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Risking risk

It seems to me that people have vast potential. Most people can do extraordinary things if they have the confidence or take the risks. Yet most people don’t. They sit in front of the telly and treat life as if it goes on forever.
Philip Adams

I woke up in a weird mood this morning – a good mood, but kind of a give-yourself-a-kick-in-the-ass mood. And so I did.

I lay in bed thinking about why I was hesitating on that house. Yes, I like my neighbourhood. But is it possible I’m just resisting change, digging myself deeper into a rut, refusing to take a risk because I’m scared?

I decided to get on my bike and head over to the Carlington neighbourhood and explore it a bit. See if I could imagine myself ever feeling at home there. So that’s what I did. And I found I kind of liked the neighbourhood. It has big trees and trippy little dead-end streets, and lots of gardens, and some people having a garage sale. I stopped and perused the books in the garage sale and then struck up a conversation with the woman running it. I told her I was thinking about buying the place up the street, and asked her how she liked the neighbourhood. She likes it well enough that she’s lived there since 1985, so I guess she’s even more resistant to change than me. She told me where the grocery stores were, and the community centre, and a bit about the buses, and where I could walk my dog.

I biked around a bit more and suddenly made a snap decision to buy the place. I rode home as fast as I could, fearful of a bidding war, phoned my agent immediately, and asked him to draw up the offer.

As SOON as I got off the phone, I started having second (and 3rd, 4th and 5th) thoughts. Gone was most of my apprehension about the new neighbourhood. What replaced it was a sick realization in the pit of my stomach that Bush is dragging the US into a deep recession, possibly a depression, and the US will take Canada down with it. I’m going to lose my job AND my house. If I were smart, I would have waited until the economy collapsed, and then I would have made like a vulture and bought my dream home for next-to-nothing from some poor soul who could no longer afford to keep it.

Isn’t that awful?

Anyway, too late now. I signed the offer. I jumped on the real estate bandwagon at precisely the wrong time. In a year or two, somebody’s going to get my house for next-to-nothing because I will no longer be able to afford to keep it.

I’ve spent the rest of the day waiting to find out if my offer has been accepted. I hope it has not. I hope the seller likes her window coverings and washing machine so much that she refuses to throw them in, and instead makes a counter-offer, and then I can just say “No thank you, I had my heart set on your sheers.”

4 comments to Risking risk

  • If she accepts the offer, you can always hope that the inspection turns up a needed repair to the roof shingles.

  • Dakota

    Maybe you are experiencing (pre) house buying jitters! I hope everything will work out just the way you want!

  • Gillian

    I understand those jitters and would be sharing them.
    No i’m not the Gillian from 55 Parkdale. I worked opposite the market.
    An open mortgage, as I understand it, allows you to pay down extra whenever you can, and that makes a difference in the long run. A closed mortgage says ‘pay according to contract’ and that’s it. No opportunity to improve your situation. You may pay a slightly higher rate, but we thought it was worth it.
    you have my e-mail so we can talk directly if you want to. I believe in sharing info. I’m not always right about things. I hope I’m right making the offer.
    Good luck.

  • Gillian, thanks very much for that offer – and I might just take you up on it. I talked to my broker last night, and talked to him about open and closed mortgages. I’m going with the open mortgage, as you recommended. I like the idea of having the option of paying it down faster if I can – however unlikely that seems at the moment!