I’ve lived in the D.C. area for about two and a half years now, and I’m still getting over my sticker shock at housing prices here, especially within the District borders. My parents are currently selling their midwestern home and the joke is that for what they’re selling their nice family house for, I could maybe get something a quarter of the size. Maybe.
Of course, the further you get from D.C., the better the prices become, so if/when I do start looking for a family house, that’s my plan.
One thing I love to do though, is look at real estate listings. I’m in love with a lot of the renovated rowhouses in D.C. They’re gorgeous and frequently spectacularly located. And they cost a ridiculous amount of money. But it’s fun to look. I don’t actually go to the open houses like a lot of my friends, but I love to look online. It’s especially fun to find ridiculously expensive and extravagant homes and imagine what it might be like to own a home like that.
Guess I should start buying lottery tickets, huh.
I can’t say that it makes me want to move anytime soon. The more I look at these homes, the more I realize that renting is a pretty great thing for me right now. The price is right and I don’t have to worry about unexpected maintenance requests. And I can continue to save and maybe someday buy a teensy version of my dream house.
Hey, the teensy version will be easier to clean, right?
Megan is a 40-something government employee in the Washington, DC area. She got interested in Personal Finance when she got out of college and realized that her paycheck wasn’t going to go as far as she had hoped. Since starting this blog, she has managed to buy a house and make a solid start on her retirement goals, and hopes to help others do the same. Here is her story:
In 2007, I was a gainfully employed 20-something with no debt but not a lot of knowledge about personal finance. It was a co-worker’s comment about Roth IRAs that sent me to the internet, searching for information. It was then that I realized that I really didn’t know a whole lot about personal finance and that my current financial situation was due a lot to inherent frugal tendencies, generous family members, a fear of debt, and good luck. While that was working for me, clearly I needed a better plan.
While I had no debt, I was also pretty much living paycheck to paycheck and not worrying about going over budget (I say this as if I had a real budget) because I had an emergency fund set aside to cover any overages.
Except that’s not what an emergency fund is for.
So I did a lot of research, read a lot of blogs, and decided that I needed a plan. I needed to budget. I needed to know what I was spending my money on. I needed to prepare for the future.
I decided to create a blog not only to make myself accountable to others but also to share the knowledge that I gained along the way. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers, and I hope that my readers can find something useful in what I have to share as well.