Gye Greene's Thoughts

Gye Greene's Thoughts (w/ apologies to The Smithereens and their similarly-titled album!)

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Age of people in authority

Hm! I must be getting old! (35 y.o., actually.) I lack confidence in people in authority that are younger than me. Doctors. Airline pilots. Midwives: we have an eight-month old girl, and when we were in the hospital, the advice of the grey-haired, "has five children and three grandchildren" midwives just seemed more... solid... than the advice from the young "just out of college" women.

Travel agents: Last week we went around to three travel agencies. The first two agents were younger than us. The first one flooded us with unsolicited options ("You could go from Sydney to Aucklund to L.A. to SeaTac for $XX -- or Sydney to San Francisco to Tacoma for $XX -- or...") -- thus missing the point that, no no, YOU'RE the travel agent; just work out the best price for going from "A" to "B" and tell us what it is.

The second guy discovered that the flights for one of our legs were booked out for our intended travel dates -- then looked at us and asked "So, what do you want to do?" ("No, no -- YOU figure out the solution, the work-around -- YOU'RE supposed to be the travel expert!") And, he had no explanation why the flights from L.A. to SeaTac were all booked up.

Finally, at the third travel agent: About my parents' age. Figured out the best, cheapest route -- painlessly. Had a plausible explanation for why the L.A. to SeaTac flights were all booked. (Cruise season: People fly up to Seattle, then cruise ship back.) And, when it looked like we were stuck with sub-optimal solutions, she volunteered to "play with some options" and see if she could find some alternative solutions by tomorrow.

We'll be using her services from now on. :)

So, doctors, airline pilots, travel agents. And bank loan officers. Someone older; someone who's actually been on the job for a few years, eh?

Yesterday, I mentioned that we were approved for a home loan. We're building on some land, which we've inherited (an over-simplification, but close enough). Need AU$14,000 for the title transfer. At the loan officer's suggestion, we decided to include that as part of the over-all home loan: That way, only one set of fees, compared to having the loan in two stages.

Today, got a phone call from the loan guy. Turns out we're in a bit of a catch-22 position (or an infinite loop, for you math/computer sci.-types). He did a title search, and the property isn't listed under our name.

Well, **DUH!!!** That's what the $14k is for! Transferring the title!!!

So, we can't get the loan for the $14k to cover the transfer costs until we actually own the land. Umm -- DUDE! This was **your** idea!!! Not sure if he wasn't thinking, or if he's just new and over-enthused, and doesn't know the rules.

And, it's not like the bank can lose out. The $14k wouldn't go to us: it would go to a trust(?) account connected to the law firm doing the title transfer. If we flaked, the bank would get the money back. And if the transfer was completed, then we'd have the collateral, and thus be good for the $14k.

The annoying thing is that we **have** the money, but it's in investments. If we'd known last week (when we met with him), we'd have liquidated some of it, paid the transfer fees out of our own pockets, and then used the land as collateral for the full loan. Instead, we held tight, thinking that the loan process was grinding away.

But, I'm sure we'll work something out.

For the semi-record, my sister-in-law and her husband had similar sorts of flakiness with the same bank (let's call the bank "MoonCorporation Bank"). Told one thing, then told another. Hm. A pattern?

Dunno if it's the same branch, though.


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