What is your current housing situation?

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What is your current housing situation?

Live for free with family
19
15%
Rent from family
8
6%
Rent a room you share with strangers
0
No votes
Rent your own room in a home shared with strangers
27
21%
Rent an apartment of your own
35
27%
Rent a whole house of your own
7
5%
Own (with mortgage) a home, but rent land (e.g. condo, mobile home, etc)
5
4%
Own (free and clear) a home, but rent land (e.g. condo, mobile home, etc)
1
1%
Own (with mortgage) a home on its own land
25
19%
Own (free and clear) a home on its own land
3
2%
 
Total votes: 130

Chen
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Chen » Wed May 21, 2014 7:22 pm UTC

Enuja wrote:In the market I live in (Chicago), the "condominium assessment fee," what you pay for your share of building upkeep, a reserve fund for major expenses (new roof, ect), heat if there's just one boiler in the building, maybe a door person, and other things, is often a good fraction of what rent for a simliar apartment would be. Condo assessments run from about $100 a month to around $600, with many being about $350 a month. Right now, I'm paying $412 a month in rent. Which tells you something about how financially undesirable owning would be, for me, here in Chicago. And like rent, condo fees go up over time. Since Phforrest is interested in reducing his ongoing expenses, condo fees probably seem very analogous to land rent (a unwanted fee that doesn't go away when you buy something), so he put them in the same category in the poll.


My condo fees are about 10% of my mortgage+taxes each month. That said they include main maintenance things that would need to be done even if I owned the whole building. They're in place so that someone in the building can't skimp on their share of maintenance if they're bad at handling money. It also ensures overall building maintenance continues and there's a fund for long term repairs, so that newcomers aren't then immediately saddled with a huge one time lump sum for a repair. For example, our projection show the roof will need replacement in 2022. Every year we're putting aside money into our reserve fund so that when 2022 comes along, we likely won't need to pay anything out individually since it's already covered. This money comes from the condo fees. If there were no fees, you'd just have a huge expense when you had to fix the roof instead. It also covers things like common area electricity, cleaning and general building upkeep (paint, common area light bulbs, snow clearing in the winter etc). These would all be things you'd pay for out of pocket anyways. So sure there'd be no "rent" each month per se, but you'd still have costs you have to pay.

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Enuja
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Enuja » Wed May 21, 2014 8:02 pm UTC

Sorry, Chen, I didn't mean to sound anti-condo. A big part of the reason that condo fees here are comparable to my rent is that, for the most part, condos are in nicer buildings, with better upkeep, than the type of apartments I'm renting. Personally, I think that buying isn't usually a sound investment (although it can be a good decision, I don't think buying makes most people money, and I think the fungible cushion of cash investments is a better safety net) and I think that condo fees are a great way to highlight the actual costs of building upkeep.

Also, I'm surprised that there is still no one who has answered this poll saying that they share a room with a non-family member. It is common in college dorms, and my ex husband, when he was in graduate school, actually rented a bed in a room with some college students.

DanD
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby DanD » Wed May 21, 2014 8:25 pm UTC

I rent a three bedroom apartment for myself in a Boston exurb, for which I'm paying about $1200 a month. I'm in my mid 30s and have a good and (for the moment) stable job.

However, I have owned two houses already, and moved out of both when I found work in a different city, the last one almost five years ago. Part of my reluctance to buy is the uncertainty of any job in the timeframe that owning a house requires (5-10 years, at a minimum), and partly because owning ends up being a hassle in taking care of the place. Also relevant is that for two of those five years, I still owned the last place, and had to sell it at a loss.

That being said, I find I am once again feeling twinges of wanting a workshop/blacksmith's forge/garden of my own, which may move me towards purchasing in the not impossibly distant future.

As far as the economic value of renting vs. buying a lot of things matter. I work in a reasonably specialized field, which means that when it comes time to find a new job, I am unlikely to be able to find one within easy commuting distance of my current location. Given my current environment, I suspect any move will be in the Boston area, but it might easily be two hours away by car during peak commuter hours, and that's more than I want to deal with daily. Therefore, owning would seriously lock down my possible future job prospects.

Likewise, regardless of what purchasing a condo would cost monthly , I am still able to put some savings into other investments at this point. That means that I am not counting on my house to provide a significant chunk of capital during retirement. And while it would be nice not to have a house payment in 15 or 30 years, I don't expect to be in one place long enough for that to happen, so that benefit is minimal.

In summary, at this point in my life, flexibility is more important than the possible benefits of owning, which would mostly come in the form of more freedom to modify my environment.
Last edited by DanD on Mon Jul 28, 2014 3:14 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Chen » Thu May 22, 2014 12:32 pm UTC

Enuja wrote:Sorry, Chen, I didn't mean to sound anti-condo. A big part of the reason that condo fees here are comparable to my rent is that, for the most part, condos are in nicer buildings, with better upkeep, than the type of apartments I'm renting. Personally, I think that buying isn't usually a sound investment (although it can be a good decision, I don't think buying makes most people money, and I think the fungible cushion of cash investments is a better safety net) and I think that condo fees are a great way to highlight the actual costs of building upkeep.


