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xagent
 
Buying a home

I'm 26, and I live in San Francisco. I've been renting now for the past 5 years, and lived in 3 different places. Apartment hunting for rooms on Craigslist SUCKS and is insanely competitive, rents are insane here. So, I've been thinking why not just get my own place? Perhaps a 2 bedroom, and rent out the other room. Rather than pay $1500 in rent and live in a place that's not my own, I'd be making monthly mortgage payments instead and the place would be mine.

Problem is, I have no experience with this. I don't even really understand how mortgages work. I've never taken out a loan before, except for a car, which I've since paid off(sold my car - didn't need one living in the city). Have no outstanding debts, and I have a stable job and income. No family, pets, other other drains on my income.

Any tips? Should I do this? How do I even get started... get a real estate agent first? Or go to my bank first? Can someone point me to any good online resources for first time home buyers and how mortgages work?

To clarify - I would most likely be purchasing a flat or condo. Perhaps a 1 bedroom, maybe a 2 or 3 bed which I could rent out (and believe me, this would be easy). . What would typical mortgage payments be like? What are down payments usually like?
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Last edited by xagent; 11-24-2012 at 05:12 PM..
Old 11-24-2012, 05:06 PM xagent is offline  
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cokezeroholic
 
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Renting is not always the best option. I think I heard that San Fran is one of the places where it's better to rent an apartment than own a home, but I could be wrong.

I wouldn't hit the ground running with an agent just yet, and a lot of them are just looking for commission. Maybe you should see what type of loan you can get pre-approved for at a bank so you have at least some idea of what you can and can't realistically afford. Just type in "first time home buyer" in google and you can get an overwhelming amount of tips, guides, suggestions, etc. When we bought our house we used a friend who was a real estate agent to get us started in the right direction. We didn't go to a bank first to see what we could really afford and all we really did was look at new build houses/neighborhoods.
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Old 11-24-2012, 05:17 PM cokezeroholic is offline  
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Rancidpunk666
 
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Ya, owning a home home sucks. I'd suggest a town house or a condo.

Property taxes are insane for houses, much less for a condo as usually you only own the property the condo sits on, not yard and driveway.

Plus exterior repairs are rediculous on a house. Usually with a condo or townhouse you only own the interior, so if the roof leaks you're not financially responsible.

Also take into account landscaping and lawn maint which can quickly add up

I don't now about where you live but our hoa fees also include snow removal which is a huge mega plus


For a non FHA loan or a loan you don't need to purchase insurance for you are looking at 20-30% down.

Mortgage rates are well below 4% fixed for 30 years.

I don't know what places go for in your are but I'd go to the bank asking for 180k, and ask for the approval letter to not include an amount on it.

Ie:: you get approved for 150k, your looking at a place for 135k. You offer 120k the realtor and the seller are not going to budge.
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Old 11-24-2012, 05:39 PM Rancidpunk666 is offline  
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lollersk8s
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Someone I know pays $300 every month for HOAs on his condo. It isn't anything ultra fancy either.

Really owning a home isn't scary. Just don't buy a run down pile of shit unless you know what you're doing. For example I have $0/mo HOA fees - so instead of spending money on that every month I soldered an elbow joint the other day after it developed a pinhole leak in the garage ceiling. Stuff like that crops up, yes, but even if i had to pay a plumber it would be a couple hundred max.

Roof wise if it's concrete tile for example and none of the felt is exposed due to slipping tiles - there is nothing to wear out or burn through for 20-30 years. Just avoid shake shingles (wood) and crap like that unless you intend to replace it yourself with something more modern.

My parents live in a VERY nice neighborhood and their HOAs are about $130/year. People don't believe when they tell them - the area looks quite nice with mature trees and huge islands dividing most streets; houses are set off the road a couple hundred feet.

Condos are nice because you do share maintenance fees with others for example on pool maintenance and common areas but... you still pay for it. Not to mention less square footage and all that.

Last edited by lollersk8s; 11-24-2012 at 06:40 PM..
Old 11-24-2012, 06:35 PM lollersk8s is offline  
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Rancidpunk666
 
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Well, when you loo at the big picture, we pay 110 a month

It covers trash, landscaping, snow removal, exterior maintenance issues, common area with a weight and cardio room, billiard and ping pong tables and a huge flat screen with an Xbox 360.

Snow removal around here runs 20 bucks a push, twice a day and if it snows 10 days a months dec-march 60 pushes that's 1200 a year just for snow removal.

