Matt's opinion

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

So frustrating

This is a call to action! I know quite a few of you who read this, if indeed you exist, are in the same predicament I find myself in. On July 1, 2005 the interest rate on federal student loans will jump a whooping 2%, costing everyone a great deal of money, but there is a way to avoid it. If you were to consolidate your federal student loans before this date then you will not be subject to the increase and probably owe less in intrest than you would have originally. The catch is that everyone is trying to do this all at the same time. The website for online applications has timed out on my more times than I can count and when you call to ask a question the automated voice kindly tells you "Your call cannot be completed at this time" and promptly hangs up on you. THIS IS SO FRUSTRATING!!!!!!! Not only is the online application process buckling under the pressure, but there is no one to help in any way shape or form, which isn't helped by that diabolically evil voice telling you HAHA I won't help you !! GRRRRRR!!! Anyway, enough venting about that crap, I'll just wait until later tonight when there shouldn't be so much web traffic at that site and try it then (brilliant!!!, in theory at least).

Melissa and I are still in the process of looking for a house, which consistently gets more depressing with every new development we look at. I'm not exactly sure why, maybe because of the hurricanes or the hordes of people moving from up north, but there is absolutely nothing resonably priced availible for miles. It seems like everything being built is out of our price range by at least $100,000, which is outrageous. Builders just aren't interested in building 'starter homes' anymore. Like everything else these days people want luxury this and luxury that and somehow have all the money in the world to pay for it. How do people get all this money? Is there some communal fund out there I don't have the pin number to? I just don't get it, but that's nothing new. We were watching one of those home improvement shows on HGTV, I think it was called 'Moving Up' where 3 homeowners sell their old homes and they show new people moving in and the changes they make to the house, and it was set in Boston, or a similar city, and the three houses cost between $900,000-$700,000. Melissa and I looked at each other like Scooby Doo, but unfortunetly only I made the confused grunting noise (she's just no fun). Now what does someone in our position do in a market where houses cost that much and they don't already own that property?
Let's take a look at that:
"Experts" reccomend you put down 10-20% in cash which amounts to $70,000-$140,000 on the less expensive end. Then the closing costs on the house usually run about 2-5%, so lets just assume 2% (cause I like to be cheap) which amounts to another $14,000. So just to buy a house in the Boston area it's going to cost you between $84,000 and $154,000 up front, and that's only if you want to do it the way the "Experts want you to do it. Now granted I only saw a small portion of the market in Boston, which may end up being statistically insignifigant (yes folks, I'm also getting a Masters in big, important sounding words), but I'm wondering to myself is this inevitable across the country? Will I have to fork out over half a million just to provide my family with a roof over their heads? That's more than a little scary, and frustrating to think about if you ask me.

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