It was more a response to the whole "unwanted continuing expense" comment. My only point was that, sure, condo fees are a fixed and visible recurring expense. But it's money you'd likely be throwing at the problems later in any case. And likely in much larger amounts. I'll grant if you're good at saving/investing it could presumably be a bit more beneficial to just keep your money to yourself and pay out the big expenses when they come. That said, the vast majority of people are not good at saving.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby alessandro95 » Thu May 22, 2014 3:48 pm UTC

I currently live with my family in a condo, there's not much to say about it, but I'm planning to move to Germany for my university studies so I'm looking for a flatshare there
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Bloopy
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Bloopy » Thu May 22, 2014 11:18 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:I'm confused by the 'own a condo but rent the land' option. Is that common abroad?


Here in central Auckland, about 15% of apartment buildings are on rented land. The land is owned by major investors or indigenous trusts. It's called a leasehold property. These sorts of leases get renewed for long periods, eg. 20 or 100 years at a time. Occasionally the apartment/house owners will get the option to buy the land.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby ucim » Thu May 22, 2014 11:29 pm UTC

Bloopy wrote:Here in central Auckland, about 15% of apartment buildings are on rented land.
Can the landowner refuse to renew the lease, and demand that the buildings be torn down?

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Fri May 23, 2014 12:30 am UTC

Enuja wrote:I don't agree that owning a home is a good safety net. Even if you own a place, you have to pay taxes, you have to pay insurance, and you have to keep paying upkeep. My mom bought a house. And then a hurricane came through and put a tree on her roof. Yes, she had insurance, but homeowner's insurance is not free. It takes money to keep buying food, to buy clean water, and to keep any living situation in a good, supportive society (taxes) and to do the continuous upkeep a safe and secure living place provides. Often, rent is the best and cheapest long term way to pay the inevitable costs of a having a place to live.

But I do hope that, in addition to having more collective living spaces, our society starts to have more affordable tiny houses.

May I echo your sentiments and add one?

And; May we have People that can live near one another in Peace.

Secure housing may be a large step in the right direction.
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Pfhorrest
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri May 23, 2014 1:42 am UTC

On the topic of renting or "renting" land under an owned building: in my mobile home park I can't be evicted unless I either fail to pay rent or violate some very specific and reasonable rules about disturbing the other tenants or damaging property or things like that. There are also rent controls keeping the rental price from going up more than a trivial amount over time, except when people move in or out, and even then there are limits. The landlord can't just not renew the lease (it's a continuous month-to-month lease anyway, there is no specific renewal date) or raise the rent and make me leave because he wants more money. Nevertheless the money I pay is explicitly rent; that's what it's called in all the contracts and laws and everything. And if I fail to pay it, I can be forced to leave and take the building I own with me -- which despite the name is really not much more mobile than a custom-built house of the same size would be, requiring extensive specialized skills and equipment, which is why they're often being called "manufactured homes" now rather than "mobile homes" -- or else forfeit it to the landlord if I leave it behind when I go.

The condos I've previously looked into around here had similar terms: you own a part of a building (essentially an apartment), and can do whatever you want to the insides of that part of the building (which, really, doesn't amount to much more than cosmetic changes), but you have to pay the owner of the commons of the building (stairs and halls and the roof over all your heads and the land under your floors), and you can't be evicted unless you fail to pay that, or commit some egregious offense against the commons or other tenants. Some of them called it explicitly "rent", others said "HOA fees", but the practical upshot of them was the same in either case. I never checked but I imagine in that case you don't even get the option to take your property with you if you are forced to leave, because other peoples' property is structurally dependent on it, and removing one apartment from a building is just completely unfeasible.

It sounds like Bloopy's examples from NZ are probably similar to that. I'm actually curious to hear about the apartments that you supposedly can own land and all. How is that possible when you have say an upstairs neighbor whose apartment that he owns is directly above the same bit of land yours is? It seems like when your home is intrinsically connected to and dependent on the homes of others, it just couldn't be possible to own it outright; some part of "your" property would have to be a commons shared with others' property, and so not really all yours, so you'd be charged for access to that since it's not yours, and lose your home if you couldn't pay that charge. I can see how the entity that owns the commons could in turn be jointly owned by the tenants, but even then, if I own a share of a company that owns something I use, that's not the same as me owning the thing.
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Chen » Fri May 23, 2014 12:21 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:It sounds like Bloopy's examples from NZ are probably similar to that. I'm actually curious to hear about the apartments that you supposedly can own land and all. How is that possible when you have say an upstairs neighbor whose apartment that he owns is directly above the same bit of land yours is? It seems like when your home is intrinsically connected to and dependent on the homes of others, it just couldn't be possible to own it outright; some part of "your" property would have to be a commons shared with others' property, and so not really all yours, so you'd be charged for access to that since it's not yours, and lose your home if you couldn't pay that charge. I can see how the entity that owns the commons could in turn be jointly owned by the tenants, but even then, if I own a share of a company that owns something I use, that's not the same as me owning the thing.


