Renter No More!
I was a renter. Renting has been part of my identity the majority of my adult life. I never considered the possibility of owning a home until my early 30’s, when it became clear that we were wasting thousands of dollars a year renting. Sure, it’s nice having someone else take responsibility for home repairs and issues that come up, and it is inevitable they will. But, hey, home ownership is a journey – you learn how to fix things, budget your money and take care of your investment. This is the honest truth of our home buying journey.
Where Our Roots Are
Brett and I have been dating for over a decade. We have an adopted “dog-child” and are not married. This is more and more common among many 30-somethings these days – no legal commitments, job changes every few years and the freedom to move whenever, wherever we want. But, the thing is, we weren’t planning a soul-searching trip to India or moving to the west coast to fulfill a lifelong dream of learning to surf. We love St. Louis and this is where we have roots. Our employment has been stable for many years and we were able to save enough money for a modest down payment. We lived in the same duplex for six years and through four neighbor changes and sharing a paper-thin wall (believe me), it was time to make a home our own.
Working With Home Buying Professionals
We both work in real estate, and it only made sense we began to get excited about the possibility of owning a home. As first time home buyers we were very intimidated by the process – loan paperwork, the evenings and weekends spent searching for a home, and the responsibility that comes with owning a home. This is where the professionals came in. We found an incredible team of agents with STL Real Estate and lender at The Shafman Group of Cornerstone Mortgage. They explained every step of the process and were available when we had questions – and we sure had a lot of questions. We set a goal in January of 2015 to meet with a lender by the end of February. We had an accepted contract on a home just one month later on my 31st birthday.
Our home is located in the South Hampton neighborhood near friends and the center of our social life. The neighborhood is amazing. We met nearly all of our surrounding neighbors in the first few days of moving in and finally have an outdoor space to enjoy. Home ownership is a big step, but it doesn’t have to be a scary one. We couldn’t be happier with our decision.