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Old 08-07-2019, 11:25 PM
 
30 posts, read 35,380 times
Reputation: 18

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I am living in Southern CA (Orange County) right now and pay $725 per month to live in a 1,200 sqft condo with 2 roommates I found on craigslist. It is small, old, dirty. My room is not even 100 square foot. It is a depressing living situation so I want to buy or rent a nicer place asap. My salary is 75k and currently save at a rate of about 42k per year. I am thinking of buying a house in a couple years since I will have enough for a down payment. What is making me hesitate is the houses here are expensive but old and small so it is a terrible value and you are really paying for the weather. Rental housing here is horrible, it is almost impossible to find a good rental place and quality roommates.

I'm considering some of these options but not sure:

1. Stay at current place to save as much as possible on rent then buy a house in 2 years here with 100k down payment, but it will be a very depressing couple of years, also my job is not the most stable because it is funded by soft money but co-workers seem to stay a long time. If I bought it would be buying a 3 bedroom 2 bathroom house and I would want to find a roommate to help pay for it.

2. Find a nicer place to rent temporarily for $1000+ then buy a house eventually, but it is stressful to find a good place, I have been looking for rentals on craigslist with roommates for the past 3 months and can't find anything that is ideal. It will also take longer to save for down payment if I do this and I will still have to live with roommates to save money well.

3. Either 1 or 2 for a few years but then find a new job in a cheaper state close to family, immediately buy a nice house there, but if I do this will have to start over and deal with stress of finding new job, moving, etc. Though I am single and moved through 4 states in the past 5 years for jobs so I am used to it. Also I would probably have to make sure I like the new job and it works out before I buy.

Apartments here are about 2k for 1 bedroom, doesn't even have a washer and dryer and I hate noise so I would not even consider doing that.

What option do you think is best? Appreciate any replies and advice.

I am a single 29 year old, no family or close friends or relationships here so nothing to keep me rooted. But my job is good, and nice coworkers, good pay etc.
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Old Yesterday, 12:18 AM
 
Location: on the wind
7,405 posts, read 3,071,628 times
Reputation: 25061
The one statement that stood out to me was the one about your job not being "the most stable". If your job goes away and you've extended yourself financially to buy a house you don't even want/like (because the ones you require are too expensive, the affordable ones are small, old, run down, etc), you are stuck with a mortgage and might have to sell fast at a disadvantage. If you are renting, you could pack up and leave to take another situation with a lot less trouble.

People have all sorts of reasons to rent or to buy. You can really get buried in the weeds over every percentage point, every dollar. For myself, I only buy if I know I will want to stay where I am for a longer time, the income isn't going anywhere but up, and I like the place enough to become a more vested part of it. I'm in no hurry to buy something so keep the search for the right property on MY terms, not someone else's. If the right one comes along I'll buy it. If not, I'll keep putting $$ away until I do. Over time sure I'll lose the rents paid, but I'll also have more and more to put toward a down payment on a property I have no real reservations about. I don't buy just to do it.

PS: if your apartment is dirty, clean it! If you don't like the "quality" of roommates found on Craigslist, work with a realtor or property manager who handles rentals to find a nicer situation. Right now the bar is probably set very low.

Last edited by Parnassia; Yesterday at 12:32 AM..
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Old Yesterday, 12:27 AM
 
Location: Prepperland
13,797 posts, read 9,909,290 times
Reputation: 9932
IMHO, I'd have a custom home built, featuring autonomy, frugality, super insulation, disaster resistance, and easily adjustable for changes in the size of the family (as in easy to break into smaller apartments, suites, etc). No matter where you wind up living, a house that can metamorphose into four apartments (& owners suite) will keep cash flowing. Or if your family expands into a multigenerational conglomerate, you'll appreciate the expansion room. And if you wind up all alone, you can move into one of the apartments *(with universal access!), and rent out the bigger section.
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Old Yesterday, 01:32 AM
 
