disappearing

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

About two months ago, Brad and I started throwing around the idea of buying property. We love our apartment but you get to a certain age and realize that all of the money you spend on rent is just going to nothing and that sorta blows. Especially when you see your tax return.

We set up an appointment to get pre-approved for a mortgage like a couple of rich white people. A few years ago when all of my grandparents decided to die all at once, I was thrown onto a carousel of paperwork, wills, trusts, legal things, and a house. Yup! My three cousins, my sister, and I inherited a lake house in Michigan that I'm told my great grandfather built. Problem was none of us lived in Michigan. So we sold it for basically nothing. On top of my inheritance money, I now had money from the sale of a home just sitting in a savings account.

What I'm getting at is: I have a very, very fat down payment for a home.

On top of being a literal heiress, I work a full-time, salaried job. And I get paid well. My health insurance is included in my pay and since I am generally healthy, I don't have medical expenses or ongoing medications that cost me anything. I have 1 credit card that usually has about a $300 balance with a $15 minimum monthly payment. My student loans are paid off in full and I don't have any other outstanding balances. All this to say, my credit is insanely good, I don't have huge expenses or debt, and I'm financially thriving.

So we went to meet with a mortgage consultant. I was told, prior to our meeting, that in order to get approved for a mortgage, they run your credit, check your balances, and you figure out a budget. BASIC STUFF, RIGHT?

Our consultant went on to give me a budget lesson. Confused, I let him talk down to me and explain that if I wanted a house that cost X amount of money, I would need to be making X amount of money. Right, right. I am a dumb woman, obviously. Please continue explaining this very rudimentary concept of making money and paying a mortgage, white man. Thank you.

Once he was finished explaining how paying bills works, he then asked me if I had any outstanding debt, "like a Victoria's Secret credit card?" Because, you see, Internet, I just can't stop buying lingerie! If only my love of overpriced lacy things could be tamed. I am a woman so naturally this must be the case.

I said no. I don't have a Victoria's Secret credit card. I almost went into a rant about how I buy all of my underwear at TJ Maxx because I don't like to spend a lot on it since I'm always getting my period on things, but I went with my gut and decided that saying less would be more.

He then told Brad that he'd want to ask his family for money. Because, you know, he's a white guy, so he probably has a rich family.

All of this without even looking at our accounts or credit scores.

Jaded, we went to our favorite bar down the street and killed ourselves in tequila.

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I recognize that this was a bit of an anomaly. Since telling people close to me about this incredibly degrading, sexist meeting, my life has been inundated with well-meaning people giving me their mortgage people's phone numbers and email addresses and sending me house listings. I already know what I can afford in a home, it's just a matter of a lender signing off on that number. I know that if I went into another office, I'd be approved within a half hour. Hell, my dad just got approved because my parents are moving out of state as soon as next month. I recognize that I simply saw the wrong person on the wrong day at the wrong time, but I took it as a sign from the universe that I need to just chill. And again, my apartment is badass. Sometimes I look around and can't believe where I live. I'm in no rush to buy, but it sure would be nice.

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So I took my budget and looked up real estate in my old neighborhood in Nashville. It's no secret that Southern California real estate is beyond sensible and frankly, not necessarily even worth it. I got the fuck out of Los Angeles County because the people make living here so awful. Did you know I can buy a 4 bedroom house, with a yard, near 12 South, for LESS than I could buy a 2 bed, 2 bath, 900 square foot condo in California? Even more, I can buy a 5 bedroom house on a ranch just outside of Nashville... for even less!

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Life is weird, man. My parents house is stark and clinical since removing everything from the walls, patching holes, and painting everything white. They've replaced the kitchen floors, fixed all of the dog scratches on the front door, and are boxing things up. They go on the market next month and, presumably, will be out of California by this Summer. They have a city in mind and I'm doing everything in my power to prevent it from happening because it isn't good, you guys. It's really, really trashy.

I had the brilliant idea of getting them to move to Nashville instead. Have them get the ranch on the lake with the yard. Give me a reason to go back to Tennessee.

I'm going where there ain't no fear,
I'm going where the spirit is near,
I'm going where the living is easy,
And the people are kind.
A new state of mind.

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My sister is moving out of state around the same time as well. She is graduating from law school this weekend and will, most likely, be starting a hugely prestigious job that I can't even discuss online. It would be taking her to the same place my parents are going.

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Everyone is disappearing.