Is it ok to make a "starter home" your forever home?

tlbean2004August 30, 2014

I have a 3 bedroom/1 bath home. It is only 859 sq ft.
When i brought it 5 years agoit was advertised as a starter home. But im 28 and single and really like the place.It is just perfect for me has a nice sized backyard. On the same street there are people with kids and also older couples who live in the same style of of house. The monthly mortgage is also just right, even cheaper than renting an apartment. Is it ok to make this my forever home?

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At 28 you are still a younging. Any home is okay for a forever home, as long as it is okay with you. However things change when you find a partner and start a family. Maybe that is not your thing and it truly stays your forever home. But nothing wrong with that. No matter what happens, it is a great investment. If you do decide to move, never sell it and use it as a rental property to help pay another mortgage. People will always need homes and real estate is a great investment when done right and with honest expectations.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 6:38AM
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Of course you can make it your 'forever home'!

You are choosing to not get caught up in the "movin' on up" syndrome where there's some kind of unwritten rule saying you must keep buying a bigger home every 5 years or so.

You like the house, you like the neighborhood, and you like the payments.

Believe it or not, you're one of the smart ones.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 7:05AM
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IâÂÂm sure some of the older couples in the neighborhood have done just that. Sometimes people buy their first home to begin building equity so that they can eventually buy a more expensive home with more features/space than the one they can afford initially. It sounds like you bought exactly what you wanted to buy, and enjoy being right where you are. Nothing wrong with that at all. in fact thereâÂÂs a lot to be said for being content with your current circumstances, not just in houses.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 7:07AM
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You certainly don't need anyone's permission to make it your forever home! Enjoy living there for as long as it works for you, which may be forever or something short of that if your needs change over time. You have a great situation with affordable housing in a neighborhood that you enjoy. Take care of the house, keep it maintained, update cautiously and appropriately as needed over the years, meaning don't try to make it into something it's not with 5" crown molding or something equally out of place.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 8:02AM
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I agree with the other posters. Not only is it ok, but it's a great financual decision to choose a house you can afford in a great location. Pay off the mortgage as soon as you can, keep the house very well maintained, and you won't regret it, regardless of what happens in the future.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 8:15AM
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Of course! Finding a home that is "just right" is "just right" for your forever home!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 3:08PM
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Of course!

(Your home & neighborhood sound perfect!)

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 7:19PM
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I think it is WAY OK!! And your question made me happy and hopeful. Our first home was purchased to be our forever home, too.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 8:17PM
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Ours was! We bought it in 1973 and still have it. (We put on an addition AFTER the kids left necause then there wasn't room for family dinners, grandchildren. etc.)

We also have a seasonal home, but we are on our SECOND one of those. First one just happened to come about before the market went sky high, and four years later, we were able to sell it at more than twice what we had paid, and bought elsewhere at about half the price.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2014 at 2:54AM
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Of course it is Ok to make it your forever home if that is your wish. The house suits your needs and you like living in the neighborhood. It is a cute little house looking at the picture. What your future needs may be(finding a SO, having children,etc.) space wise, will be decided when that happens. But for now, enjoy! NancyLouise

    Bookmark   August 31, 2014 at 9:03AM
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we built our home 15 years ago thinking it would be a starter but we have looked around a few times and haven't found anything we like better. we decided to put in a pool and remodel the kitchen rather than to keep looking and upping the budget.
be very happy you have found your forever home as you can now remodel to your taste and not worry about resale!
i love it btw! is it mcm inside? lots of cool woodwork? hardwood floors?
we have a cookie cutter subdivision home and i frequently long for something built pre 1970s:)

    Bookmark   September 3, 2014 at 9:11AM
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When I was looking for my 3rd house, when I moved cross-country, I found a neighborhood that I really liked. My agent pointed out to me more than once that these were "starter homes" (with a hint of disapproval in her voice). Well, that is where I bought, I am still there 22 years later, and the house and neighborhood have been just fine for me. I could have spent more, and gotten a bigger house, but I really wouldn't have gotten anything more that I really wanted, and probably would have gotten more upkeep than I wanted.

There are still a rare few in the neighborhood that have been here since it was built in the early 40's. Also, there are many adults who were raised in here who have come back to live!

