Monday, May 20, 2013

finding a new home

To say that finding a new place to live has been challenging is a bit of an understatement.  Vancouver is a city where the high cost of real estate creates a seriously competitive rental market at high rental costs.  Needless to say, it's gotten worse then the last time we were looking for a place to rent, which was 7 years ago.  The price for what we currently have been renting is about $1000 more and now we were looking for a bit more space.  Since our current home has been for sale, the deadline that I originally had requested for us to be able to stay until the end of the school year had been closing in on us.  It was high time we finally found a new place to live.

So I'm happy to report that the long search is over!  We found a place this past weekend in East Vancouver close to the PNE that's a little similar to our current situation.  We will be renting the main and top floor of a house with the landlady having stuff in the basement suite but not really living there.  The square footage is bigger then our place, but still has 3 bedrooms.  We won't have the yard or view we have had, but there is a great back patio and a cute front porch, with really friendly neighbours and big beautiful oak trees lining the streets.  I can boast about the high ceilings, nice mouldings with a couple of beautiful windows, 1.5 bathrooms (that's up .5 from now!),  and a huge dining room.  There are also lots of parks nearby for the boys, and it's a closer commute to the studio, so at this point, I'm overlooking the really old terrible carpet (over hardwood???) and nasty peel-n-stick laminate that really never should have happened in a heritage home like this.  We don't move in until June 15 and I'm already scheming a way to cover over some of the backsplash or sub-in light fixtures. 

The decision to rent again was a tough one.  We are easily paying rent that's equivalent to monthly mortgage payments.  I recently read the book Rent vs. Own by Jane Hodges, which takes into consideration a lot of the rise and falls of the real estate market in the US.  I really appreciated her honest approach to what the true cost of owning is.  The average person usually can't afford to buy where they really want to live, so they opt for longer commutes and less desirable neighbourhoods or housing in order to buy a place.  While ideally owning a home is an investment, the recent housing market crashes have shown us that it's only an investment if you are able to buy low and sell high- which really only happens when a person is able to hold onto a property for an extended period of time, riding the waves of the high and low markets.  Of course there are a wack of other considerations to make, but all in all, Dean and I felt like we weren't ready to move away in order to afford to buy place that suited our family's needs quite yet.  We felt like we needed a couple more years here in the city to sort through what that move would look like for us in the future. 


jeanette said...


Thanks for linking to that book. I've been tossing around the idea of home ownership for our next move- but really not sure it is all that it is cracked up to be. I love city living, but not city prices- of course.
I'm going to give it a read.

Good luck with the move! Cute home, even with the carpeting.

dahlhaus said...

Thanks Jeanette! Always glad to pass along a good book too! Take care too.

Heidi said...

Thanks for letting us stay at your new place last weekend!! It was so nice to have a visit and see where you'll be living.

I bought the boys a housewarming gift today. Can you send me your address so I can pop it in the mail?

Happy moving. xoxo