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My Home Buying Stories

Real Stories Make All the Difference

There’s much debate about as to whether or not buying/owning a home is an asset or a liability. You can find that debate talking place online, at home, among your friends or co-workers, with parents but you’re not going to find that debate here on this blog post.Owning a home is an asset for me and we’ll leave it at that.

The following blog post will give you a true account of my home buying story. I use my story to help home buyers like you understand the home buying process and to ensure that you do not make the same mistakes I made when I purchased my first home, which happens to be a condo.

My Home Buying Story, My Experience as Both a Real Estate Agent and a Home Buyer.

In 2005, I was a real estate agent in love and ready for marriage. Naturally, I wanted to take my relationship to the next level and buy a home. In truth, I wanted to buy a home even before I became a real estate agent. I took the real estate licensing classes to learn more about buying a home and never, ever really intended on becoming a full time real estate agent; but somehow, years later I ended up selling houses and representing clients, both buyers and sellers, exactly 14 months before I decided to buy a home.

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I wanted a 2 bedroom townhouse or condo with one and half baths, hardwood floors, parking. Parking was a BIG deal for me and a deal breaker if the property didn’t offer off street parking. I simply needed parking since I was coming from a rental in Harrison, NJ which just so happens that it is near impossible to find parking in Harrison.  If an  association did not allow pets, I excluded the property from my home search. No Pets, No Go! Having a dog was as important to me as much as price, location and amenities. Believe it or not, some developments have rules and regulations as to the type of pets that are allowable. I can think of one that excludes both cats and dogs, which is mind blowing to me since I can’t imagine my life without my Roxy, my mini Dachshund.

Since I was a real estate agent, I decided to represent myself in the transaction, which in retrospect, was one of the mistakes I made. I somewhat felt like I didn’t have anyone to brainstorm with or ask questions about certain important decisions as the home buying process unfolded. I did however speak with family members about the decision to buy a home. I remember speaking to one of my cousins, someone I deeply respected. Even though I could afford to buy a home in a higher price point, my cousin gave me the best advice that I know influences me still to this day, which was to be conservative with my purchase.

As a result, I ended up buying a smaller unit, a condo with one with one bedroom, one bath. That was by far the best home buying advice I could have ever received. As life would have it, my fiance lost his job after we purchase our condo and well, the real estate market took a turn for the worse. In being conservative, we were able to make adjustments when life happened.  My cousin said, “Your home might be your largest asset one day, but it definitely shouldn’t be your largest liability right now.” He was simply trying to stress having a house is one thing, but having a life that allows you to travel, shop, eat out, save, invest, be charitable and even protect your investments is the story we should all want for ourselves.

I’ve had both positive and negative experiences in living in a Condo. If you want to hear that story, listen to our podcast on Living in a Condo, Pros and Cons.

Differences Between Condos and Townhouse

Condos and Townhouses are so similar that people often confuse them or use the two terms interchangeably.  Condominiums are meant to describe properties that were either apartments in the past that are were converted into owner occupied units or units in which an owner owns the inside of the unit and shares a common interests (percentages) with other owners in the land and common elements of the development. Condominiums and townhouses are always attached to other Condos or Townhouses (Up, Down, Left, Right).
Townhouses are meant to describe properties where the owner has ownership interests in the land that the townhouse sits on and the air above it whereas a condo owner’s land interests is not distinguishable from other unit owners. Both condominiums and townhouses generally collect maintenance fees for upkeep of common elements.

FHA Financing

How to determine if the Condo or Townhouse You want to Buy is FHA Approved

Many first time home buyers seek FHA financing, but FHA financing can be tricky on a condo/townhouse purchase. There are certain guidelines that must be met for a before a lender will consider/approve your loan for a condo/townshouse purchase.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development maintains a list of approved associations.

You can find that list of approved condos and townhouses projects here.

Post By Audeliz Angie Perez (160 Posts)

Angie Perez is a NJ Circle of Excellence award winning real estate agent for Re/Max Select in Westfield NJ. She sells anywhere from 12-25 houses per year on a consistent basis since 2005. Ms. Perez is primarily a buyer's agent on 60% of her real estate sales where she represents rental income investors, first time home buyers & trade up home buyers of 1-4 family homes within specific towns encompassing 4 NJ counties: Union, Essex, Middlesex and Somerset County. Many of Ms. Perez's clients appreciate her ability to negotiate favorable real estate deals for them. Many of her clients commented that her research abilities, her honesty, her knowledge of local market trends and her proficiency to manage multiple real estate transactions from start to close are some of the reasons why she was hired as their agent of choice. Please call, text or email Angie Perez to ask if she lists or sell in your town. If she can not help you, Ms. Perez would be more than happy to help or refer you to someone who can.

Website: → NJ Real Estate For Sale

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2 Responses to Differences-Buying Selling Townhouses-Condos Galore Oh My

  1. Lindsey Body says:

    just posted this page on facebook account. it is a very interesting read for all.

  2. Well designed web site!

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