Thursday, June 24, 2010
The Biggest Purchase Of My Life - My First Home!
I never thought I would be able to get the place that I did. It was listed at the high end of my price range, and there were already 2 offers in when I submitted mine. I just put in a reasonable offer compared to the comps in the area, and asked for seller to pay closing. My realtor advised that it was probably not a good idea to do so since there were 2 other offers in already, but I thought if I lost it then so be it. Well, as luck would have it, the offer form format was changed that day so we submitted the new form. The listing agent didn't realize that the new form now had the closing cost as an addendum, and thought that I didn't ask for closing. My guess is that another offer probably came close to mine, but asked for closing. So since the listing agent made the mistake and already told us that I got it, she had to stick to her words. And that's how I got my closing costs 100% covered! My realtor said that she's never seen this happen! Especially during these hard times.
And thank God I did because that saved me so much money, and I was able to put it all towards the down payment. I honestly did not think that I would be able to own a home at the age of 26, especially because I have some shopping addictions and bad spending habits. But I guess I somehow was able to save up enough money and bought everything I wanted at the same time! A lot of it came from my big fat bonus check I received at end of last year. I guess it does pay to be in the investment management industry. I also started curbing my shopping impulses this year in order to put away at least $2000 a month since January so that made up about $12000. Also, I have some other investment accounts that my mom opened for me when I was 18. I've been putting a couple hundred bucks into them monthly for 8 years now so they were slowly building up. So, as a result, I was able to put down everything without asking help from anyone. Hooray! Oh but now I'm at only a few thousand bucks left, so I guess I have to build up again. What big ticket item should I save up for next?
The place I got is a 3 bedroom condo in Sherman Oaks and has everything on my wish list. Yes it does mean I will be leaving my beloved Brentwood neighborhood though. It's just way too expensive here to buy. My current landlord is actually foreclosing the condo I'm renting. He bought it for $1.1 million in 2007! The bank wants to foreclose for $750k. Still a little high. But it's sad that almost $4000 a month of rent he's getting from us can't even cover his mortgage. I guess that just shows how high the price point is over here. Good news is, my own mortgage will be about the same or a little cheaper than my current rent!! Sherman Oaks is a very nice neighborhood as well. It's more family oriented rather than for young professional type. But it's very safe and convenient. It's centrally located, within 5 miles to the west side, very close to Hollywood, and not too far from downtown. It is on the other side of the hill though so it will be at least 10 degrees hotter than over here right by the ocean. So I will have to get used to the heat! There is a pool there though! I see a lot of tanning in my future. =)
So anyway, since my landlord is foreclosing, we have to get out of here by June 30, which means this weekend is the moving weekend! I'm excited but wow it all happened so fast. I just got my key today, and that was very anti-climatic by the way. Just like oh yeah, here's the key. I looked at the little silver key thinking I paid that much money just for this? Hahaha... but I am uber excited about the tax deductions I will be getting. Seriously my tax bracket is pretty high being unmarried and having no dependents. I hate seeing how much goes to taxes every year! So now I have my deduction! Plus I may still be able to get the $10000 California tax credit for first time home buyers if they don't run out.
The whole process of getting the loan and all was actually surprisingly really smooth. I thought it would have been chaotic being my first time. But I got a really really awesome realtor and loan broker who worked together and did everything! I didn't do anything myself other than signing my name where they told me to. But sometimes I did wish that someone would tell me something though, because I am interested in how the whole process works to a certain extent. Oh well, there's always next time! Hahaha... but it's great that I now have dependable real estate professionals to help me with whatever I may need in the future. So glad I was able to get a great first place with an all time low interest rate!
So I guess from now on I might be writing about my air conditioning unit vs. my clothes! Welcome to being a home owner right?