Condos are great for singles, married with 0-1 kids
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:02 PM Rancidpunk666 is offline  
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Scatman
 
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Everybody in this thread is spot on. I'll add just a couple pointers from my own experiences:

1) Make sure all your finances are in order. No outstanding debts, no over-limit credit cards, etc.
2) When evaluating and comparing houses, separate the stuff that you can change vs. the stuff you can't. You can't change a house's surrounding neighborhood, your commute to work, and amount of parking (big issue for a condo). You can change whether you want an extra garage, how the interior is laid out, etc.
3) There's a special home loan out there, I forget the designation, but it allows you to apply for a home loan and roll any approved renovation costs into the loan. So if you find a fixer-upper and need to get a lot of work done, with this loan, you should be able to get a general contractor to draw up a list of repairs and get it taken care of. I'm sure there's thousands of little regulations and rules, and there's a limit of how much you can get for renovations as percentage of the loan, etc.

Good luck!
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:05 PM Scatman is offline  
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s0me0nesmind1
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xagent View Post
I'm 26, and I live in San Francisco. I've been renting now for the past 5 years, and lived in 3 different places. Apartment hunting for rooms on Craigslist SUCKS and is insanely competitive, rents are insane here. So, I've been thinking why not just get my own place? Perhaps a 2 bedroom, and rent out the other room. Rather than pay $1500 in rent and live in a place that's not my own, I'd be making monthly mortgage payments instead and the place would be mine.

Problem is, I have no experience with this. I don't even really understand how mortgages work. I've never taken out a loan before, except for a car, which I've since paid off(sold my car - didn't need one living in the city). Have no outstanding debts, and I have a stable job and income. No family, pets, other other drains on my income.

Any tips? Should I do this? How do I even get started... get a real estate agent first? Or go to my bank first? Can someone point me to any good online resources for first time home buyers and how mortgages work?

To clarify - I would most likely be purchasing a flat or condo. Perhaps a 1 bedroom, maybe a 2 or 3 bed which I could rent out (and believe me, this would be easy). . What would typical mortgage payments be like? What are down payments usually like?

I've heard these days that actually have apartment complex's that will sell you an apartment. Never heard of it until someone told me.

Either way, If single I would love the idea of the complex doing general maintenance instead of you discovering new things like taking care of a lawn every week . Seriously, I promise you that it will be more maintenance work than you can ever imagine before getting it. But either way, the thought of renting an apartment for $1k+ to... RENT... and never own... has always baffled me. I would definitely go for owning something either way. There are plenty of places that have apartment rent out for $1 - 1.5k per month! Yet in the same location, there are plenty of great homes that cost ~$900 in monthly pay+taxes (when averaged out).

So the choice is, paying $1k - $1.5k and own nothing, or pay $900+ to own a home. But like I said, with it comes work.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:10 PM s0me0nesmind1 is offline  
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U Caught The Gay
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cokezeroholic View Post
Renting is not always the best option. I think I heard that San Fran is one of the places where it's better to rent an apartment than own a home, but I could be wrong.

Nope, you are absolutely correct.

http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/buying-a-house/
Old 11-24-2012, 08:49 PM U Caught The Gay is offline  
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IcW@teR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rancidpunk666 View Post
Well, when you loo at the big picture, we pay 110 a month

It covers trash, landscaping, snow removal, exterior maintenance issues, common area with a weight and cardio room, billiard and ping pong tables and a huge flat screen with an Xbox 360.

Snow removal around here runs 20 bucks a push, twice a day and if it snows 10 days a months dec-march 60 pushes that's 1200 a year just for snow removal.

Condos are great for singles, married with 0-1 kids

i'm gunna take a wild guess that sf condo fee's would be more in the 500-skys the limit rage a month
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:05 PM IcW@teR is offline  
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Rancidpunk666
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IcW@teR View Post
i'm gunna take a wild guess that sf condo fee's would be more in the 500-skys the limit rage a month

One more reason the left coast sucks.
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Old 11-25-2012, 07:59 AM Rancidpunk666 is offline  
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IcW@teR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rancidpunk666 View Post
One more reason the left coast sucks.

same exact shit in ny, boston, miami, dc, etc....
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Old 11-25-2012, 02:47 PM IcW@teR is offline  
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Rancidpunk666
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IcW@teR View Post
same exact shit in ny, boston, miami, dc, etc....

I like living in my shit hole Ohio
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Old 11-25-2012, 03:03 PM Rancidpunk666 is offline  
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Rancidpunk666
 
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No I didn't name my pooper Ohio
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Old 11-25-2012, 03:04 PM Rancidpunk666 is offline  
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Xcric
i have 3 girlfriends but they dont know it yet
 
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you should ask ghettoraid for advice. he's good at buying and selling things i hear.
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Old 11-25-2012, 05:17 PM Xcric is offline  
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JPF_
 
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I hate South Carolina with a passion......

But dam is the housing cheap as hell out here.

Just saw a 3k sq ft house, 5 br 3 bath for 175k......recent build too no one has lived in it.
Old 11-25-2012, 07:50 PM JPF_ is offline  
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