Here in Quebec there are two types of "condos". Divided co-ownership and undivided co-ownership. Divided is the more common one when you're thinking about a condo. The building+land (immovable) are divided into private and shared portions. Each of them has their own lot number, and individuals own their own private portion and a they share the shared portion. There's a legal document that is signed which establishes the % of the shared portion that is yours. The legal document also creates what is essentially a corporation that is responsible for the shared portion. The same document is what obligates you to pay your share for the common expenses (generally via condo fees). The individual owner can always sell their private area + shared portion without needing any agreement from the rest of the owners. Undivided co-ownership is actually far murkier and most people I spoke to when looking for condos said not to go with it, so I didn't really look into the details of it. My understanding is that you own x% of the entire building+land, but your own private area needs to be defined via a separate method, which is different than the divided case. It seemed like it was a bigger pain to try and sell the places AND you had to have your 20% downpayment for those (CHMC mortgage insurance would not cover them) which made it even harder to try and sell them, especially as the price went up.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby RollingHead » Fri May 23, 2014 11:29 pm UTC

I'm in Italy, 21, and living in a tiny flat I share with my boyfriend which our parents are paying for since we're both students.
Since the purpose of the thread was to make you feel better, I'll add that in July I'll be 22 and my contract will be up so I don't know where I'll be. Presumably back at my mom's apartment (which she also rents), at least temporarily. Other possibilities are a room in an apartment with strangers or a morgue.
As for how I feel, I'm really worried about what will happen next. I also feel somewhat ashamed of not paying my way even though most people my age here live the same way. Once I finish my degree (in theory around November of next year) I'll be able to get a full time job and hopefully rent an apartment with my own money.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Pfhorrest » Sat May 24, 2014 4:12 am UTC

RollingHead wrote:Since the purpose of the thread was to make you feel better

I don't know that I'd say that. I just want to know a proper context to judge where I am and if my feelings are justified. If everyone else had more than me and felt like that was normal, it'd make me feel both bad about where I am but also justified in being upset about that. If everyone else had less than me and felt that that was normal I would feel fortunate but like an ass for complaining. I'll feel different combinations of things depending on the results and how people feel about them, but I'm glad to at least know one way or another.

I'll add that in July I'll be 22 and my contract will be up so I don't know where I'll be. Presumably back at my mom's apartment (which she also rents), at least temporarily. Other possibilities are a room in an apartment with strangers or a morgue.
As for how I feel, I'm really worried about what will happen next. I also feel somewhat ashamed of not paying my way even though most people my age here live the same way. Once I finish my degree (in theory around November of next year) I'll be able to get a full time job and hopefully rent an apartment with my own money.

My sympathies. (Sincerely, that's not just platitude). If it makes you feel any better in turn, I always wished I at least had parents who could have helped support me, either by paying my rent or letting me live with them, but dad wanted rent to continue living in his toolshed, and living with mom would mean sharing a bed with mom because she barely has room to stand in her tiny bedroom she rents.
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Bloopy » Sun May 25, 2014 7:38 am UTC

ucim wrote:
Bloopy wrote:Here in central Auckland, about 15% of apartment buildings are on rented land.
Can the landowner refuse to renew the lease, and demand that the buildings be torn down?

Not normally no, but only because of explicit clauses in the lease. A building of notable size would typically have a perpetual lease, and renewing just means revising the rent price. Also, there'd be a clause that the property owners actually do own the building and must be compensated for it (unless perhaps the land owner funded the construction themselves). Otherwise by default, any buildings built on the land would automatically be owned by the land owner, and nobody else would want to build there.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Tue May 27, 2014 2:31 pm UTC

What is my current housing situation?
Weird. So, fucking Weird.

It was excruciatingly Normal for a while.
No. That was not Normal. Well....(fuck)

Somethings are difficult to explain.
I can tell you where you might be likely to find me.

I can tell you where I have a Rental Agreement.
It's so weird. Even I don't believe it, sometimes.

I may not believe the whole strange thing.
It would be in my best interest to behave as if each and every piece of it is Real.

When given some choices, I have found the best choice is Both!

That is true with Good Things.
And; That is true for Weird Things, too.

I must click Two Boxes.
That is Stupid.

I do Both.
And; I don't want to.

(fuck)
I was laughing with My Roommate, Yesterday.
She is a Delight. (Her friends are a different matter.)

So fucking funny.
I stood in a doorway looking out at the edge of The Forest Primeval.

It is Summer.
The Forest Primeval in the full Bloom of Summer.

The worlds, Nicky Frank had us Howling with Laughter.
I stood in a doorway looking out at The Forest Primeval laughing;

I Thought of You. xkcd. How would I explain this to them?
Then I laughed some more.

It would take a Book to give you The Back Story.
(fuck) I'll give you the coordinates.

Then you explain it in 500 words or less.
Remember essays that had minimum required words?

(ech.) Both boxes! I don't want to check Both Boxes!
I live with a Stanger I like. (She has Friends that don't like me.)

The Story Goes;
I moved in.
Her friends met me.
They do not approve.

Fuck All!
I Don't Like Them, Either!

I sure like her. It happens.
I had to move back to The Flat.

My Weird little City Place.
Right there in the Middle of The City.