404 posts, read 74,883 times
Reputation: 570
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetgraphics View Post
IMHO, I'd have a custom home built, featuring autonomy, frugality, super insulation, disaster resistance, and easily adjustable for changes in the size of the family (as in easy to break into smaller apartments, suites, etc). No matter where you wind up living, a house that can metamorphose into four apartments (& owners suite) will keep cash flowing. Or if your family expands into a multigenerational conglomerate, you'll appreciate the expansion room. And if you wind up all alone, you can move into one of the apartments *(with universal access!), and rent out the bigger section.
And then reality would enter the equation and, unless the OP hit the ****ing lottery, this isnít happening in the OC.
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Old Yesterday, 05:53 AM
 
889 posts, read 618,172 times
Reputation: 1347
I would save my money and buy a house closer to family if the cost of living is cheaper there and you know you can get a job. If not definitely find a new place.Its not worth 250 a month to be miserable.
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Old Yesterday, 06:12 AM
 
Location: Gainesville, FL
192 posts, read 36,517 times
Reputation: 253
As someone who has also moved a lot, a high CoL doesn’t work for us so I would start looking for a job elsewhere when you are several months away from your lease ending.
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Old Yesterday, 06:41 AM
 
195 posts, read 82,922 times
Reputation: 358
If you can't comfortably afford to buy a house somewhere, you shouldn't live there. Start planning your departure as early as possible and keep saving for a house. Don't be house poor. CA is overrated and overtaxed anyway, wouldn't want to live there personally other than for the scenery.
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Old Yesterday, 08:16 AM
 
960 posts, read 214,964 times
Reputation: 1914
Quote:
Originally Posted by gz390 View Post
My salary is 75k and currently save at a rate of about 42k per year.
This is the statement that really stood out. That's amazing.
I live in OC too and I have four kids. I wonder the same for them. Will they be able to make it here or will they move to Denver or Houston or Phoenix....nice towns with jobs and amenities.

Even if you buy a house in OC where will it be?
What about if/when you get married?
Kids and schools.
If you buy in Santa Ana or Anaheim (two of the cheapest places), the schools are loaded with low functioning ESL kids and private is really expensive.
Irvine, Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Laguna Niguel, Ladera Ranch, Aliso Viejo, etc all have super smart kids in the schools but homes there are $400/sq ft.

Denver is really nice man. Sunny, jobs, ...it's basically got the same climate as Big Bear.
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Old Yesterday, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,307 posts, read 11,948,241 times
Reputation: 32430
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCal_Native View Post
This is the statement that really stood out. That's amazing.
I live in OC too and I have four kids. I wonder the same for them. Will they be able to make it here or will they move to Denver or Houston or Phoenix....nice towns with jobs and amenities.

Even if you buy a house in OC where will it be?
What about if/when you get married?
Kids and schools.
If you buy in Santa Ana or Anaheim (two of the cheapest places), the schools are loaded with low functioning ESL kids and private is really expensive.
Irvine, Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Laguna Niguel, Ladera Ranch, Aliso Viejo, etc all have super smart kids in the schools but homes there are $400/sq ft.

Denver is really nice man. Sunny, jobs, ...it's basically got the same climate as Big Bear.
I don't think it's amazing, I think it's not possible.

According to this calculator, a gross of 75K in Orange County nets 53708 a year. (That's actually just with taxes coming out and doesn't include deductions for any other benefits which is not realistic anyway, but let's just play along)

https://smartasset.com/taxes/califor...tor#zi2i4oa7IR

OP pays 8700 a year in rent.

That leaves him 45012. Subtract 42000 and that leaves 3012 for everything else. For the entire year.

That's 251 per month, for food, utilities, cell phone, car or other transportation including a commute to work, entertainment, medical copays and every other thing he has to pay for.

Something doesn't add up here.

And other discrepancies like saying a 1 bedroom apartment rents for 2000 but he's paying 725 to share a presumably 3 bedroom, which would be renting for 2175?
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Old Yesterday, 04:08 PM
 
38,620 posts, read 15,132,211 times
Reputation: 24987
Something doesn't add up here. $42K savings a year on a $75K year salary? Is there a misprint here?

If you're thinking of moving in 1 or 2 years to be closer to family, probably best to focus on that rather than finding a better apartment or buying a house.

Save for the downpayment, get your credit score as strong as possible, and start looking for that job in the area you want to live.

Unemployment is low and so are mortgage rates. It's a great time to buy a house, but only if you plan to stay there a while and your job is secure.
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