How Much House?
So I set out today with Mother to find a house for rent and saw one or two suitable places, one place that Schmoopie liked sight (and low ceilings) unseen, and then it happened. In the beautiful and out of financial reach area called Broadview, Mother spotted a house for sale. I hadn't been paying any attention to the places for sale as they are very expensive, and I don't yet have an understanding of the layout of the town. That last point being said, I would take anything in the Broadview area on proximity principle (proximity to Carkeek Park that I mentioned before). So Mother wanted to stop, and we stopped. Turns out it's a really nice brick house painted white with green trim, 2700+ square feet, hardwood floors, ginormous pines in the back, and it also happened to be near to $600,000. Fuck. No way I can afford that. Then I read the flier- 100% finance and interest only financing available. (begin Scooby voice) "Ruugh?" (end Scooby voice). Well, I'm inclined to think this is a bad idea, and I admittedly don't have a solid track record with personal finances. Mother, as is her wont, offered to loan me down payment money, which is ridiculous. That I would want to be beholden to her in that way is absurd. But here is the lingering thought. In a market such as this, I don't expect that a house of this caliber will be within our means (at least comfortably), and south of here in the mighty expensive San Francisco, interest only loans are not uncommon (where the geologic risks are even higher). If we rent a house, we're looking at $1700 - $2000 monthly (for the style and location we seek), but if this same dollar amount can satisfy an interest only mortgage (which may or may not be possible) for a house such as this, then the only remaining risk of note is that the house would depreciate. For frame of reference, this area is tres chic and the modus operandi seems to be to buy a $500,000ish house, scrape the lot flat and build a million dollar (or near to) "Falling Water"-wannabe new post-modern house in that place. The houses in the area are commonly $100,000 more than this one (and for no discernible reason). Yeah, you are maybe thinking by now that I'm rationalizing a bad idea, and I can't say that's not so- I'm trying to make sense of this. It also me be the rationalization of a good idea, and I don't know that I'm informed enough to know the difference. I've seen online mortgage calculators that are frequently contradictory, Some of them show rates that are near to the same rate for a conventional mortgage, making me wonder if accurate, what the hell? Other resources show rates that would be within our (perhaps uncomfortably tight) budget.
The bottom line is this- if you had seen this place, about 12 block from the water, and up high enough to have a heavenly view of the sound (you could see from the house, were it not for the HUGE pine trees- or maybe you can see through them in places) in an awesome neighborhood, dog friendly, and all these amenities, you'd be tortured too...
The hunt continues.