Post # 1
I don’t know how anyone buys a house in California. I just went to look at a foreclosure today that is listed at 399k, and had a parade of people barging into my open house. We make almost 100,000 a year and we would barely qualify for this place. We pay $1775 in rent which would jump to $2300+ add water and trash which our landlord pays. It would easily be $2500 just for the housing cost, property taxes, PMI, and water and trash.
Factor in 3.5 to 5% dowwn ($13,965 to $19,950)
Closing costs of 3% ($11970)
New appliances since there isn’t even a stove (3,500-5,000)
Inspection fees (600-1200)
cost of termite tenting (2000)
We are getting into the 32-38k territory, for a 930 sq foot 2 bedroom 1 bath with a small studio office out back. I just want to cry.
We work so hard, have no debt other than a car payment (which we only took because we got such a great financing deal, otherwise we would have paid cash). DH has been employed for seven years through his small business, and I have a new job that I thought paid pretty well. We are 32 years old and neither of us have ever owned. We still do laundry with freakin quarters. This isn’t even in our first choice neighborhood!
My agent told me we would have to offer over listing because someone will come along and who wants the neighborhood or doesn’t have other options and drive it up. We can’t match that. My husband says they all just go into credit card debt, which we are not willing to do.
I’m so frustrated. I’m tired of trying to be responsible, but seeing everyone else just get in deeper and deeper in debt.
Post # 3
Fiance is from Cali and has expressed interest in moving back there when I am finished with school and for this exact reason is why I’m putting my foot down with a big solid “NO WAY!”.
We can get a 4 bedroom new house with a nice yard and finished basement here for what it would cost to just get a 2 bedroom older house there. No thanks!
Post # 4
This is one of the big reasons why my husband and I are leaving. Home prices are insane in CA. We want to have kids and have me stay home. A house and kids on one income is just not possible here. Back where my husband is from, we could get a huge house with land for a whole lot less.
Post # 5
I know how you feel. We live in the Washington DC area, and the real estate prices are insane here too. We want to move back to North Carolina where we can actually afford to buy a nice house.
Post # 6
That’s why Darling Husband and I moved from Orange County to Raleigh, North Carolina the day after we got married. You can practically buy a mansion out here for $500k, although Darling Husband and I will be looking at houses in the $100-200k range.
Post # 7
We got lucky, when we bought in the San Fran area in November.
My Father-In-Law supplied about 30% of the down payment.
We bought in a city that doesn’t have transfer fees, so our closing costs were lower.
And those &*$^*&%# all-cash buyers that are snapping everything up and bid ahead of us decided that the master bedroom was too small and pulled out, giving us a shot.
We also bought a townhome that is 3 years old, so termites and other issues that all the 100+ yr old bungalows and such around here have are not an issue for us. Our layout is also way better, and our place is suuuuuper energy efficient. We got 1500 sq ft for half a million instead of 950 sq ft, which felt like such a coup!
We also make decent money for the area, so the $2400/mo we pay after taxes, insurance, HOA etc is still only 22% of our takehome, thank god.
Post # 8
Oh, and we paid $35k over asking, and there were 10 bids on our townhouse (and we were only the 2nd highest bid). So I definitely think you need to bid over asking, if the area you are looking is like that. There’s so little inventory right now, it’s insane!
Post # 9
Honestly, owning a home isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. It’s a lot of work and it IS expensive and in many cases, the ROI isn’t much more than inflation. It sounds like in your situation, trying to find a rental that makes you happy (like a place with its own washer and dryer) might be a good option?
Post # 10
I’m so sorry to hear that you’re experiencing a rough time with the housing market too. My finance and I have been looking since January because the rates for mortgages are so low. Its very discouraging when you go to see a house – the very first day its on the market- on a snowy, Thursday night in northern VA and 18 people have already seen it! It made us feel nervous that we’d never find a place with all of the competition, unless we moved an hr+ away from work. Luckily, we just got a contract accepted on a house a few weeks ago and it fits all of our “must haves.” We had to go a little over list price, but its worth it because we locked in the house we wanted. I hope the best for you! I’m sure you’ll find the right house soon, just don’t stop looking! As long as the house has the basic floorplan you want, you can always make small upgrades to make it a house you will love.
Post # 11
Ugh, I feel your pain! We live in Boston and it is ridiculous here, too. We are in the classic conundrum of wanting to be closer to the city… but not being able to afford to buy closer to the city. Our friends bought a 1300sf condo, 3br, for $400k last year… one town further out from us. I feel like we are going to end up moving further out and still may not be able to stay under $400k… by the time we are ready to buy, at least a year from now, we’ll be starting to have kids and will want at least 3br if not 4. Since hopefully we’d stay there for at least 5 years.
I am so sick of renting, but am trying to come to terms with the fact that it may be at least a few years before we are in a position to buy something that fits our lifestyle.
Post # 12
@daybyday: Depending on where she lives in CA, renting is MUCH more expensive than owning. Rent in San Francisco went up 14% over the last 12 months. We pay $2400 all in each month on our townhome, but to rent it would cost about $3100 (we know two neighbors who recently rented theirs out in the last couple of months).
Post # 13
I’ll join your pity party 🙁
A 3-bedroom 50+ year old semi-detached house with a tiny back yard, no front yard, and no parking that we liked just sold for over $1.2 million. We don’t want to move from our neighbourhood, so we rent a 500 sq one bedroom for $1700/month + utilities and insurance. To buy the place we’re living in will optimistically be $350+k according to our realtor. I know compared to NYC, that’s nothing, but it gets me down that we can’t afford to purchase a place of our own.
Post # 14
@crayfish: there are insane prices in the bay area but not everywhere. parts of the bay area are still very reasonable. Darling Husband and i pay $1250/month for a nice size 1br in alameda with ALL utilities included (even cable!). buying is definitely not an option nor would it make sense for us with our rent being so cheap.
@justelope: i totally feel you. we’re never going to be able to buy here. i just went through some open homes with my mom today and the prices are insane. we saw a 3br 3ba home for over $1 million. there were also a few 2br 1 ba homes – one for $760k and the other for $560k (that one needed a lot of work). i’m ok with it because i don’t want the maintenance costs/taxes, etc of owning. i refuse to leave my town. i love it here. it’s close to both of our families and our friends (and our jobs). what part of california are you in?
Post # 15
I’m on the other end. Trying to sell a house in an overcrowded market. It’s already at a foreclosure price because of all the other foreclosures near it. It’s priced literally 20k BELOW what I owe the bank, so even if it sold, I wouldn’t be much better off. I’m about to start renting it out, but when you rent out a house, your taxes DOUBLE and your insurance TRIPLES. Now, the person who comes in and buys my house and stays in it 5-7 years… they will make a pretty penny when they sell it. That makes me ill. 🙁 It’s only a 5 year old house.
Post # 16
It’s all about location. You can probably buy a house in Sacramento for under 150k. Walnut Creek goes for about 600k, go a little north to Concord and it goes down to 170k. Be willing to get a fixer and fix it yourself and you can save yourself some cash- but even then you’ll be competing with flippers.