Friday, July 24, 2009

More Thoughts About Buying a House

Last week I wrote that my wife and I have started contemplating the possibility of buying our own house. Over the past week we have continued with that thought process, and while we have not made up our minds yet, I think that the probability is now higher than it previously was. We continued to look at houses, and found a few that seemed both decent and within our price range. We also discussed the idea of buying a house with some friends who have recently bought their first house and they have been very helpful in getting us to think about additional aspects of this project.

Turns out that the searching for a house thing is pretty darn complicated: deciding on a price range, seeing all the different places, researching school districts, new vs. old, big vs. small, within walking distance of parks or stores, thinking about flood zones and earthquake prone areas (this is California, after all)... we haven't even started to look into the whole mortgage thing. The decisions seem endless and, unfortunately, as a couple, my wife and I are procrastinators when faced with choices that seem monumental. I gotta tell you - this process seems pretty intimidating to me right now.

I have decided to break down the process into small, bite sized chunks. I am starting by buying a couple of books on the topic of buying a first house. After I have read them, we'll get together with the broker that our friends recommended and I guess we'll take it from there. Fun stuff.

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3 comments:

frugal zeitgeist said...

Shadox, something that helped me was making a list of amenities and prioritizing it into deal-breakers, worth paying a little extra for, and nice to have but not critical. It made it much easier to compare the relative merits of each property. (I saw about twenty.)

I also had a consultation to my accountant, who also had a good real estate background. He helped me figure out which questions to ask that are specific to New York. Finally, I was able to get a preferential mortgage rate through a program between my employer and one of the big commercial banks, so that made the mortgage part easy. I know you work for a start-up, but it would be worthwhile checking for similar programs. Good luck!

Shadox said...

Frugal - very methodical... as I would expect from you organized people...

We're gonna wing it...

OK. Seriously, thanks for the advice. It seems like there's no getting away from the list.

My employer has very few benefits (medical insurance is all we get), and mortgage arrangements with lenders is not one of them...

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