No. of Recommendations: 8
<sigh of relief>

Just got back from my co-op board meeting (well, got back into town awhile ago, but just got home IYKWIM)...and it was so great!!!

I was approved by the "dreaded" co-op board!!!

Apparently there are only three people on the board, two of whom met with me tonight. I walked in, and the first thing I find out is the board president has a dog, the same breed as my Rocky! Then, he compliments me on my other dog, Tasha, who's a Belgian Shepherd (they knew what breeds mine were b/c I had submitted "pet resumes" with references for my pets and vet documentation). Says that they "typically" prefer to keep the weight limit on dogs at 45 pounds...Tasha's about 55, I say....but then the Treasurer chimes in, "My two dogs average 45 pounds -- I have a miniature dachsund....(long pause)........and a labrador!" <big grin/laugh> I had thought he meant if they gained a few pounds he had to put them on a diet!!

I knew right then it was going to be fine.

They had some basic questions about my finances. Thanks to my research and the information I've learned here, I sailed through the questions with no problems at all! no sweat! They asked me how the 5/1 ARM worked...had apparently assumed I was taking it b/c I didn't qualify for the 30-yr FRM (that horrible label people assume), but I explained I actually had qualified, but chose another mortgage after reading TMF! When I explained my reasoning, threw some numbers at them, and pointed out that I still had my e-fund PLUS I'm putting $700/mo toward my 401k, which I could feasibly change if I really got cash-strapped, they must have realized I had done my homework on this one.

(They seemed to like the fact that I could spout off the top of my head that my payments for the first five years will remain fixed at $866, and when they readjust, even to the maximum rate of 9.5%...which, by the way, can't happen until year 8.....I'll only pay $1,351 MAX, assuming I haven't refinanced or paid any additional principal!)

Surprisingly, they also seemed pretty shocked that I had done my homework on my financing...and financES...(do most people not research this? it's the single biggest investment most people MAKE, for chrissakes!) -- they interview every single person who makes an application to buy, and they were really, seriously shocked that I knew so much about my mortgage, my rates, my payments, etc.

Anyway, I asked them a few innocuous questions...they gave me a few handouts, along with a copy of the house rules...and the managing agent's card, with the president's and super's names/numbers written on the back. Said to call if I had any questions or needed anything.

It was so low-key, they were so warm & welcoming...explained everything magnificently....were very upfront and not threatening at all. Just wanted to clarify a few things they couldn't understand fully from my paperwork (probably to see if I knew what I was getting into here, buying a place on my own)...and essentially said that I'm probably the last person they can let in with two dogs...because the dogs are starting to outnumber the people in the buildings!!! <grin> We spent a good 1/2 hour talking about which tenants had dogs, and what breeds they were...the president introduced me to his Eskie (she's 16 years old, starting to show her age, but still beautiful). They were great.

It was almost fun! I was there over an hour and a half (only about 15 minutes of it was actually questions regarding my paperwork/application...the rest was chatting & talking about the neighborhood, the commute, the basketball game....

I am so relieved. Now I just have to make it through the closing!!!
wish me luck...I'll keep you informed!

ps....thanks to everyone, for such wonderful advice and support. I might have been able to do this without you, but I wouldn't have wanted to! and for those of you who remember my concern about mentioning all three animals (2 dogs, 1 cat), I DID 'fess up to all three. And found out that the treasurer actually has 2 cats & 2 dogs himself!!!

what a wonderful world...
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