We Are Buying A House!

I cannot tell you how excited my wife and I are.  This afternoon, we are closing on the purchase of our new house!

For the past several years, we have lived in a house provided by my employer.  Recently, we decided that the time was right to buy a house of our own.  (Honestly, we have been looking for more than two years, but we really got serious about it this past fall.)

Early in January, we found “the perfect house” for our family.  After a few weeks of praying about it and crunching the numbers, we made an offer and it was accepted.  Going through the loan process was very interesting – and my experience should lead to some interesting articles in the near future.

Obviously, we’re no longer “debt-free”.  No, now we’re “debt-free, except for the house”.  But, we do have a plan!

We now have a 15 year fixed-rate mortgage, but we plan to pay it off in (less than) 7 years.  (In the back of my mind, I’m thinking “5 years”, but that might be REALLY stretching it.)  We’ll do so using the same techniques that we used five years ago to pay off our credit card and automobile debt.

To prepare for the purchase, I’ve been making a “mortgage payment” to myself, each month, for more than two years.  I wanted to be sure that we were financially ready to take on a mortgage – and I feel that we are.  In fact, our monthly payment will be slightly less than the monthly amount I’ve been saving.

Over the next few days, I’ll have a lot more to say about the new purchase, but I wanted to let you guys know what we’ve been up to – and why I’ve been away from the blog.  This is a big step for us – and one that we are extremely pleased to take.

27 thoughts on “We Are Buying A House!

  1. 7 years is super impressive.

    My one word of advice, make sure you have a very good “official” land survey when you close. We had a property line dispute with our neighbor and found out that our survey was not official. This ended with us having to pay for another survey as well as legal fees. No fun!

    But enjoy this!

  2. Congrats! But I have two questions…

    Why would you give up the free housing? Even for no other reason to save A LOT for a down payment, or pay off the house in full upon purchase (i.e. live there another 5 years, and keep paying yourself that amount?).

    Also, why 15 years vs 30, and still pay it off in that 7 with the flexibility of a lower payment if an emergency hits? Was the interest rate that much better?

  3. Thanks to all who sent congratulations our way! You guys rock!

    Evan – There were several reasons for the move, but it all came down to “this was the time”. The house / neighborhood / price all played major roles in our decision. And, yes, the rate for the 15 was significantly better.

  4. Congrats! As someone that’s looking to make an all cash purchase of a home (mental reasons only) I watch your blog regularly.

    As a current homeowner of a financed house, I’d caution anyone that believes home ownership is indeed a freeing of one from owing anyone anything. There’s always maintenance, property tax and potentially home owner’s association. Not saying life isn’t a lot easier when you own a home outright, but let’s look at the total cost of ownership before we declare ourselves capable of existing w/o obligations.

  5. Congrats and kudos to you for taking out a 15 year mortgage as opposed to 30. I know that you’ll this mortgage paid off in seven years.

  6. Congratulations!! I’m sure with your proven discipline, you will have your loan paid off in 7 years or less. Good luck with the move!

  7. I hope you don’t mind, but I’d like to use your forum of knowledgeable readers to ask a question. My husband has taken a job in another state and is currently renting an apartment there. I’m living in our house until it sells. We paid off the mortgage a year ago, so there is no debt. However, we don’t have enough money saved up to make a 20% downpayment on a house where we will be buying. We have excellent credit. Our real estate agent is suggesting a home equity loan on the house we’re selling to use as a downpayment. We have also considered not buying until our house has sold, but we did that in our last move and the moving company “lost” many of our belongings in storage. So we’d feel more comfortable not storing. Anyone have any thoughts or alternatives?

  8. Congrats! Make sure you take some time to enjoy your new home instead of just spending all your time crunching numbers to pay it off early!

  9. Congrats on the new home purchase! You have worked hard!

    BTW, you must have a really good job if your employer provides housing? That would be hard to give up!

  10. To Mary H. above, I think the idea of the home equity loan sounds wacky. I would just wait until the house sells before buying a new one. Too much risk in this market carrying two mortgages. Chances are, you won’t lose a bunch of belongings again. And besides, if you find a house pretty quickly, you can simply pack the van and unpack at the new place and avoid storing altogether. Just don’t go with a cheap shady moving company. We used local movers that came well recommended and had absolutely no problems. Another time we got one of those storage pods you pack yourself and stored that for a couple of months and that worked fine too.

  11. Ok, I meant to note that the first mortgage was paid off, but still I don’t like that home equity loan idea, especially if you are in an area where the real estate market is slow. I live in Indiana, and some of my neighbors homes have been on the market for over a year!

  12. Nice! So you’ve planned for that monthly mortgage. Did you also plan for the other costs of home ownership? Electricity, fuel oil (maybe), water (maybe), property taxes and insurance? Is the house brand new? If not, have you planned for maintenance? Replacing old appliances? There’s more than just the payment to the bank. How much have you planned for other items related to home ownership?

  13. Hi, congratulations, buying a house is exciting. My husband & I purchased our first home last year in another state. We are renting it out until the economy improves and work is more easy to find. In the mean time, we are trying to pay off our debt sooner. We are hoping to obliterate it in five years. It can be done, but it will be very tight as I am a stay at home mom. (and I want a few more kids in the next 5 years) My online pursuits are my way of contributing in any way possible to help pay off our debt early.

    I say go for it! Pay off all you can as soon as you can. Its a nice feeling to know you have saved thousands of dollars in interest.

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