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Do Mortgages Housebreak Us?

Jan 8, 2008
A house is the biggest investment most of us will make. That's why my husband and I spent the first six years of our marriage in an apartment. Looking back, it was six years of someone else fixing things, six years of someone else mowing the lawn and six years of someone else paying the taxes. Nevertheless, one son and a pregnancy later, we decided we were throwing money out the regularly washed window. The money we were spending to rent an apartment could be spent to buy a house - so we bought one. Then, instead of throwing money out the window, we had to buy new windows for a house.

New windows, however, weren't the first thing we got for our house. The first thing was a mortgage. Fifteen to thirty years of worrying about monthly payments, fixed or variable, is enough to lose sleep over. Nevertheless, I sleep well. Because the interest on the mortgage is tax deductible, I'm sleeping in my very own tax shelter.

Our present tax shelter is a condo, which I thought would be the best of two worlds - an apartment that we (and the mortgage company) owned. Wrong. Before I moved into a condo I thought HA was half a laugh. Now I know it stands for Homeowner's Association - the rules and regulations mafia; and I'm married to one of the mafia's hit men. Yes, someone else takes care of the maintenance and someone else mows the lawn; but everyone takes care of my business. I star in my own version of "Vendetta Secrets of a Mafia Bride"; and one of my not-so-secret secrets is that you can pick the neighborhood and you can pick the house, but you can't pick the neighbors. It seems the Hatfields and McCoys are alive and well and going under assumed names in the witness protection program.

When you're a homeowner, the only things that are certain are death, taxes and - termites. You can tent termites, freeze them or spray them with orange oil; but if you look closely, they look like tiny Arnold Schwarzeneggers and you can hear them saying, "I'll be back".

When you're a homeowner, it's always something. The paint is peeling, the carpet needs replacing or the dishwasher is making that funny noise again - but I'm not complaining. Complaining only leads to an early gravestone that says, "Her Home Is Heavenly At Last".
About the Author
KNIGHT PIERCE HIRST takes humorous looks at life.
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http://knightwatch.typepad.com
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