February 2, Wednesday, a house inspector inspected our new (to be) house and e-mailed us the inspection report, along with an insurance report and invoice. Very detailed report. We'd seen most of the problems, and he reassured us about lots of other things. I learned that "Appears Serviceable" means that the system, component, and/or material is capable of being used and is in generally satisfactory condition for its type and age, though they may need maintenance, show aging, wear and tear. Problems are noted under "Condition." (I was worried when I saw so many "Appears Serviceable" tags. That didn't sound good!) There was also a termite inspection (separate). Although no evidence of termite infestation was found, the house will be treated. Even in a concrete block house, there's lots of wood.
February 4, Friday, we went to the house to meet with a contractor. We had an entourage of friends roaming around and sharing their opinions, and Shawn, our supportive realtor, was also there. He has spent a lot of time shepherding us through the various steps--and answering our e-mail queries. We need to go to the contractor's showroom to pick out materials, and, of course, we will learn what we can afford.
Note: Shawn and his wife, Dee, handle separate areas of selling and finding homes for people. We appreciate all their help! We really keep Shawn busy now, however! Here's a link to their website: http://www.shawnanddee.com/