03 May 2009

House hunting

I am moving to New City in the fall to begin a PhD program. I could (a) find a rental, find roommates, and pay rent every month, or (b) purchase a home, live in one room and rent out the others, and pay off part of a mortgage every month. Because the housing market is so low, mortgage payments would be equal to rent payments on 2 or 3 bedroom apartments (should I be awarded a mortgage by the powers-that-be; my income, though guaranteed, is by no means large). As a first-time homebuyer, I'd also get a nifty tax credit if I choose to buy a home. Weighing all the positives and negatives of purchasing a home, I've decided that I'm seriously interested in going for it.

Yesterday, I drove to New City to scope out potential properties. I saw condos, single family detached homes, and townhouses. I went to every neighborhood in which I'd consider living. I met several real estate brokers, each of whom told me how many years they'd been in the business and how hard they worked. (Does anyone else find it strange that real estate brokers are some of the only people whose jobs are not looks-dependent [to differentiate from models and actors] but who still have their pictures on their business cards and advertisements?) And then, when all that was over, I went home and took a nap. It was exhausting!

The bottom line is that I think I'd like to buy a property in New City. The idea of living in one place for more than twelve months at a time is very appealing, as is the thought of having an investment that will increase in value over time (this market must go up, right?). It's blowing my mind a little that I can actually do this, but I'm very, very excited by the idea. I have to keep reminding myself to finish my schoolwork; it's so easy to be distracted by real estate listings online. But soon, classes will end, and I'll be able to go full swing into home buying mode. I'm looking forward to it!

No comments:

Post a Comment