This has been weighing on my heart very heavily lately. Just before hurricane Wilma, all the residences of my apartment complex were notified that the property had been sold to a new company. Later, it was confirmed that the new company is going to turn our complex into condos. This would not be a bad thing for me, as I like my apartment, and have been here over 6 years.
Unfortunately, the asking price is WAY out of line with my rent. I usually don’t throw numbers out, but I have to be specific here, to give the scope of the change. My current rent is $920 a month for a 750 square foot 1 bedroom apartment. That’s pretty reasonable for Boca Raton. The rumor of the price that is going to be asked for for my apartment is approximately $250,000. I ran the numbers on a mortgage. Putting $12,500 as a down payment, with $4,000 in taxes (that’s a guess), and use 8% for 30 years, my mortgage payment would be somewhere in the area of $2,200 a month. This does *not* include homeowner association fees, which I’m sure are going to be high because of the nature of the complex. That’s a *HELL* of a jump in cost of living. I would have to *DOUBLE* my salary just to keep within shouting distance of my expenses. And folks, I make a *damn* good salary as is.
I’ve got a couple of options, all of which involve moving. I’m starting an apartment search closer to my work, as my lease is up in April. I’ve found a couple, but they of course are going to be more expensive. I have some other thoughts, but I do not wish to share them yet, as they will probably scare my boss.
What I really cannot understand is who CAN afford these places? My salary is close to what most two income families make, and I certainly can’t afford these places. Just up the road, they started building townhouses. I thought I’d look at those, but they STARTED at $350,000!!!! Are these people insane? Searching for houses/townhouses/condos reveals that there are few places under $250,000, and anything that is less is either not in a safe area or needs a LOT of work, or both. And, frankly, the housing down here is a pyramid scheme. Eventually, someone’s going to be left holding the bag, and at these prices, I’m afraid it would be *me*.