How does anyone afford a house?

posted 3 years ago in Home
Post # 2
1016 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

“My husband and I plan on only taking a 15 year loan and pay it in 7 years once we decided to buy a home, and that seems like it would be IMPOSSIBLE in other states.” 7 years is how long I’ll take to pay off my CAR lol…my condo, no friggin way! Not at all possible for the vast majority of people where I live. That said, lots of people here like big houses! We took the maximum ammortization and are in a small condo in the ‘burbs. You might not believe we net well over 6 figures, and all we could afford was a small plain new build condo far away from downtown. The downpayment was rooooooouuuuugh to save for, rent was crippling and the market was so tight landlords could get away with murder and you were totally at their mercy for a good reference. Housing is just goddamn expensive. 

My parents built a custom house just outside of Houston. What you can buy there vs. here for the same money is unfrigginreal!

Post # 3
4147 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I can speak a bit to Canada…In our case, my husband is very money savvy and it helps that he makes a good living of course.  We both also have excellent credit which is a huge help on getting a mortgage.

We own three properties (a 5 bedroom house in the burbs, a condo in the burbs, and an inner city condo) and have 25 year loans on each one. Two of those are more than half paid off by doing bi-weekly payments, and also putting lump sums down when we can.  We also had a large down payment, from a previous sale, so that helped a lot too.  

The banks here seem to be a bit tougher on loaning money…you have to put 5% down (varies depending on your situation) on a principle residence, and any rental/recreation properties are 20%.  The interest rates are pretty good right now too…I think our first 2 properties have only 2.99% interest rates, and the third one is 3.04%.

I think it helps that there are options like 25, 30 and 35 year ammortizations, but I don’t know if we have options to do less or more here…hopefully someone else can add more insight!

Post # 4
2173 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

I *think* a lot of HGTV shows are filmed in Canada, and the numbers you see may be in Canadian dollars.  At least according to my FIL.

Post # 5
4042 posts
Honey bee

katy13:  Here in Coloardo, homes are pretty reasonable depending on what and where you buy. With recent raises, DH and I make six figures combined and we are building a home in a good area for about $270k. We are doing a 30 year mortgage, but will likely pay it off in about 15. 

Post # 6
2894 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

katy13: I grew up in Texas and I miss the real estate prices. We probably won’t buy and and plan to stay in our rent-controlled apartment until our landlord dies. 

Post # 7
7284 posts
Busy Beekeeper

katy13:  Well you definately don;t want to move to Australia then. The house prices here are absurd especially in the major cities. Rents are just as bad.

The standard loan here is 30 years with 10% down (though you can get 100% financing as well). 

If you have the right mindset and skills you can make the property market here work for you but alas most people just want to buy their McMansion straight up and end up in debt to the hilt.


Post # 8
579 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

katy13:  We are in the process of buying our first home at the moment. We wanted to buy a house house and not in a complex. We live in South Africa in the smallest yet most populated province so as you can imagine house prices are ridiculous. We have taken a 20 year loan. Chances are it will take that long to pay it off, although we will try when we can to make extra payments into the account. The house does need some work though so obviously any free money would first be used for that before extra payments. Does it scare me how large of a chunk of our monthly salaries is going to go into the house, hell yes but in the end it’s worth it to us. To us this was a priority because we don’t want to raise children in a complex and we looking to start trying in 5 years. Ideally we would like to have the place fixed up before we have children as well, hence why we are buying now

Post # 9
24 posts
  • Wedding: February 2015


We live in the Bay Area of California so everything costs a fortune, buying or renting.  Luckily salaries are usually higher, too.  The 30-year mortgage on our 3-bedroom house gives us the same monthly payment as our previous 1-bedroom apartment so it’s really not that much worse than renting – all property here is a challenge.  Keep in mind that most young people I know around here couldn’t have bought their houses without parental help on the down payment and the renting out of a room or two.  Plus, I don’t know anyone who aims to pay off their mortgage particularly early.  It’s a very different market than the midwest/south, where most of my family lives.  I am definitely jealous!

Post # 10
11604 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I live in DC which has an outrageous housing market.  We are on a 30 year mortgage, hoping to pay it off in 20 years.  But that’s just a pipe dream, really.  We were throwing over $2,000 a month on rent for a one bedroom, though, so we were ready to move regardless of the mortgage!

Post # 11
11668 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

save!!!! Then take a 30 year mortgage. 

Post # 12
5518 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 2012

I love watching HGTV but a lot of them are filmed in Canada where the property values are quite high.  I live in an expensive city on the east coast.  I imagine if I had a budget of near 1 mil I would probably get around 2000 sqft and if I wanted to be smack downtown it would be closer to 1000 sqft.  We have a 30 yr mortgage but intend to move in 7 years or so and hope the next house will be the last one and it wont be anywhere near 1 mil.

Texas always sounds like a great place to buy a home financially

Post # 13
507 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014 - Stevens Estate

I’m in Massachusetts and home prices here are high. When we bought our home 3 yrs ago it was when the housing market had all these foreclosed homes for cheap prices…so we jumped at the opportunity to be home owners, with a little help from our parents lol. But we have a 30yr mortgage…so our monthly payments are very reasonable. 30 yr mortgages are common with my area I think. 15 yr mortgages are for people who want to pay their house off quickly and can afford to do so..but paying a house off in 7 years is something I have not seen yet lol…but good for you if you can do it! But I agree …being a homeowner has come with a lot of extra responsibilities…most of which are expensive. It sucks when you run into a big problem with your house that is going to cost you a lot of money…happened to us twice now. But good luck to you!

Post # 14
627 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014 - Scottish Rite Cathedral (New Castle, PA)

katy13:  My FI and I do the same thing!! We live in Pittsburgh and combined make 6 figures. Our house is a 3 br, 3 bath, with a 3 car garage and came with an extra lot of land beside us (having a yard in the city is a big deal) and was $138k. We watch HGTV and smaller houses in the US go for $500k! I have no idea how it’s possible! We have friends that live in Boston, their salaries are basically the same as ours but the housing is at least $300k, how is that possible?? Watching HGTV we agreed that if we have to move it’ll have to be Texas or Tennessee!

Post # 15
498 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

Most of the HGTV shows are Canadian and houses are much more expensive here. Watching the HGTV shows based out of the USA makes me cry seeing as a house worth 1MIL in the city here would be worth $300,000 in the cities they show on the show down there.

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