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Old 07-25-2009, 02:40 PM   #21
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Yep. They recently invaded California: Screwworms: Be on the Lookout, UC Davis Veterinary Medicine Extension
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:44 PM   #22
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Screwworms....as if we didn't have enough critters. Crap.
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Old 07-25-2009, 05:44 PM   #23
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I looked at the rent of a 2 bedroom apartments in Texas, and they are around $ 800 to 900 per month. 3% property tax on a $ 200000 house would be $ 6000, and I do not have to come up either with the $ 200000 or pay mortgage interest. I also do not have to take care of the lawn and other chores. There is also the headache of eventually selling the house I bought. So even if I have to pay the property tax for the landlord, it still appears to me to be better deal.
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Old 07-25-2009, 06:12 PM   #24
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Don't forget to factor in house appreciate rates and rising rents over time.
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Old 07-25-2009, 06:59 PM   #25
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We live in an expensive area of TX. We pay property (all-in) taxes about a 2% rate of assessed value. Even though you might pay $900 a month in rent, you may find you can buy a wonderful house for a smaller mortgage payment that includes your taxes (PITI). Huge 3 br 2 ba homes are selling in nice neighborhoods for $80K to $150K.

While maybe renting is something for you, I think you need to use some real numbers for the specific location that you think you might move to.
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Old 07-25-2009, 08:52 PM   #26
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I went back and checked, I paid under 2.5% of the assessed value, and about 2% of what I sold the house for.

I put 20% down, but had a 15 yr fixed loan, and paid less PITI on a nice 3BR/2Ba 1850 sq ft home than the 2Br/1Ba 900 sq ft apt rent I had been paying, north of Austin.
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Old 07-25-2009, 11:21 PM   #27
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Don't forget to factor in house appreciate rates and rising rents over time.
Or the reverse as the case may be!
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Old 07-26-2009, 08:10 AM   #28
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Don't forget to factor in house appreciate rates and rising rents over time.
And also routine care and maintenance of the house........ I'm petty sensitive to this right now as my list of upcoming expenses is growing. Need to have the driveway replaced, the roof is living on borrowed time, etc. We had one bath and the kitchen redone recently and replaced the HVAC system about a decade ago. There's always something.........
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:56 PM   #29
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There's always something.........
I so agree with this. I just had a new retaining wall replaced in the carport, which meant the cement floor and steps into the house had to be replaced too, a new deck in back and new front porch, a new surround shower wall, new glass door for the other shower, two new sliding doors out to the deck, new kitchen floor, two chimneys replaced from the roof up, new fireplace insert, new circuit breaker box, and attic and duct insulation. The roof probably has 10 years left, and the furnance and hot water heater may need to be replaced before then.

Thank God the sucker is paid for. I really should run the numbers and include interest on the mortgage, yard tools, improvements in addition to those mentioned above (paint, fencing, electircal and plumbing repairs), and property taxes. I'm guessing at best I would break even as opposed to renting and this is on house I only paid $100k for 18 years ago.

I'm hoping from here out it will mostly be low cost living.
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Old 07-26-2009, 03:19 PM   #30
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In 2008 I paid (in property taxes, insurance, home maintenance, and home improvement) about 3.5% of what my house is worth. There is some deferred maintenance that I should have done, so maybe that would have made it closer to 4%.

However, I have spent more in previous years when my HVAC had to be replaced and so on. I don't have those figures right now, but I would expect that it isn't unreasonable to allow an average of 5-6% of the value of the house for these expenses. More if the house is a hundred years old and was poorly maintained (mine is just 37 years old and the previous owner maintained it quite well).

My paid off house is still a whole lot cheaper than renting in my location.
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