For years Frank and I have said, “I can’t wait until we don’t have to say goodnight over the phone.” The wait will soon (in a couple of years) be over. We’ve blabbed on and on about wanting to get our own place, but that also came with the walk down the aisle. With both things –both money eaters- now possible because we’re not 16, the reality of it all is starting to affect us.
Frank would often joke that we would live in a cardboard box. Just he, Rocky and I; I would reply that I’d cut out windows and paint nice little window box planters with pretty pink flowers. One summer, when his parents bought an outdoor patio set, he jumped in the box with Rocky, pulled me in and said, “We’re home!”
But in all seriousness, talking day-to-day, it’s often a topic of conversation at least once a week. I berate Frank with listings that I hope he’ll ‘like’ just to gauge his ability to see past some minor fixer-uppers, versus the half a milli houses! We have even driven around town to see houses listed, for a better feel of the neighbourhood and to see the house to-scale! He’s becoming more and more educated on what his dollar will get him for a house, and is getting much better at guess-timating the asking price of houses I show him.
I’ve looked at houses all over the GTA, thus giving him a broader scope of real estate values and how they differ in different segments of the GTA. For us, I like our hometown – Scarborough – despite all the media fodder because there are pockets that are a great bang-for-your-buck! For example, Frank’s parents’ house is situated on a large lot, and in 25 minutes or less, you can drive to Downtown Toronto. 45, in rush hour.
I like Scarborough because its’ main roads run adjacent to the freeway – therefore to get between anywhere in town you’re going along the 401, and have all the 400 series highways accessible to you. If I end up working DT, GO transit runs along the Scarborough stretch, and key niches of Scarborough are getting face-lifts, new construction and stimulus. I like the locale of Scarborough – minus some irks – but all in all am comfortable with the housing prices, and travel times in peak hours.
To me, it’s in the middle of everything; the core to the west, the smaller ‘burbs and farms to the east, the up-and-coming towns to the north, with a gateway to it all.
In particular, we’re looking at something close to our parents’ houses; obvious reasons being when we have kids one day – we won’t have to bring them to daycare.
So all in all, this is our journey on the road to 100. (100 being the key number = 100,000 for a down payment) Even in conversation, every dollar that we don’t spend goes towards, “that 100,000.”