Sunday Survey

I’m a total noob. I can’t figure out how to insert a survey into a blog post. I wanted to survey all of you beautiful people on the topic of home buying, but I can’t follow simple directions. Instead of having a handy, easy to use, fun to participate in survey, I’m just going to write a few questions that I’m hoping ya’ll could answer. Thanks in advance! 

  • Condos? Yay or nay? Pros? Cons?
  • Any note-worthy personal experiences with living in a condo? 
  • Would you buy when home prices are high in order to take advantage of a $10,000 home grant?
  • How important was/is location to you?
  • How dumb is it to be scared of being stuck with a house that’s haunted? Is this a legit fear?
  • What if I’m stuck with terrible neighbors?
  • How terrible is being house poor? 
  • HELP

I have some real (and some made up) fears about buying a home. Permanence scares the ever-loving shit out of me. Despite feeling trepidatious and nervous-poopy, I need to get some perspective from unbiased home owners. Lay it all on me-horror stories and all. 

Author: fattymccupcakes

Just a thirty-something girl trying to love herself the way she is: fat, rolls, cellulite, and fabulousness.

84 thoughts on “Sunday Survey”

  1. ok here we are my lovely….
    Condos? Yay or nay? Pros? Cons? Condos? no idea what they are but think in the UK we call these flats. I have lived in a flat. Pros: they are cheaper than houses mostly, you have neighbours who could lend you stuff, you don’t have a garden to worry about, you can get on the property ladder, you can down size. Cons: you have neighbours who could be annoying/noisy, you don’t have a garden, you may not be able to park your car (but perhaps that’s just in UK)
    Any note-worthy personal experiences with living in a condo?  I fancied my neighbour which was cool! It was cheap.
    Would you buy when home prices are high in order to take advantage of a $10,000 home grant? No idea what that is but I would look carefully at growth in your area and location is key when buying a property. If its next to a nasty road it will always be next to a nasty road and may not sell well later on.
    How important was/is location to you? Ha! very!
    How dumb is it to be scared of being stuck with a house that’s haunted? Is this a legit fear? Its not dumb if its your fear as you will always worry!
    What if I’m stuck with terrible neighbors? Well that’s it isn’t it!? In UK if you ask the people in the property about neighbours they have to answer truthfully. You could also do a search to see if any complaints have been made to the council. Not sure if that’s the same where you are though.
    How terrible is being house poor? If its your own home then surely that’s better than renting however small your house is? 
    HELP
    Hope that’s helpful but I doubt it is as I’m in the Uk

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m British and don’t have anything useful to add. I will say that I’m desperately trying to get a deposit together to buy my own house. The house I live in now is a prefab that was built after WW2 and was only meant to last 30 years. It looks like a caravan compared to all the other houses in the street.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. First, congratulations on taking the plunge… and/or my condolences on attempting homeownership. At some point both are applicable.

    Condos. I guess condo living really depends on your area. Some places condos are very stable and what you see today us what you’ll have in 10 or 20 years both in terms of neighbors and developers. Other places turnover is just as, if not more great than apartments. You and your investment could be at the mercy of your neighbors. For all the financial security a condo affords it’s still an apartment but one where you change your own light bulbs, pay for your own plumber, and can’t just walk away from if the urge strikes.

    Home grants. I see grants, move-in specials, interest deals, and other enticements as the coupons of home buying. If you can take advantage of them for something you really wsnt, use it. If you find yourself waiting to cash in on your coupon just for the sake if not using it and get something you really don’t like to start with, you’re not going to get any happier down the road.

    Location (or as the real estate agents would tell you, Location, Location, Location (all upper case of course)) Are you looking for a forever purchase or are you on a five year plan. Pick a number say $100k. That might get you the best house in a small, mid-class neighborhood or the smallest house in a much sought after neighborhood. What do you do? Looking to turn that over in a few years, then go for the better area. It will be easier to sell later. Staying forever? Go for the big place in the lesser looked at spot. Taxes, repairs, and upkeep will be cheaper. And in my experience, the neighborhood will probably be more stable so if you do end up selling you still have a desirable property. But always remember that plans change. I bought a “starter” home and ended up staying 29 years, adding on instead of “buying up” and never regretted a day there.

