• Activity
  • Votes
  • Comments
  • New
  • All activity
  • Showing only topics in ~life with the tag "housing". Back to normal view / Search all groups
    1. I toured a 'pocket community' of tiny home - the builders are trying to help solve the housing crisis in Canada

      Was just driving through a town in southern Manitoba and pulled over to take a break and saw these tiny homes: https://i.imgur.com/hG9NAGR.jpeg Tiny homes have always intrigued me so I talked to...

      Was just driving through a town in southern Manitoba and pulled over to take a break and saw these tiny homes: https://i.imgur.com/hG9NAGR.jpeg

      Tiny homes have always intrigued me so I talked to the owner. Its in a trailer park and this was a lot that was available for development so they had 16 tiny homes built in three sizes. The smallest is a 510 sf one bedroom, then a slightly larger one bedroom and the biggest one is a 920 sf two bedroom.

      They are "modular" homes which means they were manufactured in a factory a couple of hours away and trailered into the site. But despite the fact they travelled by trailer and that they sit on screwpiles instead of a foundation, they are fully built as regular homes.

      Its cold here in winter (down to -40c) so the homes are super insulated with about 12" of insulation in the floor and ceiling and 6" in the walls with another 2" of foam insulation on the outside walls. They are completely heated by the mini split system with the addition of a convection electric heater in each room to keep them warm in the coldest part of winter. Amazingly in a place where my own bills for electricity can hit $250 in winter without heat, the most the owner said she paid was $80 for electricity including heat.

      The interiors look like any regular home only smaller:https://i.imgur.com/aFufGMI.jpeg and definitely dont give the same vibe as a mobile home. It feels like a house with small rooms.

      So far the 2 bedroom units are selling fairly well but the one bedrooms arent moving as easily. Part of the problem was covid. In this town a 'starter' home can easily be 350k and they were hoping to sell these from 80k to 120k. But during covid everything skyrocketed from materials to moving costs and the least expensive unit is now 175k and the biggest one is 220k. Add on the 350 a month for lot rent, which includes yard care/shovelling, and its pushing the envelope of what most would consider "affordable" anymore but there's not much they can do now to bring the price down.

      Buyers so far tend to be those who are looking for tiny easy to care for space: a widow who sold her house and wants something small she can leave and go travelling, a guy who works for a railroad who's only home one week a month, a new immigrant family who are just happy to own something rather than pay the same amount in rent.

      I applaud them for having a vision and actually pursuing it. There are some kinks to work out and it would be great if the prices could drop significantly but at least its an alternative to renting or buying an older mobile home. Its one of the first tiny home communities Ive seen up close and I came away with a positive impression. I think its going to be a great little community of tiny home lovers.

      40 votes
    2. I am moving to New Jersey! Anything I should know?

      Hi Tildeans, Today I accepted an offer in New Jersey situated in New Brunswick. My partner and I will be moving out there likely late July/early August. We will be bringing two dogs, one cat, and...

      Hi Tildeans,

      Today I accepted an offer in New Jersey situated in New Brunswick. My partner and I will be moving out there likely late July/early August. We will be bringing two dogs, one cat, and one snake with us. For those that live around the area, is there anything I should know about finding places to rent (e.g. places to avoid)? We are willing to be a little bit away from New Brunswick, but I would like to have easy access to the rail line that goes through the city so I can commute in without the use of a car.

      Also, what are some recommendations for places to check out when we get there? We have pretty broad tastes when it comes to art, food, outdoor activities, and all of that. Lastly, if there is anything else you think I should know about the broader East coast area please feel free to share!

      24 votes
    3. I bought a house, now what?

      I posted previously about looking for a house for my disabled partner and myself and after several stressful months we're closing on April 30th! So, now what? I'm working on home insurance quotes,...

      I posted previously about looking for a house for my disabled partner and myself and after several stressful months we're closing on April 30th!

      So, now what? I'm working on home insurance quotes, I have the money arranged for closing. We're in the "these issues need addressed" phase of the contract process (there are no smoke detectors in this house wtf) and the home inspection raised no dealbreakers. No radon or termites.

      So what don't I know about? What new homeowner things do I need to be thinking about now? We plan to move in the latter half of May. Accessibility suggestions are also useful, we're going to have to add a small ramp inside (one step), move a cabinet in the kitchen and replace carpet in the master bedroom.

      Thanks for all the advice last time, please give me more of it?