Some people like cities.
I understand the great Utility?

Is Utility the correct word?
Cities are very, very useful.

In the city the Post Office is Near.
And; Other stuff as well.

In the city, My Room Mate did not make me Laugh with her stories of her Stupid Friends.
The Friends. One of her Friends. Nicky (fucking) Frank

Spoiler:
I'd Shoot him.
I swear I would.

He gives all Tatted Up Junkies a Bad Name.
Not all Tatted Ups are AssHoles.

I think Nicky Frank is.
Not all Junkies are AssHoles.

I think Nicky Frank is.
My Room Mate Adores him and Fuck.


I kept my Apartment.
I am not constrained by confidentiality.
I might be, a little. Not about Nicky Frank.

Nicky Frank is not his Given Name. (laughter starts up, again)
Nicky Frank is his Indian Name. Why?

(shakes head) (i didn't believe it, at first. Why would you?))
Spoiler:
I still don't believe it.
We were laughing because a Tough and Rough, Tatted Up Junkie was A-Scared of Me.

I looked at her and said, "Nah."
I asked a Question, The answer was, "He was afraid of you."
That answer rang so True. It made us Laugh.

A big young strong Tatted Up Junkie locked himself in My Room Mates Room and watched Dark Violent Movies with Head Phones.
While she was working and I was sleeping? That is sort of weird. I did not see him, much.

Because he does not like me and I do not like him.
I met him Out in The Community.

My Room Mate met him out in The Community.
He was Thirty when I met him.

He was Four or Five when she met him.
I think something may have changed about that boy on the way to Manhood.

She and I agree he has never Ridden the Train to Manhood and most likely Never Will.
She sees the child he was. She sees the Man he will never be.

I see the Mean, Corse, Tall, Thirty Year Old He Is.
Why do I keep saying he is Mean?

Because! "Once Burned, Twice Shy!"
Because! "You never get a second chance to make a first Impression."
That Guy Freaked me out on the City Street! In my Kitchen! (Fuck! No!)

I kept the Apartment.
But; I live here.

I checked two boxes.
I want to give up the Apartment.

I need somewhere to Go when Nicky Frank shows up.
The Apartment is somewhere I can go.

If I had a Gun. I could give up the Apartment, Maybe.
What do you think?

She says, Nicky Frank is afraid of Me.
That is nice. But; I know he can Kick My Ass.

He has no Reason to Fear me.
If I had a Gun, he would. See?

His being afraid of me, kept him and me at a Respectable Distances.
If for one moment his fear abated. (fuck) You know. (right)

We did not speak. We both Promised my Room Mate.
I was on a, "Do not speak unless spoken to" Order.

The think with that order is once I am spoken to,
I am allowed to Speak. You never know what I might say.

Once I start talking I might not stop.
"You want to Talk now? Really?"
"You want me to Listen to You? Fuck You."

Take your Three Minutes up at City Hall, The County Court House, Washington DC.
Not my Kitchen! It's My Kitchen! It's Her Kitchen! We can Talk. I don't want to Shush.
No! You may not drowned My Voice with the Electronic Voice in My Kitchen.


Do I Need A Bull Horn for INDOOR CONVERSATIONS??
That is another Darned Good Idea. A Bull Horn!

I bet the new ones are lighter than the old ones were.


(fuck)
Spoiler:
I'm not There. Yet....
A Gun and A Bullhorn.

Look Ma!
I'm Playing Cop!


I have to get the paperwork for the Gun.
BullHorns are simply a matter of Locating one on the Internet.
Figuring out how to buy it.

Other than conversations with my Room Mate"s Friends;
When would I use it?

That might be funny. They have an electronic Voice, I have an electronic Voice.
It's Good! At least my electric Voice is My Voice. Who speaks for Them?

Do Wasp Dog Daddy from the Great Big City?
The man still wears Short Pants and is Proud of It!

Do you know how creepy that is to me?
It's creepy. It is ok. I guess.

It's like those men that wear Diapers and Play Baby.....
Diapers are for infants.
Short paints are for little boys.

Men wear Long pants or dresses.
Long pants are for hard work.
Long pants protect our legs.


Many American Men are infantile and proud of it.
How weird is That?

Not weird at all.
It's Normal.


My current living situation?
Weird. Very Weird.

I sort of live with a Stranger.
She has even Stranger, Strangers.

Apparently I am a Nerd.
A person completely lacking in social skills.

Like Sheldon without a Job and Friends.
No one likes him. No one like me, either.

Dear OP; Please, excuse the derailment.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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PolakoVoador
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby PolakoVoador » Tue May 27, 2014 3:48 pm UTC

I'm 26 and currently renting an apartment on my own, which is of more than sufficient size for me. In the future, my girlfriend will probably move in with me, and this apartment will probably be less than optimal, but good enough nevertheless, at least for a while.

Before that, I've shared an apartment with two friends, for about a year and a half. Since one of them had to move to another city due to a work opportunity, and we couldn't find anyone trustworthy enough to share the apartment, we ended up going different ways.

