Real Estate

Buying a house to live in only 2 years?

  • Last Updated:
  • Sep 5th, 2020 3:09 pm
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2010
4054 posts
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LiquoriceTea wrote: Hi all, would appreciate any advice you have on whether or not we should buy a house.

Spouse got a job in a rural area for 2 years with great pay. I'll be on maternity leave for most of the contract so will be moving up too. Our plan was to rent a home or apartment however the rental market there is horrible at the moment. There are very few rentals available. The ones that do come up are geared towards single people i.e. a room in a house for $800+. The only option we have found is to stay at this old inn for $2000+ a month. It's ok, but not somewhere we would want to stay for 2 years.

The houses in the area are reasonably priced. We could purchase a 2-3 bed detached home for 200-250k. We could certainly afford it, and the monthly mortgage payments would be much lower than renting. I would feel more comfortable being in my own home but I realise that buying a house to live in it only a few years doesn't usually make financial sense.

We feel that it would be easy to rent after we move out, however we will be 1000 kms away so will need to hire property manager once we return to our hometown. If we sell, I'm not expecting there to be an increase in value in 2 years time.

Another option would be to rent a place in a nearby city and commute in to town. It's just over an hour's drive (more in the winter). Spouse isn't used to snowy conditions so would prefer to avoid this.
Since you mention the rental market is horrible, what about keeping the house after and renting it out? Is that a possibility and if yes, would you be able to easily rent it out? This would be a good income generator. Also, if the town you'll be living in near a touristy area, perhaps consider buying close to there instead. Is the employer paying for any of the moving costs or giving extra $$ given the housing situation?
Sr. Member
Oct 22, 2016
618 posts
519 upvotes
Comox Valley
LiquoriceTea wrote: Chetwynd BC
Rent. One of the reasons why there, would be the economy. If rental market is good there now, it may be because of high lumber prices, and active economy.

If things go downhill there in 2 years, selling a house would be very tough. Industry towns can be like that.

Enjoy your time there.
[OP]
Newbie
Apr 30, 2013
80 posts
35 upvotes
RealtorInvestor wrote: Find an investor who buys properties in town, present to them that you are a AAA tenant and that you would love to rent out a property from them. There is a chance that they would purchase a property based on your needs and then lease it out to you.
This is an interesting idea, not something we would have thought about! It's a super small town tough, population 2500. I wonder if there are many people looking to invest in properties in town? Something to look in to.
Deal Guru
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Sep 14, 2003
10585 posts
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Mississauga
Lease an RV and live in that for 2 years.
4chan melts your brain.
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Mar 23, 2008
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Edmonton
danfromwaterloo wrote: Lease an RV and live in that for 2 years.
You did catch the part where someone is going on maternity leave, right? And the town in question is Chetwynd, BC, which is in the northern part of the province; it's about as far north as the most northern point of mainland Ontario. I don't see anyone living up there in an RV with a newborn for two years.

OP, you MIGHT be able to rent/buy a mobile home, if you check around. Not exactly ideal, maybe, but close to reality.

C
Deal Guru
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Sep 14, 2003
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CNeufeld wrote: You did catch the part where someone is going on maternity leave, right? And the town in question is Chetwynd, BC, which is in the northern part of the province; it's about as far north as the most northern point of mainland Ontario. I don't see anyone living up there in an RV with a newborn for two years.

OP, you MIGHT be able to rent/buy a mobile home, if you check around. Not exactly ideal, maybe, but close to reality.

C
You can totally live in an RV with a newborn. Tons of people in Alabama and Mississippi do it, AND, they have enough room to cook meth too.
4chan melts your brain.
Member
Jun 6, 2014
223 posts
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Toronto, ON
You can try asking people who have listed their properties to see if they're willing to rent it out instead of sell. This would also put in you touch with the local realtors in the area who could ask around.
Newbie
Sep 1, 2020
4 posts
I’ve lived in Chetwynd for several years, I owned for the first 6, but sold last year (and went back to renting) due to a variety of factors I feel are upcoming. It certainly feels like a peak of sorts. Rent is also at its peak especially with covid as it has pushed people who would normally stay in camp back into town with closures or capacity reductions. When the mine was closed a few years ago rents were half of current prices with lots of incentives like first month free....sometimes stuff does sell fast (mine was under a month). There’s at least a couple properties that has been for sale the whole time I’ve been here!
Honestly housing is the biggest crux of living here. I wouldn’t recommend anyone move here right now unless they are flexible on housing (renting a room, living in a travel trailer). Or could commit to here longer term. That being said you certainly aren’t the only one who would try to buy and sell with a couple years. Chetwynd has generally avoided the boom and bust like other towns due to more variety of work (*cough* Tumbler ridge), but who knows what the future brings. You’re price is optimistic unless you want more of a project (250-300,000 is more the norm)....although legion sub has much more affordable housing if you’ll take a trailer on its own lot.
Last edited by NorthBC on Sep 2nd, 2020 11:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Jr. Member
Dec 12, 2011
174 posts
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Toronto
Speaking as a parent of young children, and having friends and family that headed out to fort mac for a couple years/ bounced around BC in telecom work a few, I'd like to mention something here that nobody else will touch on. I hope you and your spouse are mentally prepared for what lies ahead. You will be moving to a very remote town with no friends or family for support during a time when you will absolutely need them the most. It is going to be very isolating both physically and emotionally. I can assume your spouse will spend long hours away from home for work, while you will be home tending to your baby. How will you get to a hospital if you need to go urgently? Will you have your own separate vehicle to drive yourself? What about if your baby needs to go to the hospital right away? Are you able to drive the baby yourself or are you going to have to first make contact with your spouse, ask him drop everything he is doing (tough to do when working in a team environment) and rush home to drive you guys? There are a number of prenatal apts, and also checkups after birth for both mommy and baby and I see this as something that will be much more difficult, especially with a husband that wont be working typical hours. Usually the people that take on these jobs go in with a mindset that they are doing a short prison bid/army stint for a couple of years. My guy that was forced to bring his gf along, well it didnt end well for them because the situation became too stressful. Add postpartum depression into the mix (which is very real), and things can become very bleak. Also, if your husband is going to work long hours doing a very physical job, rest and recovery will be of utmost importance to his on the job safety. This will be much harder to achieve when cramped in close quarters and a crying newborn right beside him. Anyways, not saying your spouse shouldn't take the job, I just wanted you to keep all of these things in mind.
Deal Addict
May 23, 2017
1038 posts
828 upvotes
clydelee2020 wrote: Speaking as a parent of young children, and having friends and family that headed out to fort mac for a couple years/ bounced around BC in telecom work a few, I'd like to mention something here that nobody else will touch on. I hope you and your spouse are mentally prepared for what lies ahead.
I second this...as a new parent of a small baby I know for a fact we could not have done this (uproot ourselves for 2 years to a rural area with no support). Being a new parent is really hard, and I think a lot of first-time parents-to-be underestimate just how hard it is. OP definitely make sure you are mentally prepared for this move.

