Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Buying a home - Start New Buy Fresh

I wasn't expecting to buy my own home for several more years down the road.  As a single mother, I figured I'd be a renter well into my 40s.  I was fine with renting.  I didn't have to worry about any repairs or lawncare.  I also didn't have a lawn in the condo I had been renting for 4 years.  I longed for something other than low end cabinetry and white appliances.  Although we were living in a newer condo, you can only do so much to spruce up a rental property.  My aunt is a realtor and suggested that I talk to a mortgage broker to see if I could pre-qualify for a loan.  I did, and I did.  I thought it was a bit absurd that anyone would loan me that amount of money for anything.  This was after the real estate crash and tight gripped loans.
I've now been in my home for 4 years.  I have beautiful custom cabinetry, granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.  Sure, those things can be a bit superficial, but I love cooking in my large and open kitchen vs. the tiny condo corner kitchen.  I have enough counter space to set groceries on the counter and wash and prep with the kids doing homework at the counter.
new house
Before, I was tightly confined to a 2' space and we could barely fit all three people in the kitchen.  Now, my master bath is larger than my former kitchen.  The leather loveseat from the condo living room fits comfortably in my bedroom.  There is ample space to spread dozens of baking goods from oven to cooling racks to decorating space.
condo living
Probably the best feature of my house is the location/views.  This is what I see from my bed (yes, often a kid, but beyond the kid is snowcovered peaks, winding creek, protected wetlands, natural pond, soccer fields, and a park.  The kids' school is a few blocks away and a movie theater and restaurants are just down the street.
As a renter, I wouldn't have been able to turn the bedroom closet into an office:
Or handpaint the shower curtain design on the kids' bathroom wall:
I'm getting ready to hang wall-covering in my son's room and paint the front door a new color.  Aside from being able to personalize my home to suit our likes and personalities, it was important to me to buy new construction so I wouldn't have to worry about repairs or replacing appliances or roofs.

How about you?  Are you a home owner?  Still renting because you're not sure if you can qualify for a loan? You won't know until you apply.  For a great resource on buying a new home, check out BHI's Start Fresh Buy New website.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.