And before that, I lived for free with my parents.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby PictureSarah » Wed May 28, 2014 6:45 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:If so inclined please also post your geographic location, your age and other stage-of-life indicators like education level, any details you'd like to share about your housing situation (number of roommates or housemates, number of rooms in your apartment or house, square footage, property value if you like, etc), and most importantly to me, how you feel about your situation (and how you think it compares to your peers or to people in general). Also feel free to post your housing-situation history if you like.


We (my husband and I) are in our late 20s (I'm 27, he's 29), both have bachelor's degrees, are both employed (one full-time, one part-time). We share our 2 bed/1.5 bath 1056 sq. foot home with our 10-month old baby and 2 cats. We bought it in 2011 for $55k in Sacramento, CA. It was so cheap because it was a vacant foreclosure that had been vandalized - a lot of the copper plumbing had been stolen from underneath the house, and some of the electrical from the breaker box. It's 114 years old, and we've been slowly working on it ever since. So far we've done: plumbing, some electrical, painted every room, complete bathroom remodel, 80% of a kitchen remodel, new floors in most of the house. We still need to do: all of the electrical, new floors in the rest of the house, new siding, *something* with the garage (it's in bad shape), and a complete remodel of the laundry room and half bath. Even though it's A LOT of work, and we took on a huge project with a fixer upper, I love my house. It has character. Here are some bonus pictures of our remodeling process!
https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/1079 ... 8067677569
"A ship is safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for."

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby speising » Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:04 am UTC


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Pfhorrest
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Pfhorrest » Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:18 pm UTC

That's an interesting calculator, but a big flaw I see in it is that it's comparing what's a better deal only after a certain amount of years (however long you plan on staying in a particular place), not over a lifetime. So the rent you will be paying into the grave if you don't eventually own something somewhere is not factored in at all, nor is the relative ease of buying a home somewhere else once you already own outright one home somewhere. It's not like if you live in one place 15 years and then move somewhere else, you start over at zero in the new place; your investment in the old place carries over to the new place (adjusted for market fluctuations and transaction costs as applicable).

I guess it is a useful calculator for deciding whether or rent or buy right now (or more generally, when to buy). Like I've been realizing lately that when considering interest rates on mortgages, it may be cheaper to continue renting until I can save enough to buy a house in cash. But that's not at all saying that renting is a better deal than buying; it's about what's the cheapest way to buy; it's saying that the interest on borrowed housing (i.e. housing rent) is cheaper than the rent on borrowed money (i.e. mortgage interest), so if I'm going to have to pay rent/interest one way or another until I have enough money to buy my way out of that conundrum, I might as well take the option that's cheaper. The end goal of it is still to get out from paying either though, it's just a matter of which is the most efficient way out of it; there is no question at all whether to get out of it or not.
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby onoresrts63 » Tue Jun 03, 2014 2:45 am UTC

Have a nice apartment with a decent interior :D

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby ucim » Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:25 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:but a big flaw I see in it is that it's comparing what's a better deal only after a certain amount of years (however long you plan on staying in a particular place), not over a lifetime.
Well, if you know when you're going to die, you can just factor that in when you select the "number of years". And if you don't, then you'd need an Oracle anyway. :)

You can factor in the cost of selling and buying successive (equal priced) homes, if you have an idea of what that might be, by calling it a "maintanance expense" and dividing it by how long you own each home. Then just run that purchase as if it were one home the whole way through. You'd have to do the same thing with apartments, but for apartments that would usually be neglegible.

The hard part is the "predict the future" part, including how much you could have made investing your money in non- real estate. The enlightening part is the slope of the curves once you've made your initial calculation.

Pfhorrest wrote:...it may be cheaper to continue renting until I can save enough to buy a house in cash. But that's not at all saying that renting is a better deal than buying...
No, of course not. There are too many other factors involved. If you know where you want to live and have a good chance of staying there for a while (job, friends, social life, etc), there is certainly a high intangible value in having a place no landlord or bank can kick you out of. But if you are still free and willing to move around, there is a high intangible value in having a rental you can walk away from if it came to that.

And it doesn't matter whether it is the mortgage holder or the landlord that kicks you out, the effect would be the same (although depending on which state it is, one may have more trouble doing so than the other).

Jose
Order of the Sillies, Honoris Causam - bestowed by charlie_grumbles on NP 859 * OTTscar winner: Wordsmith - bestowed by yappobiscuts and the OTT on NP 1832 * Ecclesiastical Calendar of the Order of the Holy Contradiction * Heartfelt thanks from addams and from me - you really made a difference.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:32 am UTC

You can *sort of* do both with RVs, etc. You can own it, and still be mobile. Obviously, some ongoing costs still apply, like insurance, registration, gas, lot rental, but you do have a certain flexibility with regards to who you pay and how much you pay. Might be nice for some.

It's not my style...I moved enough in the military(seven times in a five year span, once), that I don't feel over eager to move a ton, but some really enjoy it.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:42 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:You can *sort of* do both with RVs, etc. You can own it, and still be mobile. Obviously, some ongoing costs still apply, like insurance, registration, gas, lot rental, but you do have a certain flexibility with regards to who you pay and how much you pay. Might be nice for some.

