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Old 02-18-2010, 03:16 PM
 
1,173 posts, read 4,117,613 times
Reputation: 1330

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cw30000 View Post
No, I am not a Realtor. My point of view is from searching houses myself. My wife and I work in the NYC, so a short commute is preferable than a long commute. I have two children, 2 and 1, so good school is very important.

Needless to say, I have only look at towns that is close to NY, have a good school system and safe. Cranford, Westfield, Summit, Livingston are some of the towns I have look at and houses there are not cheap. If you only limit yourself to house under 400k. You will not find many. Many of these same houses have been on the market for months, and they still unsold for a reason.

If you don't care about school, don't care about commute, then there are plenty of choices for you.
Okay I need to stop you right there, of course you are not finding many choices under $400K in these towns, these are NOT $400K and under towns! There are very nice, safe, good school system towns that ARE in this price range, some of them are even closer to NYC.

Itís as if I needed to buy a new car Iíve only got $25K to spend but yet I HAVE to have a brand new BMW or Mercedes. Yes these are excellent cars but no matter how much I want them, they are not in my price range. Perhaps I can buy a pre-owned one that has no extra features and needs some work that I can do myself. But brand new fully loaded? Not going to happen. This does not mean I cannot afford a car, it means I canít afford THOSE cars. There are plenty of nice reliable cars in the $25K range, I just need to know what I can REALISTICALLY afford. If I simply must have a BMW than maybe I should just wait until my income level actually justifies me having one OR I can go to some shady dealership with an ad out front that says ďNo Money Down? Bad Credit? No problem!!Ē buy my shiny new BMW and wait for real life to catch up to me and have my car repossessed!

Seriously, most of us on this board would love to be able to have a beautiful 5bd 3.5bath house in Short Hills and weíre all allowed to dream and work towards it but unless you can actually afford it youíre just making yourself miserable looking at these houses and then realizing you canít have them. Youíre just going to keep feeling like you come up short. Why donít you look at towns that are actually within your means and realize how much you DO have and how much your hard work WILL afford you.

Not to mention you are so concerned about your kids? How do you think they will feel in middle school living in a town where everyone is wearing $250 jeans and they have to wear Leviís because their parents spend every last dime just trying to pay the mortgage?? There is a good education to be had in MOST NJ towns.
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Old 02-18-2010, 05:04 PM
 
2,944 posts, read 3,004,619 times
Reputation: 1109
What you are smoking? If you are making 100k/yr and is a financial responsible person (OP is), then the towns I listed are well within reach.

New Providence, Berkeley Heights and Mountainsides all good towns. Not as expensive as Westfield or Summit, but the property price there are high as well.

A town with good school system keep the price of the property stable. You do not get the roller coaster ride like some less desirable towns. Just remember, a home is a home, it should not view as an ATM.
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Old 02-18-2010, 08:49 PM
 
Location: Metropolis
1,277 posts, read 3,354,377 times
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It looks like to me by most of the responses here that you should spend no more than 3x your annual salary to comfortably afford a home.
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Old 02-19-2010, 09:04 AM
 
Location: Nashville, TN
2,866 posts, read 8,464,145 times
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I would recommend a payment of no more than $1500 a month, and that includes tge taxes on a 100K salary, and even that may be a bit to high.
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Old 02-19-2010, 09:35 AM
 
1,110 posts, read 3,912,681 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe moving View Post
You guys are funny. What is wrong with built in 1960 or 1945???
Lots of things are wrong. Everything is old and outdated. You will be replacing the furnace, roof, electrical system, possibly plumbing, could have termite damage, asbestos, and the list goes on and on.

Maybe you might have that hot 'Wood Paneling" or even better a brick or wood siding (instead of vinyl). Get ready to peel off that Wallpaper!! So outdated!!

If you are into old and outdated things, go for it!
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Old 02-19-2010, 05:20 PM
 
3,440 posts, read 7,230,095 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by todd72173 View Post
Lots of things are wrong. Everything is old and outdated. You will be replacing the furnace, roof, electrical system, possibly plumbing, could have termite damage, asbestos, and the list goes on and on.

