Mrs C and I will be moving into our new home during the Christmas weekend. We collected the keys two Fridays ago. As with most things nowadays, the entire process was highly publicized as the government wanted to make sure we and the greater public knew of their generosity (especially with next year being an election year). Step-by-step, we're being introduced to the subtle intricacies involved with becoming homeowners. Here's the process so far:
- Attend “key giving ceremony” held at the new community site. Endure speeches, singing entertainers and shameless political plugs.
- Four and a half hours later, finally collect keys.
- Wait for obligatory photo op (which we thankfully managed to avoid).
- Receive instructions about having up to one month to be fully moved in and, in the meantime, you can basically come and go as you please.
- Go check out the new digs and wonder how the place went from clean and completely undamaged during the walkthrough to:
- having a portion of the wall which needs to be repainted after a window was replaced (the old window frame was left lying the front yard for an added touch)
- having a broken hinge on the window in the back bedroom
- having a moss-caked kitchen sink
- At this point make a note of issues to add to the form you received with your package to list any defects you may find within the first three months.
(It should be noted that, based on feedback from other owners of government-provided housing, following the submitting of said defects report, one should proceed to initiate repairs one’s self since the providers of your new home may never actually send someone to repair whatever is broken.)
- Return some days later to move some of your stuff in and put curtains up to realize half the house has been flooded after the shower faucet came partially out of the wall.
- Turn off water main to house, spend several hours mopping up.
- Finally hang curtains and move stuff in as initially planned.
- Add broken shower to the defects form for the sake of formality.
- Start looking up plumbers since you’ll have to fix this problem yourself.
- Almost faint from shock as you receive a call informing the work crew will be in the area to assess what repairs need to be done.
- Take time off from work, go back to house and meet with contractors, show them everything that’s broken, exchange numbers and agree to be back again the following day to see what can be done.
- Take a second day off, go back to house again, wait, wait, call contractor, find out they are not going to show because it’s two days before Christmas and the boss can’t convince the workmen to show up.
- Be told they'll they will come back to get started after New Year's... Sometime after New Year's.
This is where the list ends for now. Until the shower issue is sorted out, we will have to keep the water main turned off when we're not using the water. So far, owning a home is turning out to be more of an "adventure" than I anticipated.