    Hauntings. If you are really concerned and you have to ask about don’t do it. In your mind you’re buying a house that has to be pest free. For some that might mean just getting a termite inspection. If for you it involves an exorcism there might be no amount of certification that is going to make you comfortable.

    Bad neighbors are tough. Most of the time you see a house devoid of neighbors to observes and owners to ask. If you like a place go back to the neighborhood in the evening and on a weekend without your agent. Walk around, listen to your surroundings, check out the driveways and back yards, smell out what’s going on-literally as well as figuratively. You can also ask the neigjbirhoid people what’s what. I would also suggest you check with the local police regarding calls to that and neighboring streets. And if you are going to make an offer, no matter how much the agent doesn’t want you connecting with the seller before closing, you can insist that you get to ask why they are selling and expect an honest answer.

    House poor. On one hand no such thing, you always have an investment at your fingertips. On the other hand, nothing worse than having to throw every dollar you make into that money pit, and at some time EVERY house is a money pit. Look at it like a business. You have to have adequate capital to maintain your investment. You cannit out every penny into the purchase and expect thst to be the only dollars you’ll have to spend, mortgage payments notwithstanding. How much capital you need depends on how well you do your research.

    I don’t know if any of that was any help. I wish you much luck but more than that much happiness. If you’re happy you’ll know it’s the right spot for you. If you’re not happy about the places you’re seeing or the process it’s taking, wait a while. One thing about houses is that they never run out of them.

    Sorry for being so wordy. My best to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have never had to buy a house or condo or anything, but I can offer a little bit of input!

    First, the survey: Go to your dashboard, then go to “feedback” and then “polls”. Here you create a new poll. Then when you are finished, there is an “embed poll in new post” button. Click it. This will create a new post with the poll already attached to it 😉

    Secondly, I’ve lived in what some people will call a condo. At least the people I lived with paid condo fees. They can be quite expensive (sometimes the same as your rent) but it comes with perks such as snow removal, lawn care, repaving the parking area, fixing anything on the outside of your house. The people I lived with had ALL their windows replaced FREE OF CHARGE because the condo board had decided to do it for all the units. And then the next summer, their roof was reshingled. That’s a HUGE HUGE HUGE expense that they didn’t have to worry about. And they also have a cute little backyard. It’s not too big but it is something.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Condos? Yay or nay? Pros? Cons?: Sorry, I’ve never lived in one.

    Any note-worthy personal experiences with living in a condo?: NA

    Would you buy when home prices are high in order to take advantage of a $10,000 home grant?: Could be a good deal to offset the higher prices some.

    How important was/is location to you?: Very important, location encompasses the area and the various good or bad conditions found there.

    How dumb is it to be scared of being stuck with a house that’s haunted? Is this a legit fear?: Don’t buy it.

    What if I’m stuck with terrible neighbors?: Naturally you would eventually have to sell/move if solutions can not be found to make them less terrible. You’ve seen my blog about weird neighbors.

    How terrible is being house poor?: As stated by the above comment, you generally have an investment that is good. If your careful on nighbors and location.

    HELP: The only other thing to consider, is the actual ownership. While owning what your living in gives you peace of mind to do what you wish with the house and property, you are also responsible for maintenance should some major component break down (Water Heater, AC Unit, Electrical). Of course if you can afford insurance for home repair, that is a plus.

    Best of luck and I wish you all the happiness you can find.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I never wanted to own a house. EVER
    But my hubs had other ideas.
    Our first home was a condo of sorts. It can be bad because you don’t own the land and are therefore subject to lots of rules and it won’t appreciate as well. On the other hand, it was all we could afford when we first bought, and weren’t sorry when the market tanked and then the market went up again. We kept it 7 years and ended up selling it for just a few 1000 less than we bought it for. Which after some calculation meant we came out way ahead over renting all that time. Some of the highest rents in the country.
    never buy more than you can afford just to get a grant. Unless the grant offsets the whole cost.
    location and neighbors are the 2 things you can’t change about your home, unless you’re into murder. We have an awesome location, but my hubs has a nasty commute. And we have one bat shit crazy in a bad way neighbor. But they say every neighborhood has one bat shit crazy neighbor, at least it’s not me this time. LOL
    About the haunting: get it spiritually cleansed if you like everything else about the house and can afford it.
    Really it comes down to what you can tolerate. I wanted a baby and was willing to acquiesce to any demand the hubs made. Owning was one of his demands, had to have a house before we got preggers. Had to buy a house in the price range that he was comfortable swinging on his own. So we did.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Really great points, friend! The non-appreciation factor of a condo worries me! The fact I don’t own the land, just the property is also a concern. But, I’m in the same position you were in-it’s almost all I can afford in this housing market. If I would have purchased just a few years ago, I’d have had many homes to choose from. I could just kick myself. I want a property that I own not for a kid, but a PUPPY!! I just can’t wait much longer! My puppy ovaries are about to burst!