It's not my style...I moved enough in the military(seven times in a five year span, once), that I don't feel over eager to move a ton, but some really enjoy it.

if a person has the Money for it.
RV's and Boats are Expensive.

The RV needs to be Replaced fairly often.
They Age quickly. It is a Big Car!

They can be Remodeled.
That is a pricey thing to do.

RV's are not a hobby for the poor.
Neither are Boats.

Not for the Faint of Heart, either.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

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Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:59 am UTC

There are many different levels of RV, ranging from ridiculous luxury models to pickup-bed affairs. Cost varies significantly depending. Of course, they typically get not-awesome gas mileage, so if you travel heavily, that can add up...but that's true regardless of where you live. If you're on the lower end of the income spectrum, long moves or vacations are a significant expense, and not one to be undertaken lightly, regardless of where you live. Home buying/selling has significant cost, and even moves from rental to rental, while cheaper, can still be somewhat costly.

Plus, yknow, there's a massive hassle factor.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Chen » Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:52 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:That's an interesting calculator, but a big flaw I see in it is that it's comparing what's a better deal only after a certain amount of years (however long you plan on staying in a particular place), not over a lifetime. So the rent you will be paying into the grave if you don't eventually own something somewhere is not factored in at all, nor is the relative ease of buying a home somewhere else once you already own outright one home somewhere. It's not like if you live in one place 15 years and then move somewhere else, you start over at zero in the new place; your investment in the old place carries over to the new place (adjusted for market fluctuations and transaction costs as applicable).


You can set the calculator up to 40 years. And the slope of that part of the curve is extremely shallow anyways.

I guess it is a useful calculator for deciding whether or rent or buy right now (or more generally, when to buy). Like I've been realizing lately that when considering interest rates on mortgages, it may be cheaper to continue renting until I can save enough to buy a house in cash. But that's not at all saying that renting is a better deal than buying; it's about what's the cheapest way to buy; it's saying that the interest on borrowed housing (i.e. housing rent) is cheaper than the rent on borrowed money (i.e. mortgage interest), so if I'm going to have to pay rent/interest one way or another until I have enough money to buy my way out of that conundrum, I might as well take the option that's cheaper. The end goal of it is still to get out from paying either though, it's just a matter of which is the most efficient way out of it; there is no question at all whether to get out of it or not.


You're not factoring in the return you can make in investing that money in something other than a house too though. That was one the sliders in the calculator. If housing prices only rise at 2% per year but you have some crazy investments that make 8% per year, investing in the house may still be a losing proposition.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby eviloatmeal » Tue Jun 03, 2014 12:29 pm UTC

I own an apartment that is part of a BL, which I believe in the United States of USA would be called a "co-op"; I own my apartment, and (a share of) the land on which it stands, and aside from mortgage and maintenance there is no "rent" to pay. That said, the mortgage is a very large, very long-term loan with a bank, and it's in their interest to let us sit on that debt and pay them interest for as long as possible.

So I suppose "own (with mortgage) on its own land" is the most correct option?

I live about as "downtown" as you can get on a small island in the middle of a fjord in Northern Norway. My apartment is 29m2, which is about 300 squid feet in imperial units. I believe this is somewhat smaller than average apartment size around here, and certainly at the very small end of the spectrum of home sizes, but it's more than enough for my lifestyle. I'm 24 and currently floating somewhere between "student" and "employee".

Owning this home is in many ways both a blessing and a curse: I feel like I can't easily leave and go live somewhere else, but on the other hand I would probably go crazy rather quickly if I had to rent a place and I didn't have the freedom to make holes in the wall or paint the ceiling pink (neither of which I do... much). It's just very reassuring to know that it's permanent.

The co-op is a mixed blessing of its own. The mortgage is stupid. The telecom arrangements are stupid. The garbage arrangements are stupid. The neighbors are stupid, and so on. But at least the stupid people running the stupid co-op are taking care of the building and everything that goes on around it, so all I have to worry about is paying my bills on time, and I can be reasonably certain that I still have a roof over my head at the end of the day - more than most can say about their life situation.

All things considered, I'm basically living in the most awesome treehouse ever. I get all the benefits of owning it, with hardly any of the grown-up bits such as worrying about banks and insurance or what to do if the mailbox falls off the wall.
*** FREE SHIPPING ENABLED ***
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Tue Jun 03, 2014 3:21 pm UTC

Please wear a helmet while RollerBlading.
Even Indoors.

Hitting the loft or a kitchen cabinet with your head can 'sting'.
TreeHouses are Great! Does your TreeHouse move in The Wind?

TreeHouses are Great!
https://www.google.com/search?q=treehou ... 80&bih=594

Some move every time the people move.
Some people can really move a Tree.
Spoiler:
There is a Rule:
If you Break The Tree,
You are in Big Trouble.

You might be Dead.


I like TreeHouses.
They are like Boats, without all that pesky ...water....?
Some TreeHouses have water. Loads of it. Georgia.

There is a place in Georgia that used to have TreeHouses.
That sort of place needs a lot of UpKeep.

