Sunday, April 28, 2013

The American Dream

Sometimes when I am bored, I look at the Trulia app on my iPad. I have it set to single family homes less than $500,000. Usually this doesn't kill too much of my boredom because there isn't much to look at.

This last time I found a beautiful house in the hills for $400,000. This is amazingly cheap for the Bay Area, and it also contains a potentially rentable lower level. Matt and I became somewhat serious about potentially investigating and purchasing this house. In the end it appears to be seriously underpriced just to start a bidding war.

But it has gotten me thinking. I love the idea of renting because you are not tied down. Awesome job in another location? No problem. What if one of us loses a job? Just downgrade. What if we decide to spend a few years in another country? What if my wayward spouse decides to go back to school?

However, I am now intrigued by the thought of actually owning a house, preferably one larger than the 500 sf we live in. At least big enough for a couch. Where we can do projects in the yard and in the house. Where I don't have to worry about when the landlords will kick us out. Where maybe we can invest ourselves in something besides our jobs. Like chickens. (And goats.)

But here in the Bay Area, that is an enormous and scary monetary commitment. And it makes, by default, so many decisions about our future. Will we ever be old enough to make these adult decisions?

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