      Like

  7. Ok, I’ll try these in order:
    1. Nay on condos, for me at least. Because….people, next to, above, below, or all. Low maintenance is good. But: HOA’s.
    2.Never lived in a condo, but I’ve lived in apartments. It seems to me it’s basically the same.
    3. That $10,000 sounds appealing, but if the prices are too high, you could end up spending wayyyyy too much over the life of the loan, especially if the interest rate is outta whack. Be careful there.
    4. Location was very important to us, in both the house we bought in the city and then where we bought our farm. A house is an investment, so thinking about resale potential and value matters. Plus, you know, you’ll be living there, so you should enjoy where it is.
    5. Well, our house is haunted. Unless books are flying across the room or walls begin to bleed, it’ll be fine.
    6. Neighbors suck period. That’s partly why we now live on a farm.
    7. I wouldn’t want to be house poor. Stick to your budget, know what you’d be able to afford per month. Living on a fine line, where budget is concerned, is extremely sressful.

    It’s a scary decision, full of scary decisions. But, if you do it right, owning your own place is great. But do not rush or make a poor decision based on impatience or rose colored glasses. Good luck in your hunt. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you! This helps a lot. Homes that were $140k five years ago are now $250k and that’s beyond my budget as a teacher qualifying alone. That’s an interesting point you made about it being more over the life of the loan. I actually didn’t think about that…Now, I need to hear about this haunted house!! I’m equal parts fascinated and terrified of haunted houses!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome! I’m no expert. We’ve only owned two houses, so I don’t have too much experience. All I can say is, when you find the right place, the combo of price and locale and just the “feel” of the place, you’ll know. It’s arduous, but try to be patient and prudent. It’s funny, but I’m usually neither of those things! 😃
        As for the haunt, it’s a long story, but we live in a 115 year-old farmhouse. Shadows, noises, and the chills at times have been present since we bought it 17 years ago. Some doubt, but can’t deny when something odd occurs while they’re here for a weekend or house sitting while we’re on vacation. I’m a believer. 😃

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I LOVE old homes-funny for someone so worried about living in a haunted house! Now that I know more about how to cleanse a home, I feel more in control if it ever happens again. My apartment when I lived in Elko was haunted. I was never comfortable in that place, despite the fact it was exactly what I want in a home-full of history, character, charm. I’m not patient OR prudent, either! 😜

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Not illiterate AT ALL, I didn’t pick it up until after a year probably!! It’s the background coding that lays out the foundation for your blog- you can tweak things that are locked into the normal visual editor! While it can be helpful, it’s definitely not necessary with WordPress 😎

        Liked by 2 people

  8. Here goes:

    Condos? I love condos! In my mind they are a fabulous idea if you are OK with not having a yard/garden. BUT, be aware of HOA fees and restrictions going into it.

    Any note-worthy personal experiences with living in a condo? Nothing noteworthy. I’ve lived in one before and enjoyed it.

    Would you buy when home prices are high in order to take advantage of a $10,000 home grant? I am unfortunately not familiar with that grant, so I am afraid I can’t offer advice here.

    How important was/is location to you? Crucial! Proximity to groceries, pharmacies, and work are key. Restaurants are nice too, but those three are non-negotiable to me.

    How dumb is it to be scared of being stuck with a house that’s haunted? I think this is an irrational fear.

    What if I’m stuck with terrible neighbors? Hmm, this is an interesting question. In all the houses and apartments I’ve lived in, I have never had an issue with this. Maybe I’ve just been lucky? IDK.

    Good luck, friend!! xo

    Liked by 2 people

  9. 1) Condos – I would have said no years ago, now – not so sure. Depends on too many factors for a simple answer. Location, housing market, condo fees, type of neighbourhood, type of condo … Pros – if something big breaks, it’s not your problem (generally). Roof, water heater, flooding – none of that your issue to deal with. Cons – can’t control everything about your space (like an apartment), don’t really own everything.