    Bookmark   September 3, 2014 at 4:27PM
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Nope. Totally unacceptable. You are snatching food from the mouths of real estate agent's children.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2014 at 3:21PM
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We lived in our "starter" home for 25 yrs, even though we orginally thought we would only be there 5 yrs. We liked the neighborhood and we have no kids, so it was big enough for the 2 of us. The price was right and we paid off the mortgage in 10 yrs. What made us decide to leave it and build a new, much bigger house was that someone liked our old house so much that they approached us through a friend we had in common with them and offered us three times what we paid for it. That allowed us to easily afford rural acreage and to build a dream house with things that we had always wanted. We moved from a city lot and a 1200 sq ft "starter" house in the city to 8 acres with no neighbors closer than 1/2 mile. We have woods, stream and a pond that attracts wildlife that we love to watch. I grew up on a horse farm, so I always wanted to go back to the country at some point in our lives. Every room has a view of something tranquil. We now have our dream house and property and I won't be moving again until they carry me out in a coffin! But if we hadn't gotten that offer at a time in our lives when moving back to the country was so appealing, we probably would have stayed in that starter home. We moved for a reason, not just because of some unwritten rule that you have to move up every 5 yrs.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2014 at 12:50PM
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It can certainly be your forever home, or you can consider it as such until your life and needs change. When I moved to Florida, I considered the triplex I purchased as my forever home. I was 40 then (10 years ago) and couldn't imagine ever wanting to move from it, even though as an attached home, and somewhat small, many would consider it a starter home. My husband and I even did some remodeling recently since we had no plans to move. Then bam! They started some new construction a couple of miles away with more room, at a good price, and in a better location for us transportation-wise. We bought a townhome in the new area, and now I'm seeing that one has my forever home for the rest of my life, or until I can't live independently, but who knows. Life is very fluid, so do what feels right now and be flexible enough to change that up later.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2014 at 12:19PM
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Three out of four of my siblings are still in their "starter" homes, which are now fully paid. They live in a part of the country where home values are not that great but taxes are high, so it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to move if the current home works.

Even our home was DH's first home purchase. If we stay here, we may consider an addition because we like our single floor plan.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2014 at 10:41AM
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Am I the only one not taking this question serious?

    Bookmark   September 13, 2014 at 11:00AM
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"Am I the only one not taking this question serious?"

I take the OP's question seriously. My DD bought her house at age 24 and she has asked me if it is weird that she wants her home to be her "forever" home. I think young people are under pressure to keep "moving up" and it may seem strange to the OP's peers for her not to plan to pursue newer, bigger and better as she becomes more established.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2014 at 11:24AM
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Not only is it OK but it's smart too! :)

    Bookmark   September 14, 2014 at 11:32AM
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Of course it is OK to keep a starter home as a forever home, but I think it is too soon to tell if the idea is 'smart' or a 'great financial decision'- it depends.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2014 at 9:22AM
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We've been our starter home for 32 years. It took me 21 to get my new kitchen and 25 years to get my new bathrooms - I,m sticking around to enjoy it. Plus, after paying for 4 college educations, I,m done with the planned high ticket items.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2014 at 8:09PM
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Not if you want to keep up with the Jones's.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2014 at 9:55AM
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Financially, our net worth wouldn't be where we are today if we hadn't moved up in house over time.

Our first home (starter house) has turned over 4 times in the 16 years since we sold it. While we got a nice profit at the time we sold, the price has been stagnate ever since. I think it's because of the same reason why we sold -- the school system was going downhill and was affecting re-sale values.

The biggest boost to our bottom line was the foreclosure we bought in a highly sought after school district after selling our starter home. We renovated it for our long-term use but ended up selling it 2 years later when my husband got a great job opportunity across the country.

So, for us, real estate is both a dwelling for our family as well as an investment. If it doesn't work for our family, we don't buy it or stay in it. If the values don't continue to increase, we sell it.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2014 at 1:11PM
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Agree with Jewel. We believe our home is also an investment. We include it as a part of real estate holding in our investment. It makes no sense to stay in the same house when the neighborhood is going downhill, and/or school district is deteriorating.

We moved away from our first house due to a job transfer. 22 years later I visited the old neighborhood on a business trip, I noticed the neighborhood had became a low middle class neighborhood, instead of an upper middle class neighborhood when we were there. House prices there only had below average increase.

Twice we rented instead of owning because it was cheaper to rent than buy. We invested the delta in equity market. It also gave us great flexibility when we had new job opportunities.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2014 at 10:38AM
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Of course it is OK.
We lived in our "starter" home for 42yrs!
We are now building our retirement home:)

    Bookmark   December 26, 2014 at 7:32PM
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