Quality versus Affordability
My life was changed 30 years ago when my husband Steve handed me a sheet of paper that read “Budget Log”. From that day forward we were to write down every penny we spent…..frightening news for a gal who owns over 200 pair of shoes!
Where does it all go?! It is very important to track your flow of money since the average American saves only 5% of his or her income per year. If you have made the major decision to purchase a home, it’s especially important to determine how much you spend. Your mortgage lender can only tell you the maximum they will allow you to borrow. But they cannot tell you how much you can afford!
My good friend Russell Finch came to me with a piece of scratch paper, looking to buy his first home. He had written out all his typical monthly exprenses. All of the standard items were there: food/utilities/gas/insurance. But Russell had also taken into account restaurant meals, typical video rental cost, gifts, tithe, and ordering the occasional pizza. We found a great house he knew he could afford without changing his whole lifestyle.
There are many benefits of owning your own home, but remember… EITHER YOU OWN THE HOME, OR IT OWNS YOU! To convert dollars spent into hours of life, take the amount of your mortgage payment and divide it by your hourly wage. For example: $1,300.00 (payment) divided by $15.00 (hourly wages) equals 86 hours. Yep, that would mean 86 hours per month, out of your life, spent working for the roof over your head!
If you are considering purchasing a home and would like help with the Quality-versus-Afford analysis, contact me for more information.
Sondra McFeters, Brokerage Owner
EXIT Realty, Your Next Move