Monday, February 23, 2009

To House or Not to House?!

Is this a good time to buy a house? I'm just wondering.

Seriously when did you decide it was time to stop behaving like a teen and start living like a grown-up? Did you know it was the right time to spend a gazillion hard earned (or yet to earn) dollars on a house?

Why am I having such a hard time with it?

I need help.

And advice.


MarvelousMOM said...

The way I looked at it was, I didn't want to keep pissing money away on rent. I was paying x-amount for someone else to be getting a tax right off. Someone else was making money off me. I figured I would much rather pay a bit more and have something of my own, something that I could do what I want with, and that my money would be going toward something.

Melisa with one S said...

I'm with MarvelousMOM. As long as you're realistic about it, though.

Realize that when you buy a home, you're gonna want new furniture and all kinds of other things to add to the stuff that's already in your apartment. Also consider the utilities costs (do you pay for electricity and stuff now, or is it included in the rent?). Here in the US, you can call the utilities companies to see what the average monthly bill is on a house you might want to buy. I don't know what things are like there, but if you can do that, you absolutely should.

Also, choose a home that you will realistically be able to keep up with yourselves. That's very important! If you two don't like to do lots of repair work, you'll need to choose a house that is really ready to move into, and probably not really, really old.

It's a hard decision, and feels like jumping into the deep end of the pool, but if you really do your research and make sure you make and stick to a budget, it'll be great!

Good luck, sis!

Amber said...

If you can afford it, I'd say yes, now's probably a good time to buy a house, because, well, it'll be cheaper. (or at least, it would be if you lived where I do. Which you don't, so maybe disregard that bit.)

For me, I decided to buy one when I wanted to move in with my boyfriend (now husband). For some reason it never really occured to me to rent, probably because I didn't want to feel like I was throwing away money every month. And I like the security of knowing that it's mine, and I don't have a landlord who can come along and throw me out on a whim...

Mags said...

So...I'm going to be a weirdo here and tell you that unless I find and marry a millionaire, I never want to own a house again. I've owned 2-one brand new that me and my ex-husband built and the house I bought after my divorce.

While I loved having a yard I hated gardening so I never really landscaped so I felt like the jerk on the block. I hated having to shovel before work, having to pay for heat and water (especially when rates are all over the place) and having to worry about fixing leaky roofs and flooded basements.

I love being able to just pick up the phone to call someone to fix my tub (without paying them) and also love knowing that if I really wanted to, I could move tomorrow without having to worry about the market or what other places sold for in the area.

If, however, I had a millionaire to buy the house outright and to put tons of money away for repairs-I'd be good with it.

Things I DO miss about having a house:

1. A deck and a grill
2. Not having to be home for deliveries because they could just leave the package on my deck.
3. Not having to answer my door when someone knocked if I didn't want to ((here you have to worry that the landlord will come in to inspect the smoke alarms or something)
4. Being able to make noise without worrying about other people.
5. Space. I had lots of it in both houses.

Jeninacide said...

Hmmm, I never made the decision of whether or not to buy a house because I just married someone that already owned one. I have to say that sometimes I feel limited and trapped by it because it is DAMN expensive for all the upkeep and maintenance and our house is scarily outdated. However, as far as I can tell, if you were going to buy something- now is the time. It is definitely a buyer's market.

Brian o vretanos said...

As Jeninacide says, while house prices aren't doing well is clearly a good time to be buying for the first time. I've still got money tied up in the house that my ex lives in until my daughter finishes her education, so I just rent, but if you can afford it, buying is definitely the best thing in the long run.

Kat said...

First off, thank you all so much for your thoughts and advice. Times are scary and I'm torn.

MarvelousMom That is our number one reason on the Pro side of the list. The money we spend on rent may easily go towards a mortgage.

Melisa Spot on. That is what concerns me. The upkeep and repairs and the possible time investment. It's gotta be thought thru. Thank you especially for the suggestion with regards to calling the utility companies for an estimate.

Amber Things are looking good over here too and while the landlord can't get us out of our apartment on a whim (that's one great thing in Germany) your reason not to have to pay rent towards something you don't own is what we like best about the idea of owning a house.

Mags You've certainly got a lot of experience then, what with having owned two houses and thank you for being so honest and also sharing the bad sides of owning property. All valid things that need to be taken into consideration.

Jeninacide True. It seems like a buyer's market at the moment though I'm held back because I fear the economy is going to get worse. Then what? Decisions, decisions. Thanks for your advice though.

Brian True, in case we separate we'd have the house chained to our neck but let's hope for the best. Nobody wants to think of that but it is important. What do you do if it does happen...Thanks