      54 votes
    4. Trying to get a better idea of what goes into having a house built

      So I'm looking to get out of apartment living in the next couple of years, so I browse housing listings semi-frequently just to get an idea of what's out there and what I can expect cost wise. My...

      So I'm looking to get out of apartment living in the next couple of years, so I browse housing listings semi-frequently just to get an idea of what's out there and what I can expect cost wise.

      My boss made an offhand comment about buying a lot and getting a prefab installed on it, so I started looking into it, but I came back with a lot of questions.

      1. Home builders seem to have preset floor plans. Every time I try and find a prefab house, all I can find are blueprints for purchase. Do you find a plan you like and then find someone to build it?

      2. Home builders I find all build giant houses. I always see comments online about how "Builders can't build affordable homes because of red tape," but I don't understand how that means they can only build 5B/3Ba houses. I cannot find anyone that has preset plans for a 2B house.

      3. How much about getting a lot "ready" would be up to me vs a builder? Is that gonna depend on the builder and what they offer? Is that all done out of pocket, or would that be included in the construction loan?

      For reference, I'm in Atlanta, though I imagine a lot of these answers will be "It depends on the builder."

      29 votes
    5. Relative financial burden imposed on university students by housing cost in Germany steadily increasing. About a third of all students close to poverty line. How does this compare to your region?

      The latest iteration of a study regarding the cost of student housing in Germany found, that rent prices for students have risen to a germany-wide average of 479€. Three years ago the average was...

      The latest iteration of a study regarding the cost of student housing in Germany found, that rent prices for students have risen to a germany-wide average of 479€. Three years ago the average was just 391€. In Munich the average cost for student housing has risen to no less than 760€. This is more than double than the housing-cost covered by BAföG, a public program providing financial support to students from low-income families. [1]

      Statistically, more than a third of students in Germany are at risk of poverty at the moment, meaning they have less than 60% of the country's mean income available. [2] [3]

      Also with regards to Munich specifically, the number of designated student housing facilities has not grown significantly or even dropped over the past few years, while the number of students has been steadily increasing. This means that more and more students have to look for rooms in shared apartments on the city's highly competitive housing market. Statistically, these students are those that live close to the poverty line particularly often.

      I realize that the cost of high-quality higher education in Germany is not as majorly fucked as for example in the USA, but still the financial burden on students is steadily increasing due to housing cost. How does this compare to where you're from? How is student housing organized in your city, how much does it cost relative to the mean income, and do you experience similar trends in your region?

      Sources (german), besides in-person conversations and experiences:
      [1] https://cms.moses-mendelssohn-institut.de/uploads/24_03_19_Wohnkosten_Studierende_804a7b53ef.pdf
      [2] https://www.spiegel.de/start/statistisches-bundesamt-mehr-als-ein-drittel-der-studierenden-lebt-unter-der-armutsgrenze-a-460cb19f-8a62-43ab-8b52-652814234250
      [3] https://youtu.be/UVaY8SCtjwg

      28 votes
    6. House hunting tips for a millennial who's never owned one

      I'm starting the process of looking to buy a house. My partner uses a power wheelchair and anything we buy is going to need to be accessible or modifiable. So I know we're looking for a ranch,...

      I'm starting the process of looking to buy a house. My partner uses a power wheelchair and anything we buy is going to need to be accessible or modifiable. So I know we're looking for a ranch, probably 3/2 at most is what will be affordable but I'm finalizing my pre-approval now.

      That said... I'm almost 40 and I've never bought a house before. What are some things I need to know when looking at a house? I have a realtor and we're looking at our first place tomorrow. I'm bringing a measuring tape because the accessibility will matter.
      But I don't even know where to start and what the normal questions are!

      48 votes
    7. Graduated and moving to an apartment in a major city in the US, advice/tips?

      I graduated in the spring and spent the last few months at home with family. I'm hoping to find an apartment/job in a major US city working as a legal assistant or paralegal. I've never rented...

      I graduated in the spring and spent the last few months at home with family. I'm hoping to find an apartment/job in a major US city working as a legal assistant or paralegal.

      I've never rented before, so I have questions, but due to circumstances related to the ones pushing me away from staying at home any longer, I don't have any parents or older siblings to ask for help, so I'm hoping to crowdsource wisdom here. I have specific questions, but also happy to hear any general advice for someone renting an apartment for the first time.

