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-   -   buying house when I485 is pending (https://immigrationvoice.org/forum/forum2-retrogression-priority-dates-and-visa-bulletins/18085-buying-house-when-i485-is-pending.html)

fide_champ 03-22-2008 02:17 PM

buying house when I485 is pending
 
my greencard is filed under EB3 category and it looks like a long wait. My PD is 2003 Nov and i am an indian. We've been debating whether to buy a house when 485 is pending. what is the risk involved? how many people are in a similar situation? I have twin boys and they are 3 yrs old now and it's getting increasingly difficult to keep them in an apartment. Now with housing market going down as well, we are in a tight spot and have to make a decision quickly. I would appreciate any suggestion in this regard.

nc14 03-22-2008 02:43 PM

Go for it.
 
My PD is May 2004 in the same category. I think you should have also got your EAD (which gives the safety net). I bought my house in September last year and got a hefty discount from the builder (State - OH). I think, its a buyers market, if you have some stability at your job and if you also have the EAD than it is time to take the plunge.

No doubt, It's a good time to buy (but also depends on where you are located). FYI, I bought a new house in a community which was getting completed and got if for a good price. The good thing about something like this is that since the community is over now, the builder is not competing with the existing home owners for the same buyer.


....................................
My little contribution - $220 till date
Flower Campaign + Sending letter to the President


Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232554)
my greencard is filed under EB3 category and it looks like a long wait. My PD is 2003 Nov and i am an indian. We've been debating whether to buy a house when 485 is pending. what is the risk involved? how many people are in a similar situation? I have twin boys and they are 3 yrs old now and it's getting increasingly difficult to keep them in an apartment. Now with housing market going down as well, we are in a tight spot and have to make a decision quickly. I would appreciate any suggestion in this regard.


venram 03-22-2008 06:54 PM

Depends on how long you would stay in or retain the house
 
Here is the key thing - now it is crystal clear that purchasing a house cannot be a short term investment. If you plan to buy a house, you should plan on staying in (or retaining it by way of renting) the house for at least 5 years. I feel, that should drive the decision of your buying the house or not. Visa status is just a very small factor in this decision. If you are not very confident of keeping your visa status valid until you get a green card, then quit the idea of buying the house for now.

I would think even if one has a green card in hand and cannot be sure of being in one place for at least 3-5 years, then quit thinking of buying a house until you secure yourself in one place for that kind of a term.


Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232554)
my greencard is filed under EB3 category and it looks like a long wait. My PD is 2003 Nov and i am an indian. We've been debating whether to buy a house when 485 is pending. what is the risk involved? how many people are in a similar situation? I have twin boys and they are 3 yrs old now and it's getting increasingly difficult to keep them in an apartment. Now with housing market going down as well, we are in a tight spot and have to make a decision quickly. I would appreciate any suggestion in this regard.


enqueued 03-23-2008 01:39 AM

I will go for it
 
IMHO - go buy a house. We cannot freeze our lives for green card.

I bought one in the first year of my H1. I changed it last year. I am in the 9th year now. It is the *only* sensible investment I made.

Cheers.

insbaby 03-23-2008 02:20 AM

LIFE matters.
 
If you want to buy a home after you get your green card, mostly you will get after your retirement.

I don't want to feel "my home" when I am 68 and after my kids are out on their own. So I decided, dump the H1B, H4, 485, 131, 761, 797, 999, 888, I94, EAD, AP... AAD, CCD etc crap in trash, and bought the home.

I am happy. Even if I am asked to leave the country tomorrow, I just lock the door, throw the keys in trash and take off.

Who cares when life matters.

nixstor 03-23-2008 02:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by insbaby (Post 232608)
If you want to buy a home after you get your green card, mostly you will get after your retirement.

I don't want to feel "my home" when I am 68 and after my kids are out on their own. So I decided, dump the H1B, H4, 485, 131, 761, 797, 999, 888, I94, EAD, AP... AAD, CCD etc crap in trash, and bought the home.

I am happy. Even if I am asked to leave the country tomorrow, I just lock the door, throw the keys in trash and take off.

who cares when life matters.

First sounded funny, then it made helluva sense.

gveerab 03-23-2008 04:35 AM

Go ahead and buy
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by nixstor (Post 232610)
First sounded funny, then it made helluva sense.

I suggest to go ahead and buy. I bought a townhome in California. I have been working here from last 8 yrs and thought enough is enough and bought the house.

if you have plan to stay here for more than 5 yrs you should not wait.

inspectorfox 03-23-2008 05:23 AM

Immigration uncertainties should not be a reason for not buying a house in the US. In my opinion its always best to buy a house considering it as a long term investment You will eventually build equity even though the present US housing market is in doldrums.

