I learned from the relocation company on Friday that we would not have to actually fix the garage roof or retaining wall prior to selling the house. I will be getting estimates this week on getting both items. The sale price of the house will then be reduced by the value of the estimates.
I also learned that since we don't actually have to go into an office to sign the closing paperwork, it is possible for us to close on the house while in Switzerland. That isn't the preferred option, but it may be necessary depending on when the permits arrive.
As for the permits, the update I received on the 26th of January indicated that the permit would be issued on or before the 25th of January. I'm assuming that the file wasn't properly updated and that it won't take a year to get us the permit