Seeking homeowner advice!

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FF Fanatic 80
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Seeking homeowner advice!

Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Fri Feb 13, 2009 10:07 pm

So, after years of saying I'd like to get my own place, then slipping into angsty whines on AIM when it fell through...

Sorry Jason/Ashley/Shaun/Dia/[insert name here], by the way =(

Anyway! Barring some kind of major screw up, it appears I will soon be the owner of a small two-bedroom condo! My offer was accepted, and I'm just waiting on the seller to review the purchase and sale docs. If there are no major hurdles, I'll be closing at the end of March.

So I ask the homeowners out there, any general advice or words of wisdom?

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Kai
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Unread postby Kai » Fri Feb 13, 2009 11:02 pm

First thing: WOOHOO!

Second! Hit thrift stores and second-hand shops of all varieties for furniture. Classifieds in your newspaper may also have that, because bookshelves, bureaus, and a bedframe? All good times.

Beyond that? It's a condo. You won't have to do things like shovel snow, rake leaves, or fix anything yourself if the super'll do it. So that's cool.

My only advice would be to clean messes as you make them, and buy that after-shower spray that keeps your bathtub from ever becoming dirty. Huge time-saver, I've found.

Edit: Hardwood floors or carpet?

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Fri Feb 13, 2009 11:24 pm

bedrooms have carpets.
The living room, kitchen and hall (between the bedrooms and bathroom) have hardwood.

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Besyanteo
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Unread postby Besyanteo » Fri Feb 13, 2009 11:50 pm

The living room, kitchen and hall (between the bedrooms and bathroom) have hardwood.


:( *jealous*

Right! So, invest in a little vacuum, a broom, and if the hardwood is smooth (I can't imagine why, but some people get and enjoy walking on rough hardwood floors. o_o) look around for some kind of wet mop made special for that. It probably won't look anything like a mop. Anyway! Wood is nice, but it can go to shit pretty badly if you don't keep it up. Especially when it's in the kitchen: Things sink in if they're left there, and then you're either on the floor scrubbing it away later by hand, or you just have to accept that you now have a dirty looking floor.

Not much else comes to mind right now. Arr.

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pd Rydia
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Unread postby pd Rydia » Sat Feb 14, 2009 4:38 pm

Congrats!

Is there anything in particularly that concerns you that you'd like advice on?

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Christian
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Unread postby Christian » Sat Feb 14, 2009 5:38 pm

Try not to freak out.

If you're moving in with someone, that's great. If not, try to have friends over (oh, and set rules if you plan to have friends over often; it's amazing how quickly all your plates, mugs and what have yous get used up and planted all over your place) as the first few months can be a bit shaky. Speaking out of personal experience, as the lack of social interaction with my friends for a couple of weeks due to work (I wasn't studying at the time, so I was working all day to make due) made me depressed as hell.

Anyway, *coughs* never settle for how you want to keep your furniture. I'm always moving stuff around, throwing out old junk I found and replacing it with new junk. Put up shelves on the walls for space-saving and keep your kitchen clean of anything non-kitcheny if you can help it.

Finally, if you're allowed to, get a pet. I got my hamster half a year ago, and he's great company. Just the fact that you have someone/something else in your place moving around, making sounds and demanding attention lightens up your life considerably.

Anyway, enjoy your new place. Always pay your bills at the earliest possible moment!

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pd Rydia
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Unread postby pd Rydia » Sat Feb 14, 2009 8:01 pm

Christian wrote:Always pay your bills at the earliest possible moment!
Best advice ever. One missed payment hurts your credit something awful, and it takes 7 to 11 years for that to drop off your credit history. Not to mention that trying to pay a late bill can be a pain and a half, what with ridiculous phone waits and mandatory paying by cash and all other manner of hoops to jump through.

My favorite way of paying bills is online billpay+automatic payment. I haven't manually paid my student loan in months, because I've got my online account set to make the minimum payment every month. When I'm feeling extra generous, I can send them an extra payment or two. Some of my bills arrive online, while others I receive via snailmail and pay online.