I played the housing game differently to minimize the risks associated with my present immigration scenario (I am on 8th year H1B with I140 pending since Oct 2006)...
1) I did not buy an expensive place even though I could easily qualify for $500K mortgage.
2) I put only 3% down payment on my mortgage instead of conventional 20%. It was a difficult decision to make due to PMI but I feel more secure with cash liquidity.

I am an optimistic person but here is my realistic backup strategy if anything falls apart due to immigration (Worse case scenario) -

1) Sell the house and move out of the US (Housing market conditions could be a determining factor)
2) Rent the house (I don't think this should be a problem... LOCATION is the key)
3) Go into Foreclosure (Highly unlikely but you are destined to be screwed anyways)

Does anyone have a better backup plan? Please share here :)

fide_champ 03-23-2008 07:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by inspectorfox (Post 232621)
Immigration uncertainties should not be a reason for not buying a house in the US. In my opinion its always best to buy a house considering it as a long term investment You will eventually build equity even though the present US housing market is in doldrums.

I played the housing game differently to minimize the risks associated with my present immigration scenario (I am on 8th year H1B with I140 pending since Oct 2006)...
1) I did not buy an expensive place even though I could easily qualify for $500K mortgage.
2) I put only 3% down payment on my mortgage instead of conventional 20%. It was a difficult decision to make due to PMI but I feel more secure with cash liquidity.

I am an optimistic person but here is my realistic backup strategy if anything falls apart due to immigration (Worse case scenario) -

1) Sell the house and move out of the US (Housing market conditions could be a determining factor)
2) Rent the house (I don't think this should be a problem... LOCATION is the key)
3) Go into Foreclosure (Highly unlikely but you are destined to be screwed anyways)

Does anyone have a better backup plan? Please share here :)

That's interesting. You paid only 3% and how much loan you took and what's your monthly payment?

You guys are providing me with lots of encouragement. I very much appreciate your suggestions or inputs.

vrbest 03-23-2008 10:10 AM

I agree with all the posters here. I also went ahead and bought the house while on H1B. Me and my family are really happy with our decision.

I got 100% loan (80-20) with no PMI. both 30yrs fixed. You can try with Mortgage agents who would do better deal initially and may transfer loan to big companies later. I got it at 5.7% first and 7% second last year.
Best of luck on your new Home(Lifestyle)!

rima1805 03-23-2008 11:36 AM

Buy that home!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232554)
my greencard is filed under EB3 category and it looks like a long wait. My PD is 2003 Nov and i am an indian. We've been debating whether to buy a house when 485 is pending. what is the risk involved? how many people are in a similar situation? I have twin boys and they are 3 yrs old now and it's getting increasingly difficult to keep them in an apartment. Now with housing market going down as well, we are in a tight spot and have to make a decision quickly. I would appreciate any suggestion in this regard.

We bought a townhome in my 1st yr of H1 as I had just got married and my wife (from India) was literally living out of her boxes in my 1-bed rm apt. My decision was based less on home being an investment (due to decling real est market, etc) and more on being a necessity. Try one of the "rent vs buy" online calculators to see how much more you would have to pay. For instance, I was shelling out ~1000 bucks a month on a decent 1 bed apt with garage; and now, I pay ~1500 on a 3 bed, 2.5 bath, 2 car garage townhome. This year I could also itemize my mortgage int payments and pay less tax too, where as the rent you pay every month goes straight into the drain! We recently had my parents from India stay for 6mo with comfort. Try that in an apt. In view of the GC situation, I'd go for a not-so-expensive but good neighborhood home so that you can 'enjoy' your life as others have rightly pointed out and sell it with lesser pain if you have to move & the housing market tanks. Good luck!

fedex_uscis 03-23-2008 12:03 PM

I am 28!!!
 
Buy home at 82,marry at 68.USCIS will never change, this Barack Obama will be stuck in name check.I am sure he will get stuck in FBI name check. AILA should apply GC for Barack and see where it goes?

ameryki 03-23-2008 10:59 PM

go for it mate. i bought a home in my 3rd year of H1 granted now I have Ead etc but immigration was never a factor when investing in a pad...hope this helps

mbawa2574 03-23-2008 11:57 PM

Go for it dude
 
This whole GC process is unpredictable. Don't waste ur life for it. Do whatever u think is best for you. It will be America on the loosing side if they deny u the GC after u have bought the home.

mariner5555 03-24-2008 12:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mbawa2574 (Post 232693)
This whole GC process is unpredictable. Don't waste ur life for it. Do whatever u think is best for you. It will be America on the loosing side if they deny u the GC after u have bought the home.

