Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Starting a family is hard (aka Woe is me)

For those keeping score at home, it has been a little over 3 months now since my wife and I made the plunge into home ownership and I have a few things I have learned.

1. A good real estate agent is the most valuable thing you can have in the process.

We had the benefit of a family member there to help us through our home buying process, but I cannot imagine having to try to figure out if the person walking houses was just after the commission, or cared about how much owning the right house meant to us. I wish that there was a different process than word of mouth referrals to accurately gauge the caliber of the real estate agent you are meeting with. Even as it was, I had other family members that decried using family to help purchase a home.

2. No matter how much you have saved, you will blow through it

We purchased new, and only painted and bought blinds (and a couch) and it was very amazing that even with parents and good friends there to help us how quickly the cash reserves dwindled. This sort of leads into the next point...

3. Closing costs are sneaky, and suck

Though we thought we understood our closing costs we still got caught looking with nearly 3k in closing costs over and above what we had thought they were going to be. It was not lack of explaining on anyone's part, it was just lack of experience on both my wife and I's part. Read that paper, until it makes sense! If something is confusing ask, ask, ask until it isn't. Oh well live and learn.

4. Home ownership is scarry, and will help you understand why your parents where crazy

I only had to chip the Granite once in the kitchen to understand the why of so many scoldings I received in my youth. It made me cringe, and I wanted to yell at myself. Oh so sad, maybe we can just polish it out....

In all it has really given my wife and I's relationship time to grow, and I cannot imagine going through this process alone. It has given us both a focus, and made me appreciate my partner more.

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