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Old 01-20-2008, 06:31 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,970 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi all,
WE are currently renting in Herndon VA and we dont have kids..
since the market has become soft for the home buyers we are planning to buy a home mid 500's is our budget...
Now we are struck as we are unable decide somethings...
1.Whether to buy now or wait for another 6 months (this becasue lot of them say that the prices are going to come down..)

2.
a.Whether to buy a Town home for 400's and think about a single family after 4 years
or

b.Buy a single family as after 4 years with silver line metro inplace prices will go up and we may not be afford it and will regret for not buying now.

3. 20171 vs 20170 (I am taking about the zipcodes that last single digit seems to make really a big difference)we can only get a TH in 20171 for the same price we can affor SFR in 20170...

Please advise
Thanks in advance
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Old 01-21-2008, 08:06 AM
 
64 posts, read 545,684 times
Reputation: 53
Your list is pretty much the exact list of questions my husband and I went through not long back. We dont have any kids as yet and were looking to buy our first home.

In addition to the choices you mentioned, we were also sturggling with a New Home Vs. Older Home decision.

We decided to buy now and not wait because Interest rates are pretty good right now. And if you are buying a new home, the builder incentives offered these days are very strong. With the Feds doing everything they can to bail out the housing market, my concern was that the interest rates may actually go up.

Townhome Vs Single Family was an easier choice. We just didnt need the space. The Townhome we bought is 2800 sq feet nearly as big as a small or mid size single family. And even when we start a family, we will not outgrow this house for another 4-5 years. Gives us enough time to learn some valuable lessons about home owning and use that to build our next big home!

Four years from now, we will have more money saved up for a great single family, will hopefully be wiser and who knows we may not even want to live in this area!! So we based our choices on fairly short term plans!

Good luck with your search. This has been a thrilling journey for us!!
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:27 AM
 
4,711 posts, read 10,908,058 times
Reputation: 3774
I would always recommend SFH.

My son and his wife had an AWFUL experience with a townhouse....FIRE. The kid next door knocked a lamp over and it landed on a bed and the place went up, catching my son's unit on fire. Thank God, it happened around dinnertime and everybody was up, so they were able to get everybody, including the kids' pets, out. But the damage was EXTENSIVE, they were out of their home for over 8 months.

And this was an older townhouse with a masonry "fire wall" between units. Newer ones don't even have that....they have some cheaper arrangement that the builders apparently wined and dined the building code people into approving.

They now probably face years of litigation to force their, and the neighbor's insurance companies to pay a reasonable amount for their lost belongings...what didn't burn was destroyed by the fire hoses. They lost durn near everything

Then you have NOISY neighbors!

A town house isn't much better than an apartment, in my opinion.
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Hampton Roads, Virginia
1,123 posts, read 4,809,330 times
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There are pros and cons to both, but I will say this. We rented a SFH for a year - big house, bigger yard. The yard work alone was out of control. Before and after that we had TH. I ended up buying a TH a few years after the SFH.

I had a family of 4 in a TH and we did fine size wise. I tend to think that a younger couple would do better in a TH - if for no reason other than yard work. Owning a home has so much responsibility that the yard work can become so incredibly time consuming when you would rather be out doing things as a couple. If you are thinking - "Gee, I would like working in the garden..." you can still do that in a TH. You will just spend several hours vs the whole weekend !!
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:59 AM
 
2,462 posts, read 8,061,307 times
Reputation: 995
We bought our first home -- a pretty small 3BR 1/5 bath Arlington box colonial -- intending to stay only three years. We ended up staying for 11 years and 3 kids. We bought right before one of the big housing price surges, and couldn't really afford to buy a bigger place in the area.

Go ahead and buy the townhouse, but be sure you will be happy living there with one or more young children, in the event that you aren't in a position to move after 4-5 years.
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Old 01-21-2008, 10:08 AM
 
3,504 posts, read 7,955,260 times
Reputation: 3466
I would wait to buy a single family - wait at least until 2009 - I believe then the price will be rock bottom.
Why dont you rent a single family home in the meantime to see if you like it. A single family does take much more upkeep and yard work but I think it is worth it in the long run - I love not have noisy neighborhors and I love the privacy and the freedom of doing whatever I want to my own property -
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Old 01-21-2008, 10:24 AM
 
Location: Gainesville, VA
1,261 posts, read 5,055,627 times
Reputation: 719
Quote:
Originally Posted by stacylee926 View Post
Owning a home has so much responsibility that the yard work can become so incredibly time consuming when you would rather be out doing things as a couple!
I so agree with that. We almost bought a house on a quarter acre lot. Every time I walk past it now I say, "We would have been spending all day Saturday cutting that lawn." Our lot is 1/10th of an acre. I have the best looking yard around and I'm proud to say a woman does the lawn maintenance :P

The house we bought is connected to the neighbor's house at the garage, but otherwise they are stand alone houses. I never hear a peep from the neighbors and that's what I was afraid of with a townhouse. We lived 10 feet from noisy mean neighbors in ABQ for 5 years and buying a TH with that possibility was too big of a risk for me. Besides, when we were looking, the townhomes in Victory Lakes were running around $480k!! I kept saying for a bit more we can get a SFH.

I'd say buy what you can afford & be happy with it.
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Old 01-21-2008, 01:48 PM
 
1,261 posts, read 5,619,599 times
Reputation: 553
Quote:
Originally Posted by mesecca View Post
20171 vs 20170 (I am taking about the zipcodes that last single digit seems to make really a big difference)we can only get a TH in 20171 for the same price we can afford SFR in 20170
20171 includes Oak Hill. Although it can change, one difference between the two zip codes is the school district, particularly the HS.
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Old 01-23-2008, 12:12 PM
 
523 posts, read 1,292,538 times
Reputation: 134
Fairfax Mom is absolutely correct that you SHOULD NOT be buying anything right now. Prices were artificially driven up over the past few years and are now finally beginning to come down. If you buy now, you won't be able to move up in 4 years because your home will probably be worth 25% less than what you paid for it.

Ultimately people do what they want and only hear what they want to hear, but you have been warned and if you open your eyes and look for other sources of news besides the main stream media, you will get a much more accurate picture of what is going on. We're headed for (probably already in) a severe recession, house prices dropping, layoffs and unemployment rising. Now is not the time to buy an overprices asset that is going to drop in value. It doesn't take an expert to see that there is a 0% chance of a housing recovery within the next 12 months. So sign a lease and enjoy seeing the price of housing get cheaper each month.

Check out this article from CNN Money today.. Title: Housing prices to free fall in 2008

Housing prices to free fall in 2008 - Jan. 23, 2008

Here is a great link for current housing news:

The Housing Bubble Blog

EDUCATE YOURSELF

Last edited by mojo_1979; 01-23-2008 at 12:13 PM.. Reason: forgot about somthing
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Old 01-23-2008, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,844,610 times
Reputation: 18992
You know, a house is not an item on a shelf with a non-negotiable price tag. A house is worth what a buyer is willing to pay for it. If you have an educated reason to believe a house is going to drop to a certain amount, negotiate with the seller.
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