it is not just america losing - the person who has bought the house would lose his downpayment / equity too -not to speak of the mighty credit score - am I right ??
depends on yr situation and your priorities and more important the place where you are planning to buy. is it in florida, mich, Ohio, california or nevada (I guess no - else you would not have asked this question). if you think of a house as investment and you dont want to take a loss - then wait. if you need the space desperately and you are o.k with the prospect of yr house depreciating for couple of years - then go ahead and buy. BTW there was another thread where this was discussed in detail
http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/sh...ad.php?t=17986

USDream2Dust 03-24-2008 12:33 AM

Ok thank you guys
 
Thank you. I need to buy a house and I have no savings. I make a lot of money but no savings. You guys are inspiration. I am going to jump off the cliff and buy a house. Worst come worst I would contribute to the worsening economy and end up in foreclosure. But I think unless I try I would end up getting old in my 1 bedroom apt.

I need help. I am searching online a lot of real estate agents. How do you do it? I am in NJ and don't even know what area is good and I heard you have to look for schools for kids (i don't have but would have in 1-2 years). Do real estate agents recommend any areas?

There is only 2 things I know.
1. I need house
2. I can afford 500k house.


Any inputs recommended :)

mbawa2574 03-24-2008 12:55 AM

I partly agree with you
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mariner5555 (Post 232700)
it is not just america losing - the person who has bought the house would lose his downpayment / equity too -not to speak of the mighty credit score - am I right ??
depends on yr situation and your priorities and more important the place where you are planning to buy. is it in florida, mich, Ohio, california or nevada (I guess no - else you would not have asked this question). if you think of a house as investment and you dont want to take a loss - then wait. if you need the space desperately and you are o.k with the prospect of yr house depreciating for couple of years - then go ahead and buy. BTW there was another thread where this was discussed in detail
http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/sh...ad.php?t=17986

I agree he will loose his down payment or credit score in case of things going south on GC side but still he will be able to do whatever is best for his long term goals now and he will be better off in terms of equity when real estate market bounces back in 3-4 years.There are lucrative deals in the market and renting does not make any sense. There is always a risk factor and u can cover your risks accordingly. Anywaz What exactly ur going to do with Credit Score after u are kicked out from here ? So why not take risk now and play the game.

mariner5555 03-24-2008 01:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232554)
my greencard is filed under EB3 category and it looks like a long wait. My PD is 2003 Nov and i am an indian. We've been debating whether to buy a house when 485 is pending. what is the risk involved? how many people are in a similar situation? I have twin boys and they are 3 yrs old now and it's getting increasingly difficult to keep them in an apartment. Now with housing market going down as well, we are in a tight spot and have to make a decision quickly. I would appreciate any suggestion in this regard.

BTW - don't make a decision in a hurry - that would be pretty bad since it is almost irreversible for few years atleast. 4 of my friends brought a house and they are o.k. as of now except for the commute - though they admit that they are more tensed up now. one of my friend who brought a house 1 year back is cursing his decision to buy - I don't know if he is being honest or whether he chose a wrong house - these are the issues that he told me. his savings has gone down a lot as he has to pay much more for his house - atleast 3 times the rent amount (property taxes are high in his area). his commute is v.long now and he cannot come home for lunch - and because of long commute - he practically does not see his family on weekdays. his daughter has done free style painting on his walls and they had a crack on the walls (apparently he tried to reduce utility bills during extreme weather). his wife is now complaining that walking up and down the stairs is draining her strength. yardwork is literally breaking his back. his friend circle has gone down as he hardly gets time. more importantly he said his priorities were different and he wanted to make / save as much as possible etc - but buying a house has affected it. BTW he has a GC. ofcourse the above is one of the worst case. being on EAD is better than being on H1 - but still you are at the mercy of a govt agency (govt agencies are same all over the world - only here maybe they wear ties and don't watch TV at work - but then who knows :-)).

mariner5555 03-24-2008 01:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mbawa2574 (Post 232708)
I agree he will loose his down payment or credit score in case of things going south on GC side but still he will be able to do whatever is best for his long term goals now and he will be better off in terms of equity when real estate market bounces back in 3-4 years.There are lucrative deals in the market and renting does not make any sense. There is always a risk factor and u can cover your risks accordingly. Anywaz What exactly ur going to do with Credit Score after u are kicked out from here ? So why not take risk now and play the game.

why do you say that renting does not make any sense ?? credit score would matter if a person gets a better oppurtunity and decides to come back - screwing up yr credit is like burning a bridge. In my humble opinion real estate won't bounce back - it may limp back in majority of the areas. ofcourse housing is local ..