    2) Never lived in a condo myself, but have friends who do. Two positives, one negative. Starting with the bad, they had terrible neighbours who figured everything was their business and policed all the rules of the condo units. Patio umbrella was too high (by three inches) and they were forced to take it down, that sort of thing. The positives: One had her shingles blow off in a storm and got to pass that problem on to others. The other met his best friend there and has formed a solid community with the people he lives near.

    3) Without knowing the market, it’s hard to say if the grant is worth it. $10k sounds like a good deal, but only if you’re not pricing yourself up much higher than that $10k.

    4) Location was less important to us than cost, but was definitely a factor. There are some areas of the city we didn’t want to live in, and we wanted easy access to parks.

    5) Any fear is a legit fear – it affects your ability to enjoy where you live.

    6) Having terrible neighbours is no more a problem than it would be in an apartment. Most places I know of have regulations on things like noise, odours, etc, so it can just come down to doing your best to ignore them when you can and deal with issues when you have to.

    7) It’s no worse than being apartment poor, which is the situation I was in. When rent is more or less equal to a mortgage payment, you just kind of make do. Our bank has been very helpful as well, it must be said.

    Hopefully that helps a bit.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you! This helps a lot! The issues with neighbors and HOAs in condos is what worries me the most. I have a friend who had to fix damage in her home from a neighbor’s toilet flooding, because the HOA didn’t cover it. So, that’s my biggest fear with going with a condo.

      Like

  10. Hi! Here are some of my thoughts/opinions.

    Condo nay. You set out to buy a house. Better to rent longer than settle.

    Bad neighbors: Your neighbors will come and go. We are on our third set right now. We had good, bad, and good again.

    Location is important. I never thought I would buy in the neighborhood I did. But what I love is the location. Super close to freeways, a park, coffee, grocery. Those things actually do make a difference in convenience.

    Haunted: You need to feel comfortable in your house. I’d trust your gut.

    House poor: It slowly just becomes another bill. Hard at first, but then your budget just absorbs it. We found ourselves not going out as much when we bought our house, so that saved money for mortgage. It helps your credit!!! My credit is soooo much better now that pre-house!

    Buying now with grant: I understand wanting to buy when you feel it’s time and the stars align financially. We bought when it was super cheap and put well over 30 offers in during the 6 months it took us to finally get an accepted offer. It was sooooo discouraging, and I wanted to give up every day. But I’m glad I stuck with it. Now, this is not my favorite house, forever home, etc. But I don’t regret it. I’ve tried to make it our own – slowly but surely. You are a great decorater. You can turn a lemon into lemonade fast!

    Hope that helps!!

    Those are my two cents!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, friend!! What is hard right now is that most of the homes we can afford are in undesirable neighborhoods. Condos are more in line with our budget in more preferable neighborhoods. I just saw a condo along the river and there is a spectacular view of the mountains from the balcony. It’s a bummer homes are just not in our range right now.

      Like

  11. “Permanence scares the ever-loving shit out of me.”

    This is a valid statement, don’t ignore it, especially when you love freedom. The permanence of constant options is heaven, anything that clamps down on that is like like herpes or craft glitter: that shit follows you everywhere. It might have something to do with being a brilliant extrovert brought up in stifling Midwestern conservatism under the guise of ecological hippydom, but I have very strong opinions about anybody telling me what I’m allowed to do. Eat glitter, you low fat mayo-suckin’ cable-watchers!

    Where was I? Oh, right.

    Listen up, buttercup, I’ve read a lot of experts on financial management, a LOT, and they all say the same thing summed up neatly into this little aphorism: The wealthy buy assets, the poor buy liabilities, and the middle class buy liabilities believing they are assets.

    Let’s break it down. If you buy something and it immediately is worth less than you paid, that’s a liability. Think of a liability as something that produces no income and is probably gonna hurt you later. Doughnuts are liabilities, they turn into shit and big pants, hopefully not simultaneously. Cars, too. They rarely produce anything tangible (ignoring dudes without mufflers) but they do produce debt, stress, and often, babies. Ever added up all the expenses of your vehicle for half a decade and divided by six? Including gas? Do you have that much disposable money in an extra account? Then, it’s a liability. Don’t talk to me about “transportation,” that’s a conversation best had on the bus. “Freedom,” however, IS a valid claim. Sooo much cheaper than therapy and scotch.

