When my husband and I were first married, we were looking at apartments that were closer to the college campus where we were attending school. We looked at several before we came to a basement apartment right across the street from the University. I instantly fell in love with the place. It had new carpet, a diswasher, and the cutest little wallpaper border all around the kitchen.

We left with me nearly in tears. In spite of the fact that I lobbied (rather selfishly) to take the apartment, we didn’t move in. You see, my husband is 6′2″, and the ceilings in the place were only 6 feet. It was so cute, that I was willing to compromise my husband’s back health to live there (notice that I say I was willing, but I am only 5′4″).

What does this have to do with home mortgages and loans? There is a lesson to be learned here. When I walked into that apartment, I got starry eyed and didn’t see the whole picture. Jon would have been miserable there because he could never (not even in the shower) stand up straight. Think about that in terms of house hunting.

We were just looking to rent, but what if, in looking to buy, the perfect cottage style house in the country overrides the fact that there are so many repairs to be made that it’s going to cost a small fortune? What if, despite the idea that it’s just what you’ve always wanted, it’s so far away from work that you’re never home?

In short, don’t let your emotions take over when you are looking for your white picket fence dream. On the flip side, no house is perfect, especially older ones. It’s common for new owners to assume some of the repair responsibilities, and you shouldn’t let that nix a deal on a house that you and your family would love.

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