fide_champ 03-24-2008 01:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mariner5555 (Post 232700)
it is not just america losing - the person who has bought the house would lose his downpayment / equity too -not to speak of the mighty credit score - am I right ??
depends on yr situation and your priorities and more important the place where you are planning to buy. is it in florida, mich, Ohio, california or nevada (I guess no - else you would not have asked this question). if you think of a house as investment and you dont want to take a loss - then wait. if you need the space desperately and you are o.k with the prospect of yr house depreciating for couple of years - then go ahead and buy. BTW there was another thread where this was discussed in detail
http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/sh...ad.php?t=17986

I live in NJ close to the cherry hill area and i am looking to buy only in Burlington county. I have been living here for about 9 years now and so far haven't thought of investing here. I invested in india and the investment appreciated 4 times or more so i am happy about the decision. I actually needed a bigger place now and i am not seeing that as a investment but if it turns out that way that's fine with me. I just wanted to find out what are people's experiences with the house escpecially for those who are under H1/EAD.

mariner5555 03-24-2008 02:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232717)
I live in NJ close to the cherry hill area and i am looking to buy only in Burlington county. I have been living here for about 9 years now and so far haven't thought of investing here. I invested in india and the investment appreciated 4 times or more so i am happy about the decision. I actually needed a bigger place now and i am not seeing that as a investment but if it turns out that way that's fine with me. I just wanted to find out what are people's experiences with the house escpecially for those who are under H1/EAD.

well the experience that I gave above was as good as I could since it was told to me in person. it all depends on yr long term horizon .....do u think u will be in NJ for a long time ? if yes and if u are getting a good deal, then house makes sense - price of house would always go up by the cost of inflation + 1 percent (except during bubble burst ..like now) - and I guess RE in NJ will always be in demand ..but u would know better.
house is definitely better in many many respects --
if u don't see it as an investment -- then why not ..take the plunge !!
The only problem that I have (in my case) is GC !! and the fact that prices went up by average of 10% during last 4 - 5 years - which is craziness (And as we know now - a bubble). I for one am not a sucker who wants to pay high for an asset than it is actually worth..in most areas in US atleast --land is plenty and time it takes to build infrastructure is less . demand is low and will be low -- and I don't think of renting as throwing money (did extensive research on the same) - as of now I am happy as I have lot more time on hand , commutes are shorter and the money that I save - I am investing aggresively in stocks etc. here is a latest article about home prices - I guess bottom in 2009 feb ?
----------
Even as sales have plunged, more supply has come on the market, from home builders, foreclosed homes, and from owners who need or want to sell. It'll take a year at least to work off the excess supply, which is driving prices lower.
Falling home prices could be keeping some buyers on the sidelines, waiting for a better deal. But prices have already fallen significantly, which means more potential buyers can find an affordable house.
The two major home price indexes will be released on Tuesday by Standard & Poor's and the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight. S&P's Case-Shiller index will probably see a decline of 11% in the 12 months ending in January, down from 9% through December, according to economists at UBS.
Futures markets predict home prices will fall another 14% by next February, UBS said.

----------

insbaby 03-24-2008 11:07 AM

Minimize the damage.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mariner5555 (Post 232700)
it is not just america losing - the person who has bought the house would lose his downpayment / equity too -not to speak of the mighty credit score - am I right ??

True.

Most of the answers in this thread point that you need to have a good life when you and your kids are young. Not for people who want to get money out of an investment.

Also a reply suggests what you can do in worst case.

Don't count how many days you are going to be in this country, but live every day for you and your family.

I am sure you were not born in this country and brought up. Think about the enjoyment you had when you were young. Playing with 10 kids of your age everyday, running stairs up and down, cycling around the communities. Don't our kids deserve the same?

They should not end up as "GC" victims.

I just decided its my responsibility to give them a good living environment when they are young if I can. I dont' care about downpayment. If I was good enough to save the downpayment amount in 4 years, surely I can earn it back in 2 years somewhere in worst case scenario.

Credit score? Sorry, I already built the score and bought the home, now I have many other things to worry about in life.

bestin 03-24-2008 11:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by insbaby (Post 232608)
If you want to buy a home after you get your green card, mostly you will get after your retirement.

I don't want to feel "my home" when I am 68 and after my kids are out on their own. So I decided, dump the H1B, H4, 485, 131, 761, 797, 999, 888, I94, EAD, AP... AAD, CCD etc crap in trash, and bought the home.

I am happy. Even if I am asked to leave the country tomorrow, I just lock the door, throw the keys in trash and take off.

who cares when life matters.

