buying a filing cabinet is a definite must! Buy a bookshelf and fill it with plastic trays. You can label them and get to the papers quickly. Being proactive and organized is less stressful than trying to play catch-up and forgetting something important!
At what age were you diagnosed with narcolepsy?