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Author Topic: Moving on up - Moving advice thread  (Read 7012 times)

bainidhe_dub

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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #50 on: 20 Jan 2012, 07:56 »

We bought a house about two years ago, after renting/being married/living together for one year. So by the time we got to closing, I was 24 and my husband was a couple days from turning 26. It was a hassle and a half (short sale with 2 banks, took 8 months, my job changed in the middle of the approval & we had to have my parents co-sign, lease on the apartment ended & we had to put our stuff in storage & live with family for most of it) but was definitely worth it, I would say now. Our mortgage came out to only about $250 more than the rent on our low-income apartment, and we had help from some of my husband's relatives for the down payment. We couldn't have done it without their help though.

So if you can buy, I think it's a good idea, but you have to be realistic about what you can really afford monthly (we were approved for a loan about $30K over what we would actually be able to handle), how much of a down payment would be, what other costs you'll have (inspection, survey, moving, "omg how did we get to this point and never own a _____").
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Carl-E

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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #51 on: 21 Jan 2012, 07:35 »

We bought when our girls were 8 and 5, and I had a tenure track position at a major university.  I was 36 and my wife was 33 by then.  I'd only had my doctorate for three years.  The house was sold at an estate auction, we were very lucky, and out parents contributed to the down pament (50-50).  The mortgage was ok, we refinenced 5 years later at a better rate, and the payments were about the same as our rent had been for a house half the size. 



Three years later I lost that job, and now we are tied to the area.  I've taught at nearly every college and university in the area as an adjunct instructor (basically, after losing two tenure-track jobs through politics, no one will give me another) and I teach online just to cover expenses.  The house isn't a white elephant, but it's over 100 years old, and can be expensive to heat.  But any house needs constant maintenance. 

The thing is, when you buy there are a lot of hidden costs (taxes, insurance, maintenance...).  Even new houses will need maintenance in a few years, and if you're not a do-it-yourself person, it gets expensive fast.  When you rent, you can pass the buck to the landlord (and hope he does it right, if at all). 

My roof is now starting to deteriorate.  Time to go shingle shopping for next summer! 
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Welu

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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #52 on: 25 Jan 2012, 03:44 »

Carl-E, your house looks lovely from the outside, maintenance and all. :) The boyfriend's dad is a qualified and certified electrician and a bit of a plumber unofficially. He's done a lot of work in his own house.

I don't think we're ready to buy yet, financially for both of us and emotionally for me. Tomorrow we're looking at two flats on the opposite side of town from me, one of which is quite close to boyfriend's work. I'm excited to be looking at least.
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Carl-E

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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #53 on: 29 Jan 2012, 11:44 »

Thanks, Welu - we like it.  It needs a lot of work, but the "public" spaces are really nice and it fits our life well. 

I think that, unlike with kids, you need to wait until you're ready to buy a house.  Shop hard. 

(I say unlike kids, because I remember an adage that was quoted to me when I was younger - "If you wait to have kids until you're ready, you'll never have kids") 
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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #54 on: 29 Jan 2012, 15:20 »

Update: One of the flats we looked at the other day, I've kind of fallen in love with the second I saw it. I think that's mostly due to the walk up to it looks like the exact kind of environment you'd scream at the protagonist in a horror film to go nowhere near. :laugh: The flat itself is lovely, not super modern but very practical and a lot bigger than I expected it to be.

Pretty much any other place we've looked at has been simply too small, even for a couple because they're just above-business box rooms essentially. The one I like is above a shop but it's in such an odd place in the building that it makes so much use of the space.

Plus it's well in our range which also surprised me, less than 400/$630 a month which is quite cheap around here. I'm very sure we won't find any where better or even as good at the same price.

We're hoping to look around it once more, with the boyfriend's dad who'll see anything we might miss. Maybe see why it's so cheap.

So yeah, if it gets the okay and no one else grabs it, I may be moving out very soon!
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lepetitfromage

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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #55 on: 29 Jan 2012, 17:50 »

Yay!! That really is a good price! We pay $1,000/month. Bluh. I always have too much month left at the end of my money. It's hard to find a cheap place around here that doesn't suck.

And I agree- Carl-E, your house is great! I love the architectural details. Is that a wraparound porch? I've always loved those  :-)
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Re: Moving on up - Moving advice thread
« Reply #56 on: 29 Jan 2012, 21:14 »

Full width of the front and halfway 'round the side.  It was redone, we have pics ofthe house from the teens and twenties that show a wooden porch.  I'm guessing parts of it rotted, so they rebuilt it in brick.  At the same time, they changed the stairs (which had come down from the front door under the little peak in the center of the front) to come down from the corner.  Very elegant...

We pretty much live on the front porch in the summer.  It's rarely in direct sunlight, and the large maple in front provides great cool shade as it's seeds and leaves clog the gutters...

One of my first repairs when we moved in was that porch roof.  Shingling along a curve is fun! 
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