Exactly.Thats the way i think too.We might be spending an additional 500 on a mortgage But we get better comforts.Spending a good paortion of your age without comforts which ypou are eligible doesnt make sense.And if something fails let the bank have it.After all we spent Rs.20000 PM for additional comfort.

spbpsg 03-24-2008 02:54 PM

better to buy
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232554)
my greencard is filed under EB3 category and it looks like a long wait. My PD is 2003 Nov and i am an indian. We've been debating whether to buy a house when 485 is pending. what is the risk involved? how many people are in a similar situation? I have twin boys and they are 3 yrs old now and it's getting increasingly difficult to keep them in an apartment. Now with housing market going down as well, we are in a tight spot and have to make a decision quickly. I would appreciate any suggestion in this regard.

I bought house while I was on H1 itself. After living here for 7 years I realized that I should have done this much earlier. In last seven years I have paid 100K in rent which will never come back to me and also compromised on living space. After few years from now I don't want to repent again for not buying a house, so bought it with 20% down to keep my monthly payments less.

I am happy now and as far as job is concerned with EAD we should not have that much problem. Anyway it will take many years to get GC until then enjoy the house, meanwhile house market value will be appreciated in case GC is denied or you want to move back.

mariner5555 03-24-2008 03:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by insbaby (Post 232751)
True.

I am sure you were not born in this country and brought up. Think about the enjoyment you had when you were young. Playing with 10 kids of your age everyday, running stairs up and down, cycling around the communities. Don't our kids deserve the same?
They should not end up as "GC" victims.

(my final thoughts ...)
well one point is clear - those who have a house will justify it and those who rent will justify the same.
I don't expect those who bought house to say that they made a mistake ..they have to justify (rightly) their decision even if they paid more. and I agree with them.
both have their valid points but from what I have observed quality of life actually goes down a little when you buy a house at inflated prices or buy a house beyond yr means (as both hus / wife have to work etc etc ..many even end up cooking food once a week - if u know what I mean).
I am from bombay -- and actually we had more fun in the buildings / apartments because you end up spending more time outdoors with friends. now ofcourse people will say they stayed in bungalows in smaller cities and they had fun too ..and I agree. similarly I know few people / friends who bought houses here (in USA) in such isolated / wealthy surroundings that their kid / kids have no friends !! ,
similarly other in a hurry brought a house so far from work / city that they are in a soup !! some of their wives simply cannot drive or will take years to learn or they have only one car ..the net result - husband goes to work from 8 to 7 (including transit time) - kids end up at home (ofcourse they run up and down the stairs - watching TV). whereas in an apt - the chances that you would find someone in similar position is more (i.e. kids of same age who can play together is higher). maybe when they grow and go to school - things will be better -- I guess in the end it is personal.
...also just because someone buys a house - doesnt necessarily mean higher std of living and simarly those who rent - it doesnt mean that they have lower std of living ...in the end it is personal decision !! but in present scenario --- looking before leaping definitely makes sense. rather than buying a house quickly - just because everyone else is doing the same ..).
BTW there are lots of articles out there which explains why renting is not throwing money away !!

mariner5555 03-24-2008 06:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fide_champ (Post 232717)
I live in NJ close to the cherry hill area and i am looking to buy only in Burlington county. I have been living here for about 9 years now and so far haven't thought of investing here. I invested in india and the investment appreciated 4 times or more so i am happy about the decision. I actually needed a bigger place now and i am not seeing that as a investment but if it turns out that way that's fine with me. I just wanted to find out what are people's experiences with the house escpecially for those who are under H1/EAD.

came across nice comments about NJ - comments from the people were more interesting than the article itself - one of them mentioned NJ and hence am posting it. The comments below are from other people (not mine) --it gives you an idea as to how Americans feel about housing
-----
can tell you in NJ, first time buyers are still screwed and stand no chance of buying right now. Let me set the scene for you. I just turned 25, I made $70k last year ($60k salary $10K bonus), I have 0 credit card debt and have never paid a cent of interest on a credit card. I have no student loans and a finished paying off a car loan in 2.5 years. I have $40k in savings and get an additional 10% of my income put in to a SEP IRA at year ($7k last year, $13k total). I would say I'm doing alright for only being in the workforce for 2.5 years, and I still have to live with my parents. Home prices here are unjustifiably high. On top the ridiculous home prices, I have to figure in the MINUMUM of $500 a MONTH in property taxes due to the complete ineptitude and corrupt nature of my state's government (if you want a never ending source to write about, this would be the place). The AVERAGE property tax in NJ is $6,800/year = $566/ month. Looking at a condo also doesn't work because you can't find a place with association fees of less than $250/month, so no point in paying a lower price for a condo. The ones that are still nice w/ 2 br. & 1 bath list for $300k. Between fees and taxes, you are down $700/month and haven't even gotten to your mortgage yet. I have no choice but to wait and HOPE the economy continues to crumble, while hoping that I stay employed throughout the whole ordeal. All of these action the Fed and the Gov't are taking to soften the blow are doing nothing but screwing me and other first-time buyers. They should just let the bottom fall out already so that people my age can even have a chance to survive on our own.
-------
Buy a house and watch the value continue to tank for the next five years....I'm sure all first time buyers are thrilled at the prospect of being "upside down" in their first mortgage. Also, Fed rate cuts also don't always translate to better mortgage rates. Lenders aren't thrilled about locking buyers into fixed low rates.
-------