The Swamp is trying to Take It Back, all the Time.
http://www.foresthostel.com

I have no idea what is going on there, now.
If you like TreeHouses, they might have one.
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Some of us see The Gutter.
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jun 03, 2014 6:11 pm UTC

Chen wrote:You're not factoring in the return you can make in investing that money in something other than a house too though. That was one the sliders in the calculator. If housing prices only rise at 2% per year but you have some crazy investments that make 8% per year, investing in the house may still be a losing proposition.

That's assuming you're buying a house as a means of making money (an investment) rather than just trying to get out from owing someone else money, though. Other investments could still be relevant though, as I said before, in determining when the best time to buy is; if you would save faster by renting and investing elsewhere than in paying down principle and interest, then yeah rent and invest elsewhere... until you have enough saved that you can buy and stop renting. Then continue investing elsewhere.
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"I am Sam. Sam I am. I do not like trolls, flames, or spam."
The Codex Quaerendae (my philosophy) - The Chronicles of Quelouva (my fiction)

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby ucim » Tue Jun 03, 2014 6:33 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:Other investments could still be relevant though, as I said before, in determining when the best time to buy is;
There are two possible answers: "now" and "not yet". But sometimes the answer is always "not yet", especially when you factor in intangibles whose value is different for each individual.

For a once-removed example, consider vacation time-shares. Some people like them, and yes, you can trade them around. But for me, I prefer to be able to just go somewhere at the drop of a hat if I want to, relying on the network of hotels to have a room for me for a few days, and not have the burden of full-time ownership and management of a vacation time share.

Jose
Order of the Sillies, Honoris Causam - bestowed by charlie_grumbles on NP 859 * OTTscar winner: Wordsmith - bestowed by yappobiscuts and the OTT on NP 1832 * Ecclesiastical Calendar of the Order of the Holy Contradiction * Heartfelt thanks from addams and from me - you really made a difference.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Chen » Tue Jun 03, 2014 7:29 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:That's assuming you're buying a house as a means of making money (an investment) rather than just trying to get out from owing someone else money, though. Other investments could still be relevant though, as I said before, in determining when the best time to buy is; if you would save faster by renting and investing elsewhere than in paying down principle and interest, then yeah rent and invest elsewhere... until you have enough saved that you can buy and stop renting. Then continue investing elsewhere.


The calculator clearly is only looking at the economic viability of it. The calculator is showing that in some circumstances, it's better to rent at X per month than it is to buy a house and maintain it. Clearly its just looking at the numbers part of it though. It can't determine intangibles like the ability to not get kicked out of a place and such. That said it does continue to include costs you have to pay to others even after you've bought the house (maintenance, taxes etc) so there are intangible benefits to renting it doesn't include either, such as the opportunity cost associated with maintenance of the place compared to making the landlord do it.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:20 pm UTC

Chen wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:That's assuming you're buying a house as a means of making money (an investment) rather than just trying to get out from owing someone else money, though. Other investments could still be relevant though, as I said before, in determining when the best time to buy is; if you would save faster by renting and investing elsewhere than in paying down principle and interest, then yeah rent and invest elsewhere... until you have enough saved that you can buy and stop renting. Then continue investing elsewhere.


The calculator clearly is only looking at the economic viability of it. The calculator is showing that in some circumstances, it's better to rent at X per month than it is to buy a house and maintain it. Clearly its just looking at the numbers part of it though. It can't determine intangibles like the ability to not get kicked out of a place and such. That said it does continue to include costs you have to pay to others even after you've bought the house (maintenance, taxes etc) so there are intangible benefits to renting it doesn't include either, such as the opportunity cost associated with maintenance of the place compared to making the landlord do it.

Making the LandLord do it?
Are you still working with Spherical Cows?

Some Owners are Great!
They want their property to be used well.
They want their property to maintain and gain Value.

Others are Shit!
Those are the Spherical Cows.

I suppose, most are out in the Middle, somewhere.
Lumpy like real cows.

People can be so petty and awful.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Apparently Anonymous » Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:20 pm UTC

I live in a shared flat - over here they call it a Wohngemeinschaft, literally "living community".
It's nice enough, it means I get more social interaction that I would living alone, which is probably good for me. I get along pretty well with the girls I live with (I didn't know them before, I just came in for an "interview" about the room and then got accepted). Even so, I absolutely love it when the flat's empty, so I guess I kinda miss my alone time (technically I can be alone in my room whenever I want, but it's not quite the same when there are people in the kitchen).

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Rogue5_jm » Wed Jul 09, 2014 10:13 pm UTC

I'm currently renting an apartment with my wife. I'm pretty darn happy with the apartment itself (940 ft2 for about $1100/month. Decent deal for the area, especially considering the condition of the place) I just can't stand the commute to work.

I've moved about once a year for most of my life, just about everything from couch surfing to shared housing to plain rental to property owned by family. I have a rough idea of how much space I need to feel comfortable(150 ft2 if I only get a bedroom, 500 ft2 for a full residence) but am very adaptable and have for the most part figured a way to carve a niche in each of places I've been. My wife is the best roommate I've ever had, and I try to be the same for her. It's nigh impossible to live around here without sharing the rental cost with another, and buying any residence or land is ridiculously expensive.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Sat Jul 26, 2014 4:26 pm UTC

Weirder Than Yours!
It does not get much Weirder than this.

