Thursday, January 14, 2010

In which we exchange contracts

Call from the solicitor this morning confirming that we have exchanged contracts on our property in Wells, Somerset with completion date next Thursday, January 21st. This has unleashed a flurry of activities:

1. Home insurance for the property booked as from today. We were surprised to find it quite a bit costlier than in Andover. Why? Wells is a very low crime area.

We concluded it's due to the age of the property: we bought our Andover house new; this one shares its birth-date with the two of us - c. nineteen fifties.

2. We put in calls to the three builders from whom we'll be soliciting quotes to knock the kitchen and dining rooms into a kitchen-diner and then remodel the kitchen. As is traditional with builders, not one of them answered the phone so that's three sets of voicemail left. [As I write this, one of them has called back].

3. I called BT to arrange for the phone service to be turned on at completion (Jan 21st). For reasons too complicated to explain, I had previously told BT to start the service on February 1st. The lady in the call centre was helpfulness personified as she explained that her "system" only allowed dates to be moved back, not to be brought forward. Genius!

Apparently the previous system was more flexible but ... there you are, you see.

So the schedule currently looks like this. Clare and Alex drive down at completion and immediately order carpets. Then they get the necessary equipment and begin to steam wallpaper off and start painting. During the following week, Alex starts making shelves for the pantry while Clare interviews the builders who by then should be sorted. What a good use of his holidays!

By popular consent, I am being kept well away from anything practical on the grounds I frequently have trouble working out which end of a screwdriver is the operational one. More opportunity to progress my String Theory book then ...