Housing prices double in less than 5 years. Then they go down about 10% such that in the last six or seven years, prices have gone up only 80%. So now houses are suddenly a bargain because they aren't quite as overpriced as they were last year? That's like my neighbor joking that gas prices are cheap when they go below $3 a gallon. Houses have a long way to go before they are a good value. You are much better off renting from someone who is desperate to not sell their house for a loss. After a year of renting, you can get that house for less than today's cost plus a year of rent. Oh, and one other thing. Get a 30 year fixed loan with the lowest rate you can find. Make sure you pay attention to the fees, so you are covered there. Go through the process with at least two separate people, so you can easily switch when one tries to screw you. The last thing you want is an ARM when interest rates are sure to go up when the screaming about inflation reaches Washington DC.
---------

zCool 03-24-2008 06:18 PM

This is total BS.
Bashing Illegal immigrants for housing market crash and accusing entire race of being theives is nothing new among right wing anti-immigrant "Hatriots"
But there really isn't co-relation between illegal migration and housing crash.. if anything, migrants are also first time buyers and they support prices towards to lower end market and stop entire lower-middle class neighbourhoods from becoming what Detroit or Youngstown have become..
So no need to parrot hateful propoganda here.. lets stick to the point..

vdixit 03-24-2008 06:31 PM

Bought a house, sold it. Changed jobs, moved cities, planning to buy a new house.
I dont think renting (flushing money down the landlords toilet) is a wise idea if you plan to live in this country for a long time.
Go for it. PLan these things according to your family's needs.
Cheers.

insbaby 03-24-2008 06:34 PM

Agree with you.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mariner5555 (Post 232863)
(my final thoughts ...)
I am from bombay -- and actually we had more fun in the buildings / apartments because you end up spending more time outdoors with friends.

I agree with you. But not all the people have the same luxury here as you may or may not see an apartment fills with people you look for and who can stay for a while at the same place, except bay area and couple of other areas filled up nationals of same countries. But surely not all over the country.

So it is not a bad thing to move to a community if you find all in one place.

Ofcourse, this is not to force everyone to buy a home and practically that is not possible.

This is for someone who knows that he has plans to go with the current company for sometime and ready to buy a home, but just waiting, waiting and waiting........ for GC to do that.

somegchuh 03-24-2008 09:33 PM

Is it really aprtment vs busying a house?
 
Ok, so everytime I see a rent vs buy discussion I see apartment living compared with living in a house. This may not apply to a lot of other places but here's how it goes in SF Bay Area:

Rental
Apartment: Decent sized 2 Bed/2 Bath --- $1600 pm
House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $2000 pm

Mortgage:
House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $3500 pm

So, is additional 1500 pm worth the money? Why not rent a house? What's the point of trying to get into a sliding market when even Greenspan can't say where the bottom is?

I am in a decent sized apartment right now and if I have to upgrade its a rental house. Buying in a sliding real estate market doesn't make sense to me.

mariner5555 03-25-2008 01:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zCool (Post 232951)
This is total BS.
Bashing Illegal immigrants for housing market crash and accusing entire race of being theives is nothing new among right wing anti-immigrant "Hatriots"
But there really isn't co-relation between illegal migration and housing crash.. if anything, migrants are also first time buyers and they support prices towards to lower end market and stop entire lower-middle class neighbourhoods from becoming what Detroit or Youngstown have become..
So no need to parrot hateful propoganda here.. lets stick to the point..

o.k. ..I had copied comments from other readers and I have removed the unnecessary remarks ..The only reason I am keeping the remaining portion is to show how many of the first time buyers (I guess Americans) feel. so if lot of people think like the above then housing will take longer to stabilize. (BTW I agree there is no relation between immi and housing crash - nor is it implied in the comments I had pasted). I guess sometimes it makes sense to read what other readers / natives feel about certain situations. a final thought (unless I have to respond to someone else's post) - everywhere I look (articles and in real life) - things are real bad in terms of real estate. will things improve - definitely but it may take long time for things to stabilize and hence it makes sense to do extra research before taking a plunge. for e.g at present I am staying in a rented town home - and I got the deal for $850 - the town homes are inside an apt complex in a good neighborhood. (you need to show income of atleast 3 times the rent to get a place here and many tenants are high tech guys). the same town home during boom time had rent of $1250 ..in other words - there are tons of deals due to excessive supply everywhere. one other important point was made by another person - this winter was harsh and hence people did everything to keep a roof above their head - wait till summer and you will see people literally walking away from their homes ...when u read posts like the above ..it makes sense to wait for some more time esp on H1 / EAD.

