Wednesday, March 25, 2015

What's funny?

    I was showing a real estate guy my Dad's house, which is in somewhat rundown condition after 50 years almost of our benign neglect. He asked what we were looking for? I suggested that we wouldn't say no if somebody offered a million dollars. He laughed heartily and I put on my straight man face and said, "What's funny?"
    And that was funny, but I wasn't in every way kidding. Not that I had any illusions about the house being worth more than it is (my illusion was that it was worth less than it is) but more a question of replacement value. Owning a house outright is quite a thing. Buying another is a tremendous undertaking. It's probably worth more to us to keep the house, have William able to stay rather than go out and get an apartment, and also for us not to have to get all our stuff out of there.
    For all that each of us would get a nice pile of money from selling, that amount would be nowhere near enough to allow any of us to buy another house. A nice car, yes, but not a house. So crazy as it might be to keep a run-down house 50 years too long, it may be crazier still to sell it. Ironic, I suppose.

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