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  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Michigan, USA
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    79

    "You should buy a condo..."

    I know that a similar topic came up in an older thread, but I just had to post this because I am beyond frustrated. Anyone else know what I mean?

    Why is it that EVERYONE finds it necessary to tell me how I shouldn't be renting anymore and I should be buying a place??!! People I barely know (and some that I do know) are constantly saying, "You're throwing money away. You need to buy a condo." In the last couple of days FOUR people have said something similar to me!!

    Okay, first of all, I understand that paying rent is viewed by some as "throwing money away." I am knowledgeable about how mortgages, buying houses, and building equity works. I know that I am not building any equity up by paying rent. I know that I would be better off, in the long run, buying instead of renting. However, I'm not exactly to the point in my life where I can just plan for the "long term" rather than living now, based on what I can do and afford now.

    However, what these people fail to realize is the following:
    1. I have debt. Lots of it. Lots and lots of it, in fact. This means I spend a considerable amount of my monthly income PAYING that debt. Let's put it this way, if my student loan balance was was savings instead of debt, I could buy a very nice house in cash. A very very nice house. In cash.

    2. I do not have any money in the bank. I don't have any investment accounts, save my retirement account which has all of about $200 in it, given that I've only had it for a few months. If someone asked me how much money I had in my savings account, I would laugh. I do not have a savings account and haven't had once since I graduated high school. I had to support myself through college & grad school and as a consequence have been unable to "get ahead" money-wise and have a significant amount of credit card debt that I am currently paying off. I don't feel like explaining this to everyone, since it's really none of their business.

    3. I have decided that I want to live in a certain area, and that area is wildly expensive. It costs a lot to live here, and I don't want to move 45 minutes away just because I can afford a mortgage payment out there.

    4. Contrary to popular belief, I don't really want to buy a condo. I'm not dogging anyone who does, I just don't want to have to spend a significant amount of money on a place where I share walls and celings with other people. I would prefer a house, and houses are generally more expensive than condos.

    5. I like my apartment! I like my roommates and I like the place that we live. I'm not in a hurry to buy another place. I'm happy where I am!

    6. It's none of their damn business what I do with my money! No one tells me, "You know, you'd really be better off buying your clothes at Goodwill than at the Gap. You're throwing money away by buying clothes at the Gap."

    Why do people think it's okay to question how you spend your money when it comes to certain areas? I feel like telling them, "You know what, you're right. Although, I'm going to need several extra hundred dollars a month to do that. Can you help me out there?"

    **END RANT**
    -r

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  3. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    portland, or
    Posts
    135
    Totally with you, especially on points #1 and #4.

    None of my homeowning friends have student loans. I don't think I'll be completely out of student loan debt before I buy a place, but getting that paid down to a manageable amount first would be nice.

    I couldn't stand living in a condo. I'd rather live in a shack on an acre or more of land.

  4. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    777
    Amen and well said. I'm sick of my husband's family telling us we should buy a house. DUH. We're not stupid, just choosing to live on a one teacher income so I can stay home with our son. We're choosing to live in a great area so there are lots of benefits for our family but we couldn't even afford a condo in this area. Someone paid $390,000 for a house in our neighborhood and then knocked it down to build a new house on the lot. And don't get me started on Sallie Mae. Nobody told me that going to graduate school to become a teacher was financially ridiculous.
    I particularly like point 6.
    I think next time I'm just going to say, "Thanks Donald Trump". Hopefully that will shut them up. Probably not.

  5. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    114
    I like #3. I feel the same way. I love the area i live in. Looooooove it. But as for owning a house here? Well, it'll be quite a while. I may even consider a condo. There are nice ones in Madison. The whole not-having-a-yard-to-tend thing appeals to me... but the whole not-having-a-lawn-period thing does not. I'm undecided.

    Good point.

    -Jera

  6. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    161
    ha, we're in the same boat! gee, i'd love to buy a house, but when the crappy old tract homes in iffy neighborhoods are going for $500K? i don't think so!!

    one of my coworkers is really nervous that he & his wife are actually going to get the condo they put a bid on this week. they're really desperate to buy a place, but they can barely afford to do so. uhhhh, then don't buy a place, ya know? seems to me that bad decisions arise from desperate mindsets.

  7. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh
    Posts
    45
    I know exactly how you all feel because I'm in the same place right now. I love the area I'm renting in, but it's difficult for me to afford something there. Plus I don't want to settle on some dollhouse (as realtors list some of the cape cods I've looked at) that barely fits 2 humans comfortably. It's most important that you make the decision to come up with a buying plan when you feel comfortable with it. Screw what the others say! As Tom Waits wrote & Norah Jones also sings, "Money's just something you throw off the back of a train." Thinking of that helps me chill when I begin stressing about all of the financial headaches that come with life.

  8. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    belleville, nj
    Posts
    467
    oh, i hear ya, sister! i'm in almost the same boat. i don't have school loans, but i do have credit card debt (although, i could maybe buy a used car with the money for that not even a shabby house). lately, my uncle has been on my case--the same uncle that screwed my dad over financially and got him in trouble with the IRS, and it's all i can do to get him to shut up. i want to tell him to give me the money he screwed my dad out of, then i can buy a great house. and i had just come to terms with being too poor to buy a house. the ny metro area is just abysmal for buyers. i don't want to live at least an hour away from anything remotely interesting and in a shack. i didn't need him creating more stress for me.

    so, my commiseration and sympathies!

  9. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    ohio
    Posts
    99
    Quote Originally Posted by lovechicken
    Plus I don't want to settle on some dollhouse (as realtors list some of the cape cods I've looked at) that barely fits 2 humans comfortably.
    oo.... i'd LOVE to live in one of those dollhouses in cape cod.. or just cape cod in general.

  10. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    down by the bay
    Posts
    767
    selah - at least in my area, first time home buying teachers buying in-district get HUGE amounts of help buying houses. One of them got a $700K condo (yay silicon valley) for $200K just by being a teacher who hadn't bought before.

    So yeah, no way I'm buying before I'm a teacher :)

  11. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    114
    Suddenly my career path is all curvy-like...

    Teaching, huh?

    -Jera


 
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