We Buy Houses - Sterling Park VA: There is a tendency to buy more than what we can afford in today’s America. We buy 2 large SUV’s instead of one, we buy lots of expensive meats when more fruits and grains would be better, and we buy more bedrooms and more square footage than we could possibly need. The bigger the house, after all, means the bigger our incomes and status.
With so many people now having lost their homes to foreclosure or in short sales, perhaps it is wiser to buy only what we can afford easily. If you have a $1200 per month mortgage payment it will be much easier to keep that up than a $2000 per month payment for a bigger house. When you buy you must ask yourself what you can live with comfortably. Can you get along with a full bath upstairs where your bedrooms are located and a half bath downstairs in the family room or kitchen area? With 2 adults and 2 kids in the family, can you get along with a bedroom for each of the kids, one for the adults, and an office?
Think of the basement as a place to expand play area and storage so you can go with less bedroom space. When grandma comes to visit, convert the day bed in the office to a guest setup instead of looking for a house with yet another bedroom for her annual 3 day visit. The prices these days are really great so you should be able to get a good price on what you can easily afford to maintain, provide heat, and cool in the summer. Make the house comfortable but a little frugality could come in very handy later if you have the unforeseen layoff at work or broken ankle that causes a 6-week work loss. Plan for the future.
With the lower house payment you can use your extra money to pay off the house faster, pay down your credit card bills, pay off the cars, or use it for more family memories through travel and activities. Check your monthly income and expenses before you go to find a new house. Lenders will help you to figure out what you can easily afford and will give you a letter stating such to show sellers. They use standard calculations to determine how much you are likely able to borrow. Check their numbers against yours and there should be a guideline for you to follow.