With today’s real estate market, I’m not certain whether I should sale (attempt) and purchase or hold my cards? I purchased my home in 2003 and was lucky to afford a 20% down payment and paid all closing costs up front. I’ve upgraded or paid out of pocket: kitchen/dinning pergo floors; garage door opener; fridge (standard 18 CU); interior paint, plantation blinds (faux wood); some lighting fixtures; microwave, solid surface stove (rarely used as I don’t cook; cats like to lay on it to keep ‘cool’); landscaping (additional trees, shrubs, perennials, raised garden bed); and additional sod (builder placed 3 pallets and I later placed 5 pallets, yet not entire yard is covered yet by centipede on .39 acre). My home is 1225 sf, and although I’m fine with the square footage, spreading across 3 bedrooms takes away from each room. If it were only bedrooms and a jack/jill bathroom, it would be much more spacious. Also, I’d like less yard. Why? Because in a few months I’ll purchase my own horse and don’t want to spend time in yard when I could be at the barn!

I purchased my present home new in 2003 after my divorce as I did not want to pay rent when I could have an investment and tax write-off. Also, I wanted to learn to live on my own.

I’ve always wanted a house in the country where I’d have my own horse on site, yet being single this is difficult b/c the work involved would leave little time for riding. Also, horses are social animals and would need a companion, i.e., another horse, donkey, goats, etc. All of which would require more money and care! Additionally, I’ve looked at ‘horse friendly’ or equine communities which are very expensive, above $250,000 for lot & home, not including fences and barn! So, have looked at townhouse communities around mid $150s. There are new concepts such as ‘villages’ with grocer, physician, business, parks, pools, walking paths, etc. all w/in walking distance and encompassed within the ‘village’ and mixed with single family and varied condos/townhouses.

My mortgage is $600, less than rent on a 2-bedroom apartment.

My vehicle is 7 years old with 85,000 miles and I’ve not had a car payment since 1995. Thus, I’m a bit frightened about having a car payment. I like to drive my vehicles 8-years, then sell rather than trade as I usually come out better. However, Fall 2008 I’d like to purchase a new vehicle with towing capacity for a 2-horse trailer. Thus, car payments.

So, guess I propose my question as should I sell/buy now with today’s real estate market (buyers rather than sellers market) and have a higher mortgage and drive my car 2 – 3 more years, or wait and purchase new vehicle and pay off then sale/buy new home while earning more equity and hoping market will improve and make a profit? Either way, I’d really like solid surface countertops, upgraded counters, plumbing fixtures, wood floors, etc. Perhaps by then, I could build my own cottage of my design and specifications on a smaller lot with the same square footage now and a 1-car garage. Who knows, perhaps I’ll come across an ‘antique’ home with original wood floors that I could up-date with ‘green’ materials?

Here I’ve exhibited the facts, thoughts that will affect my decision, yet local realtors don’t really care about a single woman’s thoughts that affect her decision making. They simply want to make a sale, especially with the present market.

I’d appreciate your thoughts and suggestions, let me know if you need my zip code. Having typed these scenarios, I find myself leaning towards waiting a few years until the next vehicle is paid off – for those who wait good things come! Yet, I would like your inputs. Thank you ladies.