Does Buying A Home When You Are Younger Makes Sense?

Should you consider buying a house in your 20s? A lot of people say no — that home ownership is a scam, that it’s propaganda designed by the real estate industry, or that potentially, millennials will not be able to afford one. Many people say that if you are saving money in any way in your 20s, you are likely doing it wrong. Both of these viewpoints are super simplistic and miss the real point.
Now, I am not one to usually disagree with James Altucher or Ramit Sethi, but here I think there really are plenty of reasons to purchase a house in your twenties.
Below, I’m going to explain how and why. It’s not for everyone, but it still might be for you.Let me first quickly tell you my experience, because I’ve been on both sides of it. I first started getting that you should think about buying a housing advice in 2007/2008. I was 21 years old who had just gotten my first good paying real job. In retrospect, it really would have been one of the worst mistakes of my life not just because the housing market crashed, but because I’m not sure I’d have had the guts to make so many of the risky decisions I made in my entire life. I wouldn’t have quit my job to become a writer. I wouldn’t have moved clear across the country. I wouldn’t have lived in nice and not so nice places and figured out what I want out of life. A house would have tied me down.

 

If you really want to live a fun life, buying a home when you are younger makes that a lot harder. At the same time, the house I did purchase 6 years later, has not only been one of the very best financial decisions I have ever made, but it has also totally improved my life. I bought my first house in 2013. A couple of years later, I bought a smaller sized ranch outside of Houston, Texas (helps with the livestock!). I do keep the other house as an office and an Airbnb rental. In both cases, I do pay less than what I would have paid out in rent, have seen both of them appreciating nicely, and live in one of the fastest growing and best places in the country.
The way to save is by automation.That sounds weird, yet it’s true. I think the very best way to save your money when you’re young is to set up automated transfers from your income stream the second it comes before you can touch it and to put it somewhere where you cannot see or even touch it. For years, I set up the second highest interest savings account with a second bank. Every week, the funds went into it without me having to do anything. For years, I never looked at the balance, even though it grew. The balance of those accounts I did check seemed artificially small because of the transfers. But when it came time to purchase the home, I had enough for the down payment.

The second best way to save money?

Don’t buy stupid stuff. While I knew that I wanted to one day buy a home, most of my best financial situation was the result of 2 things: I worked hard, and I did not just blow my cash on dumb stuff. Saving your money while in your twenties does not mean you’re doing it wrong. It means that your impulses and hormones do not lead you, and you have taken the time to develop automated systems. Living while enjoying a good time are not incompatible with wealth. However, making tons of money but having profligate habits usually is.

Scope the right city

I have traveled all over the country to identify a great place to live. I’ve lived in Los Angeles, New York, New Orleans, and Austin and spent substantial segments of time in other cities. This travel made a couple of things clear: One, I am very American, and I can only reside in the U.S. Two, my happiness level is greater in places with a slower pace of life. Three, I could acquire a lot more of what I wanted in a home and work/spend substantially less to live in the South. That’s why I bought a home in Texas.

Find professionals who you like, trust and most important, actually understands what you want

Many people think that a real estate agent is useless, that they can do it themselves. Usually, it is smarter to use a professional who understands the ins and outs of what you are attempting to accomplish.

This also includes selecting a qualified mortgage broker as well as finding a great insurance agent. (Shout out to our Houston, Texas home insurance agent, and our Houston auto insurance agent! )