Maybe you might have that hot 'Wood Paneling" or even better a brick or wood siding (instead of vinyl). Get ready to peel off that Wallpaper!! So outdated!!

If you are into old and outdated things, go for it!
Older homes are great, they're more structurally sound, and they will last a lot longer than these new "crackerjack box" homes.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:00 PM
 
1,110 posts, read 3,912,681 times
Reputation: 423
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morphous01 View Post
Older homes are great, they're more structurally sound, and they will last a lot longer than these new "crackerjack box" homes.
I used to think that. But after living in a home built in 1960 - this is what I noticed:

1) Driveway cracking
2) Wood Paneling
3) Furnace from 1960 (Bryant) Required 3 repair trips
4) AC (required 4 repair trips and not even the original)
5) Kitchen - totally outdated- no island, old tile flooring, old cabinets,
6) Bathrooms - Master bath could barely fit one person
7) Fuse box - Had 3 FUSE BOXES linked together! Totally illegal!
8) Roof giving out
9) Gutters leaking

and the list just goes on and on. I for one dont feel like fixing this.

I now live in a 2003 home - nothing needed to be done. No wallpaper, no wood paneling, efficient appliances, electric/plumbing all good.

I will never live in an old home again.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:24 PM
 
3,440 posts, read 7,230,095 times
Reputation: 2387
Quote:
Originally Posted by todd72173 View Post
I used to think that. But after living in a home built in 1960 - this is what I noticed:

1) Driveway cracking
2) Wood Paneling
3) Furnace from 1960 (Bryant) Required 3 repair trips
4) AC (required 4 repair trips and not even the original)
5) Kitchen - totally outdated- no island, old tile flooring, old cabinets,
6) Bathrooms - Master bath could barely fit one person
7) Fuse box - Had 3 FUSE BOXES linked together! Totally illegal!
8) Roof giving out
9) Gutters leaking

and the list just goes on and on. I for one dont feel like fixing this.

I now live in a 2003 home - nothing needed to be done. No wallpaper, no wood paneling, efficient appliances, electric/plumbing all good.

I will never live in an old home again.
I'm glad that you are happy with your new home. And I should point out that an older home is not for everybody because in this day and age people seem to be less and less knowledgeable with the hands on type work.

Regardless, everything you pointed out is what I would expect a home of that year would need; the crux of my argument is that once you fix those issues, you will have a better over all home (with matured landscape to boot) then a new home built by a bunch of day laborers.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:53 PM
 
21 posts, read 56,364 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morphous01 View Post
I'm glad that you are happy with your new home. And I should point out that an older home is not for everybody because in this day and age people seem to be less and less knowledgeable with the hands on type work.

Regardless, everything you pointed out is what I would expect a home of that year would need; the crux of my argument is that once you fix those issues, you will have a better over all home (with matured landscape to boot) then a new home built by a bunch of day laborers.
You really hit the nail on the head. Homes built prior to 1960 were mostly built by builders(unless you consider Levitt homes) who used experienced carpenters and certainly better quality wood. Ever see what happens to particle board when it gets wet? Today's developers are not builders they are accountants, lawyers and anybody else with financing who can swing a "deal" on a land purchase. Their subs are "builders" who use cheap immigrant legal and not so legal "mechanics" to do the work. So you get shoddy construction except for the designer kitchens and baths (developers know how to appeal to women) but the bones of new construction are really lacking. Today development houses are just plain junk.
There are a few quality builders out there but they are not doing developments, just stand alone built one at a time but these are not typical bargains homes.
I'll take older construction any day, of course new heating, a/c and a quality roof are in order.
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Old 02-19-2010, 09:00 PM
 
1,110 posts, read 3,912,681 times
Reputation: 423
It does not matter how the 'quality of wood' if its 50+ years old! Materials dont last forever, I dont care what its made of.

In any case, you still cant change the 'layout' of an old home. Split-Levels/Bi-Levels/ Poorly designed floor layouts can not be changed.
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