CantLeaveAmerica 03-25-2008 03:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by insbaby (Post 232608)
If you want to buy a home after you get your green card, mostly you will get after your retirement.

I don't want to feel "my home" when I am 68 and after my kids are out on their own. So I decided, dump the H1B, H4, 485, 131, 761, 797, 999, 888, I94, EAD, AP... AAD, CCD etc crap in trash, and bought the home.

I am happy. Even if I am asked to leave the country tomorrow, I just lock the door, throw the keys in trash and take off.

Who cares when life matters.

Awesome piece of advice..I've got to meet ya!!

insbaby 03-25-2008 08:56 AM

How.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by CantLeaveAmerica (Post 233056)
Awesome piece of advice..I've got to meet ya!!

Because you Can't Leave America.

insbaby 03-25-2008 09:05 AM

General Rule.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233018)
Ok, so everytime I see a rent vs buy discussion I see apartment living compared with living in a house. This may not apply to a lot of other places but here's how it goes in SF Bay Area:

Rental
Apartment: Decent sized 2 Bed/2 Bath --- $1600 pm
House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $2000 pm

Mortgage:
House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $3500 pm

So, is additional 1500 pm worth the money? Why not rent a house? What's the point of trying to get into a sliding market when even Greenspan can't say where the bottom is?

I am in a decent sized apartment right now and if I have to upgrade its a rental house. Buying in a sliding real estate market doesn't make sense to me.

35% to 40% of your 'take home' can be spent on the residential property. If the total monthly payment for home does not exceed that limit, if you really need, if you are willing and if you can, it is not a bad option to buy.

dealsnet 03-25-2008 10:11 AM

I brought a house
 
I have brought a house 4 years back after 2 years in this country. It is $500K house. Forgot about your status, if you have a stable job. If husband and wife working, defenitly go for it. Shop around and find a good home. It is an investment. You can claim much for tax return. My I-485 pending. PD 2004 Jan. Eb2 -India.

Gravitation 03-25-2008 10:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233018)
Ok, so everytime I see a rent vs buy discussion I see apartment living compared with living in a house. This may not apply to a lot of other places but here's how it goes in SF Bay Area:

Rental
Apartment: Decent sized 2 Bed/2 Bath --- $1600 pm
House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $2000 pm

Mortgage:
House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $3500 pm

So, is additional 1500 pm worth the money? Why not rent a house? What's the point of trying to get into a sliding market when even Greenspan can't say where the bottom is?

I am in a decent sized apartment right now and if I have to upgrade its a rental house. Buying in a sliding real estate market doesn't make sense to me.

Buying a house is a long term move. Not a short term. The payment for house will remain (pretty much) the same for 30 years! Rental prices will go up every year. And after 30 years of payments, the house will be all yours.

You're also neglecting the tax savings. There'll be appx. $900 per month in tax saving (assuming 25% tax bracket).

Unless you can think and plan 5~10 years ahead (at least), real estate is not for you.

Dandruff 03-25-2008 01:58 PM

Heres what we did, the key is to find a lot/ house that will sell ASAP:

a) Paid a little bit premium for a quickly selling house - in our case we paid extra for a lakefront lot.

b) Paid a little bit less on House itself (new construction - so we selected a less expensive floorplan)

c) combined House + Lot is still in the lower end of the subdivision range.

d) you should aim for the cheapest house in the most expensive community/ subdivision you can afford - on the other side, never buy the house which is more expensive than others around it ... u want other houses to increase ur value and not the other way around.

e) keep good paperwork for regular pest / termite treatments etc. just like it helps in selling the car

f) pay a bit extra for extra insulation - even upgrade insulation for garage door

If we have to sell the house in a rush, we have atleast done everything one could ... rest is umm beyond our hands with all this unpredictability :)

best of luck! nesting instincts need to be nurtured imho! and is very human ...

somegchuh 03-25-2008 02:59 PM

I completely agree that buying a house is a long term move. But I disagree with some of the points:

1. Does rent always go up? No, my rent did not go up at all during the real estate boom as the number of ppl renting was low. Recently my rent has gone up only $75 pm. (love rent control!!!) So in 5 years, my monthly rent has gone up a total of $125 per month
2. I hear about tax rebate for homeowners. But what about property tax?
3. What about mortgage insurance payments?