Also: Look at your monthly income and (overestimates of your) monthly bills. Find the difference. That is how much money you have to spend each month on things other than bills (duh). Some of that should go to savings and some of that should be your monthly luxury money. I suggest that you decide on a set amount of luxury money per month ($100, $250, whatever works out between your income, bills, spending habits, and self-control) and stick to it. Remember that if you set it too low, you may not be able to stick to it, or you may feel constantly stressed because you don't have the means by which to unwind (going to the movies, eating out with friends, etc.) As for your savings, I don't know what most people use it for, but I consider my savings an "emergency fund." My goal is to save up 3x[monthly bills]. That amount of money can handle the normal shit that life throws my way--the $1000 car repair, the $500 cat repair, the vacuum replacement, and so on--when life throws it my way.

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Unread postby Ark » Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:42 pm

Randomally drilling holes in walls is bad.

Make cleaning up a habit or you'll have years of dirt and dust before you know it and a days work becomes a weeks.

Leave the toilet seat up. You're living alone so who cares!?

Make sure to keep your keys in an easily remembered place or on you at all times, and stick to it. Living alone and losing your keys can be disastorious.

Try to think of what food you want on a weekly baises if you don't make many trips to stores/supermarkets and stock up. Having the munchies and not having anything in ya house is sad.

Beware leaving stuff on. Beware!!
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Unread postby Christian » Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:50 pm

Ark wrote:Randomally drilling holes in walls is bad.

Make cleaning up a habit or you'll have years of dirt and dust before you know it and a days work becomes a weeks.

Leave the toilet seat up. You're living alone so who cares!?

Make sure to keep your keys in an easily remembered place or on you at all times, and stick to it. Living alone and losing your keys can be disastorious.

Try to think of what food you want on a weekly baises if you don't make many trips to stores/supermarkets and stock up. Having the munchies and not having anything in ya house is sad.

Beware leaving stuff on. Beware!!


Cleaning: Completely agreee. I'm a slob, and nothing makes me more satisfied than when I FINALLY get my ass out of the wagon and clean stuff up. I live in a modestly sized one-roomer, so usually it goes pretty quickly, but I haven't mopped my floor in ages... *shudders*

Toilet seat: NO! FOR SHAME! BAD CHOARK! BAD! I always urge my guests and myself to sit down. The urinal stench of just a few days of standing is horrible. It's inevitable when you get up at 3 am to slay the beast of Venezuela.

Keys: Can't stress this enough. One time when I was at a friend's living quite some distance away from me, I got ill and had to get home. After almost three hours of travel I arrived at my door only to find that I'd forgotten my keys at his place. It was horrible. It's an overwhelming feeling that I wouldn't want anyone to feel. Locked out of your own home. You won't believe it 'til it happens to you.

Food: Yes. This is also incredbly important. I have the luxury of working part-time at a store, so I usually get my basic necessities there on the weekends when I work, and try to make things keep for two weeks. Usually I succeed, but only because of four years of hungry nights when I've, in sheer desperation, eaten canned tomatoes and drunk water.

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Unread postby pd Rydia » Mon Feb 16, 2009 6:59 pm

Quamat guide to planning meals:
http://quamut.com/quamut/planning_meals

I felt really stupid buying one of these from B&N, but honestly, when I moved out, I knew zero about grocery shopping. It's saved me a lot of money and time in the end.

Also recommended: http://quamut.com/quamut/slow_cookers

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Unread postby Justice Augustus » Wed Feb 18, 2009 11:26 pm

I agree with the advice above, especially the bit about thrift stores, with one important exception: beds.

I don't know what it is, but I do not like second-hand beds. Buy a new one, they're fairly cheap for the number of years they will last you, and you can choose the exact firmness that you like. Over time it'll mold itself to you, and it'll be the best bed ever.

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Unread postby PriamNevhausten » Thu Feb 19, 2009 12:13 am

Always, always make sure there is a working dishwasher.
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pd Rydia
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Unread postby pd Rydia » Thu Feb 19, 2009 9:52 am

Justice Augustus wrote:I agree with the advice above, especially the bit about thrift stores, with one important exception: beds.

I don't know what it is, but I do not like second-hand beds. Buy a new one, they're fairly cheap for the number of years they will last you, and you can choose the exact firmness that you like. Over time it'll mold itself to you, and it'll be the best bed ever.

I almost suggested this myself, but wanted to hear back on specifics. And now I'm replying to everyone else's replies.

Anyway, it's the mattress you want new. A bed frame can be gotten used--you almost certainly can get a hollywood frame from freecycle.

Dunno about box springs, but I'd lean toward "new" on that, too.


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