What should be our starter home?

posted 3 years ago in Home
  • poll: Which Home Option?
    Option 1: Affordable Condo : (18 votes)
    22 %
    Option 2: House : (64 votes)
    78 %
  • Post # 3
    Member
    753 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2013

    We are probably going to do the condo thing and rent it out when we are ready to expand our family.. unless we can find a great deal on a little starter home 🙂 We are also just starting out looking for places

    Post # 4
    Member
    2627 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: November 1999

    Do you have a particular condo identified? Many will still allow what you list as the pros of a home. extra bedrooms and a garage. 

    Also consider, if you do move again in a few years and your condo is being rented out, will you want to buy again? Will you have a downpayment then or a plan to get one?  If you dont pay off your mortgage quickly, will renting it out cover most or all of your mortgage payment/maintenance/taxes?  

    Or will you have to sell whatever you are in to get your downpayment. In which case, based on your research of your area and these potential places, which will have more liklihood of maintaining its value or having an appreciation?

    Post # 5
    Member
    2555 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    @mnp:  because of HOAs, I will never choose condo as the best option. I wouldn’t choose a house with HOAs, either. 🙂

    Post # 6
    Member
    9412 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper

    @mnp:  If it is just a starter home, choose whatever will build the most equity the fastest. You don’t plan to keep it, so that should be the goal. It isn’t your family home, it’s a starter home. My first property was a town house, which I now rent (that’s how I started playing Monopoly). If renting is your goal, choose a desirable neighbourhood with at least the standard must have of 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.

    Post # 7
    Member
    3570 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2011

    @Asia:  +1 

    DH and I were in the process of buying a condo, and it made me so nervous.  The HOA did not have much reserves, and the monthly fee could change dramatically at any time.   

    Post # 8
    Member
    2243 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: January 2012

    I’d be careful with the condos. The resale market in many areas is very shaky so you’d either take a while to sell or be forced to lower your price. You’d likely have a better return on investment by buying a house in a popular area.

    Post # 9
    Member
    10384 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2010

    HOAs are not the devil. They cover all exterior maintenance, our heating/cooling systems, all landscaping, security systems, water, gas, and trash. I’ll never have to pay to replace a roof, siding, for any sort of landscaping equipment, never have to worry about replacing a heater on a moment’s notice and the hit to our savings, etc. I’d rather pay a few hundred a month then $15,000 for a new roof all at once.

    OP – do you live someplace where condos sell quickly? You can check the days-on-market stats on real estate websites. Where we live, they are everywhere and sell really quickly, so it was a logical choice for us.

    Post # 11
    Member
    4483 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: April 2015

    Depends on the area. We will almost definitely start out in a condo or townhouse. A nice single family would start at 300K and a nice condo is half that. We could probably stretch to afford a bit more, but it’s not worth it to us. On the other hand, neither of us has a hobby that requires a garage, and with a lot of family in the area, we’d hardly use a guest room. We’re also not interested in a lot (read:any) exterior maintenance, so we’re fine with paying $200 a month for that to be taken care of for us

    Post # 12
    Member
    11772 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: May 2013

    @mnp:  My first home was actually a mobile home! They cost about the same as a new car, so it was easiy affordable, and I was DONE with paying rent!Now DH and I live  in Boston, and I have a tenant in my mobile home in Vermont.

    Now here’s where my TERRIBLE life experience can help YOU: Renters are awful. The break things. They destroy EVERYTHING. The carpets, the walls, he floors, the appliances. I once found the guest bedroom closet doors in the shed!

    And they need things CONSTANTLY. “The heat isn’t working!” (Did you turn on the furnace?) “The toilet isn’t flushing!” (Are you pushing it down all the way?) “THE FRONT LIGHT ISN’T WORKING” (You… Can’t be serious. Put a new bulb in it!)

    So unless you live within 10 minutes of your property and are able to drop everything and get there to fix whatever their innane problem is, go for it. But if you’re considering moving, I wouldn’t suggest renting your place.

    Post # 13
    Member
    4483 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: April 2015

    Also, would the house be a dream home, or would you still want to move down the road? 

    Post # 15
    Member
    9412 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper

    @mnp:  I wanted to start building equity but I couldn’t afford my dream house at the time (nor did I have my dream partner, lol). My starter house was $300,000 and my dream house is…a lot more. But my starter house and subsequent rentals have allowed FI and I to be in our dream house before 30!

    Post # 16
    Member
    2555 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    @crayfish:  It just depends on what it covers and what the terms are (is the charge fixed at the time of signing, or is it variable?). You can put the same amount you might put into an HOA into a “house maintenance” savings account every month. That way when you do have to replace that roof (shouldn’t be any time soon on a home you just purchased unless you were swindled or hit by a natural disaster) you have the funds (which have been accrusing interest) But that way, when you have finished paying off your home, you won’t have to continue paying a monthly fee on it. Just depends on what works for you.

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