      Some relevant context:

      • Studio apartment is nonnegotiable. I don't know anyone I trust enough to be my roommate. If that weren't enough, I'm one of the only people still wearing a mask and trying not to get COVID, so it's gotta be a studio for me to be able to relax.
      • I'm looking for a walkable neighborhood and good public transit in addition to affordability, so really looking at Chicago and Philly right now.
      • I love to cook, but I know studios often have really lackluster kitchens. Hoping to find one with a usable amount of counterspace.

      Those questions I had:

      1. If you offer to pay a landlord the cost of the lease in full, is it typical for the landlord to waive the requirement that you provide proof of employment, or if you asked them to waive that, would they be likely to say yes? I would really like to take some time off, and coming home was intended to be that, but toxic family means I've just been stressed the whole time, so being able to get a place without needing a job right off the bat would be a fantastic setup to make sure this new start goes well. (If I save up part-time earnings for the next 2-3 months, I'll have enough to pay a lease on a $1200 studio in full, furnish it with the necessities, and feed myself.)

      2. Recently I realized that when apartments are listed as unfurnished, that means no bed or mattress either. (I kind of see now why futons are a thing.) How do people usually address this issue? Do you buy a mattress and bed frame with the expectation that you'll take it with you whenever you move out to the next apartment?

      3. Since I don't live in the city I'll be moving to, I most likely won't be able to see the apartment in person before committing. Any particular ideas on how I could handle this or what I should be wary of? I've heard of services where you can pay someone to show up to a tour and video call you so you can follow along (https://www.gandertour.com/). $50 doesn't seem too steep, but I don't know if that specific service is trustworthy, or if there's a cheaper or simpler way to deal with this.

      Those are my questions, and like I said above, any advice not 100% related to these questions is welcome too!

      38 votes
    8. Is this really what renting is like now? (Pennsylvania, USA)

      Just coming back into the rental market after owning a home for a short time. I found a place that would be great. Then, I got the lease. This thing is a nightmare. Here are a few of the greatest...

      Just coming back into the rental market after owning a home for a short time. I found a place that would be great. Then, I got the lease.

      This thing is a nightmare. Here are a few of the greatest hits:

      • The lease lists my rent and then says they can charge "additional rent" which is "all added charges, costs, and fees for the duration of this lease." So, sounds like they can just make up a number and add it to the rent and I have to pay it?
      • The landlord will make a "good faith effort" to make the apartment available to me when my lease starts. Shouldn't the landlord actually do that, not just make any sort of "effort" to do it, "good faith" or otherwise?
      • If the unit is damaged such that I cannot live there while repairs are being made, the landlord "may" issue me a credit for the days I can't live there. What criteria will the landlord use? If they decide not to, that means I'll be paying rent for an apartment I cannot occupy?

      This is a short lease — I've seen much longer in my time renting — but even so, I could come up with a dozen more examples like this. What is going on here? I've read the law in the area, and I suspect some of the clauses in here are actually unenforceable. For example, the lease allows for automatic rent increases at lease renewal without notification while the law requires 60 days notification, and it requires me to notify 14 days after notification of a rent increase if I do not accept where the law says I have 30 days to do so.

      But how did we get here? I just want to pay a specified amount every month in order to be able to live in a space someone else owns. This should be relatively simple, but it's turned into this weird whack-a-mole game where every lease is a document of all that landlord's past tenant grievances they are trying to now avoid in the future, along with any other unreasonable terms they think they can get away with. Regardless of what the law is, the lease can say anything. If I read it and decline to sign, the next person will probably just sign it and hope for the best.

      For those of you who are renting, how do you deal with this sort of stuff? Are there reasonable landlords still out there? Is the right way to buy a home just to escape from unreasonable lease terms, even if you don't really want to own?

      Update: Possibly important context- This property is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

      47 votes
    9. What are your experiences with condo ownership?

      I'm deciding between home/condo ownership. A good condo/house cost roughly the same in my area. But I'm single and don't need a lot of space, so a condo makes sense. However, noise from neighbors...

      I'm deciding between home/condo ownership. A good condo/house cost roughly the same in my area. But I'm single and don't need a lot of space, so a condo makes sense. However, noise from neighbors is puts me off (a lot). Constantly hearing noise (parties, stomping, pets, etc.) would have a serious negative impact on what's supposed to be a home where you can relax and not deal with the world.

      What are/were your experiences? Did the HOA do their diligence when things break or need maintenance? Are their costs reasonable considering how much is needed (time+money) to maintain a house? Was the heated parking garage worth the costs?

      38 votes