It is a misconception that 5-10 years is the cycle for real estate.

Here's how in a sane real estate market the cycle should work:

No population influx in your area or there is no exodus from your area:
Your real estate ownership should be 25 years because that's when the next generation is ready to buy houses.

However, in places like SF Bay Area/new York/Boston where there is continuous influx of young working ppl this cycle can be reduced to 15-20 years.

Over the last few years, nobody thought of longevity required to make money in RE. Now that it is tanking ppl are talking about 5-10 years. Unless you are buying in a booming place, your ownership has to be 15+ years to turn a real profit.

This is purely the financial aspect of ownership. If you have a family I think its really nice to have a house but you don't have to really take on the liability. You can rent the same house for much less. But if you are clear in your mind that no matter what I am going to live in XYZ town/city for the next 20 years, go for it.

As a sidenote for Indians. We all have either aging or soon to start aging parents. The way I see it, caring for aging parents is a social debt that we must pay back. This will need me to go back to India. Therefore, if you feel you need to care for your parents, don't commit to a house.



Quote:

Originally Posted by Gravitation (Post 233069)
Buying a house is a long term move. Not a short term. The payment for house will remain (pretty much) the same for 30 years! Rental prices will go up every year. And after 30 years of payments, the house will be all yours.

You're also neglecting the tax savings. There'll be appx. $900 per month in tax saving (assuming 25% tax bracket).

Unless you can think and plan 5~10 years ahead (at least), real estate is not for you.


Gravitation 03-25-2008 03:25 PM

Good Points. I like discussing real-estate; I'm deeply interested in it. So in that spirit of having a good conversation, here's my response:

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233153)
I completely agree that buying a house is a long term move. But I disagree with some of the points:

1. Does rent always go up? No, my rent did not go up at all during the real estate boom as the number of ppl renting was low. Recently my rent has gone up only $75 pm. (love rent control!!!) So in 5 years, my monthly rent has gone up a total of $125 per month

Real Estate market is always local. Unlike the market for -let's say- rice, which can be transported from one place where it's abundant to where it's scarce easily. Real Estate remains where it is. It's also subjected to a lot of local laws, municipal regulations etc. So, any discussion we have here will NOT apply to every single location. You have to research your own local regulations/market etc.

If you have rent control, it significantly changes the picture. It usually doesn't make sense to buy if you have rent control.

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233153)
2. I hear about tax rebate for homeowners. But what about property tax?

Yep, you pay it when you own a house. And yes, you pay it when you rent (it's rolled into your rent). The difference is that when you own, it's tax-deductible; if you pay it as part of your rent, it's not.

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233153)
3. What about mortgage insurance payments?

You don't pay PMI, if you put down 20%. Not a bad idea to save that much. It forces one to learn financial planning and forward thinking.

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233153)
It is a misconception that 5-10 years is the cycle for real estate.

Here's how in a sane real estate market the cycle should work:

No population influx in your area or there is no exodus from your area:
Your real estate ownership should be 25 years because that's when the next generation is ready to buy houses.

However, in places like SF Bay Area/new York/Boston where there is continuous influx of young working ppl this cycle can be reduced to 15-20 years.

Over the last few years, nobody thought of longevity required to make money in RE. Now that it is tanking ppl are talking about 5-10 years. Unless you are buying in a booming place, your ownership has to be 15+ years to turn a real profit.

Profit/Loss is not what the primary residence is for.

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233153)
This is purely the financial aspect of ownership. If you have a family I think its really nice to have a house but you don't have to really take on the liability. You can rent the same house for much less. But if you are clear in your mind that no matter what I am going to live in XYZ town/city for the next 20 years, go for it.

You can rent for less, now, but how about later? You're assuming rents don't go up, but they do. One of my neighbors pays $250 per month in loan payment for a house he bought 20 years ago (property tax and insurance adds $550 more). It was a big payment then. Now it's almost live living for free. If he rented this he'd by paying $2500 at least. Again, if you don't plan to settle down, don't buy. But owning your primary residence is the first step towards prosperity.

Quote:

Originally Posted by somegchuh (Post 233153)
As a sidenote for Indians. We all have either aging or soon to start aging parents. The way I see it, caring for aging parents is a social debt that we must pay back. This will need me to go back to India. Therefore, if you feel you need to care for your parents, don't commit to a house.

Yes, if you're planning to go back... don't buy.


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