    Where was I?

    The rich think of money as an employee that works for them. They invest in things that definitely pay out some sort of interest, then they only spend the interest. Granted, they usually have a perverse amount of commas in their bank statements with which to play this game but most of them didn’t start out that way. They played a smart game to get there. Smart like driving by Starbucks and making their own damned coffee. Smart like ignoring lingerie catalogs in favor of nudity (men are very easy to convince on this issue). Smart like finding the free stuff out there for entertainment (I am Level Expert on this one) and learning to fry their own damned chicken. Smart like hanging out with smart people who make them feel rich instead of dumb people who commiserate about being poor. It’s the little things. Read this: http://yourfamilyfinances.com/2009/12/03/the-wealthy-buy-assets/

    I have some chicken to fry.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. My father was a real estate agent in addition to being a restaurant owner. The best advice he gave me was wait until a home needs to be sold quickly b/c of a death in a family. Everyone wants to just get rid of the house. Being house poor sucks beyond belief. Honestly, I’ve been house poor for like a decade. Owning a house is sooo overrated! Dude seriously, if you like your apartment and the rent is low, fucking rent forever. TRUST ME!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I LOVE my apartment, but pets aren’t allowed, and my life is legit not complete without a dog. Also, my fourplex has to share the W/Din the basement with the duplex next door. It SUCKS BALLS. I’m so over sharing a W/D. I’d just find a new place to rent, but it’s seriously cheaper right now to buy. I mean, it’s still fucking expensive to buy, but there are mediocre two bedroom apartments renting for $1300 a month right now. It’s balls to the wall crazy! #balls

      Liked by 1 person

      1. In my mind it shouldn’t be that expensive. I’ll see if I can find more info on the “death homes”. Honestly now that I’m sober I think your best bet is finding a good agent with a ton of connections. They know the back story as to why someone is selling and again, families just want to settle the estate and willing to take a cheap price. There are also foreclosures that are priced great.

        Liked by 2 people

      1. I don’t know. I just know my father alerted me of a home that the family was trying to get rid of fast, so we literally named the price. I guess you could be real with your real estate agent and say when a property becomes available based on a funeral, you could tell them to alert you??

        Liked by 2 people

  13. I recently purchased a beautiful condo after living in a 3 bedroom house. I wanted a pool and jacuzzi.
    Location was important because I wanted to be closer to the heart of Vegas and closer to where my best friend lives.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s a good area too. I know. It is totally reasonable. That’s one reason I moved here from So. Cal to start over. I hope you consider it. I would love to be more then just a WordPress friend, if you want.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. There are single family homes here in decent area’s for $100K or under if you look. If you consider moving here, let me know and I can give you my Realtors info. Can I give you my email this way?

        Liked by 2 people

  14. Sorry, I hadn’t finished. Make sure you can afford the association and there are some rules that if you plan on ignoring, be discrete.
    I wouldn’t worry to much what time of year to buy. A good realtor can always help you get a good deal.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Lots of good advice here and I’m WAY late to the party. But don’t buy something you don’t love. Location is only important if you hate the area, the commute, etc.

    I used to have a townhouse….very little outdoor maintenance, so that was nice. But the fees go up every year, AND the rules are…dumb. We’ve had some run-ins with the association; a few peeps were hyped up over their perceived power….But not having to mow was kind of nice.

    When we moved, we kept the townhouse and are enjoying the rental income – like you said, rents are kind of nuts, so it pays the mortgage and then some.

    Anyway – with associations, read the rules VERY THOROUGHLY and swing over and talk to the neighbors. That will tell you a lot.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, the fact that HOAs can go up every year is a concern. The condos I can afford right now, are in an area I do not like. Like, pretty ghetto. The prices are so, so high. I can’t even buy in a preferred area. I really don’t know what to do.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Honestly, I’d wait. I don’t think being house-poor is smart….it’s so incredibly stressful to be out of money, and houses just COST more, especially at first because you suddenly need all this…stuff.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. That’s a really good point, and one I’ve definitely considered. However, here’s my problem- I don’t get to have pets in my apartment. Rents are even more expensive than mortgages right now. If I want a dog in the foreseeable future I need to buy 😢

        Liked by 1 person

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