How’s that for a title? It seemed appropriate, so why not? Here’s what I’ve been up to since last posting. I was supposed to be starting a new site still bearing this name, but it was supposed to be easier on me, that hasn’t transpired yet! I was also supposed to be recording much of what’s in those books on the gallery page of this site(I wonder if anyone ever goes to that gallery page?) that hasn’t happened yet!
Instead I’ve been attempting to purchase a home. This particular home would enable me to carry out my crumbling digital empire in a more efficient manner than I’m doing now. Does anyone know much about buying a home in America? It requires money, something I don’t have much of. It requires decent credit, that I do have, but I don’t have much credit. Buying a home in America is a pain in the ass! It used to be easier, but too many folks got too greedy a few years ago and ruined it for many.
Conventional and traditional measures require a down payment of 20% and then you still have closing cost, that’s a chunk of change out of pocket to have to come up with! I’m slightly disabled, so I’m poor by American standards. I get considerably less than a thousand bucks per month, yet I’m attempting to buy a home. Someone somewhere may be asking how that works? There are several ways, but for me I’m going FHA, that’s a government backed loan. I have to due to lack of funds, FHA requires less money out of pocket, a big plus for the poor man. FHA requires some fairly stringent guidelines that the house must meet, so you won’t be buying trash! So how does a poor man buy a home in America, thus pursuing the American Dream? I’m going to take you on a journey of how one approaches this endeavor, sit back and attempt to glean something from this.
When I say I’m poor, I really do get considerably less than $1000.00 per month, but what I get is guaranteed for now! I have something to bank on! Here in America the country many love to hate, I was deemed disabled. America didn’t turn her back on me and leave me hanging in the wind though. She gives a small monthly allowance of which I try to use wisely. She was also kind enough to give me back pay in 3 installments over the course of a year. That back pay dates to the time I first filed for disability. Here in America it usually requires a lawyer and time to get disability of any form, so my back pay was 2 years worth and the lawyer got 25% of that on the first installment. We aren’t talking about a large sum of money here, but for the most part it was used wisely.
So here’s the deal, I’m dirt poor by so called American standards, yet I’m not lacking. I have my computer(actually 2), I have a cheap android phone on a non contract cheap plan getting the same coverage as most other folks on contract plans. I have a 21 year old pick up truck, but it runs alright and is paid for. This enables me to carry a bare bones just enough to be legal insurance policy on it. If the house ever closes, both policies will be bundled giving me a slight discount! I have a credit card I rarely use and keep a 0 balance on and I have my musical instruments. I probably have less than $700.00 in music gear and that’s 6 pretty decent electric guitars, one bass, and an acoustic. I also have a decent digital piano that gives me the instrument voicing and drums I need to carry out my music endeavors. The deal is, it’s all paid for and was gotten cheaply, a few of those guitars were built using eBay and Amazon as a source for parts. One of my only payments is Amazon Prime, but that gives me free shipping on a lot of parts plus I watch their shows.
If and when I get to close on the house I’ve contracted, then a one time fee of $40.00 at Amazon Prime gets me an Ultra HDTV antenna. This enables me to watch a lot of stations and coupled with my Prime subscription I shouldn’t hurt for entertainment. Now, there’s supposedly a box of sorts that cost around $200.00 or so, a one time cost! Supposedly this gives me free fast internet. My phone is with Ting,$28.00 per month will get me roughly 500 minutes of talk per month, that’s plenty for me! I do a lot of email, no texting!
So, we’ve talked about cheap luxuries and some necessities, now let’s talk about the house. I’m going to blow a hole in a new millennial myth I’ve been hearing and seeing. It is not better to rent than buy a home! You have to buy right! With that being stated let’s talk about the house.
The house I’ve contracted was contracted at $32,000.00 with the seller paying $1800.00 toward closing cost. Here’s how this breaks down numbers wise. I’m going to come out of pocket around $3600.00 at time of closing, the lender would like to see $5000.00 in my account. If you’re lacking funds you can have it gifted through friends or family, but it has to leave a paper trail. Here’s the part that dispels the myth of rent. My monthly payment with insurance and taxes included will be $284.00 per month! Where and what can you rent for that kind of money? People, this shit can be done!
At $32,000.00 I’m not buying a new home, I’m buying something that needs some TLC. I like to say lipstick and rouge, not cosmetic surgery. FHA isn’t going to allow a piece of shit. The house I contracted came back with a 14 item list. I’ve talked to the individual that did the appraisal(it’s actually an inspection), she will be the one that reinspects it after I make her suggested repairs. After looking around quite a bit I can assure you it’s no easy feat finding a decent home in this price range. I’m going to do the work myself, it’s mainly cosmetic. I have agents and sellers tripping over themselves because I announced this. It’s literally like monkeys fucking a football, they weren’t expecting this and are actually having a hard time deciding how to let me access the house to do the repairs. This is where you need a good agent, I don’t have that, I think my agent is in bed with their agent. I’m not local, they are! The point is this, I’m willing to do the work, because I’ve seen the market. It will cost me a few hundred extra bucks, but where am I going to go for those kinds of numbers?
I will be in a music town with a fairly reputable college across the river that could provide a local source of talent for my songs. As I’ve stated before, I’m in need of someone better than I to perform my songs. And this is my little tale of how to realistically buy the American dream.
Something worth noting, there aren’t many mortgage lenders willing to do a mortgage below $50,000.00, that being stated I found 4 that would. The numbers reflected above are from Trustmark Bank of the Southeastern portion of the U.S, they had the best rates for me. If you’re willing to partake in this kind of endeavor get approved for a loan first, determine what you want in a house and the property, then go shopping! Most of these homes are going to have a listing agent, you might try working with them first. The more agents involved the messier it becomes, by all means study your market. I couldn’t do what I’ve just referred to in the county I live in. I live in a resort type area, the prices are way too high down here, I was willing to move. It really is all about what serves your needs the best? I just thought I would share this with someone seeking a portion of the so called American Dream! Good Luck to you on this! Robert
I was a poor man told a dream could not be achieved
Lucky for me that’s something I never really believed.
Don’t let circumstances and others dictate what can and can not be done!