Spoiler:
I can count my blessings.
The electricity works. (cross fingers)

Wi-Fi! yey!
ok. Maybe, it's not so weird.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Artemisia » Mon Aug 04, 2014 4:39 pm UTC

I'm 30 now, live alone + 2 cats in an unfurnished rented 2 bedroom apartment with my own furniture and decorations (floors, drapes etc). Previously lived in London in a rented fully furnished maisonette (not really an apartment, but not really a house either) with others (London was otherwise unaffordable).

I'm really pleased to have decorated this place to my own wishes as this was for me the biggest draw back about rent (PictureSarah: your house+development plan looks awesome. I don't know if I could, but it would be a dream).

Wouldn't be able to deal with a room in shared accommodation now that I am no longer a student, tbh, but financially this is at the top end of what I can afford, even though I am lucky enough to have found this reasonably priced place. I'd otherwise be stuck in something with 1 bedroom of half the size, with no pets allowed (and having had one of my pets for 10 years, this was not an option).
This too shall pass

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Mokele
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Mokele » Mon Aug 04, 2014 5:41 pm UTC

My wife and I just moved from a 2-family home/apartment thingy in New England (those in New England will know immediately what I'm talking about, the 2-3 story old houses converted to 1 apartment per floor), to a rented single-family home with lawn outside of Atlanta. HUGE improvement.

Did you New England folks know that there's this stuff called "insulation"? It means that your walls and floor aren't the same temperature as the outside environment! Amazing!

And lead-free paint! Truly we live in an age of marvels!


In all seriousness, NE was nice and all, but both the quality and quantity of home per rent dollar is incomparably better in the south, especially if you can tolerate a bit more of a commute. On our part, the distance was involuntary - we have an elderly greyhound who can't handle stairs and is terrified of elevators, so we needed a ranch house with a yard. But without increasing the number of rooms or square footage (much), we've saved $300/mo on rent for a house with actual insulation, central heat and air, a yard, and that was built in 1997 rather than 1930 (or the prior one, built in 1900).

Now, to return to our life's mission of filling it with animals!
"With malleus aforethought, mammals got an earful of their ancestor's jaw" - J. Burns, Biograffiti

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Giant Speck » Sat Aug 16, 2014 12:34 pm UTC

I'm currently renting a 950ft2 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom apartment in Honolulu for $1950 per month (including water and sewer fees). For comparison, I was renting a 980ft2 apartment in Biloxi for $780 and a 1000ft2 apartment in Las Vegas for about $740.

Finding a rental in Hawaii was quite the experience for someone who is used to just finding the right apartment community and settling down. Finding this apartment came after almost four months of continuous searching before and after I arrived in Hawaii and three weeks of Craigslist searches, viewings, and fighting to be the first person to get an application in. I was the second person to apply to this apartment after viewing it with at least fifteen other people.

The apartment is pretty close to work -- closer than either of my previous apartments in Las Vegas and Biloxi had been. The apartment was remodeled a few years ago and has mostly hardwood floors (with the exception of the bathrooms and the kitchen, which have travertine tile). The biggest issues I had with the apartment are 1) I made the horrible mistake of shipping a washer and dryer with me because most rentals here include a washer and dryer or have shared laundry facilities and 2) one entire wall of my living room is pretty much glass, with a large sliding glass door that leads to the tiny lanai. The owner had vertical shades installed, which was a terrible idea considering the airflow caused those shades to blow around like crazy, so I finally removed them and stored them elsewhere. That left me with the feat of attempting to hang curtains across twelve feet, which I finally figured out by installing a ceiling track.
"Did I say recently that I love Giant Speck? Because I love Giant Speck. He is the best." - Weeks
BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE BOUNCE

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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Sat Aug 16, 2014 12:53 pm UTC

I don't cover The Glass.
It is nice in the summer.

It is weird in the winter.
The glass acts like a mirror.

Why do you want it covered?
Someone might watch you watch U-Tube?

The days are getting shorter, on the mainland.
The night is closing in. Dark, dark everywhere.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Brace
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Brace » Sat Aug 16, 2014 1:47 pm UTC

This post had objectionable content.
Last edited by Brace on Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:39 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
"The future is the only kind of property that the masters willingly concede to the slaves" - Albert Camus

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addams
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby addams » Sat Aug 16, 2014 1:58 pm UTC

Brace wrote:Shaky living situation with grandparents until the 29th when I will have to try and work on my 7th degree while homeless.

Seventh Degree?
You have Six Degrees?

And; You have learned to be a little Dramatic, too?
Good on ya'.

How Homeless will you be?
Living in The Family Summer Place?

So funny.
Be careful with those Free Housing situations.

Remember what happened to 'Jhonny'.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDpipB4yehk
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Brace
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Re: What is your current housing situation?

Postby Brace » Sat Aug 16, 2014 2:03 pm UTC

This post had objectionable content.
Last edited by Brace on Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:39 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
"The future is the only kind of property that the masters willingly concede to the slaves" - Albert Camus


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