Background info: I've done some serious thinking. And I mean serious. I'm analytical so there's really no such thing as a snap decision in my world most of the time. (Unless it involves the purchase of books or shoes.) So I have decided that with the housing market being so down, now might be a good time to try to sell my condo and buy a house. Yes, this means taking a loss on my condo, but if I wait until the market improves to a point where I won't take a loss on my condo, I will have to pay much more for a house. I'll save more by buying now than I'll gain by waiting for the market to rebound; so from a net approach, I'll technically be 'gaining' at the end of the day, even though it's an unrecognized gain.
Makes sense, right? Well today our friend Ben Bernanke and his other buddies decided to drop rates 3/4 of a point, moving the Fed Funds Rate to .25%. That is crazy low. Which is good for people buying houses. Which means, if I can sell my condo, I can get a really nice rate on my mortgage, which I mentioned in passing to a co-worker, we'll call him Tim. To which he responded -
"Really? You want to buy a house? Are you sure? Do you realizeAnd so on and so on... I explained that although I don't do any yard work now, I'm already cleaning/doing laundry/etc, and actually look forward to having a yard so I can have a little garden, etc. My co-worker, Pat, that sits next me piped in & said, "Lisa's an independent woman, I don't think you have to worry about her handling all that."
you'll have to go home from work, clean the house, do the laundry, and also mow
the yard or shovel the snow on your own?"
Well, this didn't stop Tim from continuing to try to convince me that buying a house was a really horrible decision to make. He continued by saying,
"You do realize you'll be paying for water, sewage, heat, and garbage now,
right? And insurance and taxes and ..."
This is when I cut him off and curtly reminded him that I worked in the mortgage industry for 4 years and UNDERWROTE PEOPLE'S MORTGAGES. Seriously. I looked at people's income, assets, and expenses, and told them whether or not they could qualify for a loan. I know the ins and outs of the application process. I know about dti ratios. LTV. PMI. Hazard insurance premiums. I can explain why the bank collects a certain number of months for your escrow account. I know how it works. I might know more about how it works than the person that processes my loan.
I have a college education and will have an MBA in about 6 months. If I can't figure out whether or not I can afford a house, then I shouldn't be working in finance.
I am sure he is looking out for my well-being and just wants to make sure I don't make a mistakes, but I just wanted to shout I am not an idiot. Above all, the most frustrating thing is that chance are, if I was married, he wouldn't be grilling me. But because I am a single woman, I need some guy to tell me that I have to pay for water (what? it's not free?). Gee, thanks for the reminder, captain obvious. And that I need to pay taxes and insurance (which I am currently doing on my condo).
I don't know why I even let what he say get to me. I know I shouldn't care what people think or say, but seriously. I'm almost 28. I don't need unsolicited advice.
* phew * Ok, got that all off my chest. You know what I am thankful for, though? I am thankful for the fact that I talked about all of this with my mom last night after I got home from meeting w/ my awesome realtor. And she didn't verbally ambush me and ask me if I needed to get my head examined. She listened to me and agreed that it sounded like I was going about this the right way. And trust me, my parents are not the kind of parents that agree with everything I say or do. If they disagree, they tactfully do so and explain their reasoning.
But my mom didn't disagree. She listened and I got off the phone as excited as I was when I called her. If my condo sells, I am going to have a house in a neighborhood I'll love! I can finally have dinner parties. I can finally own a grill! I'll have a spare bedroom for visitors.
So all I can say is, thank God I have the kind of parents that raised me to be independent. And thank God they are so supportive and helpful and encouraging. Clearly there are enough buzz killers around. And next time, I guess I'll just have to tell them to 'buzz off'.