Thursday, June 05, 2008

Feeling Lucky, but It's Not About Luck

This article is one of many that has been in the news in the past year or so. It's highlighting the crisis of home ownership in America. This is a very big deal because owning property is part of the foundation of this country: economically, socially, etc. Think about what it means to own your home, and what it means to own a home in one neighborhood versus another. Cities and towns function primarily through property taxes levied on homes. It's a big deal.

If you recall, I own an apartment in Brooklyn. It's far from the shi-shi areas that most people covet in Brooklyn, but it's a nice neighborhood, and the apartment is huge compared to most of those apartments in the shi-shi area...900 square feet, baby! There was a time a few years ago where I was way behind in my mortgage. To be behind in my mortgage means to owe the bank 4 figures in a hot minute, so just imagine what being way behind looked like. The amount due every month is totally doable, but as soon as you get behind, you get screwed. I was screwed.

It took a year, but I worked my *ss off to get back on track and I haven't fallen behind since. When I moved to Boston, I found a fabulous tenant who pays the rent on time every month and keeps the apartment nice. So now she's paying my mortgage. Good times.

I feel fortunate that I'm not the one in 11 who's facing foreclosure. I feel lucky that I have a tenant in my place. I also feel charmed that I did not receive a sub-prime mortgage, that my rate is fixed for the life of my loan. But I also feel proud that I pulled my mortgage back in good standing on my own...before the economic sh*t hit the fan. And that my mortgage remains in good standing through this national crisis. I did that! Luck has nothing to do with that.

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