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My First Home

Mortgage and Lending with George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages NMLS #65149

This month Kathy Streib and Carol Williams are hosting the April Challenge titled "Tell Us About Your First Home Buying Experience."  I have only purchased two homes in my lifetime, and I am presently living in my second home which I purchased in 1981.  While the two purchases were under very different circumstances, the two were very similar in that each one our offer was accepted right away and closed quickly.

After 4 years in the Navy, I decided it was not the career choice for me, so on September 28, 1974 I received an honorable discharge, and began my civilian life once again.  My departure from the Navy was soon followed by marring my to be forever wife in October 19, 1974.  After a very short honeymoon, we I packed up a Ford, Pinto station wagon with our belonging, and began our trip across country, from San Mateo, CA to East Providence, RI.

Less than a year later friends at church were selling their home in Barrington, RI.  We did not have any intention of purchasing a home at the time, but we decided we would take a look at it.  The house was perfect for us.  The house sat on a .25 acre lot, and it had 3 bedrooms, one bathroom, Living-room, kitchen, a one car garage, and was selling for $27,500.

It did not take my wife long to look at me and say I want to buy it.  We had no clue what we were doing, and this was a FSBO.  However, we trusted our friends and documents were drawn up.  I do not remember anything about financing, or being represented by an Attorney, but in September of 1975 we moved into our first home.

We were very happy with our new home, and had great neighbors, but in just two short months our furnace stopped working.  This was not good since November is the start of the colder weather in RI.  Fortunately for us the house was built on a foundation with radiant heat, so the house stayed relatively warm for a couple of days, which was enough time for us to make arrangements to stay with my parents, and schedule a replacement furnace with our oil company.  Luckily in the 4 years we lived there this was the only major issue we had with the house.

In 1978 I took a job as a salesman with a Material Handling Company who would be my employer for the next 26 years.  However, the condition on taking the job was that I had to move to CT to cover the state for them.  They gave me up to a year to get familiar with the territory before I needed to relocate.  So in August of 1979 we put the house on the market for $42,000, and the house sold a week later.

I do not have any pictures of the house, but the one in the feature photo above is how it looks today, and according to Zillow and Realtor.com it is now estimated at $404,800.  I am amazed at what the house is valued at today, and wish I could have kept it a little longer so that I could have gotten some of that additional equity!!!



Posted by

George Souto
NMLS# 65149

C (860) 573-1308
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I am a Mortgage Loan Officer who can assist you with all your mortgage & refinancing needs in
CT, and RI

I can assist you with your Conventional,
FHA, CHFA, VA, USDA, & 203K loan programs.

I reside in Middlesex County which includes Middletown, Middlefield, Durham, Cromwell, Portland, Haddam. E. Haddam, Higganum, Chester, Essex, Deep River.



Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

George Souto  loved the story of your first home purchase, funny I had no idea you were a California boy:) funny I started in Connecticut and here I am in California:)Endre

Apr 24, 2023 10:24 PM
Kat Palmiotti
eXp Commercial, Referral Divison - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Thank you for sharing the story of your first home - it sounds like it worked out perfectly!

And I also didn't know you were from California!

Apr 25, 2023 04:54 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, George. What a fun read. And just as it's hard to fathom what this house is worth today, it's equally hard to fathom what you paid for it back in the 1970's. 

Apr 25, 2023 05:24 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

When your wife looks at you and says she wants to buy it, you know what you gotta do, haha.

Apr 25, 2023 05:35 AM
Doug Dawes
Keller Williams Evolution - 447 Boston Street, Suite #5, Topsfield, MA - Topsfield, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Good Morning George Souto 

First, thank you for serving our country. I remember prices like that, of course, wages for the average working person, in 1974, were around $200 - $300/wk

Apr 25, 2023 06:44 AM
Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

As you well know George prices today are nowhere where they were 5 years ago never mind 45. You were enriched by the time you sent there and the rest, as they say is history

Apr 25, 2023 06:47 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi George:

I really enjoyed reading about your journey to your first home purchase. How wonderful to have spent so many years in your current, and 2nd, home - I can just imagine the memories!


Apr 25, 2023 08:34 PM
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Condo and Home Specialists

Such a sweet story George and  I enjoyed reading it. And as they say...Happy Wife - Happy Life!

Apr 26, 2023 12:24 AM
Ricki Eichler McCallum
CastNet Realty - Corpus Christi, TX
Broker,GRI,ABR, e-Pro, TAHS

I loved reading your story. How I wish those prices were still current today. It is amazing at how things have changed. No wonder young people have such a hard time buying their first home.

Apr 26, 2023 06:21 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Hello George - while photos can tell a story, it is longtime home ownership that tells another.  I am certain you are happy with that decision to relocate from Rhode Island to Connecticut.  

Apr 26, 2023 08:36 AM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Prop. Mgr, Wenatchee, WA

Hi George,
What a fun look back into the past. Isn't it interesting that you remember nothing about the financing, and that's what you do now? Buying and selling have gotten so much more complicated!

Apr 27, 2023 06:58 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
Savvy + Company (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC

Oh, I love your story, George! I had no idea you hadn't always been on the east coast! I remember how low prices were in the 70's and I'm sure the equity you would have had in it now is difficult to swallow but, you still made money on it and then, that was great money.

Looks like an owner after you turned that garage into heated living space, doesn't it? 

Thanks for participating in this month's challenge, George! Again, loved your story!

Apr 27, 2023 10:21 AM
Jeff Masich-Scottsdale AZ Associate Broker,MBA,GRI
HomeSmart Real Estate - Scottsdale, AZ
Arizona Homes and Land Group/ Buy or Sell

Times move on George. The house has maintained its character. Jeff

Apr 27, 2023 03:04 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

What a great story.  A FSBO as a first purchase.  Lucky you had good friends.  I'm sure that furnace wasn't cheap, but looks like you ended with good equity.  And wow - look at the current value.  Good for you!  Congrats on your long-time marriage :) 

Apr 27, 2023 06:35 PM
Hannah Williams
HomeStarr Realty - Philadelphia, PA
Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-820-3376

George Souto every time I read one of your stories I learn something new. My first house was $21,000 in 1973  times have certainly changed. 

Apr 28, 2023 10:41 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Hello George Souto - I connected to your lovely story. So much of what you wrote resonated with me. FSBO purchase. My house in 1979 was $43,000.00. By the time I sold it to move out of state it nearly tripled in price and sold before I reached my destination in Texas. 

Yours was a great story. Such a great accomplishment for anyone recently honorably discharged from the Navy. You deserved it and you still deserve all your dreams to come true. 

Apr 29, 2023 06:15 AM
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Red Rock Real Estate (435) 632-9374 - St. George, UT
St. George Utah Area Residential Sales Agent

Moving cross country must have been a big challenge for you and the family, George but turned into a happily ever after. I enjoyed reading your story and thank you for sharing!

Apr 29, 2023 04:17 PM
Ann Hayden 636-399-7544
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties-St. Louis Missouri 314-775-2050 - Des Peres, MO

George Souto ,

A broken furnace is as bad as the stove we had start leaking gas.

Happy it all worked out.


Apr 30, 2023 06:08 PM
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

George Souto Enjoyed your First Home story!  i am really having a FUN time reading everyone's experiences in home ownership! This is a great April challenge!

Apr 30, 2023 08:06 PM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

I love your first home story, George! It's similar to mine; I bought in 1974 and think it was 1977 or 78 when we sold. Did you have family on the east coast? It's interesting to read everyone's experience of their first home purchase. It's amazing you are only in your second home!

May 04, 2023 02:58 PM