Well, our offer on the little house was accepted. We had a meeting a week ago with the owner and both Inmobiliarios (rental agents) to sign preliminary paperwork, sort of an agreement to agree/letter of intent with the basic terms and information spelled out. Now for the details to fall into place. One of the big coordination issues is the cash. As mentioned in the last housing entry, 5 months rent (in UY pesos) is required to go into an escrow account, one month to the rental agent and then the first month rent payable to the landlord. That is 7 months rent up front! We could take money out of our accounts via the cash machine but the quantity needed, along with our daily limits, would require a visit to the cash machine every day for weeks. We do not have a bank account in Uruguay yet, which makes wiring money from our MN accounts difficult. We could possible write a personal check, but it is not known how much time that might take to clear. With so many unknowns, we discussed this with our wonderful rental agent who agreed to let us wire to his company account in order to expedite the process. After a few phone calls and emails to get account numbers, and a visit by Brad to the local bank in UY which the money will be going to, the wire request from our MN bank was made and the money is on its way.
Honestly, the whole "wire" process is a bit backwards to me. In this time of instantaneous transactions, wiring money (which can take up to a week or longer in some cases) is supposed to be the fast way to transfer money. Fast? Maybe in 1950!!!! But I digress....
When the money gets to the Uruguayan bank, it will be withdrawn in dollars, we will exchange it for pesos at another location to get the best exchange rate and then take it to another bank, the Banco Hipotecario del Uruguay (BHU) which is the only one in the city that handles this type of rental escrow account. Banks open at 1 PM and we are told to plan to be there for a while because the whole process may take up to 2 hours. At that time, both the landlord and the renter sign the account and the lease paperwork. Keys are given out and when it is done, we have a place to live and can move right in.
The whole bank process is scheduled to happen on Monday the 20th, barring any delays in the money wire from MN. It is possible that we will be moving into the house on Monday evening!!