The following are thirty excuses that people make for not wanting to buy a home today. These excuses are not real. They are smoke screens to cover up a more serious psychological or emotional issue that is a result of past financial failures or financial trauma. It could be due to being a participant or witness to family drama over maintaining stable housing and financial stability. Our past can definitely dictate our future if we allow it.
We are not our past.
We are the hope and the promise of our parents and of our forefathers who came before us that paved the way for the opportunities and rights to homeownership that was denied to them. All of this was achieved battling the incredible forces that were opposed them. Yet, they overcame their past and so can we.
If you are like me, then you grew up poor and wanted to do better for your family than your parents tried to do for you. I was the oldest of seven children and my mom and dad, God rest their souls, did the best they could for us with their limited skills and education and resources. I honestly do not know how they did it with seven kids in six hundred square-foot house. However, we survived and all of us are doing better than our parents and providing a better future for children.
My desire to do better for myself and my family did not necessarily translate into buying a home, but being able to get a nice apartment and buy a nice car and obtaining a good paying job that would enable my wife and I to have a standard living that was better than what we experienced at home with our parents. I thanked God when I obtained my first job in finance in 1981, where I learned the importance of homeownership and mortgage banking by my mentor, Ken Gomes. I knew at young age what building wealth through real estate meant to my family and me. To make life even more challenging, Ruby and I got married practically right after high school at the tender age of nineteen. So we set off on this life journey together to make a life for ourselves. We did not have the financial literacy we needed to make the right decisions until I landed a temporary job working for Dial Finance Company. That job changed my life and I have been in finance, banking, and lending for the last thirty-four years.
It was a financial education that changed my life.
Home ownership is a game changer. If you are young you need to get educated and buy a home as soon as possible. Do not operate in fear and do not come up with the thirty excuses that I have written below that will rob you of the opportunity to buy a home now. If you do not buy a home today, I promise you that it will be one of the biggest regrets in your life. Try not to live a life full of regrets especially the regret of not buying a home now as opposed to later.
Also, do not be under the grand delusion that your standard of living should go up if you buy a home. It will do just the opposite. You will buy a smaller house than the apartment that you live in now. Your expenses will go up and you will have less money for discretionary spending. You will have additional costs for maintenance and you may have to drive a longer distance to get to work. You may not find the best neighborhood and you may have to buy a condo instead of a single-family home. Be prepared to make sacrifices, because the greater sacrifice, the greater the reward will be. If you are willing to sacrifice now, then jump on board now.
Here are the lame excuses that I hear everyday:
- I do not like the neighborhood.
- The home is too far from my job.
- I do not want to take the train to work.
- The neighborhood has a bad reputation.
- The house is too far from my family.
- The house is not big enough. I need more space.
- The payment is more than my rent.
- I do not want to pay mortgage insurance.
- My standard of living will go down.
- I need to save more money for a down payment.
- I do not want the responsibility of owning a home.
- The maintenance cost is too high.
- I do not want to buy a condo, because I have been living in an apartment.
- I do not want to pay association dues.
- I do not want to be tied down to a mortgage. What If I need to change jobs?
- I do not feel the timing is right.
- If I buy, then my kids cannot go to private school.
- I do not have time for yard work and I am not a DIY person.
- I do not want to put any money down.
- I will buy later when the prices go down or the interest rates are lower.
- I want to pay off my student loans first.
- I want to pay off my car first.
- I want to pay off my credit cards first.
- I want to wait until I get an increase in my salary.
- I want to wait until I get a promotion.
- I want to wait until I change jobs.
- I want to wait until I finish graduate school.
- I want to wait until I get married.
- I want to wait until my boyfriend or girlfriend is ready.
- I am scared what happens if I do not make the payments and lose the house.
What excuses are you making that are putting you further behind in life? You have the power to change your life and it start now. The power is now to buy.
Eric Lawrence Frazier, MBA
President and CEO