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General update v4

It was a busy last week. I’ve been learning PHP and so haven’t spent much time writing blogs or making cartoons. My goal is to get the site into such a working order that I won’t have to mess with it too much, by cutting out all the manual work. I’m aware of static site generators, but from my experience with the end product, it’s usually kinda clunky to navigate those sites as you accumulate hundreds of blogs and cruft. I think I’m getting things close to where I would like them, so my apologies if things have been broken.

So I updated the comment system yet once again; this time to include a CAPTCHA form. I did this since a bot was spamming the guestbook. I could of blocked the IP, but figured it would make a good opportunity to make a captcha instead!

Since I’m still learning PHP here, I have to rely heavily on other examples out there. The hardest part was figuring out how to hook in both the html textarea for typing out your comments and the captcha input form into the same submit button and then verify that the captcha was correct before submitting the comment to the database. The examples I would find online always omit that little important part, and to add more complication to it, I’m using a comment system not of my own making so it took some reading into the programming to understand how things work.

I have a suspicion there might be a way to cheese it, but I did sha1 the captcha phrase and also the user input phrase so I guess time will only tell.

I had a lot of trouble with the “session_start()” function too. Sometimes it would work and other times it would just flake out. Then I found out that it only needs to be stated once in the main document. I was spamming that sucker in every PHP script I could! Really, all that it’s responsible for is establishing a temporary cookie which is needed for the captcha to work. If you have any trouble with it, then please let me know!

It’s been pretty fun so far. I might share my work sometime in the future so any of you reading can re-implement it on your own sites too.

Now changing the subject…

The house front has unfortunately not been bussin. The house that I was trying to get couldn’t be financed due to the lenders appraisal. There is some damage to the vinyl on one wall of the house which looks pretty bad, but the house overall is alright. It’s an old house built in the 1920’s, and the vinyl is just covering the original exterior cladding. The vinyl looks ugly and I would just rip it all down anywho, paint strip, restore and then repaint the original walls like we use to do at my grandparents.

This was the second appraisal and the second lender that I’ve been thru with it, and to make matters worse the insurance providers would only insure with an actual cash value policy due to the damaged vinyl and the roof being over 15 years instead of the replacement cost policy that the lender required.

I made my cash offer to the realtor and the seller wasn’t interested, so back on the market it went! They didn’t even haggle with me; just went radio silent!

It’s a nice spooky old home in a remote middle of nowhere coming in just shy of 2,000 square feet; perfect size for a family… a family of cats! Just joking, a real human family too. Anyways, the place is worth about $50K on a good day if you ask me, because according to my estimates, it’ll cost about $30K to get it back into shape and another $20K to renovate to my personal tastes.

I would have been willing to up my offer a little, but like I said, they didn’t even haggle. Seeing that it can’t be financed, cash buyers are their only market and I doubt anyone with $90K in hand is going to bother with an old dilapidating money pit middle of nowhere unless it has land; which it doesn’t. There’s land nearby it, and I contacted the owners of that land to see if they would be interested in selling and they were. I see an opportunity here, but I’d be broke and stuck with a money pit at the price the seller is asking.

Even though it’s disappointing, I think there will be more places up for sale this summer meeting my criteria; and I’ll have even more money saved up while the housing values continue to decline. By then, I won't even need a lender to finance it. Now come on feds, up that interest rate some more so I can buy a cheap cash house before SHTF, I believe in you!

Thanks for reading my blog!

Date: 2023-01-30

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  • Cozybro, I am also trying to buy a house. Having to deal with credit and banks and loans. I hate it, I hate being judged. I cannot imagine doing it at the level of detail you are. I will add your good fortune into my prayers before bed every night. Peace
    Jan 31, 2023 Permalink Reply
    • Thanks anon, and good luck and blessing with your house buying too! :-D
      I think the banks are getting a little too picky about the houses and should focus more on the actual value instead of some hypothetical market value.
      Jan 31, 2023 Permalink Reply
    • Just letting you know that captcha works fine.
      Jan 31, 2023 Permalink Reply
      • Good! It's been such a headache that I'm afraid it'll find another reason to break itself again.
        I should probably figure out how to change the font. Hard to read letter "O's" and number "0's"
        Jan 31, 2023 Permalink Reply
      • It works
        Jan 31, 2023 Permalink Reply