As for your original question, if I were you I would buy. Two years is a long time to live somewhere you're not comfortable in, especially with a newborn.
[OP]
Newbie
Apr 30, 2013
80 posts
35 upvotes
NorthBC wrote: I’ve lived in Chetwynd for several years, I owned for the first 6, but sold last year (and went back to renting) due to a variety of factors I feel are upcoming. It certainly feels like a peak of sorts. Rent is also at its peak especially with covid as it has pushed people who would normally stay in camp back into town with closures or capacity reductions. When the mine was closed a few years ago rents were half of current prices with lots of incentives like first month free....sometimes stuff does sell fast (mine was under a month). There’s at least a couple properties that has been for sale the whole time I’ve been here!
Honestly housing is the biggest crux of living here. I wouldn’t recommend anyone move here right now unless they are flexible on housing (renting a room, living in a travel trailer). Or could commit to here longer term. That being said you certainly aren’t the only one who would try to buy and sell with a couple years. Chetwynd has generally avoided the boom and bust like other towns due to more variety of work (*cough* Tumbler ridge), but who knows what the future brings. You’re price is optimistic unless you want more of a project (250-300,000 is more the norm)....although legion sub has much more affordable housing if you’ll take a trailer on its own lot.
Thanks for the reply! It's nice to hear from someone who actually lives there and has some knowledge of the area's market. I think rent is certainly at it's peak, we have been on wait lists for apartments for a few months and have been asking around but no luck so far. With only a few months left before I join him, we are getting worried about being able to find a suitable place in time, which is why we are considering buying. Our worry though is being able to sell the home in a reasonable amount of time once we return to our hometown. We are trying to be flexible and looking at all our options, but with a newborn on the way, we are a bit picky about housing.
[OP]
Newbie
Apr 30, 2013
80 posts
35 upvotes
clydelee2020 wrote: Speaking as a parent of young children, and having friends and family that headed out to fort mac for a couple years/ bounced around BC in telecom work a few, I'd like to mention something here that nobody else will touch on. I hope you and your spouse are mentally prepared for what lies ahead. You will be moving to a very remote town with no friends or family for support during a time when you will absolutely need them the most. It is going to be very isolating both physically and emotionally. I can assume your spouse will spend long hours away from home for work, while you will be home tending to your baby. How will you get to a hospital if you need to go urgently? Will you have your own separate vehicle to drive yourself? What about if your baby needs to go to the hospital right away? Are you able to drive the baby yourself or are you going to have to first make contact with your spouse, ask him drop everything he is doing (tough to do when working in a team environment) and rush home to drive you guys? There are a number of prenatal apts, and also checkups after birth for both mommy and baby and I see this as something that will be much more difficult, especially with a husband that wont be working typical hours. Usually the people that take on these jobs go in with a mindset that they are doing a short prison bid/army stint for a couple of years. My guy that was forced to bring his gf along, well it didnt end well for them because the situation became too stressful. Add postpartum depression into the mix (which is very real), and things can become very bleak. Also, if your husband is going to work long hours doing a very physical job, rest and recovery will be of utmost importance to his on the job safety. This will be much harder to achieve when cramped in close quarters and a crying newborn right beside him. Anyways, not saying your spouse shouldn't take the job, I just wanted you to keep all of these things in mind.
The stress of being new parents without family support is something that does worry us about moving to a new town, especially a rural one. Thankfully my husband does not have the typical northern job and works 9-5 in a non-physical job. Not to say it isn't demanding, but it does make things a bit easier, especially for getting to appointments and such. I think that our mental health and the isolation is something we didn't immediately consider when he took the job. Then again, we also weren't expecting at the time, so we are trying our best to work with our situation. Making sure we are comfortable and have enough space for a newborn is one of the main reasons we are considering buying. Anything to make things a bit easier for us! It will also be more suitable for when parents and family come to visit.
Deal Addict
Nov 23, 2003
1931 posts
469 upvotes
If it was GTA or some hot market, buying and selling in a short period of time will still provide gains but in not so hot areas, it’s a bad choice.

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