A Homeowner’s Letter To His Past Self
A Look Back on One Family’s Decision to Purchase a Starter Home
Dear “Home Shopper” (Me),
It’s been 3 years now since you got to spend the first night in your home with your new wife, and it’s been such a crazy ride. Who knew that such a short amount of time could bring so much change, joy, and concern? I know you are stubborn and hard-headed, but I also know that you just want what’s best for you and Mrs. So listen up, because what I am about to tell you will help keep you on track for what you both want in life.
About 5 months ago you started looking into a place to live. You both know living with 7 other people as newlyweds is not going to work for either of you. You’re going to consider apartments and see that it’s just not worth it. $1,100 a month for a 1 bedroom is out of the question. Stick-built houses will come up, but you already know that to be stuck in a 30 yr mortgage is not going to work. Especially when your wife loves to travel. That is her #1 desire other than being a mom and your wife. (You really are a lucky guy!)
You both will ultimately decide to stick to what you know – mobile homes, it just makes sense. You love the country life and space that comes with it. Your parents purchased a manufactured home and never had problems paying the bills or keeping the lights on. You were never rich, but they did their best. It’s going to take time so don’t get frustrated. You already know that your wife is a thorough person. That is going to help you both, so much!
After what feels like forever you will finally find the right company and the right home. It won’t be the home of your dreams, but hey, you two are just starting out! Remember your goals. Starting with a fancy home and bill to match is NOT one of them. You will find a home that gives you exactly what you need, and a monthly payment that you can afford comfortably.
The monthly bill will come every month like clockwork. Your wife knows the numbers so just keep working hard. Life is going to get interesting. Your lawnmower will break after you spend $500 to buy it, and it’s going to be another $200 to fix it- – but it will be ok. Although your wife isn’t working, you will be able to pay the bills because you chose to go with an affordable mortgage. Don’t worry about the lawn mower, she has been putting away money for all the “what ifs” just like this.
You will start to build your deck and realize you need more material. Don’t worry, your bills will be low enough to account for that. Your wife is awesome and keeps things in order. She will soon be able to work and start looking for a job. Even better news…she will get a job, not far from you, which works because you will still only have one car.
She will only keep the job for about 6 months. Although it’s not very long, you will know and see that it’s not good for her. She will ask you if she can quit, just say yes. Your job alone will be enough to pay the bills, for now. You may eat a little less fast food, but you need to stop that anyway. Keep your head up! You have family that works at Bill Millers and they will help her get a job there. Just don’t forget, you only have one car.
You will be turning 30 soon and won’t want this to be a typical birthday. You will plan a big trip. You and Liza will go to Russia, Turkey, Israel, and Egypt. You will be very happy that you chose to go with a mobile home as opposed to renting or buying a stick-built house.
Enjoy every second of it.
You’re going to have to get surgery due to a work incident. Your wife will tell you that’s the last straw and insist that you quit. DO IT! You hate that job anyway and it will lead to one of the best decisions of your life. You will find your true calling in helping families get into a home just like the guy who helped your family.
Your wife will get the job. You will finally get that second car, but your wife will wreck the older car. She will be ok, just a little shaken up. Don’t worry. You will have savings because you decide to buy the manufactured home y’all looked at. You will be able to get a very simple cash car from a trusted friend. It won’t be pretty, but it will work like a charm.
The journey isn’t over.
While you will enjoy what you do, the place where you work is going to go through a lot of changes. Several of your teammates will be laid off, and you will find yourself wondering where the vision you all were chasing went. A couple of your old teammates will reach out to you. You are going to get an opportunity to start something from scratch. A brand-new company from the ground up. Take it! Your wife will be able to cover the bills. You will have an opportunity that you have always wanted. Make the most of it!
It is not going to be easy.
You will have fun, but things will be very tight financially, at first. There is a light at the end of the tunnel that will get more and more clear as you progress! While I didn’t tell you everything that will happen, just know you will make the right decision. You will decide to get that starter home and anything else will prevent you from having the opportunity to travel. You will be glad you kept your mortgage low when you pursue your dream of starting a company. Your team will make front-page news and momentum will quickly build. You’re in for a wild ride.
Enjoy every minute of it.