I Bought A House

A con­do­mini­um town­house, more specif­i­cal­ly. Two weeks ago I went to the bank, got my cred­it rat­ing checked, and was pre-approved for a mort­gage at one per­cent below prime (hav­ing no stu­dent loans, no bal­ance on my cred­it card, no line of cred­it, no out­stand­ing bills, no debt what­so­ev­er, comes in handy). I also have a size­able sum of mon­ey, left to me by my grand­par­ents through an inheri­nance, which I’m putting towards a down pay­ment. The good thing is that the down pay­ment is more than 25% of the mort­gage, so I won’t have to spend a cou­ple of grand on mort­gage insur­ance alone. Within a few days, I had a real estate agent keep­ing an eye out for prop­er­ties for me. One morn­ing, she sent me the pro­file of a place a lit­tle east of down­town, com­plete with a series of eight pic­tures or so. The place looked great, so I got a view­ing booked that same day.

The house has two floors. The main floor has an eat-in kitchen, pow­der room, din­ing area, and liv­ing room. The low­er floor has the mas­ter and sec­ond bed­rooms, a full bath­room, and a stor­age clos­et. Out back is a lit­tle patio with enough room for a bar­be­cue, and a lawn that can fit enough patio fur­ni­ture for a small gath­er­ing. The pro­file list­ed six appli­ances includ­ed with the house; stove, refrig­er­a­tor, dish­wash­er, microwave, wash­er, and dry­er. There was only one pre­vi­ous own­er, and he was a non-smok­er. Everything was clean, sol­id, new, and, most impor­tant­ly, com­fort­able. It was a place I could see myself liv­ing at for the next few years, and I had a feel­ing that this was the right one. Even though it was the first place I actu­al­ly went to go see, I made a bid that evening. At the end of the night, after a bit of nego­ti­a­tion on the pur­chase price, my bid was accept­ed, and a clos­ing date was set for the mid­dle of March.

In order to pro­tect me, my agent drew up the offer with four con­di­tions; finance, insur­ance, inspec­tion, and approval of sta­tus cer­tifi­cate. I waived the first three con­di­tions with­in four days. My finances were already approved with the bank, although I did a lit­tle bit of extra nego­ti­at­ing on the rates and saved myself a con­sid­er­able amount of mon­ey (based on a 20 year peri­od of todays rates). I also already had a blan­ket insur­ance pol­i­cy through the con­do man­age­ment, and I was sat­is­fied with the house inspec­tion, which found no major prob­lems.

The approval of sta­tus cer­tifi­cate took a lit­tle longer, because I had to review the sta­tus cer­tifi­cate with my lawyer, and there were a few com­pli­ca­tions. The main com­pli­ca­tion was an on going law­suit between the build­ing com­pa­ny and the gov­ern­ment. It turns out that the patios and bal­conies need to be rebuilt because of a mis­take in the mate­ri­als used. If the build­ing com­pa­ny is found at fault, they will be foot­ing the bill for the repairs. If they are not at fault, all con­do own­ers in the area will have to pay a con­sid­er­able sum, most like­ly as an increase in month­ly con­do fees. I got my lawyer to do a hold­back in trust, for an amount slight­ly high­er than the esti­mat­ed repair cost, with the sell­er get­ting the resid­ual. My agent got the sell­er to agree to this (as an amend­ment to the offer of pur­chase), so I won’t have to pay for these repairs no mat­ter what the out­come of the law­suit. The beau­ty of this is that prop­er­ty val­ues in the area are expect­ed to increase more than three times the cost of repairs, once the repairs are all done. I waived the final con­di­tion, two days ago, which made the deal firm and bind­ing.

It’s a buy­ers mar­ket right now (no one wants to move in the mid­dle of all this snow), so I got the house at an amaz­ing price. While all of this was hap­pen­ing, my bank did an appraisal, and esti­mat­ed the val­ue to be con­sid­er­ably high­er than what I paid for it. On paper, I’ve already cov­ered the cost of land trans­fer tax, lawyers fees, and made enough mon­ey to buy car.

I will be able to walk to work. Across the street is a series of plazas, includ­ing a Timmies, a 24-hour Loeb, an M&M Meat Shop, a Wendy’s, a McDonalds, and a Pizza Hut. Right out­side my door, not more than a ten sec­ond walk, is the bus stop for the #2, which can be tak­en down­town all the way to the west end where I am now. I’ll also have a park­ing spot, which I’ll try to rent out to some­one in the area with two cars. My month­ly con­do fees cov­er main­te­nance, so I’ll nev­er have to shov­el snow or mow the grass.

Trolley will be rent­ing a room from me to help cov­er my mort­gage. I decid­ed to amor­tize over 20 years, although it actu­al­ly comes out to 18 years and 11 months because I’ll be mak­ing bi-week­ly pay­ments. I chose 20 years to be a lit­tle con­ser­v­a­tive (even though I’m on a fixed rate), because there are a few things I can do to pay down my mort­gage quick­er once I’m more com­fort­able with all the bills. My goal is to pay it off by the time I’m 40, and only move to a larg­er place when I can afford it or when this con­do appre­ci­ates enough to keep my mort­gage payable with­in the next 15 years.

Can’t wait to move in.


  1. That’s fan­tas­tic. Congratulations!

  2. I’m so excit­ed man. Let’s start pick­ing paint colours!!

    Kenny Roger’s Paint Bucket Catching Trick 500 !!!

    You got daisy yel­low in my canary yel­low …”
    “I was raised on the egg shell bitch !!!”

  4. Holy shit. Congratulations man. I sat read­ing that with high amuse­ment and my mouth slight­ly agape at how sweet the deal seems. Happy for you!

  5. that’s exact­ly what i’d like to do with­in the next two years…buy a co-op in harlem.

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