I’m reflecting on Ryan and I buying our first home in 2014, and I’m truly thinking about the question: were we ready?
Let me give you a little bit of a back story:
We bought our home in October of 2014 and sold it in October of 2015. I was 22 when we bought the home, and Ryan was 23 (almost 24). My work wanted to move me out to Colorado, so it seemed like the right thing to do. I’d truly say God lined up everything and made everything work. The first person who looked at our house, ended up buying it.
Currently, we live in an apartment. We went from 2,100 square feet to 675 square feet. It was an adjustment: no yard, one bedroom, one bathroom, etc. But, it’s been better than expected for me.
As I’ve mentioned before, I tend to be kind of a nomad or never really content with where I live. I always want to change, and I like having that flexibility. But, I struggle because we want to have kids eventually, and I don’t want to be the family that always moves. So, when we bought our house I thought it was the right idea, but now I’m thinking I wasn’t ready.
Mortgages are stressful.
We pay more for our apartment than we did for our house, but if something goes wrong, we don’t have to pay to fix it. When you buy a house, you fix it. That money comes out of your pocket.
You are stuck.
I was 22 years old going on 40. Yes, you can always sell your house, but it isn’t like breaking a lease. You’re responsible for the house. If it doesn’t sell, you might have to take a loss? Or possibly stay there when you’re ready to move?
Starting out is expensive.
We bought a new construction home, and let’s just say we had at least an extra $4,000 in expenses. We had to buy a washer and dryer. And, we also had to buy blinds. BLINDS ARE EXPENSIVE. SO SO SO EXPENSIVE. Even if you get the cheap ones, they are expensive. Consider yourself warned.
I wouldn’t say we settled, but there was definitely things we found out we didn’t like. We had a really small yard. And, that is fine, but it got old quick. There wasn’t room to spread out and just be outside. We also had a back load garage, where you drove down an ally. Neither of us had ever lived in one, and it sounded okay but it wasn’t. There was no place to wash your car. And, our front windows then were really close to the sidewalks. It sounds weird, I know, but then if your expensive blinds are open, you feel like someone walking on the sidewalk is in your living room.
Your time withers away.
There is always something to do at the house. Paint, clean, you name it. It literally takes me 30 minutes to clean my apartment. It took me an hour and a half to clean the house. Think about those things, sometimes it’s nice to not have to clean three bathrooms.
Now, done with the seriousness. It’s time for funny things you don’t think about . . .
AHHHHHHHH! My hatred for flat baseboards. The baseboards that are flat on top. They are a pain in the butt to clean. The dust just sits there, but you have to get on your hands and knees to clean them. I’m not saying don’t buy a house because of baseboards, but seriously you will stare at that dust and hate your life each and every time you have to clean it.
Great in theory, however ours would never stay on unless it saw you moving. Ryan and I like to do a lot of DIY projects, so if we were painting something, the light would turn off. We’d be jumping up and down to try and turn the light back on. It was hilarious and annoying all rolled up into one.
Honestly, we had the best neighbor and the worst neighbor. And, you just get what you get. Our bad neighbor . . . he wrote passive aggressive notes on our car if we parked even slightly in front of his house. Let me remind you, we had back load garages, so it was the public road in front of our houses. And, he could still fit 2 cars in front of his house, but he still wrote us notes with the date and a number circled. That number kept increasing each time it happened. So, when I went to confront him about it, he said it wasn’t him. Fast forward: my parents parked half way in front of his house . . . he proceeded to move his car from his garage to the front of his house and then cussed my mom out. He also called me a “little girl”, and I just thought . . . this little girl can afford the same house you can, mister. So, ya neighbors can be a drag.
I’m not saying owning a home was a bad thing. I’m just saying I wasn’t ready. It’s a big decision, and if I could go back, I wouldn’t buy one the year I got married. I would’ve waited a bit to settle in. But, I tend to do things backwards, so now we live in an apartment.
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– the Helm Household